The MIssing Laptop + Updates

Senegal Summer 2013 Blog

Written by: Daphne Basangwa

July 2, 2013

Sorry. No pictures for this post. But I promise I have an interesting story and cool updates. :)

So, last evening as I boarded a taxi back home, I realized that I did not have my laptop pouch with me i.e. my laptop was missing! Since the time I remembered last holding the laptop, I had left AUF, taken a taxi to Casino Supermarket, done a tad bit of shopping, exited the supermarket, and boarded another taxi; so the exercise of retracing my steps and guessing where I could have left it be was gut-wrenching, to say the least. 

I decided that it was either in the supermarket or in the taxi that I'd taken from AUF, in which case I would never be able to retrieve it. So I dashed back into the supermarket, searched all spots where I stopped, checked the check-out counter I had used, and consulted customer care. No laptop. My mind was flying in all directions at this point, wondering what life would be like without some of my precious documents, wondering how I was going to continue with the program, wishing I was hallucinating, and somehow also managing to console myself with the fact that a new machine would be better than my old one (I think the mind has ways to distract when it cannot handle the stress).

But anyway, for the purpose of keeping this narrative short, I'll just mention that after multiple futile searches, some of them in weird places, I finally went back to AUF as a last place to look and there it was! In the classroom - neatly stowed away in its pouch and looking very graceful on the table where I had last used it. Oh the relief! I don't know how it was possible for me to leave without it and not notice, but I'm glad it was in the classroom that I "lost" it.

Now back to AITI.

Yesterday morning Eric gave a lecture on product pricing under consumer uncertainty (MIT Class 15.818) and he somehow managed to pack almost a whole semester's worth of material into one lecture and still keep it comprehensive and interesting. What I learned from his lecture is that Starbucks' superior coffee is the same thing as their $1 coffee, only $6 more expensive. ;)

On the technical side, we did an Android calculator exercise to have more practice in building functional user interfaces. We'll still be working on interfaces today (hopefully with more elaborate features) but we're moving on to have the students actually start work on their applications rather than doing short, detached labs. So from this point on, all the code written by the students in labs should build up to their final applications. We hope to have working apps within the next week and a half and I'm excited!

Victoria and I are having a bit of a tired morning today, though excited about our afternoon lecture. I hope to check in again tomorrow to give a brief narrative on Gorée which we visited over the weekend and on a traditional Senegalese restaurant (whose name I cannot remember right now) where we had dinner last night, and of course provide more AITI updates. :)

À demain.