Got my grades for last semester and I’ve managed to maintain my 4.0 GPA. This apparently qualifies me for the honor roll as I received an invite today to attend an honors convocation and reception “recognizing you and other outstanding students of Washtenaw Community College.” This has left me with mixed emotions.
This is the first time in my entire life that I’ve had a 4.0 GPA and while there’s a certain amount of pride in it, I feel like I’ve cheated my way into it by going out and teaching myself all the stuff I’m now taking classes for and thusly breezing through the subjects. I’ve got 22 years of PC support of one sort or another behind me and I’ve not yet needed to read more than a chapter or two out of any of the course books. It also helps that I’ve taken a grand total of four classes to date (starting my fifth tomorrow night) and they’ve all been computer classes, my best subject. I haven’t taken any other required courses yet, in part because I’m hoping some of my old credits from my time at Oakland Community College some 20 years ago will apply, but when I do then it’ll probably be more of a challenge to maintain that 4.0.
So, yes, it’s flattering in a small way, but it doesn’t feel like the accomplishment it should be. It also doesn’t help that I had to get into my 40’s before I managed to get a 4.0 GPA. If anything it shows me what might have been had I not been the dumbass I was 20 years ago. Cue grousing about youth being wasted on the young and so forth. I suppose I should take whatever victories I can get these days, but I feel like I’ve bent the living shit out of the rules, if not broken them outright.
The winter semester at Washtenaw Community College starts tonight and for the next 15 weeks or so I’ll be attending classes every night after work except Fridays. Monday nights are my short night with the class lasting only two hours, but on Wednesday it’ll be a lengthy four hours or so. The Tuesday/Thursday class is three hours long which is what I’m used to from last semester. This will be a bit more of a challenge than last semester in part because I won’t have a night off between classes to study, but I really can’t get away with just taking a single class at a time as it would take way too long to graduate.
I’m feeling anxious about it all as I really hate this kind of schedule. I’m sure it’ll pass once I get settled into it, but it’s still annoying. Still, you do what you gotta do and I gotta do this. Should’ve done it years ago. Once of those lessons you learn the hard way.
So I see that SEB broke the 6,000 entry mark today with my posting on the Access Hollywood interview with the Obamas. It’s only taken me almost a full seven years to do it, but I got there eventually. Considering that folks such as ***Dave broke that milestone years ago probably says a lot about how lazy a blogger I really am, but we can’t all be superstars like ***Dave. I’ll just have to be content with the simply staggering comment count SEB has racked up over the years. Almost 71.5K as of this very moment. Our daily traffic fluctuates between 1,200 and 2,100 people and that’s nothing to sneeze at either. Nor is the amount of bandwidth the site makes use of at roughly 1.12GB a day. That doesn’t take into account the amount of email we sent out on notifications as that’s handled by a different server.
In other news, I got my midterm grade in my Networking class and I’m sitting pretty with an A for the moment. Out of the six or so tests we’ve had so far I’ve been wrong on a grand total of three questions and one of those questions was one I didn’t see at all because it was on the back page of the test. Sometimes I feel it’s not really fair as I already know 90% of the material being covered. The OSI model is one of the few things (so far) I didn’t already know, but the class promises to be digging into more arcane knowledge as the weeks progress so I’m hoping that feeling that I’ve got an unfair advantage will pass soon. The instructor thinks I’m great, though, because I’m able to answer even his tricky questions during the lectures. When he was discussing standards the other night he made a point of how the standards groups don’t always agree on a standard for quite awhile and he asked what current standard we could cite as an example. I spoke up with the 802.11 N wireless standard—we’ve not gotten into wireless networking in the class yet—which was exactly what he was thinking of. Of course Blu-ray and HD-DVD would also fit the bill.
Lastly, the folks at Blizzard have started the World Event that heralds the pending arrival of the WotLK expansion. Mysterious crates have shown up around Azeroth that, when opened, infect players with a plague. If not cured within 10 minutes you turn into a zombie and can run around using special zombie powers killing and infecting other players and NPCs. This has been great fun and I unleashed my zombified self on the middle square of Stormwind last night taking out some 20 people before dieing from the resulting melee. So far the outbreaks have been relatively easy to contain. Players of the Priest and Paladin classes can cure disease and there’s a number of Argent Dawn healers spread around various cities that will also heal you of the disease, but Blizzard warns that this is only the beginning and that things will get much worse before the expansion hits. Player controlled zombies run amok in Azeroth? How cool is that?
How else can you explain the fact that they’re revising a previous estimate they made about the percentage of college students who pirate movies?
In a 2005 study it commissioned, the Motion Picture Association of America claimed that 44 percent of the industry’s domestic losses came from illegal downloading of movies by college students, who often have access to high-bandwidth networks on campus.
The MPAA has used the study to pressure colleges to take tougher steps to prevent illegal file-sharing and to back legislation currently before the House of Representatives that would force them to do so.
But now the MPAA, which represents the U.S. motion picture industry, has told education groups a ‘‘human error’’ in that survey caused it to get the number wrong. It now blames college students for about 15 percent of revenue loss.
That’s a pretty significant difference in numbers, but that won’t stop the MPAA from continuing to push Congress to do something about those meddling kids!
The MPAA says that’s still significant, and justifies a major effort by colleges and universities to crack down on illegal file-sharing. But Mark Luker, vice president of campus IT group Educause, says it doesn’t account for the fact that more than 80 percent of college students live off campus and aren’t necessarily using college networks. He says 3 percent is a more reasonable estimate for the percentage of revenue that might be at stake on campus networks.
‘‘The 44 percent figure was used to show that if college campuses could somehow solve this problem on this campus, then it would make a tremendous difference in the business of the motion picture industry,’’ Luker said. The new figures prove ‘‘any solution on campus will have only a small impact on the industry itself.’‘
You can bet your sweet bippie that the MPAA won’t be giving up on it’s hopes for legislation anytime soon, though. I mean, look how successful the jacking up of fines for non-commercial infringement have been at curbing piracy? It’s been at least as successful as the RIAA’s attempt to sue it’s own customers into compliance.
Link sent in by DOF.