Aftermath of the CS1102C Practical Exam and the irritating Chinese Scholar

I just had my CS1102C Practical Exam today at NUS. It’s the C++ programming practical examination, and there were many problems that all of us faced. The main problem is that the server was very laggy and we had to wait for many seconds before we could continue. Towards the end of the examination, it was more laggy because everyone tried to compile their work and the servers need plenty of resources for this to be done.

During normal days, a compile would at most take 10 seconds, but today it took an average of 3-5 minutes per compile. This meant that I couldn’t debug properly because I tried to put cout (equivalent of printf) statements to debug, but everytime it lagged during compilation, so I gave up and went to continue doing other parts of my lab. Thus, I could only finish 1 question, with question 2 having some weird error at the start of the code.

However, in the end everyone (or rather, most of us) took it in our stride. We may be whining and complaining, but we never became overly angry. After all, most of us or all of us suffered from the lag, and in a way it is quite fair. I doubt that there is anyone who lags lesser than others, because it is a server issue and since everyone is connected to the same machine, we should all have an average amount of lagness.

But someone had to come to the IVLE forum and spoil the day. This guy is my number one most hated list now because of his attitude problem and his way of demanding apology from the Lab Technicians. For your info, this guy is named Zhao Ke, and he is the hacker who hacked into the RJC network to get the results of his peers. He ended up with a conviction by the courts, and has to either go to jail or pay the fine. He couldn’t pay, and landed up on the country’s newspaper where other Chinese immigrants donated the money needed for the fine. In short, he is unpunished.

What made me angry is that he is very rude to the lecturers and the lab assistants.

3. since the server is not capable of supporting so many ppl running java at the same time, why don’t the school get a few new servers? Don’t tell us you have no money, if you have money for the alumni complex, the warran campus, i am 100% sure that u can spare some for the comparably inexpensive servers. Apparently NUS is much more interested in beautifying itself than improving its teaching facilities and student welfare, which can also be seen from the recent accomodation incident.

Wow, I wanted to make a personal attack, but I decided to lessen the impact by writing less angrily on the reply at the forum, but this is my blog and I can make all the attacks I want. I mean, of all people, you come and complain about NUS having no money when you are on an NUS scholarship? Buy new servers? Why not. Let us take away your f**king scholarship and we have money to pay for the servers. What is his problem by talking about the Alumni complex as well as the new Warren Town? It’s obvious this asshole has never worked before in his life. Some people do not need to go NS but get more benefits than Singaporean males anyway. Some people just never failed to realize that money is allocated to the faculties and they work their own budget.

I don’t mind pulling out all my guns against this idiot. Even though he is from the same course as me, but what has he done to deserve my respect? These few months, his posts on the forum just justifies my opinion of him. His constant reverence to Apple products are constantly shown in most of his posts. Even in this Practical Exam, he took a chance to dig at window’s DevCpp software. I mean, WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?

I will leave you with the full extract of his post on the forum, and you judge for yourself. Please do not post any flame comments. I will just delete them. I’m in a bad mood now.

just a few thoughts abt the pe today:

1. since you have been conducting pe for so many yrs aldy (i assume, at least this is not the first yr), how come such problem occurs?

2. before pe, you mentioned that due to the low capability of the server, we would be divided into 2 grps, this showed that u should be aware of the problem but have not paid sufficient attention to it.

3. since the server is not capable of supporting so many ppl running java at the same time, why don’t the school get a few new servers? Don’t tell us you have no money, if you have money for the alumni complex, the warran campus, i am 100% sure that u can spare some for the comparably inexpensive servers. Apparently NUS is much more interested in beautifying itself than improving its teaching facilities and student welfare, which can also be seen from the recent accomodation incident.

4. well, if you are really really that poor (maybe NUS should announce all its endorsement, tuition fees and govt subsidies received and expenditure, or are they avaliable aldy?), why use such a system? Just let students program on individual workstations and mark them one-by-one, or is it too troublesome for you? I believe any responsible teacher will agree that student’s exam results are more impt than their own comfort and ease. Don’t say that exams are not impt as long as we learn something, under the current system u cannot deny they are very impt. So we expect the pe to reflects our ability and skills rather than such being a “fun” comedy.

5. extremely horrible crisis management. well, the problem occured and time could not go backward, but at least something should be done to alleviate the problem. However we saw no such attempts at all, the TA just told us to be more patient and wait longer without doing anything useful. The technicians responded very slowly, appeared innocent and incompetent, kept giving blatantly useless instructions.

6. the worst part: you even told the students to use Dev C++! this is the most unfair part in the incident. I thought it was you who told us not to use dev c++ when proramming??? obviously some of us have absolutely no experience in dev c++ before (especially mac users, arrh, ugly dev c) and had difficulties in linking up the .h and system files, yet the TA innocently said he didnt know as well. Those who are familiar with dev c will have huge advantages over those who are not.

7. why you gave extra time??? before extra time was given, at least it was fair for everybody, the system was laggy for all. but during the extra time some of us could use dev cpp while the others had to tolerate with the sunfire. Instead, the pe should be immediately suspended (well, at least for some groups) and time passed to be taken down so that they can continue in future.

8. why did you allow the 2nd group to proceed?? The TA happily told us after the java group has done that the 2nd group is coming in so you are going to experience huge lag soon! Have fun lagging! Are you intentionally exacerbating the problem?

9. i expect an apology from all the lab technicians and teaching staffs and promise such incidents will not happen to future students (and i believe many of us as well). I know it is unintentional, but so what? culpable homicide is still punishable. you got to be reponsible when something goes wrong, especially it reflects so many problems with the management of the incidents which should not have happened at all.

Comments welcomed.

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7 thoughts on “Aftermath of the CS1102C Practical Exam and the irritating Chinese Scholar

  1. Pingback: The Ignorantsoup
  2. Heh, my girlfriend was just complaining about the whole lagging problem during PE and the ensuing debate in the IVLE forums. Out of curiosity, I logged on to her IVLE (myself doing Chem. Engin.) and looked through the forums and subsequently coming to your site through the class roster.

    I have to agree this guy has some serious issues. I mean… c’mon, who the feck is he to demand an apology from all the lab staff? Who is he to judge and call someone incompetent? And his comments on NS and various off-track matters were totally uncalled for.

    Kudos to you for standing up against him.

  3. Well, I have since stopped saying anything because up to a certain point there is really no reason to continue bickering with him. What I tried to do was to try to tone him down by giving him some words so that he will understand. When he didn’t, I gave a reply that was in a harsher tone. He still think he is right though. I think he is an arrogant asshole. His mentality and aim is right, assuming that all he wants is to make sure this never happens again. But the whole process was wrong. His post itself is so offensive. But well, we can’t change people. But we can have a place in our hearts that classify some people under bastards.

  4. People who never serve NS don’t understand the term suck thumb, so they will fight for their “rights”. Sometimes I wonder whether NS makes us really man or people who resign to fate when problem arises.

    Don’t get the wrong idea…i’m not mocking anybody…just a thought that i don’t really know how to put in words.

  5. Actually sometimes I don’t agree we should suck thumb. The issue here is not about whether he did suck thumb, but the means by which he put across his displeasure, which was very rude and childish.

    NS makes us what we want ourselves to be. If we think NS is a huge waste of time, we’re going to act in such a way that it’ll be a waste of time. But if we think its a good event, then we’ll work hard and play hard. I guess that makes one a man. šŸ˜›

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