Frank's Blog

Good Enough 

Sometimes, I get asked why---and how---I wrote a doctoral thesis. There are some simple answers for the former question: Why?

1. Stay a student.
2. Get paid to be a student.
3. If you're out of arguments, you always have the doctoral joker ;-)

The second question seems to be more complicated, but indeed is also very simple: Do your job good enough. While people often search for something to become perfect, this seldom appears to be the same to other people. Just like the 80:20 rule, focus on the important things. Here is a simple graph to depict the idea:



The horizontal axis shows the time that flies by. The vertical axis shows the amount of additional knowledge you earn each time unit. In the beginning, you quickly graps knowledge. Over time, your reach the meridian. Then, you cool down. While you're still working on the topic, something absolutely new and directly related to your work is hard to find anymore. Finally, prepare finishing your thesis. The important point is to submit your thesis just in time. While you would still be able to find additional knowledge, it's not mattering for your thesis anymore. So, that's at least how I did it. And believe me, you can apply the good enough rule to almost everything!
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HPI Sommerfest 

Today the HPI Sommerfest is (still) taking place. Here I have some impressions for you:


The HPI band: Poolraum Party.


Eiszeit.


Some people in front of the stage---most stayed in the background.


Revolverheld.


Even the sun appeared in the evening.

Unfortunately, I have no picture from the fourth band, Tiger HiFi, since I had to leave early. If anybody has one, please send me a copy, so that I can add it here.
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Welcome to the Exhibition 

I know quite some people that are a bit unsure about the things we do all day long. Instead of talking about something they don't understand (it can be found here), actually, our institute has something new to offer: An exhibition of modern art. Take a look at these pictures and objects that have been placed at nearly every possible place. And yes, these pictures/objects are all original ones...










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Me with a Hat 

Yesterday I defended my doctoral thesis and finally got one of those funny hats. While my thesis will appear later this month on this website, you can already find the slides here (in German).


The reviewers of my thesis (from left to right): Prof. Weske (HPI), Prof. van der Aalst (TU Eindhoven), Prof. Nestmann (TU Berlin).


The buffet.


And finally, me with a hat (in the background is Prof. Naumann, the chairman of my defense).
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PowerBook survived Surgery OR Always make a Backup 

Yesterday, my good old PowerBook 12" (yes, the lightest Apple notebook ever produced until now), unexpectedly died right in front of a class. I was giving a lecture on the pi-calculus and BPM (what else?), as Keynote did not started the presentation right away. Instead, the Keynote dock symbol bounced up and down and the beachball occured. The only things I was able to do was move the mouse. After investigating the issue, I found out that the harddrive made a metallic click noise. This came a bit unexpected, since the day before yesterday I thought about updating my backup...

Nevertheless, I went to K&M and picked up a nice 160GB Samsung harddrive. This morning, I prepared everything according to http://www.ifixit.com/, removed about 35 screws, placed the new hdd into place, assembled 35 screws---and---finally got a working PowerBook with an even faster harddisk. This is how the book looked before the old drive had been removed:



What do we learn thereof? Always make a backup!
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