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April 10, 2007

Procrastin… Procrast… um… avoiding work

Looking for an excuse to avoid work for an hour or two? Here are my top 5 tips (that I’ve been putting to good use this afternoon):

1) Create an iTunes “Revision” playlist adding a number of albums then choosing which tracks best suit your work ethic. Wasted a good hour at least just listening to tracks and deciding which would best “help” me work.

2) Clean your room. Yes I know this isn’t fun but let’s be fair, neither is revision and at least I have a tidy room now, a much better “working environment”.

3) Read the BBC website section of your choice. My favourite is usually the sports section.

4) Find and read a webcomic. I’ve read Penny Arcade for quite a while and through them found a link to a great comic called Sam and Fuzzy which has taken up most of my morning. Seriously, this is good stuff and I’ve not stopped giggling all morning, I think my house mate is worried about me.

5) Blog. Doesn’t matter what, anything and everything is worth a blog, even something as useless as tips on how not to revise.


There he is!

Follow-up to Where is James Edwards? from Words on t'internet

So… for anyone who read my post, Where is James Edwards, I found him!

I was walking through Leamington on Saturday night looking for somewhere to have a drink with my girlfriend when, out of nowhere, literally stumbling across the road (and in front of a Police Car to boot) was the missing man himself, James Edwards.

I dragged him back onto the pavement and we got chatting, neither of us had the others number and his phone battery was dead so I’m gonna have to try and track him down again one day but it’s nice to know he’s around. It turns out that even though he got better marks in all his resits than I did the University refused to accept him back onto the Maths course. This is outrageous from my point of view, I can’t see how I, who did worse than him in my resits, is allowed to continue my studies (my marks weren’t even good) while he is forced to leave.

The reason given was that I showed “improvement” while his marks were lower than the first time around but basically he’s being punished for the fact that I screwed up more than he did first time round. I believe that the exams last year were harder than the year before and he has every bit as much right as I do to finish his degree.

Either way my opinion of the University has hit a new low, and I didn’t even think that was possible.

Anyway. Back to the revision, hopefully I can get decent marks and get the hell out of here.


October 16, 2006

Let's Play … Fantasy Final Fling!

The Final Fling is months away yet it’s that time of year again. As we size up the bands in store for us over the coming terms talk turns to “what if” and “I wish” concerning the biggest night of the Ents year. So whowill play? WHo is even likely to play? And who do the students actually want to play?

Fantasy Final Fling is easy. Pick ten bands, in order, 1 to 10 and you get a points score for who plays and who doesn’t. This year however we’ve expanded the game a little.

If a band on your list plays in Term 2 then you get 1 point for the band in 10th place in your list and 10 points for the band in first.

If a band on your list plays in Term 3 then you get double points, that’s 2 points for the band in 10th place in your list and 20 points for the band in first.

The jackpot as always is the Final Fling. If your bands play at the Final Fling then you get 100 points for the headliner, 50 for first support and 30 for second support act. These points do not take into account placing in your list.

Let’s Play …


October 06, 2006

The week that was … Week 1 – Term 1

After all that time, preparing, revising, resitting and preparing again it’s fair to say that week one has been pretty good, and worth the effort. The modules I’ve picked seem pretty good (except Topics In Math Bio but I’ll explain that later) and look like they could, not only be interesting, but possibly be enjoyable.

History of Maths lectures fly by and never seem to last an hour, the course sounds interesting and the lectures are pretty fun. What interests me most is the content. The way we look at maths not from an analytical point of view, trying to poke and pinch it until it does what we want or to prove something is either true or false, but looking at a piece of maths as an acheivement, a milestone in human progression. The way mathematicians were, much like explorers of their day, sailing without a compass. They had no idea if heading off in one direction would give them what they were looking for lead them off in totally new directions.

Fluid Mechanics for Mechanical Engineer’s looks interesting but for different reasons, it’s more to do with the application of maths than most maths courses (this one is an engineering course) so we’ve spent this first week deriving stuff and then using it. Feels more like A-Level Physics than what I’ve been used to which is actually a very good thing. I’m enjoying it at any rate.

Intro to Topology is a course I didn’t think I’d be keeping up to be honest after stuffing up Metric Spaces but so far so good. One to keep in mind I think especially after the disaster of Topics in Math Bio.

Topics in Math Bio, taught by Dirk Drasdo, is shit. I’ve been to one lecture and all I learned is that poor Mr. Drasdo cannot lecture. He rattled through some slides which he’d prepared which made no sense, accompanied by his quiet, rolling german accent made it almost impossible to hear him let alone understand him and although I wanted to do this course may be put off.

I’m sure Dirk is brilliant at what he does and knows exactly what he’s talking about but like alot of staff at Warwick lack the communication skills to get the point across to any more than 2 or 3 people so really struggle to lecture large groups.

Away from my course Cricket looks like it could be a blast and with a house warming this weekend thinks are looking good. Oh yeah, everyone’s invited if by some chance you already know where and when it is.


October 03, 2006

Sorted – Finally Chosen My 3rd Year Modules

It’s taken that long that to be honest I doubt anyone really cares but here is what I’ve chosen:

Definites:

Term 1:
MA397 Consolidation 15 CATS
MA3E5 History of Maths 15 CATS
MA390 – Topics in Math Bio OR MA3F1 – Introduction to Topology 15 CATS
(Just one of these but I’ll choose which one when I’ve been to a few lectures)
ES3C9 Fundamentals of Fluid Mechanics for Mechanical Engineers 15 CATS

Term 2:
MA228 Numerical Analysis 6 CATS
MA3F2 Knot Theory 15 CATS
IE420 Problem Solving 12 CATS
PX261 Mathematical Methods II 7.5 CATS
PX270 C Programming 7.5 CATS

Which takes me to 108 CATS with 12 more CATS coming from

Term 1:
PX268 Stars 7.5 CATS (If I can fit the lectures into my timetable)

Term 2:
PX269 Galaxies 7.5 CATS
PX264 – Physics of Fluids – 7.5 CATS
PX326 – Introduction to Synergetics – 7.5 CATS
IB217 – Starting a Business – 6 CATS
IB228 – Understanding Enterprise 6 CATS

Which I can pick when I feel like it as they’re in the second term and right now I don’t think I care.

To anyone who’s given me advice, thanks alot, you’ve saved me from Combinatorics, Algebra II and Measure Theory as well as a large number of other courses I undoubtedly would have hated.


October 02, 2006

The Saga goes on – Still Picking My 3rd Year Modules

So…... I’m not sure anymore.
Went to the first Consolidation lecture today and found out I only need to do 57 CATS of Maths this year SO I’ve decided to thin down my maths and look elsewhere for interesting and most importantly EASY modules.

Here’s the list of definites so far:

Term 1:
MA397 Consolidation 15 CATS
MA3E5 History of Maths 15 CATS

Term 2:
MA228 Numerical Analysis 6 CATS
MA3F2 Knot Theory 15 CATS
IE420 Problem Solving 12 CATS
PX261 – Mathematical Methods II – 7.5 CATS

which is 69.5 CATS and only 51 of List A Maths.

So my options are

Term 1:
1 or 2 from
*MA390 Topics in Math Bio 15 CATS
*MA3F1 Introduction to Topology 15 CATS
*MA3G0 Modern Control Theory – 15 CATS

which takes me nicely to 66 CATS of Maths and 85.5 Overall (If I do just 1 of these 3).

Then my other options are

Term 1:
PX268 – Stars – 7.5 CATS
ES3C9 – Fundamentals of Fluid Mechanics for Mechanical Engineers – 15 CATS
(Which was suggested by the Consolidation Tutor although it may not be this module exactly)

Term 2:
PX269 – Galaxies – 7.5 CATS
PX270 – C Programming – 7.5 CATS (I think this is pretty much a definite)

so if I take C Programming I have 93 CATS so need really 27 more which can be either 2×6 CATS and a 15 or 2×7.5 and a 12 or any combination really. I can overcat slightly if needs be so taking Fluid Dynamics still leaves me with either both stars and galaxies to do or I need to find 12 CATS from somewhere. Possibly from The Business School.

Nearly there (I hope)


Consolidation – A New Hope

There is hope for me yet.

Had an hour introduction lecture for Consolidation today and it’s given me some hope that I can at least scrape a 3rd and even get a 2.2 if I put the effort in. It’s nice to know that all 9 of last years Consolidation students went on to get a full honours degree, 5 of which got 2.2’s.

I guess I need to concentrate on picking the right modules (yes I still haven’t quite decided) and I have a good idea of what I want to do but I’m still a couple of modules short seeing as I’m cutting down the maths to about 60 CATS and doing more non-maths stuff. Might mix in some Engineering and Physics to go with the definite Computer Science modules although I may struggle to keep it down to just the one Unusual Option.

Does anyone know the rules for how many modules or CATS worth can be made up of unusual options? I want to do C Programming which is 7.5 but there might be a better way for me to use that unusual option choice and take up more CATS with it. Anyone know?


September 26, 2006

Where is James Edwards?

So…..? Where is he?

For those of you who don’t know who he is let alone where he is, James failed second year maths with me (literally with me, we revised together in Weatherspoons) and also did resits with me, however since resits (which I think he passed) he’s dropped off the face of the world.

In case you see him:
*He works or worked in Spoon’s in Leamington
*He’s about 5”10 with what can only be called “out of bed hair”
*He’s a piss-head

um…. not sure what else to put, oh, he’s from near Chesterfield.

If you spot this man please let me know! I need to know at least one person on my maths course seeing as everyone else I knew graduated


September 20, 2006

Picking My 3rd Year Maths Modules, The Final List (Kinda)

Follow-up to Picking My 3rd Year Maths Modules pt.2 from Words on t'internet

Term 1:
MA397 Consolidation 15 CATS
MA3E5 History of Maths 15 CATS
MA390 Topics in Math Bio 15 CATS

Term 2:
MA228 Numerical Analysis 6 CATS
MA3F2 Knot Theory 15 CATS
IE420 Problem Solving 12 CATS
MA235 Introduction to Mathematical Biology – 6 CATS

Unusual Options:
PX270 C Programming 7.5 CATS
and Math Methods II if I can find it – 6 CATS

Total – 97.5

Maybe’s:
MA3F1 Introduction to Topology – 15 CATS (and is term 1 which takes the load of term 2 a bit)
MA3G0 Modern Control Theory – 15 CATS (also term 1)
MA3D4 Fractal Geometry – 15 CATS (term 2 so gives me an easy term 1 to work on Consolidation)

any of which would take me to 112.5 CATS and only one small module from the magic 120. Opinions on these two? Baring in mind I failed Metric Spaces (before it was actually lectured and was a reading module, opposed to the lectures you get this year and last year)


September 16, 2006

"R U Ready?" questions

Um…... where are they? I’ve got two weeks till I start back at uni and I’m trying to do some work to prepare myself and I can’t actually find the R U Ready Questions that I was advised to do.

Anyone know? I’ve looked on MathStuff but can’t find them :(


September 10, 2006

Leeds Festival 2006

Writing about web page http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/drheaton/gallery/leeds_festival_2006/

http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/drheaton/gallery/leeds_festival_2006/

This is the gallery with some of my best pictures of the weekend, they were taken on my “new” camera which I literally picked up off the floor on the saturday night. It’s a 6mp Sony CyberShot camera and after a little soul searching I decided to keep it. I know I “should” have handed it in but let’s be serious here, who really would have handed it in? Come on, show of hands.

Well, anyway, I kept it and took a few nice pictures with it which are posted above. Unfortunately the unlucky people who lost the camera didn’t lose the charger so it’s now just sat on my desk waiting for me to buy a dock. Oh well

Unsuprisingly Muse were the highlight of the weekend but Franz suprised me, they were alot better than I expected and made up for the Arctic Monkeys let down. Arctic Monkey are just not good enough to be so far up the bill on the main stage and were poor, the music was ok but not much different from listening to the album. What let them down was the “show”, they just didn’t put one on. In my opinion there isn’t a huge difference between Kaiser Chiefs and Arctic Monkeys, both fairly poppy, both with nice catchy lyrics and good tunes. The main difference between the two is stage presence, Ricky of the Kaisers has it and Alex of the Monkeys doesn’t.

A band called Humanzi on the Carling Stage were excelent as were The Research, and on Friday Boy Kill Boy, Kooks, The Rakes and Maximo Park were all brilliant.

Looking forward to next year already.


September 09, 2006

Picking My 3rd Year Maths Modules pt.2

Follow-up to Picking My 3rd Year Maths Modules from Words on t'internet

Thanks for the response guys, so far I have:

Term 1:
MA397 – Consolidation – 15 CATS
MA241 – Combinatorics – 12 CATS (Maybe)
MA3E5 – History of Maths – 15 CATS
MA390 – Topics in Math Bio – 15 CATS

Term 2:
MA228 – Numerical Analysis – 6 CATS
MA3F2 – Knot Theory – 15 CATS
IE420 – Problem Solving – 12 CATS (Anyone heard of this?)
IB217 – Starting a Business – 6 CATS (Maybe)
IB228 – Understanding Enterprise – 6 CATS (Maybe)

Unusual Options:
PX270 – C Programming – 7.5 CATS

Which takes it to 109.5 (although I’m only allowed to take 90 to start with seeing as I’m on a pass degree for now). I’m going to look for both Math Methods I and II as well as maybe a few more unuasual or non-maths options.

Thanks guys and any more input would be great

PS I’m thinking of going into Accountancy or Teaching, is there any easy modules I can do that may give a bit of “preparation” (read as “escape from maths”) for those two careers?


September 06, 2006

Picking My 3rd Year Maths Modules

Ok, it’s a little scary to be honest, sitting here, looking through the PYDC online and choosing modules for this coming year. 2 months ago when I got the results of my resits (a pass, not what I wanted but better than a fail), and found out I would be coming back but only on the pass degree I was a bit all-over the place. I was happy to have passed but a bit wary of what being on the pass degree entailed. I know I have to do the Consolidation Module, which is 15 CATS but I’m now lost as to what else I should choose which will best help me acheive my goal of getting an honours degree, preferably a 2.2 if I can get it.

I like the look of:

MA241 – Combinatorics
MA228 – Numerical Analysis
MA245 – Algebra II (although I’m not sure of this one as I had to resit Algebra I)

and so far:

MA3E2 – Group Theory (although again I didn’t do well in Algebra I)
MA3E5 – History of Maths (which gets me out of an exam)

but as to the remaining 45 CATS I have no idea, does anyone have any tips for me? Anything I should avoid like the plague or embrace with open arms? (ok, I know I’m talking about maths modules but if I don’t start to show enthusiasm I may as well not bother)

Come on people! I need help!


June 28, 2006

Guess who's back, back again

That's right, me!

It turns out that I did just enough to get back onto my 3 year maths course this time around. I passed 3 of my 6 exams and did enough to get a lowly average of 31.8 which means I'm back next year on the pass degree but I'm still back and I can work on changing that to a full honours degree by christmas.

To anyone who failed there exams, Don't worry, If I can get back so can you.

Now the search for a job starts, just something to put me on over the summer and earn me a little money. Plus I need to find a room for next year, something in Leamington would be nice but I'm not fussed seeing as I have a car.

Congrats to everyone who graduated this year and is now joining the real world, hopefully I'll be out there too by this time next year


April 28, 2006

Distractions from revision

For the past week or so I've been down in Coventry revising for my resits and have reaped the rewards of not having my PC down there with me as a distraction. I've come home for the weekend and there it is, in it's awesome distracting glory so the question needs to be asked … "Should I take it down to Coventry with me when I return?"

For the next 8 weeks of revision I'm going to need some way of getting onto the internet and some form of light distraction purely so I don't go mad but my PC is never just light distraction, it's a huge distraction. It won't really fit on the little desk I've got plus I'd need a chair in order for me to sit in front of it which I don't have right now so is it really worth taking down there with me?

Those cover most of the negatives:

–Distraction
–Too Big
–Needs Chair
–Won't Fit on Desk
–Distraction (I've got this twice because it's a REALLY BIG distraction)

But the positives are:

+t'internet
+Won't get mind numbingly bored
+Huge array of music and films/tv to listen to/watch
+Access to E–mail, past exam papers, general knowledge etc

So I'm stuck, I've thought of getting a laptop to take down to use to revise and access the internet but that involves spending £400 at least, which is £400 I can't really afford to spend unless of course someone has a half decent laptop they don't need because they have two perhaps? Just a thought. Anyway I don't have a clue what to do.


April 21, 2006

Two down…. Four to go

I've been back in the midlands now since Easter Monday, I didn't actually tell anyone seeing as I've been hidden away in my room in Coventry almost permanently since I got back with the exceptions of Wednesday and Thursday when I've been on campus either revising for or taking my first two resits.

All in all Algebra I on Wednesday didn't go well but I never expected it to, what I did expect was the fact that everybody came out saying exactly the same thing. That they didn't think they'd even answered enough of the paper to pass. This was perfect because I in fact did answer at least 40% of the paper and though that I may have passed but if the paper's marked up then that's even better.

Analysis III was a breath of fresh air and I left the exam feeling better about my resits than I've felt all year. It was exactly the paper I wanted except for one question and a conservative estimate of my mark is around 40, with a hopeful score nearer 60 which is better than my wildest dreams.

Tuesday brings PDE's, that's Partial Differential Equations, which I haven't even started preparing for but I've got a few days to get on top of things although I don't have any notes, worksheets, of exam papers. So wish me luck.

On a lighter note

Happy Birthday to Me
Happy Birthday to Me
Happy Birthday to Me
Happy Birthday to Me

21 today although exams have rather spoilt the occasion. Oh well


April 05, 2006

Leeds Fest 2006

Here's the link for the line-up if anyone's interested

Leeds Festival Line-Up 2006

Pick of the bunch?

Muse, Placebo, Feeder, The Kooks and Kaiser Chiefs what with it being Leeds :D


Oops

Once again it's been a while since I last "blogged" but I keep forgetting. I now have 14 days till my first exams, that's 3 exams on the 19th, 20th and 25th of April then a little while off before another three. Revision is almost grinding to a halt and I'm struggling to get my head down and do the work hence this entry. I'm still not sure about what I want to do next year and should I pass I've got to decide where my future lies and university may not be it. I don't need a degree to become and accountant which is what I want to do so I may not return but as in any profession a degree helps and it increases my potential earnings by a huge amount.

On a much more exciting note I going to the Leeds Festival again this year. Got my tickets after 45 minutes trying to get on however I seem to have got 8 instead of 4 so I may sell some on eBay or find some people to come along. I'm sure there'll be plenty of those seeing as Muse as playing plus some others like The Kooks, The Rakes and Placebo which I'd love to go see. All in all I can't think of a better Line-Up. Franz aren't great but I'd love to go see them, same for the Arctic Monkeys and Kaiser Chiefs who I've seen already. Every day has at least 4 or 5 bands I really want to see and that's only from the names realeased so far. I can't wait.


March 06, 2006

Guess the movie

Ok so I kind of stole the idea a little from Alex but I prefer my format.

Guess the movie from this rather shortened plot synopsis.

Looking for work
Sheep
Pretty Scenery
Sheep
Mountain
Bareback
Sheep
Fewer Sheep
Parting of ways
Reunion
"Fishing Trips"
Family Scenes
"Fishing Trips"
Brutal Murder
No More "Fishing Trips


February 27, 2006

Apple is owned by the Devil

Sorry for not bloging much recently but I couldn't be bothered. Busy with work and worthless revision and spending lots of quality time with my new girlfriend, all in all things are not too bad. I've only got 2 weeks left of work which takes me up to Sat 11th March fully 5 weeks before my first exams start, not much time but right now I'd rather be working than studying because it's just not going in, straight in one ear, causing headache, straight out of the other. That's the general format anyway, I'm really getting tired of not understanding any of it and it only makes me think that if i come back and pass my exams I'll only fail next year anyway.

Anyway enough of that, to the reason for the blog, I need to rant about Apple. The most incompotent bunch of pig fucking, brain dead yokels in the history of man-kind. Now I must admit that I'm slightly in awe of their audacity where "support" is concerned. They claim to have an "award winning" support site however I couldn't find a contact email address anywhere on it. Was that award given to them because they get fewer complaint emails than anyone else? If so then I may have discovered their cunning secret, and there is no direct link to anything I want to know, I have to find a similar article then jump from article to article 'till I find what I want which is how to send my iPod back AGAIN.

Some of you may know that not long ago (November I think) my iPod hard drive broke in a way that caused it refuse to load and play any music and fail to connect to my PC. I sent it back without problem and within days I had received (via UPS) a brand spanking new iPod (probably refurbished). I was extremely happy that replacing my iPod within 12 months of purchase was so painless however now 4 months later the little devil spawn is broken again (with exactly the same fucking problem). I admit that it is now out of it's 12 month warranty however it should under no circumstances be broken with the same goddamn fault so soon after it was "fixed". What's worse is that seeing as it is now out of warrarnty they want to charge me £166.29 for "parts and labour" in order for me to get it fixed.

Now that leaves me in a spot of bother seeing as I no longer trust Apple to send me back a working iPod however much I pay however it's still cheaper than buying a new one or replacing it with a similar size alternative. I admit that I have always been (since my first iPod which was the first edition back in 2002) a huge fan of the iPod, its stylish look, easy to use interface and great sound quality leave it in my opinion head and shoulders above the rest even if it is more expensive. But I'm not sure if I want another, it seems daft to keep giving my money to Apple if they keep breaking and although I may just have been unlucky (3 times, twice with the same fault) my confidence in them is waivering. Plus I don't have £170 to just spend on fixing it, and common snese tells me "why spend £170 on fixing an old iPod when I could spend £250 on a new one?" which I have to admit makes sense. First port of call is Currys tomorrow to price up alternatives but I'll have to make do with my little 256mb MuVo for now.