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városliget, budapest – video

Yes, it’s been 10,000 years since my last post.

Here’s a video.

Hope you enjoy. Go eat cupcakes. Live your life.

music to work to – alex’s thoughts

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I recently got a job – my first ever, woo! – and while I really enjoy what I’m doing, it’s sometimes helpful to put on some music in the background while I’m researching companies or writing drafts. So I went to Soundcloud and clicked ‘play’ on something I kinda liked, and let their algorithms work their magic.

P.S. If you work at a company that doesn’t allow employees to listen to music while they work, you have my condolences.

So without any further ado, here are all my current favourites, available for your listening pleasure after the cut! Enjoy!

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june wallpapers – freebies

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I’m back, and I’ve brought shiny things! Pretty wallpapers for you to use during the lovely month of June! June is one of my favourite months because it’s summer, but not Summer™, which here in Hungary usually means 40 degrees of face-melting sunshine and sweat. However, it does also mean an excuse to eat ice cream, so I’m not complaining too loudly. (Sidenote: why am I using so many italics today?)

Anyway, here they are – check them out after the cut!

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late, late, liverpool – video

Stop looking at me like that. I may have come late, but I’ve come bearing gifts! Well, a gift. Don’t be greedy.

It’s a – drumroll, please – video! Yes, my very first video for alexappears. Exciting stuff, I know.

Like I mentioned in my previous post, I went to England in February and I took a few videos of my trip. I edited them together and voila! One shiny video, just for you. And anyone else who finds it. (But mostly you.)

I hope you enjoy it and forgive me for having such shaky hands.

one month down, eleven to go – alex’s thoughts

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So, I was kind of absent from this blog in January. Sorry about that.

I was completely determined to throw myself into this blog that month, especially because school doesn’t start again until February. So obviously the universe decided to throw a ton of stuff at me. Again, my apologies.

I already made a post giving my opinion on New Year’s resolutions, and I’m willing to admit that I made a few (non-written) ones myself. One of those was being more fearless, the other was to write more posts here, and another was to possibly expand from being just a blogger – if I can call myself that – to being present as a creator on other websites too. It’s a little disheartening to see how little I’ve achieved in the first of twelve months, but I refuse to let that stop me. Another way to look at it is ‘yes, 1 month is gone, but I still have 11 left’ and that’s how I’m trying very hard to see it.

In other news, I’ll be travelling to the greatest of Britains soon, so expect to see at least a few photos of that adventure when I get home at the end of February. I always look forward to those trips, mainly because I get to see half of my family. I’m also willing to admit that I love going back for more material reasons, like fish & chips and SALES! They just don’t do sales in Hungary the way they do in England. Gotta love what my home country stands for.

I really hope I watch or read something this month that inspires me to write another review, but we’ll see what happens. If all else fails, I’ll just ramble at you again.

Thanks for reading.

bioshock: rapture – book review

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Spoilers ahead! Don’t read this review just yet if you haven’t played the game and don’t want major plot points to be revealed to you. Go play Bioshock (and maybe Bioshock 2) and come back later. Don’t worry, this review won’t go anywhere!

Ah, Rapture. How you terrify and intrigue me at the same time. A sprawling society under the sea may sound ridiculous to some (“A city at the bottom of the ocean? Ridiculous.“), but the one created in the 2007 video game Bioshock is nothing short of enchanting. And horrifying. If you’ve played the games like I recommended in my spoiler warning up above, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. John Shirley’s Rapture aims to add a little more backstory and clarifications of the first game, showing how one man’s idea became a deadly mess.

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new year’s eve – alex’s thoughts

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2016 is right around the corner, which means that the tradition of making New Year’s resolutions is at the forefront of a lot of people’s minds. What’s interesting to me is that this year in particular, people are very loudly denouncing them, saying that the new year shouldn’t be considered a new start, and that people should make changes whenever they need or want to.

While I agree with that to some extent, I don’t think that shaming devoted resolution-makers is the right way to go about doing things. Obviously a lot of people don’t stick with their resolutions past the first month or so, hence the stereotype of New Year’s resolutions being meaningless, but quite a few people do find that a new year means a new start. It can be the push a person needs – yes, I could start going to the gym or trying to find a better job or being a kinder person on a Wednesday afternoon in July, but that doesn’t hold quite as much symbolic value as the fresh, new feeling the start of January can bring. It’s like wanting to write something down in a notebook – of course you could write it down on the 3rd page, but there’s something inherently satisfying about opening up at that crisp, clean first page and making the first mark.

We shouldn’t be looking down on people who make those kinds of resolutions – maybe it’s ‘cool’ to not care, cool to make ‘anti-resolutions’ where you go out of your way to start reaching for your goals on a different day, but maybe that won’t help you to achieve them either. Maybe it’s less to do with the date, and more to do with having a positive, determined attitude. In which case, a lot of people publicly shaming makers of New Year’s resolutions might not be in the right state of mind to practice what they preach anyway. So how about we all make a resolution in 2016 – to stop being mean just for the sake of being mean about things that don’t mean anything anyway. I think it could work.

Happy New Year everyone, and I hope you reach all your goals, regardless of what they are and when you make them.

star wars: the force awakens – film review

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By now you’re probably sick of seeing Star Wars everywhere you go – I know I was getting a little annoyed at being bombarded by stormtrooper faces everywhere I went. So that’s why I’m apologising in advance for joining everyone else in talking (at length) about this film. But oh, this film! I finally watched it yesterday, and let me tell you that falling asleep is extremely difficult when you’re re-watching a 2-hour-long film in your head and overanalysing every single scene. So in the interest of getting a better night’s sleep tonight, here are all my thoughts written out, which will hopefully stop them from bubbling in my head.

Let’s start with the standard procedure:

POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD! If you don’t want anything spoiled, don’t read this!

(I’d also like to add that I’m not a hardcore™ Star Wars fan, I just like the films, meaning that I might get a few facts wrong. Go easy on me, okay?)

Now that that’s over with… on to the review!

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I.T. terms made simple – helping hand

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Helping hand is a series of blog posts aimed at helping you to better understand concepts that you perhaps thought were complicated before.
Today’s post: helping you to understand I.T. words and terms you might have seen either on your phone or computer.

Have you ever seen a word like ‘cache’ or ‘malware’ and had no idea what it meant? What about phrases like ‘storage capacity’ or ‘cloud storage’? You see these words everywhere, but it’s easy to misunderstand them when they’re explained to you by someone who uses them on a daily basis and doesn’t see them as complicated things at all. But what do you actually need to know? If you’re here, I’m assuming you’re not an I.T. expert, just someone who’d like to better understand the tech in their pocket, and that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about.

So without further ado, here are some simple definitions of scary-sounding I.T. terms, that will hopefully help you out.

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winter backgrounds! – freebies

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Oh, winter. That wonderful time of year when I suddenly realise that my wardrobe is full of summer clothes and summer clothes only, and that I’m going to freeze to death if I don’t quickly acquire a coat. It’s a very expensive time of year, even before I buy my loved ones presents. But it’s not all doom and gloom! And it’s not all about $$$, either. Case in point: I made free backgrounds for your enjoyment!

Happy holidays!

(check them all out after the cut, and click the thumbnail to get the full-size image)

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