I am The Happiest Camper right now!
One of the studies I’ve been working on this summer had this horrible lag in filling in data, as the software we use to collect all of our physical measures is meant for clinical use, not large data sets and has no simple way to export large amounts of information. Before this summer, we’d been entering it all by hand. That means we were about four semesters behind in data and when I went to start again, it turned out almost all of what had already been entered was incorrect.
So! Here’s the awesome part! My mom and I (yes, I’m twenty years old and my mom still helps with my school projects, I’m not even sorry) wrote a program to enter all the data for us. So I just entered ALL the data from like four years of testing in thirty minutes. Thirty. Minutes. Guys I am so, so, so relieved right now! I have no idea what I’m going to get paid for for the rest of the summer, but I’m so happy!
(Under the cut I will recount some more research exploits, this post is mostly for freaking out over how well things are going.)
So my advisor (and head of the lab I’m working in) was also the professor of a class I took last semester called Evolution for Everyone and our final project was to write a research proposal that we could potentially carry out for the final project of our minor (the class is the introduction to the Evolutionary Studies minor). So mine had to do with studying intrasexual competition by way of an ecology lab we have here that houses fish, connecting that to the ways we compete intrasexually, such as females, who are the ones with a more developed sense of smell, as they need to find the single best long-term mate through pheromones and the like, being the sex that ends up buying hundred dollar bottles of perfume and painting their fingernails all sorts of colors, whereas males tend to buy a 6 dollar can of axe and call it a day. This is usually chalked up to competing for the opposite sex, but that makes no sense. If it were for the opposite sex, men would go absolutely nuts trying to smell like the perfect mate. So my boss just got back from a conference on evolutionary behaviour and he apparently mentioned it offhand to a few people and they were all like, “Oh my god! You have to do that!” So I’m going to do that.
And we’re about to start another portion of our self-deception survey that I’m basically going to do most of with examining online presence and sexual selection stuff. This is super extra exciting because studying online presence is part of what I want to study, like, for the rest of my career and that is awesome! So yeah, I’m a very happy scientist today!