jeudi 31 juillet 2008

Diary: Job: +1, Apartment: +1, Girlfriend: -1


I don't know whether this is obvious or not, but I borrowed the idea for the title from a movie. Which one, that is the question!

The answer is: Bridget Jones, the Edge of Reason. I got to watch this movie again a few weeks ago, and at the end, Bridget ponders on what happened to her in the past year, and it goes something like this "boyfriend: 1, lesbian kiss: 1, got arrested: 1 ...". Well, I didn't have as many stunning experiences as Bridget Jones, since I neither got arrested nor had a gay/lesbian kiss, but still, this has been a busy year so far!
The latest thing being that I have found a new apartment in Paris, located not too far from my new job and in a nice place. This is very exciting! I am starting my new job tomorrow, and I am actually quite eager to start since it will certainly be intellectually satisfying; hence, I hope that my mind will be totally engrossed in what I will have to do, instead on delving into the past or having dark thoughts as I currently do.

It is weird: I don't have any brothers or sisters, so that I have always been used to being alone, and I seldom get bored, since I always have something to read or to do. Even when I am in a relationship, I don't mind being alone from times to times. However, without my ex-girlfriend, I feel more alone than I have ever been, and all the things I used to like doing when I was alone --like reading-- don't have the same appeal now that she's not around! This is kind of stupid because I certainly don't need her to enjoy a good book, but I guess that's what is implied when you say "she made the sun shine more brightly". I guess that's how I feel right now.
Well, it's only been a month, I hope it will get better as time goes on. Still, it is not easy when you know that the other person misses you almost as much as you miss her, and even though you have tried everything you could possibly do, she wouldn't change her mind. And well, yes, of course, the problem is that you still love her so much...

As to the movie Bridget Jones, well, it's quite funny at times, and I have enjoyed it, but it might convey the idea that one always deserves a second chance, whereas in life, things are not that simple...unfortunately. And of course, it has the usual "happy ending" where the two lovers finally end together against all odds.

vendredi 18 juillet 2008

Three windows apps: printkey, photoresize and evillyrics

Hi to all!

today, I want to talk about 3 free windows apps that I really like.

The first one is called Printkey and is a useful utility that allows for very easy screen captures of any size and shape. Captures can then be pasted into Word documents or saved as .jpg images for instance.

The second one, photoresize is useful for batch resize of pictures, something which is dear to my heart. Here, all is very simple: just change the number after "photoresize" to change the size of the final picture, and then drag&drop the folder with all your pictures over the photo resize, and press enter. Done!
For instance, Photoresize800 will resize your pictures to 800x600.

The last one, EvilLyrics, is only useful for those that use Itunes : it automatically imports lyrics as you listen to songs in iTunes.
I am still looking for something good to import artwork on Windows (with my iMac, I used a very cool widget, but there is nothing equivalent in Windows, AFAIK), but to no avail.

'Till next time!

dimanche 13 juillet 2008

Iphone's App store: a few applications

Hi again,

even though in France we must wait until Thursday in order to get the new iphone 3G, we can at least enjoy the new 2.0 firmware for the iphone V1.
The most important addition to the firmware is the possibility to download applications through the so-called "App store". What is nice is that it can be done directly from the iphone, since upon installing the new firmware, a new icon appears on the dashboard, the App store icon. Of course, it is much quicker to use the Wi-fi to download applications.
At the the launch of the App store on Friday there were already more than 500 applications to choose from (from games to dictionaries...), most of them not free, with prices ranging from 0.79€ to more than 30.
Still, there are a few interesting free applications such as Remote and Shazam.

Remote is an application that allows you to control the use of Itunes on your computer, directly with the iphone: for instance, on the screen of the iphone, you see all your playlists, you can sort by artists, reduce/increase the volume, switch songs...When you listen to a song, the artwork even appears on the screen! Very nice!

Shazam is a wonderful free app that allows you to identify any music you are listening to be it on the radio, on TV...Simply put your iphone near to the speakers, launch Shazam, and wait around 10 seconds and voila, you've obtained the name of the artist, of the song, and even the artwork. You might even get a youtube link providing a video of the band/artist playing the song!

Well, there are hundreds of apps, and more are created by the day, so expect some updates as I discover interesting new stuff. Personnaly, I have also downloaded a free bloomberg application which allows me to follow the world financial markets as well as my portfolio. You can even enter the number of shares you own of a certain stock, so that you get the amount of money you lose/gain over the day: I lost more than a hundred euros on Friday!
Of course, it is not useful for everyone, but it is definitely an improvement over the basic Yahoo app.

vendredi 11 juillet 2008

A new life!

Some good news and some bad news for the summer:

first, a piece of good news: I have finally found a good economist job at a financial institution! I am supposed to start on the 1st of August.
I will be in charge of making economic forecasts as well as both strategic and tactical asset allocation (TAA), with an emphasis on the later. Whereas strategic asset allocation mostly consists in finding a suitable benchmark (i.e. long term allocation) for a portfolio, TAA basically consists in short term deviations from the benchmark by temporarily over/underweighting certain asset classes within the portfolio.
The salary is quite good, and much higher than what I could expect in the public sector and my future colleagues seem quite interesting and nice.

As to the bad news, well, after almost 3 years together, my girlfriend and I have broken up last week. This has been the most difficult break-up in my life so far, and I feel like my heart has been torn to shreds. I keep having this weight on my times, it's so overwhelming, I feel like I can't breathe anymore. It's also strange how you can miss so much all these little things you were routinely doing with your lover without realizing how lucky you were...
There are so many things I wished I had told her when we were together and that I may never have the opportunity to tell her. I think she may never know how much she meant (and she still means) to me, how much I love her. I wish I had shouted my love for her to the whole world when I could... Life is so meaningless without her. As they say, the sun rises and sets with her...I know she was not perfect, but for me, she was!
I think she still loves me (or at least, she cares a lot about me...), but still, that's not enough it would seem...
But I won't give up, and as long as there is still hope...
Anyway, I know she will remain dear to my heart forever.

Well, the good point is that I will have much more time to blog now, even though for the moment it is difficult, since I don't really feel like doing anything.

'Till next time!