Pretty good day. Lunch with adam and tom. First advisor meeting of the semester went decently, where I learned that I should be reading about "abduction" and "interpolation", but sadly not the same sense of abduction that adam always talks about. Or maybe it is. I really can't say yet. Also Pierce's paper at POPL'05 is supposed to be a good read. Went to the philosophy of language class at pitt I am currently sitting in on. It still hasn't completely lost me yet, but I'm starting to suspect it may in a couple more weeks. I don't understand his diagrammatic notation at all, but he did mention the notion of his diagrams commuting, even referring to the fact that he was deliberately taking the terminology from category theory, even though it's only a very loose and informal borrowing (one might even say "abuse") of the term --- his diagrams aren't literally taking place in some ambient category.
I totally forgot about the Minsky talk, so I didn't go. Very sad. Instead bumped into and got some dinner with subpar, which was good times. He proved an interesting result lately about the theory of games with positive spillover, a niche I'm not very familiar with. The real-world scenario that corresponds to what he's trying to rig up is a scheme of matching donations to, say, a political cause, but not a simple 2-way thing where a company offers to match every dollar, rather a complex n-way scheme where many not-as-rich agents contrive to make each of their donated dollars have some promissory leverage on the dollars of all the rest.
Also, not unlike last year this time, I'm doing a lot of going out for coffee with people I don't know well but am interested in getting to know better, and it's working out pretty well.