Tuesday, July 24, 2012

You Never Know

Day 12
You know how I said I gave up on Greek? Well today, Bethany and Bob started a new competition, in which us interns work in groups of two to solve problems involving imaging science. I was partnered with Nick, and lo and behold, the first task was to decipher an English message written in red, which was beneath a lot of green, Greek text. I realized right away that this was my time to shine, and quickly got to work scanning the image (Bethany had to help me set up the scanner, and I learned that she has a Perry the Platypus key-chain, awesome!). Anyways I got Nick, and with a few image level adjustments we were able to isolate the text. I was ready to finish up with that and submit our answer when Nick pointed out that the text was actual writing, not just gibberish. (Seriously, good catch there Nick because I never would have caught that) Optical Character Recognition was the first thing I tried, but it was unable to detect the Greek text. I'm not sure why but I set to work translating the text by hand. It took about two hours, but by the end I was translating it as fast as I could read it. It wasn't anything special, just a discourse on Imaging Science, but in the process of translating I learned something: Greek. It just goes to show you that you never know where the day is going to take you, and sometimes you stumble upon an answer to your problem when you least expect it. I now know every Greek character and its English counterpart, so while translating took a long time, it was a very worthwhile experience.

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