May 082013
 

由于要准备一个B1签证去美国开会,研究了很久新的签证预约流程。

总体来说签证的预约比以前稍微方便一些了,至少不用掐着时间着急打电话了,而且护照会发放到中信银行..不过这个预约系统中有些步骤是独立的,有些步骤又是相关的,所以要严格按照下列步骤进行

具体步骤为:

  1. 填写DS-160表, 网址为https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/。这个表格貌似年年都有一些细微变化,不过大体差不多。随便百度/谷歌一下就能查到填写方法。最后填完了别忘了记下来确认码,应该是AA打头的。
  2. 进入http://www.ustraveldocs.com/, 用邮箱注册一个用户,这样每次预约都可以用这个账户了。
  3. 用刚注册好的用户名登录,点击最左边的“安排面谈时间”,开始预约。
  4. 按照提示进行,中途会遇到缴费的页面。
  5. 无论用何种方式缴费,都要事先记下那个CGI number。接下来可以在网上直接支付(需开通银联快捷支付什么的服务),或者直接去中信银行缴费,不过一定要拿着CGI number去缴费。
  6. 交完签证费后貌似就没有什么了,继续按照指示走下去,最终会给你一个蓝色的confirmation page,包含了申请人信息,签证类型,护照投递的中信银行地址,DS-160确认号,UID。这个要打印下来带到领事馆
  7. 对于F-1 签证,别忘记交SEVIS fee,在这里:https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/index.jsp

个人认为一次预约对应一个CGI number,所以如果整个步骤出错了,比如想改一下DS-160上的内容就比较麻烦了。。因为DS-160/面谈时间/CGI,和预约完后得到的UID 是绑定在一起的,而不是像3.16之前的签证预约那样,每份文件都是独立的,可以进行各种“组合”。。比如如果在中信银行交过两次签证,填过两份DS- 160,这两样东西可以以任意方式组合在一起带到领事馆签证,而不是像现在这样,必须严格地对应起来。。

接下来拿着confirmation page,其他必须的材料(简历,paper的draft,会议邀请函等)去领事馆签证即可,具体的签证面谈的过程在这里。我的签证被check了26天,最后是以短信/email方式通知我去中信银行拿的。查询签证状态在这个网站上:https://ceac.state.gov/CEACStatTracker/Status.aspx?

基本上就是这样。

Jul 172012
 

把这个暑假出国带来的生活用品记下来好了,最多一个大箱子+背包就足够了。

大箱子:

  • 外层:做笔记用的笔记本(后来发现还是这里的笔记本好!),保鲜袋,抹布,纸巾,(小礼物)
  • 内层:棉签、帽子
  • 内部:
    • 牙膏、肥皂、沐浴液、洗发水、牙刷、牙缸、毛巾、擦脚布(准确的说洗漱用品略多余,这里也不贵)
    • 内裤、背心(事实证明可以多带几个)
    • 袜子
    • 转换器×2(貌似可以多带几个,最好能随身携带的那种)
    • 泳衣、泳镜
    • 枕套、床单、被子、浴巾
    • 另一套枕套、床单,以及毛背心
    • 上衣×5,腰带,短裤×2,裤子×1
    • 药(内有指甲刀、军刀)
    • 枕头(真空压缩的,不占体积,第一次知道还有这种神器)
    • 手电筒
    • 垃圾袋
    • 衣架(只要那种晾内衣的架子就行,洗衣服都是直接烘干的)
    • 夹子
    • 鞋×2:Nike Air Max 90+Converse Chuck Taylor
    • (貌似没带洗衣粉,不过在这里买就行)

背包:

  • 电脑
  • 相机
  • 转换器(more,最好有袖珍的)
  • 照片(可能会用到但是至今没用到的各种尺寸的大头贴)
  • 计算器
Jun 252012
 

大一那次签证是团签的,然后那天还悲剧地感冒了,于是这次对上次的记忆几乎为零,就记得当年面签的时候直接被叫过去问几个很水的问题就过了...以防再忘了流程,特此记录一下:

准备材料:

  • DS-160表:来之前突然发现了个错误,貌似十指指纹的确是取过的,于是又改了一下重新提交的,事实证明没问题。具体怎么填DS-160,随便google一下就好了。可能表格的排版每年都有点改动的样子,不过基本上都差不多。
  • SEVIS FEE:网上直接用信用卡交$200,把收据打出来即可
  • I-20:别忘了面签完了提醒签证官还回来。(即使被check了)
  • 照片:貌似上海领事馆不需要,依稀记得上次也没有要
  • 护照:不解释。
  • 其他:邀请信、父母工资证明、导师CV、在读证明、成绩单、个人简历、study plan。
  • 2013.3.16之后:蓝色的确认单。

面签过程:

  1. 先去某大叔那里拿一个EMS的单子填好基本的邮寄信息
  2. 到预约时间左右的时候挤到旁边mm那里确认一下到达,提前15min即可。
  3. 到另外那个大叔那里拿紫色的入场券
  4. 自己上8楼排队,然后跟着“大家”一起走,就没有什么不清楚的事情了,具体来说:
    1. 把EMS单子和一些基本材料进行初审
    2. 到拍指纹那里等待审核的材料。
    3. 拍指纹
    4. 排队等待面谈
    5. BalaBala
  5. Done. 如果不放心的话最好问一下到底有没有pass,不过好像没有明确说拒的话应该就是pass了。

感觉领事馆应该在楼下做一个指示图之类的么。。。否则在各种小白的轮番轰炸下工作人员必然比较崩溃,而且很容易产生冲突。

好像稍微晚点到也没什么,不用过分着急。据说跟北京相比上海领事馆的通过率还是挺高的,不过还是目睹到了被check的。

至于多久拿到签证这个问题,貌似3天之内应该就能拿到了,这次是第二天晚上就寄到了,不过由于懒的出门去ZJG白沙邮局拿,于是就等到第三天再去了。

还有就是两次签证都是搭ZJU校车回来的,如果人多的话可以租一辆校车过去(18人 or 45人,ZJG-上海往返,貌似¥200/人,如果坐高铁去也差不多这么多钱,不过如果没人接送的话就得靠自己了)。赞一下校车师傅,当然更得感谢来的时候张叔叔的盛情款待!下个暑假要拜师学做饭鸟~

May 202012
 

目前先总结一些纠结的公式书写方法吧:

  • 一些(总是)记不住的符号:
    • 实数符号\mathbb{R} : \mathbb{R}, 需要\usepackage{amsfonts},其他的比如\mathbb{Q,C, N, Z, F}同理
    • 矩阵的输入(需要\usepackage{amsmath}):
      \begin{pmatrix}
      a_{11} & \cdots  & a_{1n}\\
       \vdots&  \ddots & \vdots\\
      a_{n1} & \cdots & a_{nn}
      \end{pmatrix}

      效果为:\begin{pmatrix}a_{11} & \cdots & a_{1n}\\ \vdots& \ddots & \vdots\\ a_{n1} & \cdots & a_{nn} \end{pmatrix}

    • 输入因为\because,所以\therefore符号的时候,要\usepackage{amssymb}
    • 输入证明完毕符号\qed的时候要\usepackage{amsthm}
    • 输入带圈的数字\textcircled{\footnotesize{1}}
    • 弧: \stackrel \frown {AB}  效果为\stackrel \frown {AB}
    • 肯定还有....
  • (总是)记不住的公式排版:
    • 带大括号,多种case分别讨论的(需要\usepackage{cases}):
       \begin{numcases}{y_i=}
       1, & for $x_i$ in class 1 \\
       -1, & for $x_i$ in class 2
       \end{numcases}

      如果cases跟amsmath冲突(其实交换一下位置即可),可以换这个:

      \begin{equation}
      \left\{
      \begin{aligned}
      x&=eq1\\
      y&=eq2
      \end{aligned}
      \right.
      \end{equation}

      效果为:\begin{equation}\left\{ \begin{aligned} x&=eq1\\ y&=eq2 \end{aligned} \right. \end{equation}

    • 类似于优化问题里经常会出现的那种min...st....的多列公式:
       \begin{eqnarray}
          min & \frac{1}{2}w^Tw \\
          s.t. &  y_i(w^Tx_i+b) \geq 1
       \end{eqnarray}

      效果是: \begin{eqnarray}min & \frac{1}{2}w^Tw \\s.t. & y_i(w^Tx_i+b) \geq 1 \end{eqnarray}

    • 公式太长了,或者需要推导很多步,于是只好换行(需要\usepackage{amsmath}):
       \begin{equation}
          \begin{aligned}
            a&=f(x) \\
             &=g(x)
          \end{aligned}
       \end{equation}

      效果是:\begin{aligned}a&=f(x) \\&=g(x)\end{aligned}

    • 把下标放在底部而不是在右下角:
      [i,j] = \mathop{\arg\max}\limits_{i,j} P(i,j)

      效果是:[i,j] = \mathop{\arg\max}\limits_{i,j} P(i,j)

    • 肯定还有
Jan 302012
 

From: http://technicalblogging.com/why-every-professional-should-consider-blogging/

I often argue that professionals should share their knowledge online via blogging.

The catch is that virtually anything worthwhile in life takes time and effort, and blogging is not an exception to this statement. So before committing your energy to such an endeavor, you may rightfully stop and wonder what’s in it for you. Is blogging really worth it?

In this article, I briefly illustrate some of the main benefits that directly derive from running a technical blog.

1. Blogging can improve your communication skills

Communication and writing, much like programming, are skills honed through countless hours of practice. As you work hard at articulating your thoughts into words, you’ll find that the process ends up improving your ability to express yourself. And communication is key, almost regardless of your profession.

Over time, you’ll become a faster and better technical writer, who’s able to come up with an insightful essay or tutorial in just an hour or two.

Even better, you’ll be able to concisely formulate confusing or undefined thoughts into exact words. Vague thoughts that you considered in your head will either prove to be valid and gain strength throughout the process of formalizing them into words, or quickly fall apart as flawed ideas once you see them on the screen.

This habit will make you not only a better communicator, but also a better, clearer thinker.

2. Blogging can improve your technical skills

One of the most successful learning technique I know is to try to teach what you’re currently learning yourself to other people.

The process of explaining something to others quickly solidifies your knowledge and outlines its shortcomings, exposing your own doubts about the material you’re studying. This is why writing down and paraphrasing a book, something bright student often do, is a powerful technique that helps retain and clarify your understanding of the information you’re gathering.

As a blogger, you are likely to improve your technical skills because you are forced to research further topics in order to properly share them with the public. You might be corrected by commenters who know more about the subject than you do, and learn a lot from them in the process. As well you may learn more as others expand on what you had to say within their blogs, or perhaps force you to answer more questions about the topic than you thought about in the first place.

As I mentioned in my book, blogging is just as much as teaching as it is about starting a conversation. These conversations will often help increase your expertise and well-roundedness.

The collaborative power of blogging was truly highlighted and pushed to the limit by the Fields medalist Professor Timothy Gowers with his Polymath Project, in which his blog and commenting section was used to figure out unsolved mathematical problems collaboratively.

3. Blogging can provide you with a repository for your knowledge

Some people like to use personal wikis for this purpose, but blogging can be an excellent way to keep track of information you intend to retrieve at a later stage. For example many programmers use their own old posts to find particular snippets of code, the exact steps to configure a server, or a given URL for a useful service they blogged about.

At times you’ll find that googling for a given problem will bring up an article from your own blog that you may very well have forgotten about. (And if that post doesn’t solve your problem, you can curse your past self for not providing more details back when you wrote it.)

Looking back at your old posts is also a great way to keep track of progress, and have access to a timeline of what you were dealing with, thinking, and doing at a given moment in the past. It’s fun to look back once in a while and introspect about how far you’ve come. This can often provide you with glimpses of insight about where your career and professional interests are headed.

4. Blogging can help make powerful connections

Technical blogging injects you into an online community of fellow professionals who are passionate about the topic they are writing about. If you are contributing valuable information and insight, and link to others, you’ll likely end up on the radar of these people, and ultimately connect with other world class players in your field.

Blogging is certainly cheaper than flying across the world non-stop to meet all these folks at expensive conferences (though blogging is not a substitute for in-person human interaction).

Society functions through people interacting, connecting, and networking. How you use this opportunity is up to you, but it can definitely be a boost for your career, business, or even life in general to be in touch with other experts in the field of your choice.

5. Blogging can help you make friends

Even better than powerful acquaintances are friends. As a prominent blogger you’ll get to meet and interact with a wealth of people online. If you’re social and available to others, you’ll end up making friends (influential and less influential ones alike) online.

I’ve lost count of how many people I’ve come to know thanks to my technical blogs.

Sometimes it’s a case of someone who comments often and you get to know them better through this route. Other times it is a fellow blogger. Often, it’s someone who noticed you through your blog and gets in touch via email. If you are fairly popular in your field, you may even get the occasional ego boosting, “Oh, I follow your blog” when introducing yourself at meetups or trade conferences.

6. Blogging can provide you with a second income

Most bloggers live under the false assumption that you can’t make serious money from running a blog on the side. They understand that if you dedicate yourself full-time, there is money to be made, but they severely underestimate how much revenue you can generate with just a couple of hours of your time per week. They’ve tried or heard horror stories from people making mere pennies with AdSense, and assume that they can’t monetize their own blog unless they’re really famous.

A few hundred dollars a month from your blog is absolutely within the reach of any professional out there. If you do everything right, and put in the work required, your blog can even make you thousands of dollars, both directly and indirectly.

My technical blogs make me a few thousand dollars every month, and I often end up not touching them for weeks at the time. Blogging is not passive income, but if you know what you are doing, all the content you produce compounds and ends up providing you with a substantial income – even when you neglect the blog for a few weeks or months at a time.

Blogging can provide you with some serious extra income that you can then use to finance your hobby, buy gadgets, pay off debt, or do whatever else you desire. It’s a really nice feeling to receive a few extra checks each month, and it will further motivate you to continue blogging.

In my book I cover in great detail how I go about monetizing my blogs, but I’ll also talk more about this subject on this site (subscribe via feed or email if you’d like to be notified of such future articles).

7. Blogging can score you freebies

Publishers and PR firms have become aware of the influence bloggers have on targeted audiences. Even as a mildly successful blogger, you can expect to be contacted by a multitude of people offering you freebies. Depending on your niche and field, these offers will typically be for books, but it’s not uncommon to receive offers for other items, including tickets for conferences, gadgets, software, etc.

As long as you disclose your affiliation (in a way that makes the FTC happy), it’s actually very nice to routinely receive freebies of this kind. If you like what you receive, you can then blog about that product and review it for your readers.

Often, if you establish good relationships with publishers and PR firms, you can even organize giveaway contests which benefit your readers, not just yourself.

8. Blogging can advance your career

A few of the previous benefits I mentioned have already revealed how blogging can have a positive impact in your career. However, I’d like to stress just how much blogging can open certain doors for you. Every post you make is a new opportunity to get people to notice you on a professional level.

Because of my blogs, but primarily my programming one, I’ve received countless job offers over the years, including some from a selection of the largest and most sought after companies in the world. Some offered me generous relocation packages to the US, and a few went so far as to offer me the job, no questions asked (e.g., they didn’t even require a formal interview, they had sized me up enough through my blog writing).

I got my job at IBM in Canada mainly thanks to my blog (at the time I was still in Europe).

Whether blogging allows you to find a new job, customers, partners, investors, publishers who are interested in having you authoring a book, or something else entirely, it is certainly a great career booster.

In fact, my number one piece of advice for new professionals who are interested in building their careers is to start blogging today.

9. Blogging can make you popular in your field

Most professionals work hard because they want to be successful and gain recogniztion in their field. Blogging aides with that and can make small celebrities out of regular professionals. For those in the tech world, this is not an uncommon occurrence. Names like Joel SpolskyDerek SiversSteve Yegge, and Scott Hanselman come to mind.

I’m reminded of Joey Roth’s “Charlatan, Martyr, Hustler” poster. If you do incredible work but nobody knows about it you are a martyr. If you accomplish nothing and do no work, but talk a sweet talk, you are a charlatan. If you can walk the walk, and talk the talk, then you are a hustler.

Blogging helps you ensure that you can talk the talk and reach the right audience, once you have walked the walk.

10. Blogging can help you reach and teach a wide audience

The number one reason to blog for many people, is the desire to share their knowledge and teach others.

For some, even in the technical realm, it’s a matter of politics. For example, an Agile development professional may actually want to influence the community and advocate his theories and ideas about the process of developing software, so that they (potentially) become widespread.

Others, may use this teaching tool to promote their technical projects. An example, also from the software development world, is blogging to help people become aware, loyal, and eventually proficient in an open source tool that you created.

As you can imagine, these are just some of the many benefits of blogging. As you begin creating your own blog posts, you’ll likely find that some of them fall into place organically, whereas you need to work at others. All however, stand to enrich your career and life, and help inspire you to keep blogging for years to come.