Posts in the category "University".

Books for fun at last

Today I finally had the exam that fell through the last time. I had time to read the books a second time yesterday (and the day before) which I really needed. I think it went well. There were 10 questions and I had to pick 6, so I could leave out the ones that I couldn’t think of anything to write about.

During the exam I had got a text message telling that my book order (Bachman Books) had arrived and I thought damn, just the day when I decided to leave my credit card at home (just to be sure because in the exam you weren’t allowed to take your things with you). Luckily, I had taken some money so I could scrape up enough and got to bring the book home. It’s so pretty! :)

And just after hearing the news about the book, this happened. What a day.

Exam jitters

I don’t remember being this terrified of an exam before. My heart’s racing like I’ve had too much coffee (but I haven’t… well, a mug 5 hours ago, but not too much).

I know why I’m terrified. I don’t have a feeling that I’ve read enough. But the problem is, there wasn’t enough material! Just some vague links to different sites, so I only know finite-state automaton systems well enough, but not (plain, augmented, or recursive) transition networks or artificial intelligence or that damn mysterious acronym SM which I couldn’t figure out. No, it doesn’t stand for sadomasochism.

Oh for crying out loud

I’ve spent my Sunday and Monday — and will spend Tuesday too — cramming for an exam and now I’m told the examiner hasn’t mailed the questions intended for me.

If I somehow get the questions for Wednesday, I’m relieved.
But if not, and I can take the exam based on the same material later, I’m happy.
But if not, and there are going be sanctions to me, I’m fuming.

Now don’t tell me I haven’t spent nearly enough time reading. :razz:

[edit: Apr 26 @ 10:58] I won’t be doing the exam tomorrow which suits me fine. [/edit]

Major musings

Maybe I should change my major.

Today I got the results for the digital media techniques course, and I got 3, again, with yet another best score of the bunch (59 out of 60). Woo hoo! \o/

Among the language technologists I sometimes feel a bit stupid. I just wish there’d be the sort of teaching I’m after. Haven’t found it yet.

Too much excitement II

Why does university always get my pulse running high?

Today I’ve been panicking about my very first faculty exam (book exam for a course) for which you have to enter by filling in an envelope. Well, I’ve just recently decided I’m going to do the exam and last week when I mailed the examiner, he was abroad and said that he’d mail me more info next (this) week. Yesterday he had mailed a group email about the amount of pages to read and what to read. Today I quickly checked what we have available here and decided the material I’m going to read. I have no idea if I have time to read all 400 pages well enough. Just now I was waiting for confirmation on my choices and the time was running short. Luckily, after a little investigation I found out that people haven’t been writing the literature on the envelope because the examiner never gets it before the exam and the literature is agreed upon via email. Phew.

So, I just dropped my very first exam envelope in the box. The exam is on 27th so I hope I’ll get the confirmation soon enough. I’m going to do some heavy reading for a week.

I’m getting there…

I’ve been feeling a bit hopeless/aimless/procrastinating in my studies. Courses aren’t either taught this year or they don’t fit in my schedule — if there is a possibility to go to lectures, I go. Still, I’m slowly approaching the limit for bachelor’s degree.

Today there was an info meeting about the new degree structure (Bologna — will be unified in all of Europe, at least EU, or something like that) and I thought of a good plan. There is a 3 year transitional period during which I’d probably get master’s degree done if I really wanted to, but I’m afraid to take the risk so here’s what I’ve been thinking: I’ll do my bachelor’s degree and then change to the new structure. The BA gets approved automatically as a part of the new 2-step degree, and I’ll have “easier” terms on the master’s degree (as the basic and intermediate studies are broader than in the new system). However, I need to do two “maturity demonstration” essays (answering questions about the theses to demonstrate grasp of topic, major subject, and mother tongue) even though this old system only has one — but I’m sure they are no biggie.

*happy sigh*

I’m getting there… Some day I will have a nice degree. What I’ll do after that is a whole different headache.

Guest blogger: Donald Duck

It’s soon been a month since the digital media techniques exam and there is some sort of rule that the grades must be given in a month. So, I went to my portfolio to see if the person who’ll check my work has left a message.

Boy was I disappointed. I was expecting a hi at least, but there was a message by “Donald Duck”, titled “Title” saying “. . . .” (all in Finnish though, even the dots). Wow. I’m touched.

Darn, I should’ve made the program only mark posts as deleted but still keep them in the database… it would’ve been interesting to see what that deleted message contained (the post IDs are 1,2,3, and 5). But then I would’ve needed to mention that in the documentation.

Stereotypical linguist

While we were having lunch, a gentleman in the next table asked which department we were in. He was conducting a little lunchtime experiment. We told we were from the general linguistics department, and apparently he then told us what he first thought we were, but none of us heard it. I just heard him say “oh, that’s what linguists look like” and tell where he’s from etc etc. I thought to myself that maybe we’re not very good stereotypes for linguists. I for one would probably pass for a philosopher with my black attire (bear in mind that the choices were teachers (and “related”), linguists, and philosophers).

Grandma has told me once that I look like a humanist (student in the Faculty of Arts, or Faculty of Humanities as it is for us), so that’s good. But do I look like a linguist? Think not, at least I’m not a linguist at heart, unless liking languages means ‘being a linguist’. I could be a computer person, but what do they look like? I already have glasses so I think that’s going for me… but everybody has glasses nowadays — or so it seems.

Hopefully I’m not stereotypical anything.

Too much excitement

I had the digital media techniques exam today (it went well, I think, by the way) and I almost didn’t make it. First of all, the bus was either 8 or 13 minutes late: there was supposed to be one at 14:45 and another at 14:50, one came at 14:58. Of course, 2 buses came to the stop at the same time. I thought as the other one drove past us, people would get on it and we could drive quickly by. But no, some people chose this bus even though they were going the exact same route to the exact same place.

The bus driver seemed to be driving slower than usual.

When I finally got to the centre, I ran to the tram stop and luckily there was one coming at 15:30 (instead of :34 like I remembered). But… trams are slow, they stop almost every 100 metres. AND adding to that, the car broke (tram car, you know) leaving us just one stop too early (and of course, this stop isn’t with the 100 metre interval…). I started running/hurrying towards the campus, it was 5 minutes to, and I still had a nice hill to climb.

Luckily, everyone was standing outside the auditorium when I got there, so the computer people were a tad late, as usual. My heart was pounding out of my chest, partly from the hurrying, mostly from the panic I’d had since I was waiting at the bus stop.

I finished the exam in roughly 1 and a half hours, I re-re-checked my papers and went through my mental slide show as I was waiting for the guy at the end of the row to leave. I think I did alright. Oh yeah, I have a course evaluation to fill in. That’ll have to wait, I have a little more urgent issues at hand.

Web portfolio

On Thursday, after staying up until 3am the previous night, I decided to stay home and do Uni stuff: checking texts for grammar and things, and my beloved web portfolio of which there’s been a little tasting earlier.

Here are some new pictures of the layout. I can’t give out the site link because there’s an open insert/update form to the database, so you’ll have to settle for hand-picked favourites of mine:
This is the view on a post editing page when no post has been selected yet. I made those fancy “drop down” post numbers. They’re post IDs wrapped in span tags floated left.
List to edit posts
Here’s my WP style quicktag pane: Smiley panel
And last but not least, a snippet off of the documentation page including the right side of my horizontal menu (the main links are on the left hand side) and the header with fancy underlining. Snippet off of documentation
I could rant on and on about the (cool?) things I’ve done on the site-slash-blog-application but I’ve just done that, all day long. Writing the documentation and tons of comments. Maybe I will rant some day.

Oh yeah, I just realized. When next week’s craziness is over (exam and perhaps I should find some time to study for it too, an essay, loads of papers to check for grammar etc, new course, finishing touches to the portfolio — and work), I can start modifying the portfolio layout to fit my WP blog!! Can’t wait!! Today (= yesterday) I installed XAMPP and put up a local WP where I can test out my themes — and write some very secret things that no one else is allowed to read! Now… how could I get such secret things to write about…
(XAMPP is an Apache distribution containing MySQL, PHP and Perl. And then some.)

[Edit: March 14th @ 23:00] Now I sent in my portfolio (or the url, actually) so now I can only sit, be scared, and wait for the judgment day. I actually noticed some whoopsies after sending the url and quickly corrected them (a non-validating documentation and a form handler that didn’t display a “don’t use this page directly” notice). Now they work. Now ALL of it works I hope. Ugh, I hate this sort of uncertainty. [/edit]