Wednesday, 31 January 2007

The forgotten child....

With all the furore surrounding Brax and her feet Lucy isn't getting much attention.
Still I get to spend an hour quality time with her training this evening, and to make up for ignoring her I have given her a little spot on my blog of her very own......

Tuesday, 30 January 2007

MST121 - Finished


So I have managed to work through all of the units for MST 121 and have answered all of the questions for TMA 3, TMA 4 and CMA 41 and CMA 42. A-Level maths was a real help, although I did find the calculus challenging and I can now put this course to rest (the last of my Level 1 courses) and turn my attentions to finishing M253 (only 6 weeks left I can't wait - I officially hate this course) working through M263 - which by all accounts is about to get much more difficult! and start work on M255 - although I think I will stick firmly to the timetable for that one (i.e. I am not going to look at anything until Feb 3rd).

More Sleeples Nights....

So I thought that the foot saga was wrong I was

Poor Bracken was back at the vets yesterday with another cyst on her foot - different foot this time but same is incredibly disturbing. She is feeling very sorry for herself, and I can't say I blame her.

I suppose I should take heart in what the vet said - whatever it is responded to antibiotics last time and there is no reason that it won't do so again. There is nothing to indicate that there is anything systemic causing this problem and I think a change in the walking route might prevent poor bracken going through this again.

After all - she only has two feet left now......

Monday, 22 January 2007

MST121 - TMA 2 Result

Well I received this TMA back in record time and was very happy with the result - a 96 to add to the 100 for TMA 1 which puts me on track to do very well in this course.

The feedback from the tutor (and his general level of interest) is far better than any other course I have taken and really helps my understanding. He obviously has a great deal of expertise in teaching older students.

The next TMA is Calculus - it was always a little bit of a mystery to me during A-Level Maths, so I don't think I will be reaching the dizzying heights achieved for TMAs 1 and 2 - but I seem to be understanding it a bit better second time around, so perhaps it will go well too.

All in all I am zooming through the course - the final Block, Statistics is something I was very good at at A-Level - mainly thanks to an excellent teacher in Mrs Clark (who is responsible for me passing the A-Level!) so I am looking forwards to refreshing my memory with regards to that.

Wednesday, 17 January 2007

M253 - Milestone 2 Update

Ah well, I did it again - I managed to curse myself.

Now that we are reaching the business end of the second M253 milestone things are getting hairy. I think that the Christmas holidays, coupled with a lack of inertia and enthusiasm are going to mean that the team-generated report section for the TMA is, once again, going to fall short.

The problem seems to be that a lot of people are going through the motions - and are not willing to devote the amount of time to this level 2 university course that they would to other similar level courses. People who were more active during TMA 1 have become disenchanted and are doing the bare minimum - others have stopped checking in altogether and the exercise requiring people to work together in pairs has led to some disharmony!

The only thing keeping me going on with the course is that I am now two-thirds through it, and the only thing that I can think of that would be worse than continuing would be to have to do it all again. It is a requirement for a named degree and I feel that most of the people in the team wouldn't have touched it with a barge pole had this not been the case.

It is a shame. I think the course is useful and interesting and relevant. The problem arises because people taking the course have no interest in it from the beginning. Perhaps if it became a graded course - as opposed to pass/fail - with an exam people would take it more seriously.

Wednesday, 10 January 2007

Salty Sea Dogs

Well it seems that whilst I am slaving away in the office my dogs are out living the St. Tropez lifestyle at the beach.

Well, judging by the state of them perhaps I am better off in the office - especially on cold wet days in January!

Tuesday, 9 January 2007

M253 Milestone 2

Well what can I say.....Milestone 2 appears to be going okay - despite the Christmas holidays taking a lot of people away from the course for a significant length of time and one of the team members having to defer things seem to be remarkably on track.

Perhaps I shouldn't have said that - and as punishment things will now go haywire - but it seems to me that the whole team is getting a lot more involved in this task, so perhaps the course does do what it intends to - despite the resistance of the students involved.

I have to admit that I can't understand why it is such an unpopular course. I realise that it is not the most stimulating in terms of actual computing, but it does provide the participants with a range of skills that they would otherwise not possess (if they are open to learning them that is). Perhaps it is my different background versus people who are primarily computer based in their academics that leads to this different perspective - who knows.

New Year New Job

Well things at work have been unsettled recently, with the threat of redundancy looming large, so I applied for another job - and lo and behold managed to get it.

I start work for my new job on March 1st. It is exciting, but also a little sad, as I wouldn't be leaving my current company, who have been very good to me, had it not been for their financial restraints.

Christmas fishes

So Christmas was a blast this year - I received the present of a tropical aquarium and am now the proud 'dad' of ten fishes - 5 zebra danios and 5 black mollies. Who would have thought I would spend so much time worrying about nitrite levels, counting fishes and explaining to the spaniels that although I do have new pets to look after, they will always be my number 1.

Depending on the nitrite levels this week I may get a plec. If they are still settling down then it is another 20% water change and some neon tetras instead.

I am turning into a fish geek. :)