Category Archives: Student Television

That was quick!

I have a house for when I start my PhD! After only a few short days of looking for houses around Guildford Will, Anna and I have found the perfect abode! Let me show you round…

It’s a 3-bedroom place, all the rooms are big enough for double beds, the kitchen is modern and it has a dishwasher! Luxury R’ Us! It’s not far away from my house with the girls last year, except a bit nearer university if anything. Same local pub though :D

I’m snatching up one of the biggest rooms, and since the place is unfurnished I can’t wait to put my stamp on the room and make it mine! Geeky posters and computer parts everywhere!

It’s so exciting to finally have a place sorted, it means I can really get my head straight about how the next few months before my PhD starts are going to play out, and it looks pretty awesome!

  • 26th May. First exam
  • 1st June. Last exam ever
  • 11th June. Project Viva, and the end of university
  • 15th June. Big party
  • 17th June. Boat trip with housemates
  • 25th June. Start summer job at Sony
  • 8th July. Move out of my current house :(
  • 17th July. Graduate
  • 20th July. Graduation Ball
  • 25th July. AMERICA!
  • 15th August. Move in to new place :)
  • 1st October. Start PhD at University of Surrey

And with producing the Fresher’s videos for the student television station and designing a new website for my local church I don’t think I’ll be bored! I can’t wait!

  • Happiness. 7 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 7 out of 10 (lots of revision)
  • Last Meal. Good ol’ fish and chips
  • Song of the day. Lenny Kravitz – Fly Away
  • Thought for the day. The meaning of life is to give life a meaning.
  • What I’m Doing Now. In disbelief that I’ll have to leave this house in 7 weeks time… I might cry.

New Kindlings

As I always seem to be saying on this blog, new and exciting things are afoot. Lots is happening at the moment, and I don’t just mean revision for my final exams… although I probably should.

No, there is lots to look forward to once this university madness is over. I’m currently in the process of looking for a new abode in Guildford for the coming year, since I seem to be sticking around thanks to my new found PhD position :D I’m hoping to live with Will, my current and ex-housemate, and Anna, my current housemates girlfriend. It’s complicated, ok, but it’s going to be awesome! 3-bedroom places are not all the rage, but there are some out there and we plan to find somewhere to call our own! But we haven’t found anywhere yet, there are a few viewings going on this week though so I’ll keep you informed if anything drastic happens. I promise this time.

What else? Well we’ve been testing the limits of our housemate Mike’s stupidity…

For those of you who don’t know, the Cinnamon challenge is where one attempts to swallow a tablespoon of cinnamon. It’s as simple as that…

If you like that there’s a few more here :D

I’ve also been keeping up my involvement in the student television station, recently put in charge of producing the fresher videos for the new students starting in September. Now isn’t that a shift? Just a few years ago I was the unknowing fresher…

I’d love to go into more detail about some of these things, but it will all be eeked out of me eventually.

Lots of plans, lots of ambition, lots of revision to do…

  • Happiness. 7 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 7 out of 10 (revision time!)
  • Last Meal. Chilli without the chilli 
  • Song of the day. Stevie Wonder – Superstition
  • Thought for the day. House times are exciting!
  • What I’m Doing Now. Putting off sleep…

Pause for thought

Hello again! My heart is still beating, and I have lots of news you might be interested to hear, but first an explanation.

Since I last wrote here almost 2 months (wow, I’m ashamed of myself), I have been very busy. Busy, you say? What on earth could be more important than writing in your favourite place on the internet? You better have a damn good excuse. Well…

tickled

I’ve been going to a local piano bar quite a lot with the ginger one in this photo. It’s a very civilised place with live music and cocktails.

banana and choc ice milkshake

Experimenting with banana and choc ice milkshakes.

singing

Doing some terrible singing at the aforementioned piano bar.

 uv

Covering our kitchen in highlighter fluid and UV ink. The reason behind this will become clear… you just have to be patient.

treasure

Been on a treasure hunt around Weymouth.

go ape

Gone Ape!

So that’s what I’ve been up to! When I haven’t been doing all of those fun things I’ve been working on coursework and my final project – which I finished today! Hence the post :)

So coursework in and final report written, now is a good time to note that there’s only precious few weeks left of my university life before heading out into the world of work… or is it?

I have kind of been keeping some big news from you since the last post 2 months ago, and it’s kind of what the last post was about. When I wrote the last post I was deep in thought about what to do once I graduate, because I’d been given a choice: Work for Sony, or be sponsored by Sony to do a PhD. And I changed my mind. I’ll never know if it was the right choice, but I’m so happy that I’ve decided to do a PhD.

I don’t want to dwell on what the PhD is on right now, that will come in a future post, but needless to say that it is really exciting and I can’t wait to start! My PhD course is 3.5 years long and it’s at the University of Surrey still, starting in October. I’m being sponsored and getting paid tax-free, so it’s not going to get me into any more debt! I do want to go into depth about why I decided to do a PhD, because I found it a hard decision and I want to be able to help other people who might have to make that decision in the future.

This isn’t the end of my links with Sony, in fact it’s only just the beginning. Sony have a big input in my research during the PhD, but I’m also working there over the summer with the team I was in last year. Hopefully the ties can continue because they are amazing people!

So… life turned on it’s head and I don’t really know what to say. This blog will be getting a major overhaul in the late half of this year, to capture more of my personal and professional life as it develops… hopefully!

I feel like my life is going from strength to strength, just got to get through these exams first and then I have a long summer of work, America and a new home to look forward to! I’ll reveal all, just bear with me! And thanks for sticking round this far! As a thank you here’s the link to the rest of the Pound for Food videos I produced with my housemates recently, they are seriously funny: http://bit.ly/poundforfood.

  • Happiness. 7 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 5 out of 10 (revision time!)
  • Last Meal. Spaghetti Bolognaise
  • Song of the day. Jason Mraz – Everything is Sound
  • Thought for the day. Dissertation done! Boom! 
  • What I’m Doing Now. Sleep! Then starting revision tomorrow… All will be over in only 5.5 weeks!!!

Progress is progress…

So since my little excursion to Greenwich, life has been dribbling along very nicely indeed. I’ve got some plans for updating some websites which I currently run, namely moving the www.stmarybalham.org.uk site over to a php server running WordPress… I’m doing it to get more experience running my own server, and writing php; but also because I wrote the code for this website before I came to university and since then I’ve learnt some better techniques for dynamic website building than I used back then. It’ll be a challenge, but something I’m looking forward to digging my teeth into once this whole university thing is over.

My final project is coming along, it now shows a lot more information and I’m in the process of building a test rig that can assess the accuracy and performance of the system so far for benchmarking and to get some pretty graphs to go into my write up :)

And I got my results last week for my exams in January, I did really well! I got a first in all my modules and I’m averaging 82% for my degree :) Only 30% of my degree left! The end is in sight, finally!

And for those of you who are interested, the next video about my stupid housemates who are living off £1 for food for a month is up:

I didn’t think my voice could go that high for “Top tip of the week”… turns out I was wrong.
  • Happiness. 8 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 5 out of 10 (but it’s all interesting stuff…)
  • Last Meal. Fish and chips
  • Song of the day. Red Hot Chilli Peppers – Scar Tissue
  • Thought for the day. Don’t know whether giving my housemates a beta version of my app was a good idea… :p
  • What I’m Doing Now. About to do some more work… after lunch….

The final semester begins…

My last semester of lectures started last week and because of my cunning plan to front load my module choices for final year I only have two modules and my project work to do. While I regretted that decision in January, having to sit 4 exams, coursework and write a report for my project it all seems worth it now.

I’ve got a couple of marks back for coursework already, and they are both firsts, so with any luck I should still be on track. I’ll get my exam results before the end of the month and that will be a really good indicator of how I’m doing since I’ve now completed over 70% of my degree…

My new timetable is only 7 hours a week! 3 hours on Tuesday, 3 hours on Thursday and an hour on Friday. This gives me loads of time to work on my project witch is going really well (thanks for asking :P)

My project, ELROND, can now do lots of the things I explained in this diagram a while ago, and there’s still plenty of time for refinements and improvements which should give me lots to talk about in my final report. This makes me happy :)

At the moment my housemates Will and Mike are attempting to eat for a month on only £1 of food a day. I’m helping make a weekly video diary for MADTV:

That’s my voice in the intro :P

What else has been going on? Well I’m starting to think more seriously about life after uni, what to do, where to live, whether to go travelling for a while before starting work and so on… So far I’m planning a couple of weeks in California with Charlotte before starting work for the rest of my life. I’d also like to go on holiday with my housemates, but that’s just an idea at the moment.

It’s all exciting times, and Charlotte and I are off to London this weekend to see Mr Scruff play at Koko. I went last year with Julie and it was AMAZING! I’m really looking forward to round 2!

  • Happiness. 8 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 3 out of 10
  • Last Meal. Kung Pao Chicken!
  • Song of the day. Ed Sheeran’s Plus Album, it’s all good :)
  • Thought for the day. I was there when this happened!
  • What I’m Doing Now. Thinking about buying a Linode

Acting Debut & The FUTURE!

I’ve been part of the University of Surrey’s Student Television Station since it began a few years ago, but I’ve always focused on the technical aspects such as filming and editing… but this week, in a bizarre role-reversal between Mike and I, I presented and he edited. So I present to you my first (who knows their may be more…) foray into news presenting…

Charles Gray uncovers plans for the old bookshop to become a strip club after it’s refurbishment… or at least it should according to one student. In a MADTV EXCLUSIVE we tell you what is actually to become of our once loved book shop.

In other news, that I haven’t presented to camera, I went to London last weekend and saw some mates from way back when in Sixth form. Brought together with our love for Nando’s free whole chicken, we sat, gobbled and gobbed for hours. It’s always interesting to stay in touch and see what all your old friends have achieved with their lives. Ben, who has already graduated from an Accounting degree, has found himself working in the Pensions department at Wandsworth Council… I wonder where I’ll be in a years time? Back at Sony? Another broadcast company? McDonalds? the street? Like recycling, the possibilities are endless…

But that’s a while away yet, what about the immediate future? Well I’m off to W-hey-mouth this weekend to see the lovely Charlotte :D After that?

  • 4th December. My parents come to Guildford for Christmas dinner cooked by my housemates and I.
  • 15th December. Going to see Matthew Bourne’s Nutcraker in London!
  • 22nd December. The usual trick for Christmas commences… up to my sisters in Chesterfield for the festivities and prevailing jokes.
  • 29th December. The usual trick for New Year… Jake and I hit up London for a ‘small’ party with friends while the parents are away…
  • January. Exams, coursework, projects… back to normality, for my last year at University!!!

Some of you may have heard that I made a new years resolution for 2011 to not buy any chocolate for the whole year, and those people will also know how impossible this challenge should prove to be… well I’m still at it, but the going is getting tough with just 6 weeks to go! I started the year with a chocolate stash (below) to get me through, but this week that stash was depleted to zero. So now, as Boyzone once said, the going gets tough…

 DSCF4836

  • Happiness. 8 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 1 out of 5
  • Workload. 6.5 out of 10
  • Last Meal. A hobnob
  • Song of the day. Ed Sheeran – The A Team
  • Thought for the day. I thought love was only true in fairy-tales, meant for someone else but not for me…
  • What I’m Doing Now. Packing for the weekend