What am I up to

I’ve been studying, mostly studying how to study, something I need to do to continue with my degree, I passed my first module for last year, 76%, but I felt that I made it a lot harder for myself than I needed to, a lot more work, ie. written work, than was a requirement. I needed to learn the information, understand it and retain it in my head. So I’ve been refining and reflecting on what I did last year and coming up with a new strategy for this years study. I’m using the holidays to refine it and try things out that I hope will help make it easier, not in a I’m too lazy to work sort of way, but in a I can learn more and faster way, then I can increase the amount of stuff I learn rather than just get it done quickly. Lots more reflection each week and tweaking to make my learning beneficial.

Most of the new terms work will be maths stuff, algebra, complex numbers and the such. All looks daunting from my position now, but so did my last module back in July last year, so I assume it’s just me adding unnecessary stress to the situation.

I’ve been taking a course called “Succeed in Learning” at the Openlearn site, it has shown me that emotional conditions, distractions and other people’s opinions can have a massive impact on the way you learn. They suggest you keep a learning journal to discuss your emotional state and learning process with yourself so you can better understand how you learn. Everyone is different, everyone learns in different ways, and so I’m trying to find my optimum learning process.

Learning is for life, and is life, and you have to keep questioning things, yourself and the things you are trying to learn, taking time to reflect on what it was you hoped to get from your study for that day, week, month whatever. Learning is the process of gaining knowledge, not endless facts and memorising texts, but understanding what it is you are studying and being able to put it into your own words in a way that shows you yourself have understood the thing you have studied.

The maths I will be learning is not just about getting the correct answers it is just as much about how I got to those answers, and how I have understood the maths enough to explain the process I went through to get those answers. The maths is important, but the process is doubly important. You can solve equations, but there is little point in doing so if you have no idea why you are solving them and for what reason.

Ok, will go now. Talk again soon. Remember though, dreams can only come true if you act upon them, otherwise they are just thoughts in your head with very little substance.

An open mind

Why I prefer science to religion. (NOTE: I don’t worship science, or atheism, because they are just useful names for what an open minded person can be called by people who have no idea how you can think for yourself instead of using invented gods in your head)
Science can make mistakes, admit to them and change them. new discoveries change our minds on things. It was not until the 1970’s for instance that we found proof of continental drift. We can now prove this with GPS systems, as we can see that the land is moving each year, about an inch.
We only discovered geezers that could be the starting blocks of like on our planet, in 1979.
Science bases its ideas on the latest science, the latest things we know, and we are willing if the proof is provided and shown to be repeatable by other people or scientists we change our minds.
This is why religion is a problem, we have proven and discovered many things in the last 3000 years, such as the earth rotating and orbiting the sun, we know things, have invented things that the ancients 3000 or more years ago would have called impossible. In fact the Greeks didn’t even believe in decimal numbers! The number 0!
Things change, we discover new things, religion stays the same, and becomes more and more incorrect as time goes on, I’d rather be up to date and in the now.

Windy, and I want to garden, sit.

One of the pleasures of living where I do, is the sunny weather, and sitting outside in the sun, working rather than sitting inside working. Its only May but I am yearning to do the sitting in the sun thing, but its not happening yet, we have sun, but we also have wind, we have wind indoors too, but that is the beans. So I want out. To cut the lawn, to weed, to work, to weed some more, to have random chats with my neighbours, and get pawed and clawed by my cats. It’s what I do. I’m almost 50 and I do jack shite, other than sit, soak up the sun, and whine about my life being crap.

I usually have plans for the garden, but it ends up being more effort than I really care about. I may be alone in that idea, but I do know I have zero work ethic, I’d rather not do anything than do something. Maybe one day someone will recognise my non-active life style and reward me with mountains of money, but I doubt it, I will die, sitting in my chair, in the sun, with the cats taking the opportunity for a free meat meal and nibbling on my dead carcass.

I don’t TV anymore!

For a while now all I have taking time out of my life to watch on TV has been Dr Who. I watched Ep1 of this series, and it was good. I haven’t watched Ep2 and 3. Why? Well I can’t be arsed to watch, it takes time out of what I am doing. I am working on my OU topic, reading, watching my youtube list, listening to podcasts, playing games. TV needs me to pay attention, and I don’t really care. Just don’t fucking care anymore.

TV is dead to me, takes time, needs me to stop doing other things. I’m over it, I just don’t TV anymore, period.

Not sure what they can do to win me back, its all crap, populist rubbish for the lowest common denominator, nothing taxing my brain, I would rather work on some science, maths or something than melt my brain with mindless crap which doesn’t need me to think. TV sets are just gaming screens now.


Blog 13-01-2017 – Emotional effects

I’ve been reading a lot of books, articles and course on learning, as I am in that mode it works out for me to learn how to learn, what I need to do to learn, its not just about gathering facts, its also about having the correct mental attitude. The ability to tune your emotions to the learning, so that you learn the most at the right times. Its not easy, and as someone who suffers from Bipolar, I also find it hard to control the chemical changes this brings me. Its all about control, and control can only be within yourself, people post and comment about such things and most even the people considered experts know very little about what each individual suffer goes through, specially as I know I don’t tell anyone, not even my family most of the thoughts I have, if I did they would be worried, so I keep them to myself, or my journal. Gathering thoughts, over thinking, are not problems, as long as you have control of them, over the last 10 years I’ve been doing that, its been hard but it has begun to have an effect.

I write a journal, I write pages and pages and most of it is my emotions at that moment, my thoughts, my ideas, my life. I discuss it with myself, because that is the way you learn, you have to learn about yourself, how you do things. You can take in some input from those around you, but only you know yourself. Only you care about yourself. My learning is getting better, specially as I learn more scientific methods to do things. It allows me to step back and look at myself from a distance. I spend more time lately, with myself, thinking, planning, judging my actions, my thoughts, my life. Its not been nice a lot of the time, I am my worst critic, and that is how it should be, after all I am only human, a species that has not even been on the planet log enough to have a fossil record, not even a blip on the evolutionary scale. A dot in an infinite universe, so as serious as I am about everything, none of it matters in the long term, not for another billion years, and I won’t be part of any of this by then I suggest. So I will continue to make small changes to my mental health, my way, not the way people who don’t understand anything about it, and that includes the experts who get paid to know, they don’t, they change their opinions so much because they don’t really understand, and that is because none of this is understandable unless the truth is told, and no sufferer is able to tell that truth, because only they know.

Blog 12-01-2017 – Extra time

So woke up at 5am this morning raring to go, did some physics note taking, did some note taking from an open learn course I’ve been doing. Then realised I had and extra day, not sure why but I had decided I had 2 days before next topic started and I in fact had 3. So really I have managed to fill a lot into a small time, and have even more free time than I had before. Amazing really, well its amazing to me, so now to get on and see what other to do’s I can do. Or I can procrastinate and tidy up instead of getting some real work done.

Looking forward to getting my teeth into my next topic, could start it now, but that would waste the thinking time, and thinking time is important, over thinking everything is a useful pursuit, no matter what people say, its IS a good thing. Working at the moment at a process for writing up and performing observations in my experiments, I feel chaotic and disorganised and need to get the process down into simple procedures that I can follow each time. Nothing too rigid, but rigid enough to give me a goal and purpose as I go along.

Bag of silica bags came today, so have everything ready for next 2 weeks worth of experiments, but also see that Topic 6 has no experiments, just numbers to study in activities, so seems they thought about the time it would take for the Topic 5 stuff. I love how they have thought of everything, over thinking the whole thing, see it is a great asset for a scientist to over think everything, its why we are alive, we must over think, so we can over plan and fix the broken world, and if not fix the broken world, we can fix our broken selves.

Blog 11-01-2017 – Gaming days

I have a couple of days free for doing me things, so I’ve planned some gaming, last night I tried all my 360 games in the xbox one and most failed, but the few that worked, will be played on the stream over time. Left4Dead being one of them, not played that for ages, even on the PC. Also Halflife 2 orange box set, saw that I haven’t finished portal or ep2 so those will get done. And Red Dead, gotta play that through again, enjoyed it so much first time around.

I also have some development stuff I want to do, mainly involving moving graphics around the screen, have some ideas, want to get them either onto paper, or into code before my days are up (that makes it sound like death). So that’s the way my next couple of days is going to be, gaming, dev and maybe some text book note taking between things, all for me, fun things to do. Also have to work out how I’m going to use the sarcastically sized iron nails I bought for an experiment next week, whoops!

Oh, yeah, finally got my chemistry book to start notes on. Thing I’m going to have to get a bigger note book though, seem to have almost filled this one again.

Laters taters.