Who are Surveyors?

Hey guys today’s blog was inspired by my friends and family who seem to know little about my career of choice, Surveying.  When people ask what I do, they often respond like “oh, you’re one of those guys that looks into those funny instruments“ or “yeah, you’re one of those guys on the side of the road that checks the level and stuff“ though these statements aren’t entirely untrue  I’d like to share with you the basics about what we really do. For this blog I thought I would briefly explain what we do, enjoy.

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What Are Surveyors??

Surveyors are essentially expert’s at measurements with the help of mathematics and specialised equipment (like the one you see in this picture above). We analyse the data which presents information about the land. Surveyors are capable of measuring just about anything whether it be on land, in the sky or under the ocean.

How we obtain data to produce maps varies with the type of instruments we use, the precision or landscape. Traditionally, surveyors used modified chain linked together that once stretched would equal a set distance to measure land. Thankfully, with passing years we have obtained instruments that make our job a little easier, these instruments include Total station, GPS and Laser scanner.

Total Station: These are operated wirelessly by a control

Total Station: These are operated wirelessly by a control

Laser Scanner: These instruments operate independently to produce data

Laser Scanner: These instruments operate independently to produce data

Laser Scanner: these instruments operate independently to produce this type of data

Laser Scanner: these instruments operate independently to produce this type of data

GPS: operate like a total station but uses satellites to obtain data. They can be used anywhere

GPS: operate like a total station but uses satellites to obtain data. They can be used anywhere

GPS: operate like a total station but uses satellites to obtain data. They can be used anywhere

GPS: operate like a total station but uses satellites to obtain data. They can be used anywhere

A diagram of old school survey (note the chain used by the surveyor in the blue shirt

A diagram of old school survey (note the chain used by the surveyor in the blue shirt

Depending on the work you’re doing different instruments are chosen due to their accuracy and convenience while there are many instruments can be used by surveyors, these are the most common.

Where can our job take us??

Now that we have a fairly good idea on what surveyors are let’s have a look at areas that surveyors can become involved in. Like some specialized careers the sky is the limit, however there are generally three main areas common to surveyors.

Cadastral Surveying:

A cadastral surveyor is responsible for accurately defining property boundaries and understanding the laws of land and ownership. This job may include the identification of residential or rural boundaries, re-establishing boundaries that have been previously surveyed or creating new boundaries as part of a land subdivision process.  A cadastral surveyor has the skill and knowledge to interpret and advise on the location of boundaries and if there are any rights or restrictions relating to the property. Only a registered cadastral surveyor can certify survey plans for lodgment with the government.

An example of a Cadastral Survey Plan

An example of a Cadastral Survey Plan

Engineering Surveyor:

Engineering surveyors are generally associated with the design and construction of new infrastructure projects. These may include high-rise buildings, road freeway systems, road tunnels, airports etc. to ensure they are built in accordance with the design criteria with regards to location, size and shape.

Just another day in the office for an Engineering Surveyor

Just another day in the office for an Engineering Surveyor

Mining surveyors

Mining surveyors work in both open cut and underground mines for minerals mining industries.  Mine surveyors will basically have responsibility for surface and underground plans of the mine site doing activities that include for an open cut mine identification the extent on the resource for excavation purposes or marking the drill patterns for blasting coal. In underground mines surveyor will determine and control the location and direction of tunnels as well as the mapping of all underground tunnels. In both open cut and underground mines, the surveyor will prepare mine plans and calculate the volume of materials moved or mined.

A surveyor at an open cut mine

A surveyor at an open cut mine

A surveyor at an underground mine

A surveyor at an underground mine

Do not be fooled in thinking that these are strictly the areas we are kept to they are merely the areas that make up the majority of the work force. We’ll now take a sneak peek into speclised area of surveying to keep it interesting I’ve posted a video of each area which you are welcome to watch if such an area fascinates you.

Hydrographic surveyors

Surveyors who measure and map the location and shape of the land under the oceans, rivers and lakes are called hydrographic surveyors. They use specialized technology to identify underwater hazards, look for oil, guide dredging projects and measure erosion.

Forensic surveyors

Forensic surveyors map, analyze and collect data used as evidence during court cases. They testify in lawsuits over automobile wrecks, industrial accidents and boundary disputes. Forensic surveyors are good communicators since they need to share technical information in a way that’s easy to understand – especially by people who know nothing about surveying. These specialists must be very precise since their evidence is scrutinized by other forensic surveyors hired by the opposing side.

Archeological surveyors

Surveyors work with archaeologists to define the parameters of an archaeological search area. They also map out locations to identify points to excavate for particular objects, artifacts, human remains and cultural heritage land.

Ok, that’s pretty much the bread and butter of what surveying is all about while it only scratching the surface I hope it helped educate you on what we really do. Like any job there are very generic parts to it that even I find boring however, I hope I’ve shown you that it does obtain exciting combination of both indoor and outdoor activity that continues to grow and revolutionize as technology advances. I hope you’ve found Surveying as exciting as I do and as a reward I’ve posted some pretty funny video relating to surveying, enjoy.

Holiday Management

The year’s over, the res colleges contract has ended, and aside from a Christmas and New Year’s Eve party your calendar begins to look upsettingly empty. Three and a half months of holiday, and nary an idea to fill the time. The early days are spent playing Skyrim and marathoning Scrubs, but after the novelties of shouting at dragons and the shenanigans of ‘The Janitor’ dwindle, you are left with days that seem to be getting exponentially longer as the holidays go by. Thus begin the dark times, you realize it’s been weeks since you last ventured beyond the safety of your front yard, your parents have become frustrated with your apparent inability to accomplish anything with your holiday time. Perhaps you tried to get a job, join the gym, do prepatory study for next year, perhaps it worked, or perhaps it was such a dark, distant and unsuccessful process that you’ve blocked it from your mind forever. Regardless of the intricacies of your holiday so far, you’ve begun to experience a yearning, an overwhelming desire to return to the warmth and comparative comfort of college life, where doing things isn’t so hard, and you can feel a sense of accomplishment just by making it to breakfast on a weekday, but I digress.

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My experiences of the holidays have gone a little something like the above, and I thought it would be a good idea to talk about the ways that I choose to deal with the separation anxiety and notable lack of structure that holidays bring.

 

First of all, I think that the holidays are an amazing time to reconnect with family, and your friends from home. It may sound obvious, but when everyone from college is now hours away, spending time with the people who are right there is the clear better idea. For me this involves family Christmas parties, finally being able to attend small family gatherings, watching movies with friends, and things tend to settle back into their old routine. Regardless, at times, an overwhelming sadness comes over my very being, as I remember that, while I am spending time with my friends from home, my friends from college are not being graced with my company. The highlights of my holidays have been the times that I get to reconnect with my college life, through the people and places. There’s something about meeting up with a couple of college mates in a college room and just having a chat that is an extraordinary experience.

 

As far as maintaining my sanity, time spent with college friends was highly valued, and often the most looked forward to times of my holidays. Road trips, parties and hangouts were some of the highlights of my social calendars.

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Between Skyrim, Scrubs, Christmas and College Friends, it’s pretty easy to fill the weeks with completely non-useful activities. Good Luck!

European Adventures

Do you want to know what I think the best part about finishing Uni and getting a job was – finally having $$$. Not just that but also having time. Sure, I have to work during the day but once that clock hits 5pm I walk away and don’t think about work until I sit down at my desk again the next day.

For me, that time and money means holidays! Not just a weekend you get every now and then between assignment due dates in Uni, or the mid semester break that’s over before it even starts. I am talking about a pack your bags, we are off to see the world, who knows when we will be back kind of holiday.

For 18months I worked and saved, all building up to the dream holiday – several months backpacking around Europe. This was always my motivation for graduating, knowing I would finally have the time I needed to see the world. I set off in July, starting with a Contiki camping tour to get myself orientated before venturing off on my own to explore.

Contiki Map

I had the most incredible time abroad, meeting weird and wonderful people and making memories to last a lifetime. I’ve see the Eiffel Tower,

Eiffel Tower

the Colosseum and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

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I went parasailing and scuba diving in the Greek Islands,

Scubadiving

climbed to the highest peak in Europe in the Swiss Alps,

Swiss Alps

danced on tabletops in Spain (sangria in hand), explored castles and ruins in Slovakia and partied in underground bunkers. I have eaten copious amounts of pizza, pasta, pastries and gelato, played with the high rollers at Monte Carlo Cassino, saw Tom Cruise repelling from a rooftop in Vienna filming a movie, and so much more!

It has been an incredible and life changing experience that challenged me every step of the way. I have battled freezing cold nights and scorching hot days, not to mention the wind and rain while trying to set my tent up, sometimes in the pitch dark. I have dealt with ice cold showers at 5am and many a sleepless night in hostels. Travelling alone in foreign places where no one speaks English can be daunting but I am proud to say I did it and I survived.

After 32 days spent sleeping in a tent and countless more on uncomfortable couches or questionable hostel beds I am finally home. Sick and tired at first (anyone who has ever been on a Contiki will know about the dreaded Contiki cough) and very broke, but also with a strong case of the travel bug. Now to plan my next adventure…

Valedictory Dinner

Valedictory Dinner is an evening where the graduating residents from each of the colleges come together and enjoy a dinner in honour of their time on college. Mine, I’m sad to admit, occurred in October this year. I’m sad about it because it means that my time on college is finally coming to an end, a very sad realization indeed. Regardless, this was an opportunity for us to come together and celebrate the ups and downs of our journey, which, for most of us, has been many years. Between the good food and powerpoints, there was, of course, an important reminder of the significance of this moment.

Valedictory-39

There were four speakers, the valedictorians from each of the colleges, and our guest speaker, to deliver the valedictory address. The three valedictorians were Alex Darton from McGregor, Steph Piper from Steele Rudd, and Lachlan Withnall from Concannon. Steph had spent her first two years on McGregor, so had some horribly embarrassing photos of all of the McGregor residents, myself included. We remembered strange haircuts, unusual activities, and peculiar goings on. Lachlan reminded us of the general superiority of Concannon College, and Alex brought us home with a reflection on the beauty of finding time for yourself amongst the crazy college environment.

 

The Valedictory speaker took the time to remind us of the merits of being kind, of knowing what you need to help you through the university environment. We were regaled with tales of cats, kindness, and University life. For me, there was a moment of learning not touched on by our speakers, and it occurred as I watched all of the graduates receive the beautiful photo frame given to us by the colleges. It was a reminder of the significance of community and comradeship. As someone who holds a strong need to maintain close relationships with people, I had the opportunity to see many of my closest friends as the people they’d grown to become, which was frankly a magnificent experience.

 

Valedictory dinner, beyond the memories and reminders of the friendships developed, was a wonderful evening full of great conversation, excellent food (and wine) and fantastic opportunities to reflect upon the magnificent years that had preceded it.

Valedictory-132 Valedictory-126

Graduation from College Life? Here I come!

7 Cool Places around USQ You Might Not Know Exist

So you study at USQ, but how well do you know USQ?  We tend to stick to our respective departments and don’t often go and have a look at what’s around.  It’s okay though, because that’s what I’ve done for you!

1.  The new research labs:  Where myself and a few others have been undertaking our Honours year.  These great new facilities were officially opened by the Chief Scientist himself, Prof. Ian Chubb.

stephGif1

2.  The Arts Theatre:  If you haven’t been in there to check out a performance yourself, I highly recommend it!  A great performance that’s on this week is “Love Me Tinder”.  Can personally recommend, 10/10 performance!  Check it out here: http://bit.ly/1tWSAfF.  Last performances are this weekend on the 14th and 15th of November, get keen!

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3.  Voice Editing Studio in Y Block:  Thanks to Jason Myatt for the tour!  Acting student Joe Treloar was recording his glorious voice in the below .gif.

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4.  A Block Courtyard: A secluded, sunny place to have lunch and meet some arts students.

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5.  The Vice Chancellor’s Board Room:  Notice the newly acquired artwork titled ‘The impact of colonisation’ by Jennifer Wright recognising indigenous culture.

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6.  The S Block Level 5 Council Chambers:  For the Toowoomba G20 (just kidding).

Sblock

7. C Block Resarch Office:  Where all the ‘work’ gets done.

Officeresearch

Tune in next time for more potentially undiscovered USQ!

4 tips to prevent your social life taking over

It’s Friday afternoon and you have an assignment due Monday. You’ve kind of looked at it but haven’t made any real progress. You’ve decided to dedicate your entire weekend to writing the assignment that you really should have started weeks ago.

You sit down, read the assignment task and begin to do your research.

‘Buzz buzz’. You didn’t turn your phone off and your friends have text you wondering if you are still keen to catch up tonight. You reply that you have an assignment to do so you can’t make it and you will catch up with them next weekend.

‘buzz buzz buzz’ your phone rings and you reluctantly answer. You know what’s coming. All of your friends have been conferenced into the call.

‘It’s just a couple of hours tonight’, one friend says.

‘You promised you would make it this weekend’, another insists.

‘But we already made the plans, you can’t back out now’, another cries.

‘I really need to do this assignment, I’ve already received an extension’, you explain to them.

‘It’s already late’, your best mate jokes. ‘What’s one extra day going to matter?’

The cursor on your computer blinks at you. You have lots of work to do. You’re already pushing the deadline and are unsure if you can get the assignment finished on time.

Not all of your friends are students and they have trouble understanding why your assignment is so important. You really want to do well at uni, after all, your degree could potentially set you up for the rest of your life. But, you don’t want to disappoint your friends. What do you do? How do you say no to your friends and other social pressures and work hard to still meet your study deadlines?

The above scenario is one that many of us are familiar with and some of us handle the situation better than others. Some of us can say no while some of us give in, meet up with our friends and submit the assignment late, incomplete or work that is of a poor standard. These four tips will help you say no to your friends once in a while and help you balance your study and social lives.

1. Explain to your friends that you have study to do:

Tell them why study is so important to you. You want to use your nursing skills to help people, your teaching skills to educate people, your engineering skills to build cool things, your business skills to start that business you have always dreamed of, or your music skills to start an awesome band and make great music.

2. Make a compromise:

Explain to your friends that if you get this assignment in and feel like you did a good job, you’ll be able to catch up for longer next weekend. Talk about how awesome the party will be when you can celebrate your graduation.

3. Ask your friends for their support:

Make your friends feel involved. By asking them for support, it lets them feel like they are part of your study experience too. They can offer you the support that you need to get through those long nights of study and the stress of exams. Not to mention the late-night coffee and snack runs!

4. Don’t forget to have fun:

You don’t always have to say no. You don’t want to burn yourself out by sitting in front of the computer screen for too long. Have fun and remember that it is OK to spend time on things that make you happy. A quick study break might be just what you need.

Ultimately, you are at uni to get your degree and get to where you want in life. It’s important to have a balance between your study and social life, but remember that study is only a part of your life for a short period of time. You will have the time to catch up with your friends during uni holidays and after you finish your degree. Keep focused on the reason you are studying and surround yourself with supportive people.

What are you going to do this weekend?

FLORIDA- HERE I COME!!!

As I was working through my study books in mid May, tirelessly completing final year assessment for university, I got a little single note tone on my phone indicating that I just got an email. Now getting an email is nothing new, but this one was from my music lecturer suggesting that I check out an audition in town. The audition was for an event in Orlando, Florida. This is an American event that allows people in the fields of Singing, Dancing, Modelling and Acting to showcase their talents in front of agencies and to attend workshops for training from professionals in their specific fields. They have an Australian representative who auditions around the country and takes over a specially selected group. This year she selected 37 people from across Australia and New Zealand.

Universal Studios

To gain a spot in this would have been phenomenal but when you consider how many people, from these two countries, would be eligible, there was a very slim chance I would have a hope in getting selected. I figured, I wouldn’t know unless I tried. If I did it and didn’t get in, at least I would have gained some experience auditioning. If I didn’t even audition, what would I gain from that? I’d probably gain curiosity and regret.

After a seemingly long week, I got an email from the lovely representative saying that she would love to have me on board and asked if I would accept her offer.

Florida

This just blew my mind! My friends at college kept saying, “I reckon you got a good chance” and that was really encouraging to hear, but I didn’t want to psyche myself up, only to get disappointed. None-the-less, in December 2014, I’ll be heading to the States for a week for Singing and Modelling.

Now I had to balance the trainings for it and my studies to make sure I can succeeded in both. It will work out to be perfect timing because I will just finish my course and then go out and showcase what I can do.

The only issue is that I need to pay for the expenses and they add up to just over $7000. Thankfully, college friends also helped out with fundraising and so far I have been able to meet expenses. I haven’t paid them all off yet but I have faith that I can make it!

Steele Rudd College

I seriously can’t thank all my college friends enough for taking the time out of their busy schedules and for their efforts and support – purely for the sake of helping me achieve my dream. I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart!

If you would like to help me financially, please go to the link below:

http://www.gofundme.com/9wx2wo

Kent

 

And the winner is… Steele Rudd!

And there was much clapping, standing, fist pumping, high fiving and celebration.  The bards will sing about the glories of this win to many freshers to come.  The news is out, Steele Rudd has won the Residential Shield cup.  What a year – All three colleges consistently impressed me with their skill and commitment in all events.  Short film is one of the more light-hearted competitions between the colleges, and you can re-live the action below.  All videos had to contain items like a Shakespeare poster, Big Brother, Nutella, the Game of Thrones theme, Billy Jean and many others.  Enjoy!

Steele Rudd College:

Concannon College:

McGregor College:

Thanks to Simon Merange for the usage of his YouTube channel!

Music Parodies, Friends and Fun- Just some of the perks of living on College

Living on College really is a lot of fun. Whether it’s playing a game of pool in the Rec Hall, participating in Res Shield events, chilling out with your friends or watching a movie in the Common Room, there is plenty of fun to be had.

Sometimes we forget how easy things are when we live on College. Internet and utilities are provided as part of our rent, we get lots of support and help with our study, our friends live right next door and unless we live in self-catered, we don’t have to cook.

Some of our residents recently put together a parody of A1’s Caught in the Middle and called it I Wanna Go Back Now to highlight how great College really is.

Whether you are currently living on College, or thinking about joining us next year, we can’t wait to see you!

Will we be seeing you in 2015?

Top 10 College ‘Life Hacks’

When you start studying at Uni it is a fair assumption that you will have a tight budget, but there will still be things that you just can’t go without.

Now that I am at the end of my fourth year living on college, I thought that I would share with you some of the most important college ‘life hacks’ that I wish someone had told me in my first year.

1. Use shower curtain rings on coat hangers to hang your scarves and belts

Shower Curtain Rings on Coat Hangers

2. Use can pull tabs to create extra hanging space in your wardrobe

Can pull tabs to create extra hanging space in your wardrobe

3. Push your leftovers away from the center of the plate for even re-heating

Reheating leftovers

4. Put a small hook near your door to hang your keys so that you always know where they are

Key hook

5. Turn your laptop bag into a back pack

Laptop bag into back pack

6. Fix your thongs with a bread clip and super glue

Fix thongs with bread clip and super glue

7. Use a toilet roll and plastic cups as a speaker for your phone

Toilet roll and plastic cups as phone speaker

8. Use bulldog clips to hold your chargers

Bulldog clips to hold chargers

9. Hang a damp towel in front of your window on hot days to cool down your room

Damp towel over window on hot day

10. Post-it notes are great for cleaning dust from your computer keyboard

Clean keyboard with post-it notes

Do you have any life hacks that aren’t on the list? Let me know in the comments below!

Until Next Time,

Kim