Accomplishments: October 2023

October was going to be a bitch. With everything going on, including the Filthy 50, training for the Tour de Tucson, catching up at work from the time off, and recovery from my lengthy vacation in September.

  • Finish studying for the AZ-104 exam, schedule that exam
  • Build the login system for Scoutreads
  • Make significant progress on my Docker/Kubernetes coursework
  • Kick ass on progress for my final project for Linguistics

AZ-104 Exam

This was an ambitious add to the calendar, given that I’ve been buried with stuff since we came back from Europe. The Udemy course I took, I finished a couple months ago, but I’m working my way through an exam prep book and studying carefully for this. I’m not quite finished with the book, though, so this is a FAIL.


Instead of building the login system right out of the gate, I opted to be a little more thoughtful about things and spent a lot of time designing it — how it’ll work with manual sign-ups, using third-party OAuth, passkeys, and how it’ll work with the now, plus long-term goals for the platform. PARTIAL WIN.

Docker/Kubernetes Coursework

This was a total FAIL.

Linguistics Project

My project is taking two data sets — one generated by ChatGPT prompts, and one of materials generated by humans, and then using Zipf and Shannon analysis on them to see if there’s any discernible mathematical difference between them.

The biggest part of my project is creating my data sets. My original plan was for 100,000 words from each set of sources, but then I started thinking that 250,000 words would be more statistically significant. Once I learned how badly ChatGPT counts and the amount of time it took to generate 100,000 words, I decided not to bite off more than I could chew.1 I also kept track of my ChatGPT prompts and my sources. Once I get this whole thing done, I’ll probably put it in here under a section called “really nerdy shit”… WIN.

Minor Accomplishments

  • Training resumed on October 2nd after more than 3 weeks off — the mountain bike crash put a halt to anything I could do before vacation started, and honestly, vacation waylaid the rest of it (gladly). I did get some miles in using a rental city bike in Amsterdam, but it wasn’t enough to really count as training, per se.
  • Survived the Filthy 50 on the 14th of the month. I knew I was coming off a gap, plus I was dealing with bronchitis. Around mile 30, the back spasms started kicking in hard, and I really had to push myself to get through to the end of it. I didn’t finish anywhere near as fast as I wanted to, but I’m pleased with what I accomplished.


  • Man, the jetlag and illness I brought back from Europe on the first of the month kicked my ass hard. I tried to power through and on Monday the 2nd, even went for a 40-mile ride. The post-ride self-survey shows that that was the incorrect course of action. But also that a bad ride is better than no ride.


Getting anything done this month in combination with having a race, recovery from a long vacation, and catch-up at the office. I need to be smarter about these things, especially going into the holiday season.

(Featured image created with/by Adobe Firefly Beta 2.)

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