Best Computer Science Students in UK

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It just dawned upon me that in ECS alone, we have quite possibly, some of the best computer science students in the UK. Okay, so league tables don’t mean everything, but there must be a reason why Southampton has always ranked so highly. With all the tests coming up as well as having about three assignments to do, it only just hit me that we’re being tested and assessed constantly. I would argue this is a good thing as if you are starting to slip up, this will be recognised and you can get help; recently I pushed for a help session for the discrete maths module as everyone I was friends with seemed to be struggling with it. Now every Wednesday at 2pm there is one. As the Undergraduate Representative for First Year Computer Science, I feel like I have a responsibility to get out there and make the general opinion known.

One piece of coursework is to write a technical report on a topic which is selected from a choice of six. I chose to do ‘Open Source Software – Can it provide an alternative to proprietary software?’. Why did I chose this topic, you might ask. Well I’ve been using open source software for quite some time now. At home I use Linux Mint (an Ubuntu-based distribution) as well as using Pidgin for my Windows Live account, Thunderbird for my e-mails, OpenOffice for my word-processing, etc. All of these have worked out okay for me so far, so I’m naturally going to argue, yes, it can. I’m finding the coursework interesting and I’m really getting into it. I’ve already had many debates with my coursemates about open source software and there’s been a wide range of opinions, from those who are die-hard Linux fans to those who are in love with Windows 7. Either way, I’m sure these same people would be interested in reading my report when it’s finished.

After having my Christmas dinner in my catered halls, complete with crackers, hats and bad jokes, I can’t believe there’s only seven days left here until Christmas holidays. I feel like I’ve only just got here. Still, it will be nice to visit my friends and family back home. I will be honest and admit I’m looking forward to coming back to Southampton in the New Year. Also, rumour has it that there’s going to be ‘Re-fresher’s week’ – I don’t think it will be the same as Fresher’s week but that doesn’t mean it won’t be better! This time people will be more themselves, more relaxed and therefore in better spirits. But at the same time, I can’t say everyone is ecstatic about January exams looming. They feel so soon. I guess time flies when you’re having fun. Or at least when you’re engulfed in some source code which contains bugs you’re trying to fix.

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