May 27, 2007

Wii are online now

Last Friday I bought Mario Strikers Charged Football for my Wii, on the day of its release. So far as I have played its fun in single player mode. I cannot judge multiplayer yet as no one could be acquired to play with me until now but I'll find someone as soon as possible.

I also tried to play online with a random player but just succeeded once so far to get online because the game servers seem to be overloaded all the time. There have also been rumours of a hacker on the net.

Nevertheless, my Wii and friend codes for my Wii online presence are following: Wii

If you'd like to contact me, register on Wii Codes Section, enter your codes too and post me a private message there.

Link dump time...

As promised last time, here are my recent tabs.

Cool Stuff

  • Want to grow your own vegetables? This guide helps you if you have limited space. It shows you how to grow vegetables in containers and also looks on some common problems.
  • And Gardening Basics - Gardening Pitfalls shows you how to avoid these things which make your plants not growing right.
  • Paper Pilot is a paper plane flash game. Design your paper plane, practice and join the competition :)
  • The Kaze Kamome is a cool independend outdoor lighting which utilizes both wind and sun power as energy source.
  • The Blog Cocktail Party Physics takes daily events and simple things as starting point to explain complex physical stuff.
  • The writers of the Physics of Sex Blog do the same, just starting with more intimate things.
  • Rope Swing Cities is a netlabel where artists post their new music.
  • On the Flight 404 blog a digital artist shows off his cool synthetic video arts.
  • Want to build your own wind turbine? shows you how.
  • has also plans on vertical wind turbines.
  • The Map of Online Communities is a mapmakers try on visualizing the size of online communities.
  • Want to see better at night? Try these 10 tricks to improve your natural night vision.
  • The Highlights of an interview with Joel Spolsky, a quite famous software developer and company founder, previous employee of Microsoft.

Personal Development

  • This blog entry on O'Reilly Sysadmin is about how the person deals with the danger of specialisation at work. Specialisation means that you're becoming an expert in a specific area and only get work in that direction but nothing else anymore... And over time you loose track on other technologies.
  • Speed Reading, as explained here, here and here allows you to read and recognize larger quantities of written text in shorter time.
  • Praising Your Kids may not be the way to help them in their personal development.
  • TradeTricks is a page dedicated to all those little secrets every profession has to simplify their work or impress customers.
  • Starting vs. Finishing is a blog post about that a good start of a project is nothing if it doesn't end with a good finish.


Computer Technology

  • Interface is a collection of UI elements for Javascript using jQuery.
  • FullerScreen is a Firefox plugin which makes the Fullscreen-mode now really fullscreen.
  • TrueCrypt encrypts files and drives using AES on Windows and Linux on-the-fly.
  • WiPeer is a small tool which helps you to set up a connection for data sharing between two computers without tinkering with network or Wi-Fi settings.
  • On the Quick Reference Site there is a large collection of quick reference sheets covering many areas of IT topics.
  • The Better Gmail Firefox extension reorganizes and enhances the Gmail Interface and also allows some themeing of the whole site.
  • Notepad++ is a nice sourcecode editior with syntax highlighting for many languages and (as the name suggests) a replacement for the default windows notepad application.
  • xplorer2 lite follows the steps of the famous Norton Commander as a file manager and windows explorer replacement.
  • The Xecutor manages startup and shutdown of applications at startup, defined times or shutdown of Windows.
  • Simply Google unites all known and unknown search possibilities of Google on one page.
  • Tokamak which is a quite extensive physics simulation engine has now been put into open source.
  • OSAlt tells you which open source applications are available to replace your paid software.
  • The WikiMatrix is an overview and comparison tool about many (if not all) of the available Wikis and Wiki-engines complete with feature listing and so on. Some of the entries are a bit dated but nevertheless a handy tool.

May 11, 2007

European Song Compost 2007

The last ten finalists have been determined yesterday in the several hours lasting semi-finale. And here I may present the proud finalists who made it through the semi:

Great. So now lets get on to the fina... wait! Let me have another look at that list. See something? They're almost all eastern countries and none of them is coming from the "old" EU states. Something's strange here... Also if you have watched the show yesterday, maybe you had the same thought as I. On many songs I had the feeling that I know the music from somewhere else. For example the beginning of the song and the recurring tunes from Belarus reminded me of some songs from "James Bond". Or Switzerlands DJ Bobo reminded me of... well, himself in his other songs (which I personally like quite much nevertheless). Or Moldova, which reminds me of something like Apocalyptica or Nightwish - Nemo. And this feeling with almost all of the songs... It felt "flat", nothing really special.

And also the shows. Many of the songs more relied on the background performance than on the music or, on the other hand, on the "crazy"-factor of the song.

So in conclusion, I'm quite disappointed with this years Song Contest and also because the few entries which I think have a bit higher quality than the rest didn't qualify at all. I also expand this to our entry which I liked this time. The last few years our entries to the Song Contest (despite the success of Alf Poier) weren't really something outstanding and of quality.

And I'm not the only one who thinks this way...

PS.: I've again collected a huge pile of browser tabs, so expect another link dump in the next entries...

May 3, 2007

Energy saving potential for large companies

Today I was walking through our buildings when a thought came into my mind as I was looking at workplaces where the people were not present at that time.

What I was looking at was an empty chair, a desk and a laptop standing on it. In our company we have standardized laptops and system images which are centrally managed and maintained (altough it needs some user-interaction to activate the regular updates). This one was nothing different and so I saw it lying idle with the brand new corporate screensaver we had to install a few weeks ago.

Maybe it has something to do with our corporate image update but it is one of those screensavers which display our company name and different slogans fully 3D animated all the time. When I stepped nearer to the laptop I heard it's cooling fans running at full speed and hovering my palm over its keyboard reveiled it to be emitting quite some warmth.

"What the..." I thought, these things normally are silent all the time even when the user is doing some heavy-duty work, so I kept my eyes open for other lonely laptops and desktops. And really, all computers which were "idle" and had the default screensaver activated were running at maximum fan cooling, while the rest of it, being used by people, were cool and silent.

Can it really be that a company (incidentially or not) increases it's energy footprint when no one is at work? I mean, the power consumption is low when all people are in and busy and it is high when no one is working (for example at night) and the computers are coping with tedious screensavers.

I see a large possibility of energy savings there... Well, I also suspect the screensaver being just thrown together with some lousy .scr-creator or just showing a (HD-quality) video because I cannot imagine these few fade-in effects needing that much brute calculation force that it heats up our computers so enormously.

So please headquarter, turn off this screensaver which just costs us more money than it brings us PR at our customers and in office. And honestly, it's disturbing and nobody looks at it anyway.

I occassionaly see other potential savings too, like opened windows and air conditioning at full power or using air condition to cool down rooms in the morning instead of just opening windows for a few minutes, but these are topic for another rant sometime...


Hm, maybe the screensaver IS intentionally and annoying, so that people turn off their screens when they aren't working on their computers. In that case I would have to rethink if the increased consumption of the computer is compensated by the deactivated screen...)



From time to time I find sentences or citations which make me think. The following is one of those which I've been spending more than just a minute on.

Remember me is all I ask,

And yet

If the remembrance prove a task


(from Mind Hacks)