Category Archives: Update

A problem with making commitments on the internet is that once you don’t do it… it will get you! Right?

Last week, the first week of the vocabulary challenge, has been a nightmare for me. I’m currently still sick from what I hope to be a throat infection, (rather than something worse). My mom received bad news from the hospital for which I will have to go back home to figure stuff out. And even today, my bike got stolen from the station -_-”

Don’t mind me while I am delaying this challenge until further notice… :X

Working, a party from work, as well as Christmas with the family. I’m still sick while catching up on school work. Those are my 5 excuses for not posting anything for nearly 2 weeks. I still felt that I should at least post once more this year, and what else to post about? I’ve never been big on doing new years resolutions because of the disappointment that I will probably have when I fail them anyway. Thinking about that more though, it is a key problem with my work ethic. Giving up before actually trying anything. I am currently building a 3D Rasterizer from scratch for school and I basically stopped building for 3 entire days because I got stuck. (Granted, I tried fixing it for 10+ hours). I still think it’s unacceptable and simply a waste.

Fixing my work ethic is an absolute must if I want to accomplish anything this year. I called 2013 “my year” with the advancements I made with my company in late 2012, but it all sort of fell apart. There were reasons obviously, and they are not completely invalid but it has affected me for too long in my opinion. Time to move on.

In 2014 I will…

… stick with my projects.

… finish all my school courses.

… take the TOPIK test.

… post on this blog at least once every 3 days.

… dedicate at least one hour to Korean, every day!

… start specializing myself in one area of programming and become an absolute guru in it.

… spend less money on stuff I don’t need.

I really enjoyed the SBS and MBC gayo this year! SBS even made a song, pretty good! :)

Alright so I haven’t posted in nearly 2 weeks and I feel really bad about it. The truth is school work is piling up again because I’m still working too much to actually earn money for my expensive lifestyle (l0l, why are flight tickets to Korea so expensive?). That or maybe I should not have bought that PlayStation 4. You might have guessed it already, this blog post is not entirely about Korean.

Failing school by being intimidated.
Alright, so maybe I’m not working this much just because I want to earn money. The truth is that I’m failing school because for some unknown reason I have become intimidated by the programming assignments. Is this intimidation justified? Not at all. I finally proved that today.

What happened today you may ask? Well, I actually finished implementing Tf-Idf in C++ which, just 2 days ago, I considered to be too hard or too bothersome. Within effectively 5 to 10 hours I now have a fully operational solution which in my opinion is very elegant. Let me just say it right now. This project was easy, and I underestimated myself heavily.

Does this affect my Korean as well?
Unfortunately, I think so. I sucked at learning languages in high school. I was actually so bad that I had to study too many hours for a 55% passing grade. I was absolutely convinced that languages were not my thing and that I would not be able to learn any, ever. (Except of course English, because c’mon… I’m from the internet!)

The only thing I remember being good at in language learning was vocabulary. I was able to push words into my memory like no other. 50+ words a day without much hassle. In fact, I was able to do about 20 to 30 for Korean too when I finished learning Hangul. I remember using Memrise for this, back when it just launched.

Right now though, I’m not learning any vocabulary at all. I learn some new ones in my iTalki lessons which I hope will have stuck around until the next lesson. I’m forgetting words I knew before and so on. Am I underestimated myself again? Pretty sure I am.

What does this mean?
With the actual proof that I can do a good job if I just do it I have finally started up Memrise again. I also intend to create a special section here on the blog which will list all the words I know with some fancy filters such as word categories, date learned or just sorted by Jamo. Look forward to it!

With all the recommendations for twoChois all around me I had to check it out for myself right? What to get though?

I contacted the Dutch Korean embassy a couple weeks back asking for more information on how to sign-up for the TOPIK as a Dutch citizen. This is because we lack a testing site in our own country, which isn’t really that surprising. I was told that I was able to just sign-up in another country so that would be either Germany, France of the UK.

With a proper TOPIK preparation in mind I browsed through some of the other self-study bloggers and found that apparently Sogang 1A & 1B are on par with TOPIK Level 1-2 (+ Sogang 2A to be safe). I believe that at least 1A is below my level and I’m either around the end of 1B or beginning of 2A.

Putting my current level aside I felt it wasn’t bad practice to just start it from the beginning so I orderd Sogang 1A & 1B + Workbooks from twoChois for starters.


The delivery was fast and it was neatly packaged with some free goodies including a cute thank you note. The process of ordering on their site was smooth too. When I initially made a mistake in the payment process this was also quickly resolved without hassle within 24 hours. I appreciate that a lot.

Having gone through the first few chapters of Sogang 1A I might do a book review on it even though I believe there are already more than enough. What I am quite happy about though is that 1A is far too easy for me. Now if only I could find something to increase my vocabulary by a lot. So tempting…

Due to poor time management (as always) I had to struggle in the final weeks towards the exam week to get things going. Fortunately I think I did quite well and hope to pass my courses this block. What it does mean is that Korean has been on the side, again -_-“.

Personally I think it is time for me to release an official schedule, here on the internet. That means that if I do not follow said schedule the internet will come and get me! Right?

Day Subject
Monday iTalki lesson review. A summary of points covered.
Tuesday Reading & pronunciation practice.
Wednesday Writing practice.
Thursday Textbook exercises.
Friday iTalki lesson review. A summary of points covered.
Sunday Korean related programming stuff.

So yes, a schedule with 6 out of 7 days in the week filled. Which in my terms is very ambitious and I’m unsure if I will be able to actually do this all the time. I will do my best however to make this habit stick because in the end, it’s all for myself and I need it!