Swedish class: done

At last.. I am done with the course. Now, all I have to do is to wait and hear what grade I got. All I'm asking for is getting an acceptable one, it doesn't need to be astonishing. The only reason I signed up for it was to pass it and have it nicely on the paper with my merits. It has to be there or otherwise I can't apply for university later on..


Finished NP tests today, and there is bright light outside

Finally. I am done with the NP test. In Swedish that's "Nationella Provet i svenska" and in English.. just a mother test of all tests, meaning it's critical if you want to pass the course with anything else than an F :)

I have had a rough time trying to sleep, also, mainly because it's way too light outside. That's one of the few negative things I have to say about living up north when you really want to sleep. However, you can turn it to your advantage too, say if you're spending time outside with friends in a cottage, a summer's stay, just to mention one situation where it definitely is appreciated!

Yet another test coming on tomorrow in the morning hours. By the middle of next week I can relax and focus more on other things. That will be nice.

Update, May 18th

The grade was more than G (Good / Passed). I actually got VG (Very Good) on both parts of the test! Wohoo! Excellent.


Summer at the beginning of May

It turned into a summer climate about a week ago. We never had spring around here, it went from a cold winter into a comfortable temperature, enough to make it possible to talk a walk in shorts, enough to make you go out and embrace the sunlight .. for at least a little while, it all depends on your situation and mood of course.
I imagine myself sitting with a laptop next summer outside with WiFi if I'm alone. Else, an alcohol-free drink and dessert together with someone.


Summer jobs around here - are you kidding me?

Anyone who have ever taken a look at the current job unemployment statistics for young adults (18-26) in Sweden the last couple of 5 years and today, knows how hard it is to be a student in summertime. I don't even bother applying for the currently two listed available jobs that I can imagine maybe 2,000 people (?) will try to get their hands on. CSN, the study council board, seems to haven't updated their policy with student loans during summers. I do not understand why they aren't giving out money between June and August when most of the chunk is loaned money anyway.

In the longrun they make more money that way and it would higher the quality of life for such a large number of students in this country who can't find any jobs and won't be able to afford a vacation during their 3.5 years or longer of university education. Something's terribly wrong. Encouragement to get educated is pretty high in Sweden, but should be much higher than it already is. There is not enough flexibility and possibility to independence through job salaries today, and will continue to be this way for an uncertain future ahead of us.

I followed a debate about young adult unemployment in this country, on TV, just a couple of days ago and found out there are somewhere between 140,000 and 170,000 unemployed young adults. The numbers differ depending on if you count in students, long-time or short-time unemployed, non-students, etc. The politicians have job offer hirings for 20,000 long-term unemployment people in the governmental sector. That will make a difference, but the rest of the unemployed in the same age group will still be left out and with nothing but uncertainty for now.

My education plan is firsthandedly about getting a secured monthly income, secondhandedly about reaching my goals in life with getting a nice, appreciated, fun and wellpaid job in the future. My own personal hope is that the job market will have recovered until about 2010-2012 some time, or else I will have to move somewhere else, possibly to United Kingdom where jobs flourish (the pay being less of course, but a job is still a job!).


How Wikipedia and Impress can work together

So, I have a much dreaded test on Tuesday in Swedish class. I tried to figure out which way would be the best to study for it and what I concluded is the following: looking up keywords on Wikipedia (Start page) or Wikipedia in English. I am only recommending the English version because of the vast resources they have there to offer people fluent in English, since most contributions ended up there instead of the localised versions they try to push.

Impress is the free and open alternative to the office application Powerpoint from Microsoft. It's compatible with .ppt files and has a lot of professional features to offer. My idea here, is that you first you go visit Wikipedia and type in keywords for everything you need to find information about that's related to the test. Collect the information, filter it through: what is important? What does it say? Is this reasonable?

Make this information into both questions and answers in form of text you put inside the Impress presentation pages. Once done and ready, push the playback button and sit back, try to learn and think about what's on the screen at the moment. Do you understand what it says and can you learn it?

First let the question present itself, followed by the answer to that question after X number of seconds, say perhaps you need 30 seconds to think it through, or 10 if you're more sure about the topic you're on. Set up the pages to transition from one to another automatically so you don't have to push the mouse button for every slide to come up on the screen.

Failing or succeeding the test could depend on your ability to study using this method. I came up with this idea some week ago and I'm not sure yet if I should try it out or not, but I just might try it. No guarantees for it to work, of course, but it sure could be worth checking it out.


Pure Pwnage: a funny show - except for n00bs

Well, well!

I started watching the Pure Pwnage episodes some weeks ago. It's come to the 10th episode this far, and I'm really starting to like it. I hope the guys are going to continue do it. From what I understand it is gaining in popularity as more and more people become aware of the show's existance.

It's exciting to see the technology becoming cheap enough for amateurs with medium-sized pockets to be able to invest and do shows on their powerful mid-range to high-end computers. It's going to get even more interesting in the near future, as more and more people get hands on great software at a great price. The dual-core Intel Macs will certainly make low-cost - and high quality - amateur productions possible!
If you have not done so already, check out fun videos (some of them being well done) on the Google Video site.


Swedish e-commerce: screw up once - it's a mistake. Twice - a fool

[Begin rant] In the mailbox came two movies I had ordered from a Swedish online movie site. One of them was "Pirates of Caribbean" and the other one was a Swedish film. But after opening the package I understood the Swedish film was not there, but rather "Night of the living dead"?! What the...!!

This is not the first screw-up they make. I have friends who have ordered recently and gotten something totally else than they ordered. How this can happen is just a puzzle. What kind of incompetence is that? The Swedish film I ordered was a family movie rated for kids. The movie they sent is from EIGHTEEN and is a horror movie! Get this: the bill even clearly states the correct movie name and article number, etc. Still.. they screw up. I just can't believe it. They have tough competition online, and they sure need it to improve themselves. If they get a bad reputation, people will jump ship to their two main competitors.

What I would like to know is where the issue is: employees who can't do their jobs with the packaging or an administrative setup gone wrong?
Which is better: one day delivery time with half the merchandise getting mixed up, or two days time with everything always correct on delivery? Yes, you bet it's the latter :).
[End of Rant]

Well, you know what? It's the 13th, just happens to be. Coincidental? Yep.


Two new DVD movies for my collection

Today I purchased "Enemy of the state" and "Bad Company" for a bargain, a total of 99 SEK for both of them! I really don't mind buying good movies some year or two after their release if the price is right. Usually, though, ordering online can mean you get the same movies for sometimes half or a quarter of the price what you do in IRL stores!

It's getting tedious to administer the ever growing list of movies in my collection, but I'm doing my best for it to stay synchronised. Anyone wondering where this list is? Well, it's not published - I keep it mostly only for my own purpose of keeping track of which movies I have and which ones I don't have. In the future it will prevent me from ordering movies I already possess. Haha, that would be when the collection has grown out of control I suppose, if it ever does? So far it's not even close to happening!

I need more movies in the comedy genre. Any suggestions in the commentaries on this would be appreciated.


Swedish B: ancient Greece and the Medieval times


Tomorrow morning and afternoon there will be a big test that involves answering questions about ancient Greece and the Medieval times. I missed out on the two tutor sessions of course, naturally oh so unfortunate with the timing.

I have had NO motivation to study for all this and I looked through my material and paper of questions, quickly found out I lacked a much-needed book to get all I needed to learn about the things that will be on the test. Uh, I am going to bed a bit earlier than usual tonight to try get some extra sleep.

Tomorrow will be a long day, especially since it will continue after the test with 4 hours of another Swedish lesson... joy, oh what joy it is ;)