October in review; plans for November

october calendar

October was the month of MOOCs. I read a grand total of zero books but I started on CS50.

October was also the month of lapses: I started playing computer games again, spending ~10 hours on Dota 2, ~5 hours on Borderlands 2, and ~10 hours on CrusaderQuest.

That’s three whole days of work assuming 8-hour days.

Something I’m particularly ashamed of is the fact that I squandered the last week (24–28) after keeping up an admirable momentum for the first two–three weeks.

I estimate that I’ve wasted around 8 days in total of a 28-day month and this is of course unacceptable.

I need to start planning my time better. In particular, after I ORD I will have the freedom to structure my time to a far greater extent. No hour should be wasted—this is the minimum modicum of discipline that I should expect from myself.

In other news, I realised that I’ve hit the 85kg 5x5 stated in my “current projects” page. I also managed to bench 105kg ORM—I will update the current projects page.

Projects for November

These are my current projects for the month of November:

  1. Smart home project
    • The issue I’m currently facing now is a problem with serial output coming from Arduino. Instead of receiving data every line, sometimes I receive the data as follows: “line1 \n line2” as one data object. Mark suggested I write a buffer to print out the data line by line but…I’m not sure how to do it and have been putting it off.
  2. Co{de}llective website
    • This has to be up by 12th November: non-negotiable.
    • I’ve to get the site up and write some articles… shag af
    • I realise that I’m less and less interested in webdev, at least building static websites… I learn nothing from it and it’s just really dull.
  3. CS50: finish it up
    • I started CS50 1st October and managed to do 5 problem sets in one month. I hope to be able to finish up CS50x by November and then start MIT’s Analytics Edge in December.
  4. Scholarships: look for and apply for them
    • I have blocked off the months of Dec and Jan for travel. (December with family; January with class) Hence, there won’t be time for me to do anything serious then.
    • My scholarship deadlines are March—that means I have only one month + to prepare and submit my scholarships.
    • That’s why it’s important to start looking now (after November 12).

Currently worrying about

  1. ORD
    • I realise that I’m not looking forward to ORD as much as I should. I really wanted to ORD but now that it’s right around the horizon the sense of freedom has been relpaced with some sort of dread and I’m not (as) keen to ORD. The dread is the recognition that I will have an enormous block of free time and I will have the responsiblity of using it properly.
    • There are also things that I previously took for granted in the army but can’t anymore: for example, I’ve to find a new gym and pay for it (TGN is 8 dollars an entry; membership at 75 dollars a month)
  2. Scholarship
    • Critical if I’m to go to Oxford—enough said
  3. Major choice
    • Change major or no? Tech is becoming more and more relevant and I’m not sure about the relevance of a PPE degree.

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