Monday, April 21, 2014

Digital photography using a smartphone

Guys there is no need to buy a very expensive camera or lug it around as you can take pretty good pictures with your smartphone. Nowadays all phones have some sort of camera. Most days they are digital

One such good shot by a smartphone camera

How much memory do I need? 
About 16GB as each photo is worth about 200-1500KB.

Megapixels and Pixels
Every camera has these. Without them you cannot take a good picture. A megapixel is equal to 1000 pixels. These contribute to a good picture

Tips for taking one

Avoid direct sunlight. Best to take the subject in its natural light.
Take as many pictures as you need to edit it
Don't move the camera- have it in one spot or otherwise you'll have some blurry pictures.
If you don't know how to use your smartphone camera or just bought a new one have a play with it first to get the right effects. Know your phone's features. Most manuals that come with the phone have these sorts instructions on how to use the features. If in doubt just Google it.
Learn how to photoshop. You can download Photoshop for $9.99 per month. And then you can also do tutorials online

Just have a go. You don't need to be perfect the first time as it is just for fun.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Four students killed in Brisbane in the last four months

Sophie Collombet. Image by
And they are all International students who were murdered by local residents in Queensland in the last year.

The latest one was French student Sophie Collombet whose body was found and the guy was caught. She was loved by everyone.

Meena Nanrayan. Image courtesy of

Another one was found dead in her hotel room. Meena Nanrayan was a student at QUT doing her Masters in Business. She came to Australia in Feb 2013.  She was murdered by an Indian national which they were supposed to be married. 

Two Korean students Eujin Ban and Min Tae Kim (both 22 years old) were murdered in a lonely quiet place in the early hours of the morning.

The parents of the four victims were devastated as well as teary.

The lessons learnt: Be aware of your surroundings and don't walk in quiet dark laneways.

CISA, Meld and the team at RMIT Newintstudents is concerned about the International student safety. We always feel sad and uneasy for them when things like this happens. We want International students to have a good time in our country, rather than having uneasy memories.

In Melbourne an Indian student was stabbed late last year at Federation square. In 2009-2010 a lot of Indians were attacked. We hope that this year is a lot better for International students.

Do the Live below the line campaign this year

Live Below the Line campaign has been going strong for many years now. It is a campaign where you live on just $2 a day for 5 days. You can still drink water though.

The campaign is on from May 5th- May 9th this year.
You sign up here and then you need to get your friends and family to donate money online.

Last year they featured at RMIT by doing two minute noodle lunches.
Last year they raised over $2000 just to help those Australians doing it tough. Can you do it this year?

Some ideas to get you started:
Oats for breakfast- a pack of these is about $2 in the supermarket and with water it is a substantial meal.

Rice on its own is enough for a poor person. But even better you could do a pumpkin mash as at the market pumpkins are about $1-$2.

Tuna at Coles is about $1 each and you could do this with rice.

Pasta is also another good option as many packets are $1-$2 each and its enough to feed four people.

Bananas are a good snack for the Live below the line campaign.

Guys you still have time to sign up and get your donations in. Just head to their website.
To those of you that are doing it: good luck. What are your tips for the newcomers?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Williamstown farmers market

Williamstown Farmets market is on every second Sunday from 9am-2pm. It is about a five to ten minute walk from Williamstown Beach station.

This market is where all the farmers come together to sell their wares to the local/metropolitan crowd who don't go to the country all that often. Most farmers markets would have some sort of lively music to attract people to visit. There are farmers markets all over Melbourne usually on the weekend. For more info visit this site.

Like most farmers markets it is dog friendly. Hence heaps and heaps cute dogs there.

It was here that I tried real scones for $2.50. Light and fluffy like they should be with real jam. It worked a treat for me. Scones are the English way to have afternoon tea and scones reminded me of Sovereign Hill where all the gold came from.


beef jerky

cake samples



Fruit and veg stall

I also tried lots and lots of samples and lovely sauces. But there was one stallholder who was a bit rude to me as I was enjoying the lovely samples. Its not too often that we get to try them and you are there to promote your stuff.

All in all I did love the chilli sauce. It was really spicy and I enjoy spicy food. The sauces would be lovely in pasta on a chilly winters night and with great sourdough from Noisette. I also loved sampling the olives.

My friends bought a huge punnet for $8 which is fresh. It wasn't sweet but it was fresh. The strawberries were rather small.


All in all I had a great time at the Williamstown markets and you shall check this out too if you want market fresh produce and sauces for under $10 (homemade)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Blogging basics part 2: Starting one and where do I start

The second part of our series talks about starting up a blog, In this part we talk about which platforms to use.

The logo for (B) and Wordpress by
Blogging platforms
There are a few of these on the web. We talk about these here.

 There is heaps you can do in Wordpress. Here you choose many themes and these are updated daily. You can also add as many pictures as you like to the posts.

But they do have a limit of 10MB and then you have to buy more space.

In your dashboard you'll see your notifications. You can moderate comments.

This one is simple to use, but they don't  have many themes. They do have Google plus which is cool and amazing and you can share your posts in Google Hangouts. You can also have pages and things sitting in the drafts for a while.
They haven't got any space limits.

Like Wordpress you are notified when there are new comments, via the Bell icon. You are also notified via email. Unlike Wordpress there is no chance of comment moderation unless you delete the comment.

WIX- this is a relatively new one but they are adding lots of themes and widgets to their site daily

Understanding how your one works.
There is a help section for each platform. Signing up is relatively easy. All you need is a blog name, username, email and password and you are good to go. If you sign up with Blogger (they are run by Google), they integrate your email and blog so you only have one login to worry about.

Stay tuned for the next part which is about content.

Heston Blumthaal's Fat Duck to arrive in Melbourne

The logo which was taken from Gourmet Goddess blog

Heston Blumthaal, acclaimed British chef is said to open his new restaurant in Crown for six months. This is while his restaurant "The Fat Duck" is undergoing major refurbishments in the UK. It will open in Feburary 2015

Heston Blumthaal is rated number 7 in the world and is known for his creations, particularly sweets. It was rated as outstanding by the bloggers.

The Fat Duck has three Michelin stars. It is a fusion restaurant in the UK which attracted a lot of bloggers and heaps of hype. The Fat Duck is known for its five star dining and the amuse bouche. At the end there is sweets like a candy shop. Heston is well known for his creations and theatrics.

The place is also known to do the Mad hatters tea in Heston's style which is quite whimsical. This is quintessentially the mock turtle duck's egg soup in which diners have to pour in this tea to make the dish work.

Bloggers both rich and poor will be very excited by the arrival. Will you?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Know your rights

About 79% of International students are being underpaid according to United Voice. United Voice is a union for all workers. Last year there was about 1500 places being inspected by the Fair work Ombudsman.

This year a huge Asian market in Adelaide called Mariana Market  which employs a large number of Asian students. Their owner did not pay them properly and she was fined a lot of money.

A Cairns sushi bar paid their Chinese, Korean and Japanese workers $9 an hour when they should have got $22-$24 per hour. The owner was made to pay back that money.

Gloria Jeans in Melbourne has been fined recently for underpaying students by about $14-$15 per hour.

One of our classmates did a trial shift where the employer said that they would pay her a minimum of $8 per hour in a Chinese takeaway store if she was successful

Recently via Meld we also heard that someone else was being underpaid by about $8 at Cafenatics. When she contacted head office they told her to contact her supervisor. To this day she still has no reply.

You can check out the Fairwork site for your entitlements and pay.  This site has information in 27 languages so you are bound to find information in your language. You can also complain to them if you are being underpaid or treated unfairly. Everyone has a right to be heard.

International students what is your experience in regards to pay?