My Relationship with Computers

I have an interesting relationship with computers. I love them, I hate them, and sometimes they annoy me to death. I had one computer that had some many issues that once one of the issues got fixed, something else would stop working.
That was hell.
My current computer is quite annoying as well because it isn’t as slow as some of the older computers but is advertised to run faster than it actually does. This is also where I learned that having more cores on your computer does not necessarily mean that your computer runs faster. Remember that. The salespeople are not necessarily well-equipped to properly help you. Or maybe they’re simply biased. I suspect its a combination of both.

Earlier this semester, I had one available slot left in my timetable and I opted to take computer science, which is A. an elective, B. an elective offered to people in the grade above me, and C. headache inducing. Do you think I’m crazy? Sometimes I myself think I’m crazy for taking the course. When people hear that I’m taking that course, a common question is, why?

If I’m going to be completely honest with myself (and you), I first have to admit that it was a split-second decision. I had planned on (maybe) taking this course, but as a grade 10 student. This summer, when I went to summer school, I took math. It was a very intensive course and I did not want to take anything related to math this year. And what did I end up in? Computer Science (or, as they call it, Introduction to Computer Studies), which is basically another version of math. Great. It was either that or take Grade 10 math, which I would do under no circumstances.

I actually like the course though. It’s a really different approach to teaching. We learn (very, very basic) programming and it’s not the “Follow the instructions and you’ll do well” kind of class. No. It is literally “Here is the problem. Solve it.” I both love and hate this approach. It is totally appropriate for a class where you learn coding. Basically what software does is solve problems for you. But someone wrote that software. In order to have the program solve problems for you, you need to understand the problem yourself. You need to be able to break down the problem into its parts before you build the code. Then, you need to understand the logic and how to do things sequentially.

The funny thing is, the more you write code, the more you start thinking like a coder. It literally changes the way you do things. I find myself wanting to simply write the word “else” instead of otherwise or something do that effect, because that is how conditional statements are communicated to the computer. Huh. If I wrote an essay like that, my teacher might ask quite a few questions. Namely, “are you sane?”

I honestly don’t think I am.

-Rebeeks

Thoughts on Getting Accepted to CHS (Part 2)

About 6 months ago, I wrote a post about what I thought about being accepted to Canterbury. Now, a week after my first day at CHS, I can write down my thoughts about actually going to the school. 

  1. I have to wake up super early to go there. Living 26km from your high school is never a good idea. Unless, of course, that high school is Canterbury. It takes me about an hour and a half  to get there in the mornings by bus, even though it’s a 20 minute drive from home. The first two buses I take aren’t that crowded though, would is a godsend. And it gives me time to write these posts ( or read or do my homework).
  2. I love the vibe coming off of the school. The murals are awesome (like, who wouldn’t want paintings on the walls of their school?) and you can literally feel the creative energy emanate from, well, everyone.
  3. There are to types of people in my lit class. The people who really like English and the people who actually love writing. I don’t even know where I am in these two, so, moving on. 
  4. I’m not getting censored anymore (finally!). The last time I had a teacher who didn’t censor us was three years ago. About two years ago, for some reason I wasn’t allowed to write a story where a character commits suicide. Something about it being too dark, although it’s not like we were reading our work to six year olds (or to anyone else for that matter).
  5. Computer science is a hard course. Especially since I’m taking it with grade 10 students (which is really intimidating). Do not take a grade 10 course as an elective during first semester. Or try not to. You won’t die, but it might be in your best interest to reconsider. That damn course is so fast paced…

So yeah. Things I’ve learned. But also, there is so much to do in high school, and there’s something for everyone. (Unfortunately, I don’t have time to do it all. That sucks.)

-Rebeeks

The Rebeeks is Back!

I haven’t blogged in like, three months! And I miss it terribly! But the fact is, lately I’ve been very preoccupied.

First of all, I’m applying to CHS for Lit art and I’m kinda freaking out. I mean, what if I’m not good enough? My friends keep assuring me that I am, but I’m freaking out just the same. What if I don’t have what it takes? Also, writing an autobiography is a lot harder than it seems. Especially when you need to do it in under 500 words.

CHS is amazing. I can really see myself going there. I love the atmosphere, especially the paintings on the wall… Their e-newspaper (is that even a word? If not then it is now) is great too. Too bad I can’t read any of the stuff from last year. This year’s stuff is pretty interesting. But why the heck did they call it The Wallflower? That makes no sense to me whatsoever. Anyways, I love the place. And I would love to be in a full-time writing program. Writing is in my blood… Although it probably doesn’t seem like it here since I don’t blog that much. But hey, I have a life too… Although my life is kinda boring… But hey, forget I ever said that.

English class is bugging me this year though. It’s been bugging me for a while. The last time I was really allowed to explore my limits was back in Grade 6. The teacher honestly didn’t care about what we wrote, as long as we were expressing ourselves. That was also the last time I got to experiment with violence in my stories. Last year, when I approached my English teacher about a murder scene, he objected, saying that the Principal wouldn’t be too happy if she read it, blah blah blah… Since when does the Principal’s opinion on a student’s work matter? I wrote the murder scene anyways, but did it so that it was accidental murder. Sometimes, you have to reject what the teacher says/thinks in favour of a your creative license. That story would not have been complete without a murder. And for some reason, the teacher didn’t seem to notice that I’d ignored the rules.
I can’t wait to be able to explore again… that is, if I make the program.

Also, I can’t wait to escape the harsh reality of my school, which I absolutely hate, and do not want to graduate from. Wait… that does not sound like what I meant. Let me rephase that. I wish I could graduate from my old school. All CMS ever did for me was irritate me. It continues to do so, except that my French/Art/History teacher is great… For once, history, which I normally hate, was interesting and FUN! Although I’m not too fond of the art projects. But she can teach. And she’s really supportive. She’s pretty awesome.

I feel like no one at CMS truly understands me though, which makes me somewhat depressed. I wish people were more willing to understand me though. I feel like I’m asking too much of people though. But I will never completely adjust, which is just as well, since I’m only spending a year here anyways. I will never adjust to the fact that there is no Strings program. I love the viola and I miss it terribly. The teacher who was making band bearable left to teach at my old school, and has been replaced by some other teacher who never ceases to frustrute me. She’s overly optimistic, doesn’t understand anyone, and is not willing to give me more time to properly learn the flute. I’m more of a nuisance than a student. I’ll bet that she’s failing me already.

Well, that’s all for today. I hope to be back soon (not in 2 months!).

-Rebeeks