Blog · Challenge · Events

Life of an IT student | October 2018

Hello readers,

The month October was a very busy month full with study, city trips and short travels related to study and an amazing magazine project where I had the opportunity to interview ambitious women in the tech world.

I’ve had several jubilee activities and festivities from the company I work at. Loved it! Teambuilding, the things we achieved so far, milestones, as a big team working together… life lessons you learn. It’s always a challenge and therefore always fun!

Halfway the month I traveled a lot. To Utrecht, The Hague and the High Tech Campus at Eindhoven for the magazine CURIOUS / IT. I had the opportunity to interview together with colleague Melanie Lopes Andrade the ambitious women:

CURIOUS / IT Magazine

Thanks to the CURIOUS / IT magazine project I had the chance to interview several ambitious women about their experience in IT and their advice for young girls and other women. What was it an amazing journey! The magazine is published on October 29th, 2018

My LinkedIn post about it in Dutch, the translation of the text to English:

CURIOUS / IT! The magazine where I, together with a great team, in the past five weeks, worked extremely hard for to achieve this amazing result.


Thanks to the entire team and the support for this super experience! Together with Melanie Lopes Andrade I’ve had four nice interviews with inspiring women and seen the tech behind the scenes of several companies.


“The magazine of Hogeschool Rotterdam / Institute for Communication, Media and Information Technology to make girls enthusiastic about the IT world. Read or download it via the link below! ”


Curious/IT download –> below the article is a PDF version, all in Dutch.

At the end of the month I’ve been in Gouda to a theatre college talk given by Joris Luyendijk: “Het zijn net mensen 2.0″. It gave me a lot of media insight, a view on journalism and how small things can turn into big stories and how big things can turn into small stories. To summarize it, my opinion: The world is a matter of each individuals’ perception. It is all just a matter of perception.

How has been your month of October?

Greetings by Sophie

Blog · Health · Technology

Life of an IT student | September 2018

Hello readers,

Before the astrological summer ends, the time of studying or back to work – or both – has started again. New challenges ahead and a new full 10-month journey of duties in study and the challenges in your life to keep things rolling. Oke maybe I sound a bit cryptographic right now, maybe duties isn’t the best word or at least it is not the only important word in this yearly 10-month life journey. You feel you have a duty because you have goals you want to reach, achieve and want to try. Challenge accepted!

The start of the month

September started for me as usual. The first lessons of the study year of a new challenge part in study. The minor Crossmedia Journalism. What has that to do with you as a software engineering student? 

Desire for Crosstech Communicating

You might think. Well, I love to talk, I love to write, I love to inspire people and I love to explain digital stuff. Digital stuff is a broad term but so are my interests. Explaining software or how to use it more efficient. Explaining social media, the know-how behind it, the effects, the different way of using for different purposes. But also closing the gap between the developer and the other creative with a digital product idea. Or between the developer and the end-user. Closing the gap by being the bridge where it’s needed for more happiness between all the people involved and more efficiency in how you spent the time of your life (of which most is work). How shall I call this then…?

Maybe I just have a desire for crosstech communicating <- I just brought that up, no idea if the term exists and otherwise it exists now. With the goal of making lives piece by piece more efficient, healthy with enough amount of rest and happier and thriving because of the efficiency without losing the main focus on quality. Good quality takes time, good performing takes enough peaceful mind and rest too.

Follow up start of the month

The minor started with a nice introduction of theory and challenging thoughts about (digital) communication nowadays and some good examples of magazines, newspapers and crossmedia concepting brands. Very inspiring! A month in my life is rarely without visiting an inspiring talk about life, business, how to’s or just do something!

#Girlboss talk Ellen Hoog

This month I went to the #Girlboss talk from the hockey legend Ellen Hoog. Such an inspiring woman and so nice to have met her in real life! Her books with recipes about good food and exercises to live a sportive active life are one of my favorites and good-accessible to bake e.g. Healthy waffles and do some core exercises or make some energizing smoothies. And her way of doing business, her mentality of just doing and trying and figuring it out but never quit or step back because of fears. No her mentality lesson – which you also need in topsport – is: challenge accepted = challenge completed and hopefully with a winning mood and result!

Halfway the month I stumbled into a new nice challenge of which I had doubts if I had enough time besides studying to make the full commitment. After a couple of days, a meeting with encouraging and inspiring moments and a bit of luck or coincidence, I accepted the challenge: writing for a magazine!

My mind was jumping my heart was bouncing and I just sat still in the meeting with a look of being flabbergasted! Time for ideas, time for connecting the team to work as a team together and time to seriously face reality too: the printing deadline was already in four weeks! F o u r weeks! A new magazine, no format nor brand nor style nor example of previous editions yet. Just from scratch!

So this process started at the end of September and a few challenges for October were already set in the calendar. In my Life as an IT student | October blog edition will this story continue. For now this is a challenge in progress! And what a unique and amazing one!

Did you encounter a challenge in the month of September?

Greetings by Sophie

Blog · Books · Social Media

Year 2017 in Book Statistics

The year 2018 is already for a month on it’s way and this is my book statistics overview of 2017. Not as many pages and books as in the previous two years but that’s because I’m in the middle of my study programme and achieved a Propedeuse in Software Engineering. I think I have even read more pages in total in articles, tutorials, written code and so on…than all the book pages of the read books of 2017.

The list of 2017
  • Books total: 32 books
  • Pages total: 5241 pages
  • Shortest book: 36 pages ‘The Hedge Knight | Issue 6′ [EN]  written by George R.R. Martin
  • Longest book: 569 pages ‘The Definitive Guide to Yii‘ written by Qian Xue
  • Average length: 164
  • Most popular:Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ written by J.K. Rowling
  • Least popular:The School Investigation – Maarten Brand‘ [NL] written by Maarten Brand
  • My average rating: 3,8 / 5 stars

Goodreads link to my 2017 overview: My Year 2017 in Books

The list of 2017 and reviewed are the linked:

Chronological from first of 2017 to last of 2017

  • The Journeys of Alex | The Olympic Games (#4) – C. Hervan
  • The Hedge Knight | #4 – George R.R. Martin
  • The Hedge Knight | #6 – George R.R. Martin
  • Gestrand – Mariëtte Middelbeek [NL]
  • Hobson & Choi | The Girl Who Tweeted Wolf (#1) – Nick Bryan
  • Midnight Blue – Simone van der Vlugt
  • Advent – Gunnar Gunnarsson
  • Beauty and the Beast | Zielenrijger (#1) – Maxe L’Hermenier
  • Beauty and the Beast | Evenbeeld (#2) – Maxe L’Hermenier
  • Between Title and Position – Marja Visscher
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | Part One and Part Two – J.K. Rowling | John Tiffany | Jack Thorne
  • Kuifje en de Picaro’s – Hergé
  • Ladies of Harper’s Station | Worth The Wait (#1.5) – Karen Witemeyer
  • Citylights – Margreet Maljers
  • The School Investigation – Maarten Brand
  • Wanhopig Verliefd | Verboden Liefde (#1) – Lizzie van den Ham
  • Loïs Elzinga | Aan niemand vertellen (#1) – Simone van der Vlugt
  • A Deadly Run-Off – Max Rippe
  • Tom Dumoulin – Léon Kort
  • Ginevra | an Italian Love Story – Simone van der Vlugt
  • Saïdjah en Adinda – Multatuli
  • Wanhopig Verliefd | Verboden Kus (#2) – Lizzie van den Ham
  • Chris Froome – Léon Kort
  • Beroofde bejaarde in Oostgaarde – Ben de Raaf
  • Architectural Styles and the Design of Network-based Software Architectures – Roy Thomas Fielding
  • phpMyAdmin Documentation | Release 4.7.5-dev – The phpMyAdmin devel team
  • #GIRLBOSS – Sophia Amoruso
  • Web Application Development with Yii and PHP – Jeff Winesett
  • The Definitive Guide to Yii 2.0 – Qian Xue
  • Yii 2.0 Cookbook – Alexander Makarov
  • The Crimson Spell – Cameron Dokey | F. Goldsborough
  • The Priest – Connie Palmen
Did the 2017 challenge beat the 2016 challenge?

So here we are…time for the comparison of years 2017 versus 2016 in a summary:

  • Books total: In terms of completed books…2016 wins. In terms of most read study related stuff beside books…2017 wins.
  • Pages total: 2016 wins
  • Shortest book: 2016 wins, but 2015 has the shortest read book ever so far.
  • Longest book: 2017 has beaten 2016!
  • Average length: 2016 wins, a difference of 25 pages
  • My average rating: 2017 has beaten 2016 and 2015 (draw), with 0.1 in average rating!
Review Overview of previous years
Book reviews I have written in 2016:

Continue reading “Year 2017 in Book Statistics”

Music · YouTube

Eurovision 2016 Douwe Bob

Tomorrow is the finale of the Eurovision Songcontest 2016.

Douwe Bob represents The Netherlands during the finale with the song ‘Slow Down’. He has a special voice which isn’t alike Michael Bublé and isn’t alike Waylon. But in my opinion it is in between them and does not overlap. I love the song. And a famous act to be not making any music, saying a quote and after ten seconds they sing on. That’s a challenge.

This video is how he live performed at the first semi-final.

Published on 10 May 2016

Douwe Bob represents The Netherlands at the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm with the song Slow Down


Licence: Standard YouTube Licence

Do you like this song too?

Greetings by Sophie

Books · Challenge

Reading Challenge List

The Reading Challenge Book List page

Today just a short post. I have made a list of the books I want to read in English or Dutch and also translated the Hebban Reading Challenge 2016 for you! You can find my list and this translation on: The Reading Challenge List 2016

Take a look and maybe we share reading the same book!

See also my other post about the Reading Challenge 2016

Greetings by Sophie

Blog · Books

Reading Challenge 2016

The reading challenge of 2015

In a few days 2015 will be at an end and 2016 will start. Time for a new reading challenge. This year (2015) I challenged myself on Goodreads to read 52 books in a year. Any kind of book, any amount of pages. About the statistics of 2015 I will write a post when 2015 has really ended and 2016 has started. Maybe I read a few more chapters in those last days of 2015…
Well at least I can give away that I completed my challenge of 52 books! And I started on April 1st, not in January 2015.

The reading challenge of 2016

Continue reading “Reading Challenge 2016”

Books · Challenge

Retrospective on the OhMyBookathon

The past couple of days – from Thursday 16th – until yesterday late evening. I have read a lot during the well-known OhMyBookathon challenge. In a previous post I wrote about the readathon and my expectations of what I would read during this challenge. I updated my ‘Challenges‘ page several times and this is the lookback. Do you want to know how my first readathon challenge fared? Read on…

Continue reading “Retrospective on the OhMyBookathon”

Books · Challenge

The Book Week of Three | Challenge completed

It’s summer time and lots of people are busy with challenges. Sport challenges, food challenges – about healthy food use – and also book challenges. But because I can not complete a book challenge that lasts a whole month – by posting every day on Instagram – I made my own book challenge. The Book Week of Three Challenge that only lasts one week and you can start it on any day at any moment. No dates attached to it.

An overview of my results of The Book Week of Three Challenge:
with links to the posts for the complete text and coverview and some bookreviews

The Friday in June three nicest covers: 1. All The Bright Lights 2. Viva Coldplay! 3. De Memoires van Sherlock Holmes.

The Saturday in June three books, same genre; biography: 1. Rutger Hauer Autobiography 2. Joop van den Ende – de biografie 3. Steve Jobs – de biografie

The Sunday in June three books from study: 1. Intercultural Skills for International Business and International Relations 2. Social Research Methods 3. Marketing Communication Strategy

The Monday in June three books to be read: 1. Eldest 2. Brisingr 3. Inheritance

The Tuesday in June three books to be finished and in red, white and grey: 1. Miss Communicatie 2. Zus 3. Game

The Wednesday in June three books read and written by Simone van der Vlugt: 1. Blauw Water 2. Jacoba | Dochter van Holland 3. De Ooggetuige

The Thursday in June three books new: 1: The Rosie Project 2. The Fault in Our Stars 3. The Rosie Effect

Did you complete a challenge already this summer?

Greetings by Sophie

Books · Challenge

The Book Week of Three | Thursday in June

Thursday – Three books new

My three books I have bought the past couple of weeks and why I chose them to be part of this challenge.

and..they are all English pocketbooks

Book one: I have chosen ‘The Rosie Project’ because it seems an interesting story to me
Book two: I have chosen ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ because it is a sad but true imaginable story and when it is close to family or the people you love, a subject like cancer is difficult.
Book three: I have chosen ‘The Rosie Effect’ because when ‘The Rosie Project’ really is that good, than I can not ignore to read the sequel.

Greetings by Sophie

Books · Challenge

The Book Week of Three | Wednesday in June

Wednesday – Three books read

and…three books written by Simone van der Vlugt

My three books I have read shortly and why I chose them to be part of this challenge.

Book one: I have chosen ‘Blauw Water’ it is a slow thriller.
Book two: I have chosen ‘Jacoba | Dochter van Holland‘ because it is a beautiful Dutch historical novel.
Book three: I have chosen ‘De Ooggetuige’ because it is a thriller in a different way, when you are visually impaired.

Greetings by Sophie