Poem: the edge

i took a step to the edge today
toward a plunge into decay
another kill they’re going to say
alive a bitter thing to stay
reading the letter where she used to say
i love you, please live with me today.
and here i sit and write and cry
i never wanted it to be this way
i’m doing drugs to keep my sanity
to keep those thoughts away from me
this suicidal tendency sinks its claws into what’s left of me
i never thought i’d get this far
lost my last anchor and have no more straw
so please hear what i have to say
i know it’s stupid as hell as far as i can tell
and yet i cannot move my self away
this edge has been calling me so long
standing there and waiting for
another reason for a step forward to my personal hell
i never thought i could get into this mess
another joint for sanity, another glass to misery
writing lines no one will read
a way out of insanity
whatever happens now to me
it matters less and less to me
the drugs keep me together now
the thoughts tear me apart in whole
the broken pieces breaking more
and tumbling down the edge in front
it’s no solution - that i know -
and yet another step i do
Rectifier, how's the world supposed to be? Rectifier, take my hand and rescue me!
-- RA Rectifier

Note: I wrote this during a very dark period of my life. It's an almost unedited stream of consciousness type of work . I am now feeling a lot better.


Poem: Growning (c)old

(Note: this is an old text from another life)

two lives that went astray
one to stay -  no more to say
feelings turning round again
returning where they started from

better feels the thrill of old
costly for it's golden glow
what became a growing cold
once a friendship it was told

boats afloat in growing storm
land of luxury foretold
nothing there to help them sail
they will ultimately fail

seas that could be overcome
used to drown what could have swum
dark the depths of drowning song
the song he sang for her alone

Poem: Me, unfiltered

Me, unfiltered, is hard to swallow - my mind is just not made to follow.
Corrupted thoughts without fence or barrier - that's a lot to worry.
Sorrow and mystery, truth and horror - all of my thoughts could be you tomorrow.
Run away while you still can - no second chance no help to follow.


Black and White is a different beast

I just recently started shooting black and white film and of course, just like I do with color, I develop the film myself. I am still getting used to thinking in B/W and I have to say it's a lot harder than color. Even the development part - I seriously don't understand why so many people say that B/W is more easy than color development. The C41 Process is standardized, there are good chemical kits available and the only thing you need to know is to have the chemicals at 38 degrees Celsius. Look up the development times and have some stopwatch and you are ready to go.

Not so with B/W film. You need to look at massive charts that are missing you exact ISO/film/developer combination and everybody on the internet keeps writing that B/W development is easy without telling you how it's done. B/W film is absolutely not forgiving when you process it too long, mess up the dilution ratio etc. - the film gets grainy instantly. That said, here's a nice tutorial that won't go into all the unnecessary details (in German).

It's the first time that I developed and shot B/W, but the results are OK. Here are a few samples.


Poem: A gambled dream

I've gambled all.
Did I lose? Did I win?
I'm not selling out!
I'm buying in.

The strangest dream, 
a film I'm in. 
I'm losing it!
I'm done within!

Alone again,
breathe out, breathe in.
How strange is life!
Where have I been?

What happens now?
Whatever will!
I will find out,
I'm buying in!

Do I regret?
I never will!
I've gambled all,
but did I win?

The dark depression
that I've been,
got lighter now
as light came in.

I guess I lost
and I did win.
How strange the world
that I live in.

A dream I had.
Why wake? I cling
to moments of
just peace within.

A gambled dream,
a form of sin.
I have come back
from where I've been.

As time goes on
I change within
accept myself
with all I've been.

An easy life,
is not my thing.
I gave it up,
I'm buying in.

And what will come?
Who knows? I will
live through it all
and fight within.

A fight that I
may never win.
Yet never lose
a gambled dream.

My Life needs more Art

I have been writing a lot of poems lately. It's something new for me and I get a lot of positive energy from writing at the moment. I'll try to turn a few of them to sound files and share them here, so expect some new stuff here soon.

I do this for myself, I don't care if others like what I do. If you don't like it, move on. It's a free world after all. However, if you have valuable input, I'll listen.

I wanna Live! I wanna Love! But it's a long hard Road out of Hell!
-- Marilyn Manson Long hard Road out of Hell


We are all too serious

The last few weeks were one of the most crazy episodes of my life. I have experienced life from so many different perspectives that I lost count. What I learned however, is this: Stop planning, stop being too serious. and stop being too damn grown up. Sure, there are many occasions where you have to be serious and it never hurts to think about the future, but please don't overdo it.

I have made plans all my life. I am usually acting very cautiously and always play it safe. This lead to a situation where chaos and disorder was pretty much removed from my life. It also lead to a lot of boredom and every-day-life that just went on and on as it did. It was sometimes so dull and lifeless that at some point something in me decided that stuff must change.

I gambled with everything I had and loved. I hurt the feelings of many people and behaved extremely egoistic. I did a shitload of things that you just "don't do" and did not give a damn about the consequences.

It was not a well thought out decision, it was not planned and it was totally crazy. It also was the right thing to do and by far one of the best ideas in the last few years. It brought my life into chaos and got me to question things I never thought I would. It got me back into a reality where stuff happens without plans and without control of me. I have set things in motion that have no definite outcome, but the intermediate results are so much better than the initial situation that I am absolutely sure everything will turn out fine.

I let go of most of my long term plans. I don't want them any more, they are way too structured. Life is way too short for all these things. While it's not wrong to aspire to something and to have some goal in life, it's not really necessary either. Life should not be a long term project, it should be easy.

This isn't a game, turn the safety off
--VNV Nation, Tomorrow never comes


The Internet as we know it has just ceased to exist

The Court of Justice of the European Union has just allowed to censor the web on copyright claims by requiring providers to block the access to specific Domains.

While the copyright lobby claims it's just a "handful" of domains that they want to get rid of, it's just a matter of time when they will loosen their definition of handful. This has happened in the past so many times that I cannot comprehend how any court can not see and anticipate this. Want more examples? Dig through the EFF yourself and you will see what I mean.
Free speech has just been destroyed in Europe. Welcome to Hell.



One of the worst things that politics can throw at us is censorship.
TTIP is designed to do just that. Please take up your civil duties and fight it.


Documentation by video

Sometime during the last few years people started to provide how-tos and sometimes documentation for various topics by uploading a video with audio commentary to YouTube.

Please stop doing that. The average human can read about 250 words per minute - way more than we are capable of speaking.
There are videos for trivial tasks on YouTube that would take only a few lines to describe and maybe a Screenshot or photo. Still, people are producing low quality videos with bad audio which do not get to the point within the first third of the time (see Wadsworth constant).

I appreciate the effort, I just hate the method.


Of life, loss and endings

The song Black Flies by Ben Howard describes his view on a friendship that parted ways. It is a strange coincidence that I stumbled over this song just last Saturday. I usually don't show the public my very personal writings, most of which is done with ink and paper during late hours all by myself, but this time I feel like I have to.

Last weekend, a good friend of mine moved to Berlin to pursue her studies in biology and get her PhD. I encouraged her to go because she described the whole situation as the perfect fit, in terms of coworkers and studies alike. She would have been a fool to let this pass and I would have tried to force her to go if necessary.

But this does not mean that I am happy with the situation. We had a farewell party on Friday, where I realized, upon leaving the party, how much I will miss her and how much of a good friend she is. We share an awful lot of humor, have been in the same sports club for a long time and did a few crazy things together (Who gets up at 7 am on a free day to wield a wooden sword, seriously?). But you only know what lost after it is gone.

People tell me that Berlin is not far away and that I now have a good pretext to fly there. True, a flight is not dramatically expensive but experience warns me that our friendship might start to fade away now. I have seen this before with other friends of mine , some of them gone for over ten years by now, and I have no idea what they are up to nowadays.

The truth is, keeping relationships alive and vibrant over long distances is exceptionally hard. I had good friends in Vienna who never moved away that I haven't spoken to in years. Out ways just parted and I hate it when this happens. I will try to work against this happening again this time (as I always did) but the chances to succeed are slim at best.

A friend of mine likes to say "Life sucks, and then you die". There is a lot of truth in that sentence. Friendships begin and end all the time, but I really hate the endings. They turn the world into a harsh place. 

I want this post to be a reminder that we have to try harder to keep our friends close and something that will nag me every day to do so. I already have a tattoo that does this but it did not really work out. Maybe this will.

Dear Babsi, I really really hope that it's different this time. I have rarely ever met somebody who connected with me on so many levels. I will dearly miss our discussions and beers after training, musing over music, University, jobs, TV, xkcd, flaming ice and, most importantly, chocolate. May all your walks be silly as hell. May the yip yips keep you happy on Tuesday and Thursday night. I hope you will have the best time of your life in Berlin and find bacteria that digest plastic. Or atomic waste. Or both, while producing black holes that allow instant space travel. Because that would mean you could maybe make it into training on Tuesday.


Glass reactions

During the last few weeks I had some interesting encounters while wearing Glass. Most people react positively and are amazed when I let them try them on. The only place where people wanted me to take them off (which I did ofcourse) was the Metalab. No big surprise :)

Here are some of the highlights that people said:

  • I want to let it google 'glasshole' but you are not behaving like one.
    I take this as a compliment :)
  • OK glass go to <random porn site>.
    This joke is becoming old quicker than anything else. And it actually never worked, no idea why not.
  • You have a totally different perspective, you are so high up!
    That was my wife who is about 20 cm shorter than I am. I let hear shoot a video on Glass walking though our flat. It was an interesting experience seeing the world (and myself) from her angle.
  • You glow like a Christmas tree.
    Yea, the display turns on a lot when you sit on the sofa and talk to people that walk around the room.
  • Those glasses look back, don't they?
    That sentence made me smile. It's true, after all.
  • Next time, I know where to hit.
    That was about the strongest reaction I had so far. The guy that said it wasn't one of the smart kind and trying to hit me is not a good idea, either.


My Life #throughglass

So I finally got it. Ever since seeing the first concept video of Google Glass I wanted one. Badly. I went to great lengths to get one, failed, tried again, failed again, flamed Google on G+ and at the end somehow managed to get one.

It arrived on Thursday and I have been wearing it since. It's awesome. It really is. And of course it has bugs, but it's not a finished product yet anyway.

It's interesting that I did not face more Privacy related discussions, given the fact that I was at 2 Software related events in the last few days: Our overdue X-Mas party and the Austria Game Jam.

The Picture Quality is OK, you can check for yourself at my AGJ2014 album.
Video recording could have better audio - you barely hear others when they stand next to me. See my presentation of our AGJ2014 game to know what I mean.

Here is a quick recap about my experience with Glass so far:

Cool things:

  • Winking to take a picture is the most practical thing EVER. I take a ton of pictures and videos with my Nexus 4, now I take even more.
  • I don't wear a watch because it sucks to wear one when you are at the keyboard 24x7. Now I have one in sight all the time.
  • Navigation has never been cooler.

Bad things:

  • Why does the start screen not show the date? Seriously!
  • Calling somebody sucks big time. The quality you hear and the quality the other end gets are so terrible that it's unusable.
  • When you use something that requires quite a lot of processing (WordLens / Video recording) the device gets quite warm which is uncomfortable.