Nov 17

Heheh – two exams today, so this post is brought to you by the freshbytes lackeys who seem to have nothing else to do but study… Apologies for not putting it up sooner, I wanted to get some sleep.

You hear the horror stories about how calculators can die suddenly due to a loss of power during end-of-year exams, and you worry.

You hear how harsh the TQA are on spontaneous calculator battery death (as we’ll call it), and how they don’t tolerate any excuses for spontaneous calculator battery death.

You hear how someone was sitting on an EA before they went into the exam, but are now only going to get an SA because they suffered spontaneous calculator battery death.

Well, okay – so I made that last one up, but I’m sure it has happened to someone, somewhere at sometime in the past!

Right – so I wasn’t going to let that happen for me. No way. I needed as many points as I could get, and spontaneous calculator battery death would just lead to a whole world of pain – namely, year 13 at Calvin (that, in and of itself wouldn’t be so bad, but having to do year 13 in the first place would be)….

Anyway, as you shop for batteries, there are a lot of questions to be pondered, such as:

  • What brand of batteries should I get?
    This question is quite important as if you’re paying for the brand, then you’re doing it wrong, especially when it comes to mundane things like batteries. I managed to pick some nice red evereadys as they have worked well for me in the past – and if good performance is for this particular brand, that’ll bring me back to that brand, time and time again.
  • How many should I buy?
    This is also an important question – if you have other devices in your house that use a large number of specialised batteries, you should probably buy them in bulk so that you always have some of those batteries on hand when you need them. Running out of batteries sucks at the best of times, and well, you can never have too many batteries! Of course, there is a limit, so don’t rush out and buy cartons of batteries – after all, you need to be realistic.
    I ended up going for an 8-pack of AAA’s as they were on special.
  • Should I buy rechargeable batteries?
    If you’re asking yourself this question, you probably should – provided you’re prepared to lay out the extra initial cost of the rechargeables, as well as a charger if you don’t already have one… Supposedly rechageables are more cost effective, but in reality, you’re paying for the power that you use to charge them, too!
    I didn’t buy rechargeables as the batteries were for a caluclator – and I’ll probably use it once every couple of months after exams are over.

Anyways, that’s about the end of my battery-buying advice. If you’ve got any more tips that you feel I’ve missed, then shout out in comments!

As for school, well, I’m smack bang in the middle of exams. Chemistry was last Friday, and I’ve got Maths Applied and Computer Science tomorrow (Monday). Thursday sees the Physics exam, and after that – the Magazine needs to be done, I’ll work a heap, and work on a couple of projects I’ve got planned… Yeah, my holidays are fairly jam-packed as is.

On the Radi8 front, we should have a couple of good events to finish up the year with, which should be good.

The song for this week is Michael Buble’s Everything – from his album Call Me Irresponsible. If you’ve got iTunes, hit the links – they’ll take you to the correct iTunes Music Store page.

Other that that, I’ve got nothing.

Comments below.

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Nov 10

These days it seems like I’m stuck in a rut:

Wake up, eat, study, eat, study, eat, study, sleep.

After rinsing and repeating for x number of times, you start to go a little crazy.

You start having weird dreams which have don’t reflect reality, but the truth is that your subconscious mind is processing information – stuff that you might have learned, thoughts you might have floating about, and anything else which it can lay it’s ever-reaching arms on.

Sometimes, your subconscious mind tells you things which you madly wish were true – ah, if only such things could happen in reality!

Anyways, if you haven’t noticed, I am, along with the rest of my known universe (because you guys matter to me that much) busy studying.

This has lead to what I call study syndrome – where you stay up really late every night, cramming examples, formulas, and just about everything bar the kitchen sink onto your information sheet, in the feeble hope that you’ll have enough information to take into the exam with you.

It’s exam week now, and everyone is in full study mode; in particular, I’d like to make a shout out to those lucky guys and gals who have Biology and Legal Studies exams today. I salute you for your valour.

I won’t, however, wish you luck – if you need luck at this point in time, you’re in the wrong reality.

Reality – you’re doing it wrong!

You can tell by the quality (or lack thereof) of this post that it’s very late (or is that early), and I need some sleep.

I’ll catch y’all sometime later.

There might even be something (better than this, to be sure) up tomorrow morning.

Heh, just noticed that this was Freshbytes’ 50th post. Wow, how utterly anti-climatic… :D

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , ,

Nov 02

So on the study camp, we got a little brochure about study techniques and everything.

What I took away most was the fact that the little study camp book had a cool little man on the front – saying “Exam is here!”.

For those of you that don’t know, mid year exams != fun, and the same applies here.

Year 12 end of year exams do not equal fun. Exams in general don’t equal fun, but year 12 end of year’s are far more scary.

Unfortunately, this is the time of year when you can make or break your whole career. Sure, if you stuff up your exams really badly, you can always repeat and do year 13, but who in their right mind wants to do that?!

I suppose if I was looking to get a good job I’d need to get a good score – say about 90 or so to get into the degree that I want to do at Uni.

90 isn’t totally unreachable – I know people who are aiming for 100 or above, and someone else who managed to get 113, but it’s still going to prove enough of a challenge as it is.

Let’s see:

Now, according to the Scaling Summary from 2007 (PDF link), (assuming that those values hold true for this year), I’ll need at least an average CA from Physics, which is completely achievable, and therefore inside the realms of possibility.

Indulge me – we’ll just assume for the moment that I’m insane and manage to get a CA in Chemistry – no mean feat, I assure you. In terms of points, that would garner me a respectable 11.9 – not enough.

However, if I were to get a HA in Physics, I would gain 17.4 points – which would be awesome.

Of course, I can’t predict the future, and I’ll just have to hope that everyone else that studies Applied is on the same level as the year 11’s in my Applied class – that being the case, maybe we’ll see something like last years scaling where Media Production was worth an incredible 28.5 points at EA level – just, WTF, especially considering that Maths Specialised, arguably the hardest subject in the whole TCE course list, was only worth 25.2 points at EA level.
The chance of this happening is low, however, as there are some others who are either repeating Applied, or people that have done methods previously and are now doing Applied for the points alone (like I am). If that’s the case, then Applied will be scaled down – and I’ll get less points as a result.

For now, it’s all a numbers game. If the right numbers come up, I’m in the green. If bad numbers come up – I’m in the red, and the likelihood of me repeating is high.

I’m praying for people to lose their minds just before the exams – I need those points.

It’s scary to think that my future depends on how well other people do in exams. I know roughly how my classmates will go, but I’m in the dark as to how other people will go. Of course, for myself to go well points wise I need other people to do badly, which is kind of weird. I don’t usually wish that people sucked at what they did, but really – if you do well at your exams, you’re hindering me!

In all honesty, I think that the scores will balance themselves out – and I’ll get into whatever course I want to at whichever Uni I want to. While my UMAT results weren’t crash hot, (in actual fact, they were below average, oops), I’m sure that people will see through the fact that there’s more to life than standardised testing, like the SAT’s or whatever those yanks have.

Comments below.

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , , , ,

Nov 02

[Quick shout-out to the last episode of season 4 of The O.C – The End’s Not Near, it’s Here]

So I had my last day of formal school last friday.

Last day of school – for ever.

For ever – it means no more BBQ Bonanzas from Bakers Delight, no more Ronson, no upper common room superiority, no shouting obscenities at innocent passers-by, none of that.

To think that I won’t ever run another assembly at Calvin again, nor ‘just hang’ with my mates outside the common room, taking in some serious sunlight.

Unless I see bump into my friends in town or something, I probably won’t ever see them again. I can guarantee you that there will be people from my year that I will never, ever see again (after the formal, of course).

Everyone says that they’ll stay in touch, but they never do – this is a proven fact.

It’s no secret that I’m really disappointed about leaving. Hell, I doubt you’d want to leave a place filled with people who care about you, a place where you’ve experienced the highs and lows of the best friendships of your life, or the place where you’ve never consumed so much junk food in any single day.

We say we’ll look onwards and upwards to Uni, or whatever we’re doing next year. In truth, we probably will, but we’ll never forget how good the upper common room smelled, how it felt, what kind of a vibe it had.

We say we’ll keep in touch, but the sad truth is that we almost never do. If we happen to bump into each other in the street, sure, we’ll stand in the middle of the road and catch up, but we’ll rarely go out of our way to dedicate some time to really catch up – usually because we’re far too busy doing our own things. Besides, that’s what FaceBook is for :D Speaking of FaceBook, I’ll be getting one sometime after exams. I detest MySpace with a passion, though, so I definitely won’t be getting a MySpace.

Alternatively, you can contact me through various ways – the easiest is to shoot me an email (bennglingbling [at] gmail [dot] com), but you can see other ways to contact me here.

Anyways, freshbytes is here to assist you in keeping in touch with your mates from Calvin – for those who aren’t into the whole “social networking” thing at all, freshbytes is here for you.

Visit the forums, or simply post comments on posts. I’d appreciate it :D

Comments below.

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

Oct 26

Study Camp 2008

Blog, Misc, School Comments Off

Well, the inagural Study Camp for 2008 has been and gone.

Sure, the study sessions could have been longer and more frequent, but it was fine. Really, it was.

Sure, there were 6 laptops there (and one most excellent Linksys WRT-54GL router w/DD-WRT), and Mr Lineage is more than correct in saying that they were just going to be a distraction from study – which they were. I’m glad I didn’t take mine.

Because of the Study Camp, I don’t have any pre-prepared content for y’all to enjoy this weekend, so I’ll just whip something up now…

On my last post, there was a comment from turkeybrain about how he doesn’t think that anyone else reads this stuff.

Now, he may have gotten that from the fact that y’all don’t post any comments, man! I mean, really! Go ahead. make a comment – for what it’s worth, they’re free and you can say whatever you like – internet anonymity is awesome for that kind of stuff. Of course, I’ll know who you are (depending on your screen name and whatnot), but at least you’ll have the satisfaction of posting on freshbytes…

Anyway, I can safely say that there are actually people who read this stuff – even if you don’t know about it. Just because there is a definite lack of comments doesn’t meant that this place is a ghost town, turkeybrain.

I fully understand that not everyone is into the whole “ooh, Internet!” thing. While I certainly am, there are those of you who clearly aren’t with the exception of the odd MSN/MySpace/FaceBook session. I get that, I do.

Another thing I understand is how geeky it is to have your own website, let alone two. That’s a topic for another time, though.

Anyways, I hope you’ll leave a comment on this post – if you haven’t left a comment, ever, why not post one on the Freshbytes Wall? It’ll show up on every page – it’s the little block on the upper right hand corner of every page. Hit the button to get started.

I’ve been wanting to post this for a while now, so here it is…

Ever since McDonalds bought out the new burger packaging that has the funky info on the inside, I’ve been wanting to know what the value of M is. You know the one that tells you how much beef McDonalds bought, how many Mmmmm’s that equates to, etc.

Well, Lumus from the MacTalk Forums managed to work out the value of M – as according to McDonalds. Unfortunately, his working was out by a factor of 16, but hey – his post on his MobileMe shows just how easy it is to create a quick website using Apple gear.

You can read his post here. (Original credit MacTalk Forums)

One last thing – there are 5 days of school left. Forever…

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , , , ,

Oct 08

So it’s that time of the year…

The time of when we fill out those forms for the Calvin Magazine (more on that later), saying who we are, what we want to be in 5 or 10 years time, etc.

So I came to the part labelled “What is your favourite memory from Calvin?”… and I paused.

Favourite memory from Calvin? There are far too many…

  • Year 3 – there was an incredibly awesome teacher. She was also heaps pretty, too. Anyways, this incredibly awesome teacher was definitely the highlight of Year 3 – she made maths fun, for crying out loud! It doesn’t get much better than that – ‘cept when all your other year 3 subjects are fun as well! I don’t really remember much else about year 3 (apart from extra music below) – I was fairly good friends with Ben Steyne, and together we conquered the whole Primary campus with his 3-2-1 Thunderbirds! playset. It was awesome…
  • Again, year 3 and it’s extra music classes. Now, because Ben Steyne and I were so damn excellent at Music (as a result of separate, private [piano] lessons), we were entitled to go to these special music classes for people who were musically gifted. Unfortunately, these weren’t so much extra music classes as much as they were bludge lessons – at the time, all Ben and I did when we weren’t practising for our next concert or whatever (which was 99% of the time), was socialise with the (at the time) Year 6 girls… Good times had!
  • “Monkey”-ing around in year 5 (or 6) – imitation is definitely the best form of flattery. I was imitating someone in my class when she started to get really annoyed. I think the teacher then noticed it was annoying her and she (the teacher) then told me to stop being a monkey, ‘cos apparently, to monkey someone is to imitate them. I think it was designed to embarrass me, but I didn’t care…
  • Year 6, and it was time for our buddies. Now, we got to choose partners, so that each Prep kid had 2 year 6 buddies. Not unlike when I was in Prep, we also had to write stories for our Prep buddies. I don’t have the foggiest idea what my story to my buddy was, but I do remember that I chose one friend over another… Callum A was his name, and I was fairly good friends with him as well. More so than another guy you all might know, Jaymes C. Somehow, I managed to pick Callum over Jimmy to be my buddy-partner, and I don’t think Jimmy ever forgave me for that…

…and that’s just Primary school! :shock:

I’m fully aware that some of you mightn’t have primary school stories as colourful as mine – there were definitely some other stories that aren’t really appropriate. Now is not the time, nor the place.

So, back to this leavers interview…

I’ve put down “Tamworth 2006, aka Science and Engineering Challenge 2006″ as my favourite memory from Calvin… It was completely epic. So epic, in fact, I’ve got a website (almost) dedicated to it… See here.

200+ Krispy Kream Donuts.
38 students.
3 teachers.
13+ hours of bus.
4+ hours of plane.
4 days.
3 parents.
2 hotels.
1 Grand Challenge.

Yeah – that’s pretty much the best excursion ever. No idea how you’d top it…

Comments below.

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,