Top 5 places to nap at UIC’s East Campus

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Some people see a couch, I see a mid-day respite. (which is the same thing)

 

Everyone has a busy schedule. It seems like there’s not enough time in the day to get all of your classes, studying, workouts, work shifts, extracurriculars, and social life commitments done in 24 hours. Usually a single day involves some sleep, right? Sometimes you just need to crash wherever and whenever possible. Here’s my top 5 places to nap at UIC’s East Campus. (You should feel lucky that I’m sharing this information with you)

 

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1. Newman Center

The Newman Center is the youth Catholic center on campus. It hosts mass every day. Catholic or not, the Newman Center is open for use for everyone. It has a multitude of couches and seats that are pretty empty the majority of the day. Being a church, it will most likely be quiet, so your naps will be uninterrupted.

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Sea Story 7

 

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Italian protesters outside the Naval Base Sigonella gate. Aerial view broadcasted on the guard tower’s TV.

Every year for the reserves, naval personnel has to go on what is known as an AT, or annual training. These trips can last for as little as two weeks to almost a full year. Either way, it’s good work and it keeps service members updated on their roles in the military.

I’m part of a reserve unit known as Naval Support Activity Naples, Detachment 106 Chicago. As an Information Systems Technician, my main role over at NSA Naples is to manage network systems and to operate general computer equipment wherever necessary. NSA Naples is not based in Florida, but it is based in Naples, Italy. If you can guess, every year I get to go to Italy to perform my AT. The work is a lot of fun and I get a lot of leave time to explore the city and Italy as a whole. More on that later. This last summer was my first year at Naples, so it was a unique experience to say the least.

The first day I arrived there, I reported to N6, also known as Information Systems. The shop was 100% government contractors, and all of them were pretty damn chill. The work was cake as well; I would go and DRMO equipment (basically take them apart and recycle them) and log them in a excel spreadsheet. It’s a bit below my ability level, but I’m not complaining. I’m getting paid for this.

A few days go by of doing that, and we are notified that in a few weeks, the base will be inspected by other government agencies to look for network vulnerabilities. In preparation for this inspection, the government contractors and I would do an in-house inspection to make sure that we don’t fail the big inspection. Did I mention that we’re doing an inspection?

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Want to Join the Space Force? Read the Manual: Starship Troopers

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Last time I tried using a balloon for a parachute, I faceplanted off my roof.

 

Just last August, President Trump announced that the US Government will develop a United States Space Force by 2020. Some of of the main missions include maritime security among the US forces and our allies, and to protect potential future ventures for commercial business in space. Some people think that the proposition is ridiculous (I am in agreement; the necessity of a space force is not prevalent enough to create another branch of the military) while others fully support Trump’s decision to develop such a force.

I think that humanity has always looked to the stars for answers, but in 1959, Science Fiction writer Robert Heinlein wrote Starship Troopers, a penultimate novel about the life of a young Army recruit who earns his way through the ranks and becomes a commissioned officer. The recruit’s name is Juan Rico, and joins an elite fighting division called the Mobile Infantry; power-armor donning space soldiers, if you will. The backdrop of the story is set in the near future, where interstellar travel is made possible by FTL, (Faster Than Light) known as Cherenkov Drive. The Terrans are at war with multiple alien factions, and Rico finds himself in the midst of what they call the “Bug War”.

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Sea Story 6

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Yeah, we completed our trip to Denny’s.

 

Graduated from boot camp, enlisted naval personnel and went to what is known as “A” School. This is a technical school that sailors attend to learn about their
jobs or “rates” in the Navy. For me, I went in as an Information Systems Technician, which deals with military networking, communication, and general IT and
computer support. It’s a broad discipline containing various aspects of networking and computer skills.

IT “A” school is located down at sunny Pensacola, FL. right at the east end of the southern bible belt and just miles from the border of Alabama, making it a very
unique location for training and travel. There’s two sides to the base:

NAS Pensacola = Naval Air Station Pensacola. This base is absolutely beautiful. It’s quite a large base, and it is where all of the aircrew and pilots go to
train. The base is well maintained, full of amenities, full of beautiful architecture and nature, and the noble might of the US Navy shines brightly here.
It’s definitely the place to be.

Corry Station = Also known as the Center for Information Dominance, this base looks more like a prison than a place of learning. The compounds (also known as
SCIFs- Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilities) are gated and barb-wired. The base is dated and construction seems to always be taking place. It’s sh*t.

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5 Tips To Stay Motivated During Syllabus Week — and My Personal Back To School Playlist

uic.jpgUIC’s Brutalist architecture might be unique in Chicago, but it doesn’t mean it’s attractive. University Hall looks like a giant air conditioner.

Hey, how’s it going? Matt Cuartero here.

I just wanted to take a quick moment to welcome you to my blog here at UIC Radio: M4 – Matt’s Monday Morning Mailbox (although I do not always release on Mondays exclusively). I answer viewer’s submitted questions, and I also like to write about the military, music, video games, and track and field. I also do reporting on school events from time to time. If you’re returning to UIC, welcome back to another great year; thank you for joining me again. If you’re a first year student here, I welcome you too. I hope you’ll find Chicago an exciting city to be in.

With a new year comes new classes, responsibilities, and opportunities. It also comes with what I like to call “Warm Up Season”. I don’t know about you guys, but the first few weeks of school are always my laziest. I don’t know; until I realize that classes are getting serious (usually I am notified by this with a bad grade) I take a long time to get into action and really buckle down on studying. I wanted to provide you with a plan of attack of my own to hit the ground running and get the jump on the semester before it gets a jump on you. Some say the most important part of the semester is the very beginning and I would agree with that.

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Matt’s Monday Morning Mailbox – KOD: kids on drugs, king overdose, kill our demons? (4/30/18)

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Good morning everyone! My name is Matt, your host for today’s Monday Morning Mailbox. Today’s question was asked by Brady M.

Brady M: I just listened to J Cole’s new album, KOD. I have my own interpretations on it; what are your first impressions?

Thank you for your inquiry. This album really hit me with its message, and I have a few things to say about the album.


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Battle of the Bands 2018

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On March 16, UIC Radio held the Battle of the Bands, which is a competition against local bands for a spot to play in next year’s Spark in the Park. The event was held in the East Terrace from 6 p.m. -9 p.m.

Man. Spark In The Park has had some fire lineups in years previous. We had Nick Jonas and DRAM this year. 2015 had Twenty One Pilots, 2014 had J Cole, and 2013 had both Kendrick Lamar and Chance the Rapper. These are just a few of the notorious artists and bands that have performed here in UIC’s backyard.

Imagine opening for one of these artists as a performer or band in your own right. Sounds amazing, right? Well, local band New House was the winner for this year’s Battle of the Bands.

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Matt’s Monday Morning Mailbox – PUBG vs. Fortnite (3/19/18)

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This is a series that I would like to start here at UIC Radio. Every Monday, I want to answer questions regarding the military, video games, track and field, or really anything presented to me. Anyone can submit a topic to me via email (mcuart2@uic.edu), and I will humbly answer these questions with the best response I can muster. I hope this gives you the level of power an espresso shot would give you to start your Monday morning, and I hope you all enjoy!

Good morning everyone! My name is Matt, your host for today’s Monday Morning Mailbox. Today’s question was asked by Ryan H:

Ryan H: I play both PlayerUnknown’s Battleground’s and Fortnite’s Battle Royale Mode. Which one do you think is better?

Thank you for your inquiry. I think that this is a question many fans argue about. Let’s compare and contrast the two.

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Fortnite Battle Royale (With Cheese)

In my opinion, Fortnite Battle Royale contributes a lot of its success to the fact that it is free. Fortnite’s Battle Royale has received a lot of positive reception since its release in September 2017 (The full game was released in July 2017). The game mode is highlighted due to its easy accessibility to the general public and is a game that is easy to learn and play. The skill ceiling is somewhat low too, so it is not hard to master. Fortnite, like other battle royale games, is played with singles (lone wolf), doubles, or squads (four players) to try to be the last surviving member(s) alive.

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Retrospective Video Game Review for the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

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In blurbs in some of my articles, I’ve stated that my favorite item in my possession is my copy of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. This is not a joke. I legitimately carry the game everywhere I go, so just in case the need arises, I can play Oblivion. This video game means so much to me, and I carry quite the sentimentality with the game series. (Did I mention I am a fan of the Elder Scrolls?)

However, it has been a long time since I’ve played Vanilla Oblivion. I still play the game today, but in modded form with updated graphics, coding, and gameplay changes. I wanted to review the game in a retrospective lens and see how it has held up 12 years after its original release. With that in mind, I popped in my copy of Oblivion and started a fresh new character.

GRAPHICS:

When Oblivion first released, the graphics were lauded for being cutting edge, even photo realistic. This was a huge deal, especially with an open-world game, which usually lacks in the graphics department. Oblivion was released in 2006, so the next generation of game consoles at the time (Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii) were just released. These graphics on Oblivion pushed the limits of these systems already, and fans and critics alike were blown away with the graphics of the landscape, NPCs and items.

My first impression of the graphics were much better than I thought. I expected to pan the awfulness of the graphics; instead, I was blown away with how well the graphics have held up in the twelve years it has existed. Oblivion’s overall graphics have a stylized approach that has stood the test of time. It is more akin to a storybook about a medieval landscape more so than a realistic world, and I think that is why the graphics looks so tight after all these years.

There is one aspect of the graphics that has aged poorly: the NPCs. Many fans of the game will make fun of the NPCs of Oblivion. The human races look like potatoes, the elves look like sweet potatoes, and the beast races (specifically the orcs) look like Shrek. This is all well and true, and I completely agree with my fellow fans. Despite all of this, the NPCs are very charming and are at least good to laugh at how bad they were designed. They honestly look ridiculous and there are many memes on how bad they look. Then again, it just adds to the overall humor to the game’s community. Continue reading “Retrospective Video Game Review for the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion”

2018’s “Little Dark Age” (Also MGMT concert in Chicago!)

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I’d like to begin this article by saying welcome back to another glorious semester here at University of Illinois at Chicago; as usual, I ushered in the new year by being incredibly lazy, and I’m sure you had the same response.

Whatever. Let’s talk about MGMT who is releasing their 4th studio album on February 9, 2018. 

This marks MGMT’s fourth studio album, and a lot of the aesthetic of the album pertains to the Gothic medieval era, similar to the album’s namesake. The themes are very apathetic, evil, and has the typical trippy vibe of MGMT. “When You Die” is my favorite single on the album, and it is a very warm and tangy song for how dark its lyrics truly are. Just watch the music video and you’ll understand what I mean:

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