Changing editor colors on TexShop

A Pair of TeXShop Applescript Macros gives two scripts that let you change the font highlighting on TeXShop’s editor so you can get light text on dark backgrounds (for example). This was surprisingly difficult to locate, but might be of use to those who eschew Emacs.

(This link comes to you via Galen Reeves.)

UPDATE : I’ve been informed that the script will not change the text color on the latest version of TexShop. I’m not sure why that is…

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Man of the Heart at UC Irvine

I’ll be doing the lights for this production at UC Irvine next week:

The International Center for Writing and Translation

presents as part of

Global Conversations : a Festival of Marginalized Languages

Man of the Heart

on the life & times of Lalon Phokir

Written/Performed by Sudipto Chatterjee
Directed by Suman Mukherjee

Friday, October 26, 2007
7:00 PM

Little Theater Auditorium, UC Irvine
Humanities Hall 161
Building #601 on the map

Directions to UCI and Campus map

Mechanism Design

I read this morning that Maskin, Myerson, and Hurwicz won the Nobel for their work on mechanism design. I’ve gotten interested in auction theory in the last year, so for once I actually understand what the economics prize is being given for before reading all about it in the papers.

The Shadow Lines

I just finished reading The Shadow Lines, by Amitav Ghosh, and I loved it. Ghosh’s unnammed narrator, a doctoral student from Calcutta studying in London, tells the story of his own childhood and his present life in England. As a boy, he was fascinated with his cousin Tridib, who was doing postdoctoral studies in archaeology. Tridib ties together the characters in the book — his brother Robi, the narrator, Ila, and Tridib’s lover, May. Through their memories and reminiscences we get a snapshot of a time in the 1960s, when Bangladesh was East Pakistan and the wounds of Partition were still fresh. The narrator’s desire for Ila, his cousin, the border with Bangladesh, Tridib’s relationship with May, and Ila’s displacement in the UK are all shadowy boundaries in Ghosh’s world. It wasn’t the kind of novel I’d necessarily have picked up and read before, but it was deeply moving and I’m glad I bought it. I was a big fan of In An Antique Land as well, so now I’m tempted to gorge on Ghosh like I would ghosht…

Mathematical methods in systems EE?

One thing that I have definitely benefited from in graduate school is my undergraduate background/degree in mathematics. It’s not that I use the contents of the math classes I have taken — Dynkin diagrams and cohomology don’t often appear in information theory or signal processing problems — but I am pretty comfortable with mathematical formalism. Grad students who didn’t do as much math usually get caught up on measure theory and so on by taking the graduate probability sequence or analysis sequence. What we don’t get is a survey of all the mathematical tools which we could use to attack different problems so that we know what kind of tools may relate to a given problem and where to look for it.

I think a first-year topics lecture series that introduces some new mathematical concepts to first-year graduate students could be great. Subjects like algebraic graph theory, auctions and mechanism design, random matrices, and so on may form a small unit in a regular class or may not be covered in classes at all. Not everyone wants to sit through a reading group on percolation theory, but they might want to get a basic idea of what percolation results are like and how they are useful (e.g. network connectivity).

On the other hand, maybe if such a lecture series were offered nobody would come and it would be useless. Any thoughts?