Archive for the ‘Daily Life’ Category

Procrastination Deluxe

October 31, 2011 1 comment

Well, the past week and a half I have not even opened a book. Epic fail I know.

It started out with the feeling that I need a game to play in my spare time (you know to relax) as I was getting bored with films and series. Now I usually prefer offline adventure type games. Ones that require more thought and imagination rather than reflexes (like one of my favourite games; Neverwinter Nights). However I decided to play an online one that I haven’t touched in some-time. I bet you can guess the game…

Now that I think back on it, there were some very familiar signs of a game’s “charm” beginning to take hold:

It started out with the innocent “I feel like playing an interesting game that does not take up too much of my time”.
A few days later this slowly changed into “Oh, I’ll just do one more level… what can it hurt?” and “I just need this one staff and I’ll stop for a bit”.
Soon after followed by the tell-tale “I need to get higher level so that I am in the top half of my guild”.
Finally you find yourself in bed thinking (perhaps even dreaming) “I’m going to do this quest and that quest tomorrow so I can get that epic looking shoulder armour”.

I looked at the calendar nearly needed a new change of pants! Low and behold nearly two whole weeks had passed! Shock and horror!

So now I find myself needing to do a lot more work just to catch up yet alone getting slightly ahead. All this because of games… Looks like I have my work cut-out for me for quite sometime… great… 😐

***Edit: I forgot to update from the previous post. I have uninstalled Ubuntu and installed Windows 7. Haven’t looked back yet. Might even post next about some useful applications that I have found 🙂 ***


Linux or Windows?

October 21, 2011 Leave a comment

This is a question that I have been asking myself recently.

A few weeks ago I made the switch from Windows 7 to Ubuntu (10.10 as I am still unsure about Unity). The one of the main reasons was that Windows 7 got so much slower over time (no matter how well you looked after your hard drive) and I just generally was tired of it and wanted a change. Oh how I miss XP.

I found Linux to be a surprisingly good replacement. In fact it was much better than I had previously thought. A lot of the applications that I use on Windows can also be found on Linux:

  • Skype
  • Thunderbird
  • Firefox
  • VLC
  • uTorrent
  • LyX (LaTeX editor)
  • VirtualBox

Along with a host of new Linux-only applications that I have already grown very attached to, and anything windows only (Mathcad, Photoshop, etc.) I would run through Windows 7 on VirtualBox. It all seemed like a perfect setup (and it was pretty damn close to this statement too)! Although I would be telling porky-pies if I said that I did not miss playing games.

However there is a single, constantly nagging point for me; screen tearing (at first I thought it was VLC, but after a while I found it was the ATI graphics card drivers). There is a fix/workaround but it appears to only last for a single reboot then I have to apply the changes all over again (and even then the fix/workaround is not all that great). As I watch a lot of movies / TV series / lectures / etc. this is not at all acceptable. My friend does not even notice the tearing but unfortunately I do.

My friends suggest that I dual boot. While this is a perfectly sound idea, I know myself better (I usually end up only using a single OS and the other just collects dust).


So which is it? Linux or Windows? I’ll let you know when I know, although I am leaning more toward switching back to Windows at this moment.


October 18, 2011 Leave a comment

Well, today I had one of those seriously annoying “derrr…. what’s going on???” moments for something that should be so utterly basic (at least I think it is basic).

It was a simple algebra step (when working with the closed form of a linear recurrence sequence) that tripped me up. I just sat there trying to figure out what just happened and why I could not figure it out.

From this: x_n={r^{n-1}a+(\frac{r^{n-1}-1}{r-1})d}

To this:     x_n={(a+\frac{d}{r-1})r^{n-1}-\frac{d}{r-1}}

I think I need a quick review of algebra. This should be child’s play to me! *cry*

P.S. I did actually figure it out before posting this, I just thought that I would post my pains to the world.

Install Update

October 10, 2011 Leave a comment

As you may or may not have noticed, I have been rather slack regarding this blog for the past month or so. This is because not much was happening in my life (apart from lots of Star Trek episodes and Sci-Fi movies, with the occasional studying). Now however, as of 1st October I have been ramping up the studies to try make studying a much much larger part of my life. Although I have bad insomnia at present, making this rather a challenge.

Currently I am studying Sequences (along with all the little gaps I have missed out; Trigonometric Functions) and trying to stay a step ahead. Wish me luck!


The current theme may remain permanent as a tribute to Steve Jobs whom recently passed away. R.I.P.

Categories: Daily Life, university Tags:

Transportation: Activated

September 22, 2011 Leave a comment

It has been a while since I last posted on here. I have been studying, although nowhere near as much as I should have. This, hopefully, should change starting from tomorrow.

I have purchased… wait for it… a bicycle! For a staggering £25.00 I bought a mountain bike that is sized for a 14-16 year old, which is a little too small for me but this was all my budget could afford (I do somewhat resemble a clown on a small bike). This will allow me to start going to the bigger and better library that is open 6 days a week and has a much better selection of physics and math books! I am yet to time how long the journey will take one way, but right now I am guessing around 30 minutes, which is in my opinion a very good workout.

Speaking of the library, I will be studying there for the majority of the winter sunlight hours (\pm 10am to 5pm or 7pm depending on that days closing time). This brings up a new challenge; lunch. I will have to prepare something to eat while I am there. It has to be cheap, filling and able to survive the journey there (and perhaps a little heat). Right now I am testing baguette as they are cheap, filling and can be made to taste different with different fillings.

Other than that, I am a fair bit behind where I should be in my study schedule, but I am hoping that this new plan will correct that in a very short amount of time.

Back on Track. Again.

September 5, 2011 Leave a comment

My apologies to whomever reads this blog, my Grandmother stayed a lot longer than expected. What I thought was a weekend turned out to be nearly two whole weeks!

While I thoroughly enjoyed her company (as it has been some time since she has visited), it did unfortunately put studying on halt and any other activity that I do. I did, on occasion, try to study but I either felt guilty not spending time with her or there was too much happening in the house to concentrate properly.

However she has now returned home and I have some serious catching up to do. Not only that, but I need to refresh on everything I have learnt up till now because I seem to have forgotten some important bit and pieces (too much Star Trek and not enough revision hehe). I have a little under a month left before MST121 officially starts and I wish to be as prepared as I can.

On that note, I am about to start Linear Algebra (I still have not started Trigonometry I know…) and will move through it as quick as possible (I still have distractions at home that I am only beginning to learn how to handle).

On my next blog post, I will start going through a few documentaries that I suggest watching 🙂

Mmm… It’s a pickle alright!

August 19, 2011 Leave a comment

I have had to move my study time to the library recently due to the distractions at home. Unfortunately the library closes early on Mondays, all day on Wednesdays, hosts a housing benefit meeting on Fridays (making it hard to concentrate with crying babies) and, the cherry on the cake, is also closed all day on Sundays. The next library that is closest to me is more than double the distance, making it pretty much unpractical.

I am however starting to relearn how to wake up early (8:00am haha) so that I can get to the library earlier and hence get more hours of study (just so you know, I currently wake up at around 9:15am but only get to the library at 12:30pm). But this is a work in progress that I plan to be putting in full effect within the next week.

So all this leaves me in a bit of a bind. I struggle to study at home, and I only really get the library to study for a whopping three days of the week. What to do with the remaining four days? Where can I go that has a nice desk, adequate lighting and most importantly a studious atmosphere?


I decided to wait till Friday to post this, as I wished to first examine Fridays before deeming them as unusable. So far (I am writing this in the library) it is almost no different from other days of the week. Fantastic. So I now can claim I have four days of the week for library study.

I have also had insomnia for the last few days, making it harder to achieve my 7:30am wake up (I changed it so that I wake during a REM cycle making it easier to wake up) goal. But I have done some research into sleep in general and will try out a new method to ensure a better night sleep, which in turn will help me wake earlier and easier. If my method works, i’ll post it here for all.