My Last Jump?

Airborne Jump

Today was probably my last airborne jump on airborne status in the Army. I’ll miss it. =( Everything went according to schedule this time — I had missed the last jump even though I was manifested because of miscommunication. And the jump before that, we had our seatbelts on for an hour before the air force guys said the plane was broken.

So I was on the first stick to jump off, and the ramp door of the C-130 wouldn’t open…on the third try, it finally did, and there was an eruption of cheer from those on-board who knew what was going on (i.e., not the cherry jumpers who have never jumped outside of basic airborne school). Then the plane slowed down and we walked off the ramp. As it turned out, one of the steering toggles on my chute ripped as my chute opened, so I couldn’t steer and just went in a horizontal circle straight down to the ground. What a way to go out! I yelled at the guy who was after me to get out of the way, and he steered away in time. Soft landing, in a marshy part so my butt got wet.

Here’s pretty much what our ramp jumps are like, minus the gay music:

Grad School

Okay, so I have confirmed that my grad school applications are complete, except for UT Austin, which has been closed all this week due to the deep freeze they’re taking right now! I’m pretty proud of myself, because I did almost all of this work on my own. I studied for the GREs while in Iraq and after I got back home, then took them and did pretty well. I had to do all six of my applications including all the leg- and phone- work for them, which was pretty ridiculous because you also have to pay the school to look at your application. You have to jump through a lot of hoops just to get considered.

I don’t know if I’ll get in anywhere but even if I don’t, I think I’ll be pretty proud of myself. I gave it my best effort and it’s what I want to do, so we’ll see what happens. I won’t be devastated if I don’t get in but I do feel like I’d be a very good student who could add a lot wherever I went.

The good part is that it’s done with and now I can move on and not worry about it too much. Until I find out where I get accepted and then have to make life-altering decisions which not only affect me but my girlfriend, her family, my family, career, and my checking balance!

Extra bonus: I drive back home with all my stuff in a month. Extra un-bonus: no more hanging out with my enlisted bro’s. =/

PHP and AJAX

aard mentioned CakePHP to me and so I finally checked it out the other day. It allows you to create easy interfaces for your database and has a bunch of pre-built stuff that makes scaling a web site far easier than doing it by hand. I’m trying to figure it out slowly and so far it’s tougher than it would be if I just did things normally. But I’ve migrated some of my project to it and am testing my limits.

I also started using Scriptaculous, which is a javascript with a lot of functions built-in. Since I had started using some AJAX back when it was still primitive, my code was huge — but now with Scriptaculous I shrank the code down probably 80%. Hot. Plus it’s more reliable and has better visual cues. All this is for a business idea I have that will take a lot of work to implement, just because of the sheer breadth of it. But I’m ambitious and optimistic. =) If it works, it will be huge. And if it doesn’t work, well, at least I’m keeping myself up-to-date on web development shit.