Working from home

I’m sitting at our dining room table with my notebook from work, preparing for the last day of the first week of working at home. Still a bit early (as usual), so I’ve turned on the Wikiloops One World Radio, which looks like this:

Screenshot from 2020-03-20 07-56-42

As you can probably see you don’t have to have an account or being logged in to listen to this, so go and have a listen if you like – it’s nice and it’s free.

I was productive this week, without having all of the colleagues around me, so as I thought (or knew) I can concentrate on work much better in silence and in solitude – but it’s still something else, this. Unreal somehow, the thought that this might go on for weeks or even months.

And holidays? Hm. Strange thought.

Ok, off to work right now. Take care, be safe, and stay healthy everyone. Thanks for reading.

Planned outage of de.wikipedia.org

As announced, the German Wikipedia is off today:

I had followed and supported the change.org call and petition already:

But like suggested from Wikipedia, I also wrote to some (German) politicians who hopefully will represent us all against this planned censorship.

And if you’re a democrat, you should probably think about this as well. Thanks for your consideration.

P.S.: got a first answer from one of the parliamentarians already. Which shows that democracy actually works, it’s only up to ourselves to become active, and do the first (baby-) steps…

Good articles in German, and Freak Shows

I’ve read some remarkable articles in the German (online-version) magazine “Die Zeit” recently. One of them was “Das rote Sommermärchen”, and it’s about Sahra Wagenknecht’s new “Aufstehen” movement, which is some kind of a think tank for us lefties if you so wish. Interesting, and if you understand German, it’s a recommended reading.

Another article, also in German and in the same publication, is called “In einer Welt der Verbote”, and it’s about freedom in art, which seems to be in danger from the sides of some (even left) mobsters who are loud enough to get others scared enough to think about public displaying of “difficult” stuff.

And that got me thinking about an image I made myself a few days ago. That was a photo of a colleague who changed from smoking tobacco to inhaling fumes from one of these new pocket steam devices, into which you fill some kind of oil to inhale the fumes of it. That gives a whole lot more clouds than tobacco smoking ever did, and it’s also not yet clear if that is any less dangerous than inhaling burnt tobacco leaves.

Anyway, I had asked that colleague to wait with his next inhalation, got ready with my camera, and took a photo of him exhaling.

And he looked like a monster in that photo. Steam coming out of his mouth, his nostrils, totally unreal. Which reminded me of Freak shows, and led me to the question to myself if I would want to participate in something like it (which I don’t, obviously).

So like always, there’s a fine line between what *can* be done, and what *should* be done, and judgements never come easy – at least they shouldn’t. To question yourself is always a good beginning in my opinion, and should you be interested in a bit of self-reflection, it makes all of the articles mentioned above recommended readings.

As always, thanks for reading.

The non-word of 2017

And the “winner” goes to… “alternative facts” (which might be copyrighted by Kellyanne Conway, who knows).

See here (in German), here (in English), and here (in other news).

Let me use a short quote of the English Wikipedia article about something else related to truths:

“The phrase “alternative facts” was claimed to be similar to a phrase used in Trump’s 1987 book, Trump: The Art of the Deal.[23][24][25] In that book, “truthful hyperbole” was described as “an innocent form of exaggeration—and … a very effective form of promotion”.”

Sounds quite a bit Ferengi to me…

So much about (bad) joke figures for today; sorry about the rant.

Bravo, Anastasia!

Look at this article in the British Journal of Photography, which reports about young photographer Anastasia Taylor-Lind doing some portraits of dignity in the crimes committed against the Rohingya. Thanks also to Human Rights Watch, and Peter Bouckaert for publishing reports and photos like these.

Other than the pope, we can report about this. We can name their names, and accuse those responsible for it. So we have to. Again, thanks for your good work, Anastasia, BJP, HRW, and others.

Retirement of a dear colleague

Today was the last workday of one of our colleagues from Filenet. His name is Detlef, and he and his whole (now former) team are so-called “mobile workers”, which means that we see them only about once a week, but we do so since we’ve moved into the IBM Frankfurt offices over 7 years ago.

Heike (Detlef’s team lead) and her team set up a champagne breakfast and invited our team as well, so I offered to take a few photos. I cannot show all of them, but here are some from today’s event:

7e0_b175569-flowers-colleague

7e0_b175571-champagne

7e0_b175572-detlef

7e0_b175617-detlef-heike

7e0_b178394-detlefs-retirement

7e0_b178405-detlefs-retirement

It was fun having Detlef around, and I certainly wish him a nice and well-deserved retirement time. We hope to hear from him once in a while…

… and as always, thanks for reading.