Oct 26, 2016

How to sign up for PlayStation Plus

This is a follow-up to my article on buying a PlayStation 4 in Mauritius. If you are planning to buy a PS4 in Mauritius, I recommend checking it out. Following the publication of this article, I've received several messages on Facebook asking for help with playing online on the PS4. Since I'm cool, I thought the best way to address this is by creating a new post on the topic.

The PlayStation 4 introduced a new feature for multiplayer gaming. Basically, you need to subscribe to PlayStation Plus to acess the multiplayer in both games. This is a drastic change from the PS3 where multiplayer was a free feature. Without subscribing to PlayStation Plus, your multiplayer gaming option is non-existent.

It will take over your life.

Before you start cursing Sony for this ludicrous attempt to make more money from you, there are certain things you should however consider:
  • PS Plus is not very expensive. It's USD 9.99 for a one-month subcription, USD  24.99 for a 3-month subscription and USD 59.99 for 12 months (around Rs 2,200). There's also a 2-week trial version. It is better to go for the annual membership straight away as it is cheaper and you don't need to renew that often. 

  • When you become a member, you automatically sign up to receive free games every month. Some of these free games turn out to be actually great although I have not personally really tried them out. They did give away Resident Evil collection at the start of this month (October 2016) but I already had the Bluray. You get to keep the games as long as you remain a member of Plus. It is up to your whether to want to download these free games or not.

  • Being a member of Plus also gives you access to exlusive deals and discounts on the PlayStation Store. This is by far the best feature of Play as some of these exclusive discounts on crazy. One of the best games I've played so far (Life is Strange) was bought using one of these deals. I have also bought other games simply because the savings you make online is amazing but I have yet to try them out (yes, I'm turning into a digital hoarder and I blame Sony for that). You also get discounts on all content types, including films and tv shows. Whether you are actually going to buy films and tv shows is up to you.
PlayStation Plus is amazing and is a purchase you won't regret. In any case, it's not like you can ignore it if you want to play online. I personally never play multiplayer games but I consider it one of the best things that comes with the PlayStation 4. If you need more information about Plus, you can visit the official website.

Now that you're ready to sign up to Play, here's how you should proceed. You can pay directly through your PlayStation but I don't recommend this. It's always better to buy a voucher, add the code to your PS account, and then use this credit to purchase your membership. A reliable website where you can buy your website is Offgamers.

You can find the list of all the options here. You can then either buy 12-month membership directly or go for the value cards and then use part of it for the membership. It is usually better to go for the membership directly to save the hassle. Offgamers is by far the safest bet for purchasing memberships or credits so you can buy game online. They take some time to process your purchase and email you the code, but they are extremely reliable and I have never had any issue with them (and in case you do have issues, the support is stellar). You should also note that there is a small processing fee for all purchases you make but if you own a PlayStation 4 and are buying games, that fee should not be a stumbling block.

One last thing you need to keep in mind is that US and UK memberships are sold separately. If you have created a US account on your PS4, make sure you buy the US Plus Membership. If you end up buying the UK membership instead, you will need to create a UK account on your PS4 to be able to use the code.

Sep 5, 2016

Putting your qualifications in your name on Linkedin - yay or nay?

If you are on Linkedin, you've probably seen it too: people who include their qualifications in their name on Linkedin. I recently got the request from someone who had his undergraduate degree and another professional certificate after his name. This was not the first time I got such a request. I actually often get requests from people who put their qualifications just after their name but it was usually for MBA's and PhD's. The inclusion of an undergraduate degree and the certificate got me thinking about this trend.

This post was sponsored by dark shadowy people.
How do I put my qualification in my name on Linkedin?
It's actually not that difficult. If you want to jump on the wagon and start toting your qualifications in your name, you simply edit your name and put whatever you want behind it. Linkedin has absolutely no restrictions there, as long as you are not putting in any offensive words.

So should I do it or not?
It ultimately depends. Most Linkedin users are using it to showcase their qualifications and experience, and it's pretty much the only place where you can do it without looking like a major dick since people want to know what sort of degree you have. However, doing it for only a B.Sc. can come off as annoying and retarded as pretty much everybody on LinkedIn will have at least a B.Sc. In my opinion, have your qualification in your name is fine as long as you restrict it to MBA-level and above. It also depends on what kind of career you are pursuing. There's not much point in adding it if you are an entrepreneur and have absolutely no intention of becoming an employee again.

For a B.Sc., putting it in your name may come across as an attention-seeking individual who is probably more focused on titles than actually learning and being an asset to an organization. In fact, consider that this may actually adversely affect your chances of getting that job you are really interested in. You may end up dealing with a recruiter who thinks putting your degree in your name is a cry for attention. And this may cause the recruiter to think you are not  a team player as your profile is basically screaming "Me! Me! Me!"

In conclusion, for only a B.Sc., it's something you should approach cautiously. However, if you have a qualification that is impression or quite rare, then putting your qualifications in your Linkedin name does work. In those latter cases, it is actually recommended to do so as it will allow recruiters to find your profile faster through a Linkedin search.

Aug 19, 2016

Has George R.R. Martin written himself into a cul-de-sac?

WARNING: This post contains spoilers for the TV series and the book. Click back, delete your browser history and toss the device you used to access this post in a fire if you don't want either spoiled for you.

Fire and Fire
 Yes, he has. So if you want spoilers, you have to buy the books. Trust me, they are completely worth the money and they will keep you busy forever.

Jun 10, 2016

Euro 2016 team analysis by an expert* pundit

*based on the fact that I watch football matches on TV and have a Fantasy Premier League account

This is my in-depth analysis of selected Euro 2016 fixtures, with the opening matche being played today

Euro 2016
France vs Romania

The hosts France are among the favourites to win the tournament as they have a great squad and home advantage. However, it's not just up to this. Consider the fact that France won the Euros two times before, in 1984 and 2000. Based on statistical bullshit and trends lifted straight from my arse, my money's on them to win the 2016 tournament too. I also have Giroud as the tournament's top scorer, which is awesome because everybody knows he's shit and I'm not even sure if he actually starts for France.

I know absolutely nothing about Romania, which leads to my prediction that France will win 3-0.

May 19, 2016

Tottenham Hostpur 2015/2016 season review

The Barclays Premier League season ended yesterday and was very notable for three things:
  1. Leicester defying all odds (well, odds of 5,000/1 actually) and winning the league
  2. Aston Villa having the shittiest performance ever seen in the league and deservedly going down, hopefully never to be seen again
  3. Tottenham Hotspur being Spurs and handing the runners-up place to Arsenal on of the last day of the season
Obviously, yesterday's match against Newcastle was a horrible way to end the season but the overall performance through the entire season is still excellent. Most fans would never have dreamt of a top four finish this year, especially given the focus on the stadium and the fact that the squad is the youngest in the league. The fact that the team performed beyond expectations and played such thrilling football (most of the time) speaks volumes about the work accomplished by Pochettino since he joined Tottenham.

The counter-argument is that the team has performed horribly over the last four matches but that should not detract from the amazing results the teams got throughout the season and the fact that Harry Kane ended up as top goalscorer when he could not find the net in his first matches. There are many positives to take from this season and some negatives.

The positives 
  • The third position - yes, the drop from 2 to 3 was a huge blow but third position and automatic champions league qualification should not be scoffed at
  • The football - best goal difference, some absurdly brilliant football at times, there's a lot to like here
  • Outstanding performances from Toby Alderweireld, Dele Alli, Moussa Dembele, Harry Kane and to a lesser extend Kevin Wimmer who was perfect when called upon
  • The team spirit - something which seemed to be lacking under previous managers but which fans can feel now
The negatives
  • Alli's and Dembele's red cards - they effectively ended Spurs' title charge which means Pochettino must find adequate players to cover them when they cannot play
  • No plan B - Pochettino is very good at coming up with plan A but still seems unable to tweak his tactics if the plan does not work
  • Jaded squad by the end of the season - new players are a must especially given Champions League football in the upcoming season.
One thing that baffled me during the last matches was fans constantly criticizing Mason when Spurs did not win. This is crazy because Mason was never deployed in his favorite position and this is why he could not perform as well as one might expect. In fact, Pochettino should be the one to blame here for not trying to buy players that could provide adequate cover in areas where the squad is still lacking such as centre forward and defensive midfield (although Bentaleb's injuries must have been a big blow). Hopefully, the automatic Champions League qualification will enable Spurs to buy the players they need to compete properly in Europe and in the domestic competitions.