Thursday, August 31, 2006

Only 1 month to go...

OK, so thats it, almost there...This morning it occured to me that I now have only one month to go before the start of the MBA.

On 3oth September (Sat) we have our first 'official' MBA event; The Orientation Day. This involves all students coming together at midday for an afternoon of meeting people, discovering Oxford and general MBA awareness (is how I understand it). There is a 'meet the Dean' event in the evening for which families are also invited.

And so the countdown continues. My last day at Honda is the 15th September, so I should have a full 2 weeks to prepare for the move.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Michaelmas Subjects

Last week SBS sent through a link and password to the intranet site which contained a whole host of information from procedures & IT to schedules & course outlines.

The basic course outline is available on the SBS website. However in a nutshell, the subjects that I will be taking between Oct and Dec this year are as follows:

Finance 1: "A foundation in finance with particular emphasis on financial decisions taken by firms"
Financial Reporting: Accountancy practices and strategy
Decision Science: Statistics
Managerial Economics: "Application of Microeconomics to business decisions"
Strategy: Strategy?!?
Developing Effective Managers: Organisational behaviour

Also, within each of these outlines (one is 20 pages long), is the recommended reading prior to the start of the course, essential reading prior to each lecture and an accountancy 'preliminary exercise'.

That should keep me busy between now and October.

Oh, as an aside, Namiko and I tried out that Skype translator. It is not bad, but also not brilliant. Anyway, it is still in beta, so I will check it out again in the future.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Skype Automatic Translator

Today I found an interesting entry to the Skype Journal Blog (which I haven't visited for a while). The entry talks about a real time automatic translator for Skype chat. Amazing!
I have used automatic translators before (mainly Japanese/English) but never a real time chat one. I wonder whether this will be the next advance for people who use webchat...
It seems that the Japanese/English is still in beta but I will try anyway. If it works, I will try to get my parents (no Japanese) to speak with Namiko's (no English). Isn't technology great!?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The request for payment

It has finally come. Oxford have asked for the tuition and college fees to be paid. In one lump. By 8th September. Yikes.
Well, there is no real suprise, I expected it to arrive around this date. It is just quite alot of money leaving my account at the same time...

Now going back now (not that I want to).

Monday, August 14, 2006

France, Spain, Portugal and a nice Airport

We have just got back from a great 2 week break where we managed to get to see my parents in Carcassonne, France, a friend in his home town of La Coruna, Spain and Oporto in Portugal.

Instead of writing about the holiday (which we really enjoyed), I thought that I would write about the stop-over that we had in Madrid, or, more importantly, Madrid Barajas Airport's new T4S building. Whilst I don't normally see the need to talk about airports (seen too many), I must admit that this new building is quite breathtaking and made the transit actually pretty painless.

Here are some facts:
Completed: 5th Feb 2006
Designed to handle 35 Million Passengers per year
Total Area: 500,000 Sq meters
Two Buildings T4 and T4S (for Transit)
Length of T4S: 1Km
Ceiling material: Bamboo
Lighting: Uplighting onto glass windows which balances the natural light
Architects: Estudio Lamela from Spain and the Richard Rogers Partnership.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Master Trader...or not

SBS have released a 'game' for all accepted students onto the MBA and MFE. The name of the game is 'Oxford Master Trader 2006' and the object of the exercise is to take your starting capital (of $10,000,000) and grow it as much as possible before the 1st of September.

Luckily, whilst the market data comes directly from the LSE, NYSE etc and is accuarte, the money is only make-believe and so there aren't 225 students loosing $2.25 billion of Oxford's money.

I have just spent my first day trading and despite falling into a negative position early on, managed to close up...go Starbucks and ICICI Bank.

The system is excellently designed and very easy to use. The attached screen shot shows the trading page (which I have doctored to spare my blushes).