Back in the habit

Published: 2011-01-11
Updated: 2024-04-15

No, I’m not talking about nun head wear. I’m talking about using this blog effectively by using it at all. So, I thought I would try and update it at least once a week with what is going on, so what is going on?

Well, in the ages it’s been since I last posted anything a few things have happened. Sadly, none of these point to getting a paper out, but never mind. The big things are that I have learnt Python (to a degree) and have coded up a nice little assessment program for comparing a wave generated by starccm+ (but could be any other program) with an analytical wave. Unfortunately, it has taken me a while to get this up and running and I have no significant results from it yet, but the bare bones are there, so hopefully it won’t take too long to get something useful. The problem is that there is such a range of potential tweeking to be done, that it is difficult to assess what variables I should be examining.

The Python is quite neat, in that it also delivers jobs to our compute cluster and then analyses them once they have finished. What’s amazing is how unreliable that process is, not just because of the young code I have written, but because of star and Sun grid engine being rather random with their outcomes. Add that to some interesting practices from the cluster administrator (like restarting the queue every hour) and error catching becomes extremely challenging. Still, I’d like to publish the delivery system if possible – assuming I can get away with GPLing the IP. The bugtracker (ditz) is (was) here if you want to snoop on my progress.

The second big thing relates to the other part of my job which is the SuperGen Marine Energy Consortium Website. Due to a nasty hack attack on the old e107 system, the IT department insisted we cease and desist administering our own websites (e107 was always a bit of a mystery to me, especially with the custom hacks that has been added to it) and get in line by using Drupal. This could have been a big, time consuming job but we lucked in with getting a great young developer names Sean Bedford to port the core content over and re-establish the publication database. A few attractiveness tweeks from yours truly and we were ready to go again in about 3 months, which I though was pretty good considering we were pioneering the system. Only downside with it is that there is no test site, which means that changes must be short and swift. There are many more “Drupally” things I would like to try out, but I can not develop this on the live site, unfortunately.

One, final thing that is taking my time at the moment, is an MSc project that I dreamt up. I have often been trying to get a verification experiment set up for my PhD code. Last year I was trying to get the flume working (no one took it on) and this year I want to make a solitary wave (or soliton) with a hinged wave maker. Now, this has been done before at Marseilles, but with no publication as to how. Traditionally a solitary wave is generated with a piston wavemaker, as a flap is not great at generating the high velocity required towards the bottom of the tank. However, if you raise the floor of the tank, then that error is reduced. This is all a bit pie in the sky at the moment, but I think working up the mathematics would be interesting and generating a soliton with our wave paddles is quite useful. We haven’t been allocated students yet, but even if I don’t get one, I’ll probably do some of this anyway – if I can handle the maths!!!