6 Weeks Left at Bosch

I’m approaching the final stretch at Bosch which means a number of things.

Firstly and most importantly I need to take my finances seriously. Now I know I should have been taking my finances seriously before but somehow during the past 6 mths I’ve managed to not save a cent (Don’t tell my dad!!) Clearly all those minor discretionary purchases, you know: $1000 phone, $500 winter shopping spree, numerous nights out on the town, have added up and managed to eat up the solid $250 a week I should have been saving all this time. Bad Miriam!!!

To make up for all this financial naughtiness I’ve been doing some very sensible and responsible budgeting, and examining credit card statements and I’ve figured out how I’ll pay off my credit card in the next 6 weeks and all sorts of other well behaved activities. Then I get to suffer for my sins by working to earn the money I need to survive. Of course the best bit here is I wouldn’t have to work for a year if I’d been saving that money. Ah well, priceless lesson in the value of saving I guess. Anyway the upshot of all of this is I need a job (speaking of which if you happen to know anyone looking for a regular babysitter I am quite a lovely one, references and all)

Secondly I need to start revising my uni work. I’ve been away from uni for nearly a year now and I suspect I’ve forgotten most of the important stuff which will carry through to next semester. In fact, given I haven’t been exactly the most disciplined of students over the years there’s probably a whole bunch of maths things I never really learned in the first place. So over the next couple of weeks I will (attempt) to knuckle down and study all those things I either can’t recall (Fourier Series) or never really learned in the first place (Differential Equations) which I know will be assumed knowledge in subjects coming up this semester. Lucky me!

Finally it means that it’s nearly time for celebrating. Those of you who I’ve spoken to during my big break from blogging will know that to say I didn’t really enjoy my IBL placement is an understatement. Despite the stress of having to find a job in time the knowledge that in just 6 short weeks I’ll be outta here is a huge relief. However in the spirit of my new resolve to find the positives in every situation I have compiled a list of important life lessons I’ve gained while working at Bosch which I intend to form into a sort of series of blog posts for your entertainment.

A New Direction In Life

IBL has taught me many things, most importantly that I’m kinda heading in the wrong direction with all of this automotive engineering stuff. I love cars but its just not my thing. So, in an attempt to figure out what is ‘my thing’, I sat down and had a little think about what I’m good at, what I enjoy, what I’m interested in and suchlike. The upshot of all this is that I’ve decided to take a slightly different direction to my original intended one.

During my pondering I noted that almost without exception my best marks every Semester have been in my software subjects. I also noted that I really like programming. Programming is one of the few things that I can just sit down and do. My ADD seems to go into hiding as soon as I get into the swing of a bit of coding. So at this point I’m thinking ‘aha, perhaps something relating to software could be a good plan.’

I then considered what I’m interested in and, looking back on all the information I used to devour I realise that neurobiology seems to be more heavily represented in my bookcase than any other subject. I’ve also always been fascinated by automation. Not boring manufacturing style automation but proper intelligent automation, like cars that drive themselves for example.

By now you can probably see where I’m going with this. I have decided that after I finish my Bachelor degree I will do a Master of Software Systems Engineering specialising in AI. I do of course recognise that I may not be able to work in AI straight away which is fine because everything I’m doing up to and including the Masters degree will give me enough generic programming skills to get me by for a bit. In the mean time I shall try my hand at programming little web apps and suchlike. Got to do something with all the spare time that my remaining years at uni will provide.

The End of Semester

The end of semester is approaching and it’s been a busy one let me tell you! My first freak-out cry was in week two of semester and the workload hasn’t really lightened up since. Now there’s a week and a bit left before exams start and after that a short break and then… I actually have no idea what’s happening after that, and its kinda exciting.

IBL (Industry Based Learning) is a program which gives students an opportunity to get a year of full time work experience halfway through their course. Officially I’m doing my IBL year starting July; however, I’ve only applied for one job. So, either I get the job of my dreams next semester and off to work I go, or I get 8 weeks holiday and then I’m back at uni for another semester. The way I figure it if I don’t get the placement I want this year I can always do IBL starting January instead and cast a wider net then.

I’ve been totally uninspired with my writing recently. I guess its a combination of stress, tiredness and the constant feeling in the back of my mind that I have something more important to do. So I apologize for the drop in writing frequency and hopefully I’ll think of something witty, imaginative or insightful to say soon.