Nothing to Hide

If you’re reading this blog regularly, you might have asked yourselves why all the thoughts about security, privacy, freedom, and so on lately? And you might be one of those who say “I have nothing to hide”. Well…

This one is a must see. It helps if you understand English, French, and German at least a bit, but even if you don’t, watch it to the end:

This comes from the PeerTube, and it promotes those free and decentralised services, and for good reason as you will hear. So please do yourself and us all a favour and stop using Facebook, Whatsapp, and all of that – and replace it with something like Signal or even better, XMPP. We will all profit from it.

Oh, and in case you have an old Android phone which isn’t supported with regular updates anymore, try DivestOS. And if you have a new one from Google, try GrapheneOS (or else, DivestOS again). Sure you can’t live without that intrusive Play Store? Have a look at F-Droid instead. Or are you using Apple instead? Maybe think again… and please start encrypting. You can at least do that even if you stay with a standard Google or Samsung or Apple device.

As always, thanks for reading, and for viewing.

Some links

That’s why I like The Guardian – they’re not afraid to clearly state a good opinion. Plus they name things as they are:

The Guardian view on Vladimir Putin’s war: terror without purpose
As the toxic legacy of opencast mining in Wales shows, operators get the profits, and the public get the costs

Another commentary well worth reading – this time from a different publication – is this one:

Commentary: Cory Doctorow: The Swivel-Eyed Loons Have a Point

Found that latter one through Russell Coker’s Links for May 2023 – thanks man! And yes, some post things like these to their personal chirp or toot sites – but in my case, that’s a blog… thanks for reading, like always.

Standing ovations for Lars Reichow

Normally I don’t watch anything related to carnival, but I was glad that I did yesterday (pure coincidence). Listen in case you understand German and our politics:

Lars Reichow: “Die AfD-Fraktion im Deutschen Bundestag, ist ein Haufen ungehobelter Arschlöcher.”

Bravo Lars. It was about time someone said that. Link to his full speech is here.

Here’s another one from the talented young man:

Lars Reichow “Putins Krieg” – “Bойна Путина“ Русские субтитры через Настройки !!!


Awesome comment in German from Martin Gerhard Loschwitz regarding on how US companies hire & fire their staff, without showing the slightest hint of empathy.

But read that using Tor browser, because on you’ll have to accept trackers from 200+ “partners” to see any of their content. Shame on you, Heise! (same on zeit. de and and many others)

Counter measures

I’ve decided not to use some sites with my regular desktop anymore, both local sites in Germany and also some international ones. Here’s why:

Or, as an example of an international offender:

Basically, these are opt-in only – you either pay with money, or – in case you’re poor and can’t or don’t want to afford it – with your data.

And that is *not* acceptable, guys – this should be reported to the EU government because it is at the very least highly unethical to let the poorer ones pay with much more than money – with their privacy.

Why in the world should we have to allow 200+ third party advertisers and money-makers to track, spam, and follow us everywhere we go? To hell with you all!

I showed you these pages in a Tor browser from Tails (I wrote about that and can highly recommend it, search my blog for it) – but I’ll never visit them again from my normal environment. Plus I’ll report them to the EU myself. The GDPR or as we call it the DSGVO (Datenschutzgrundverordnung) should protect us against sharks like these.

So use this to browse morally questionable sites:


Never forget – it is our human right to protect ourselves. You can do almost the same network-wide (in case all of your family members or room mates agree) using something like Pi-hole. Thank me later.

As always, thanks for reading.

It all adds up

Or: your low latency is not my low latency

With makers of mobile phones and even notebook computers ditching the headphone sockets, more and more people have come to accept in-ears and headphones without cables, most of them using Bluetooth technology to transmit the audio to and from your phones, notebooks, computers, and so on.

And some people – like those playing games – noticed that it takes some time to get audio “streamed” to your wireless cans or in-ears, and that there can be lags between the picture they see, and the sound they hear.

But that’s not the worst. Even with “low latency” Bluetooth codecs – aptX speaks of 40ms – they still forget that there are people for whom this is much too much.

Musicians for example – some people claim that they can hear latencies of around 10ms (I can’t), and so we all set our audio interfaces to the lowest possible settings to achieve latencies of possibly 5ms or better – otherwise it would be hard to play in time with what you hear from others’ tracks coming from your DAW (digital audio workstation). We spend quite a lot of money to get interfaces like from RME or other professional vendors which can give you these low latencies – and then we should add 40ms for the Bluetooth cans only? No way.

Which is why musicians like Zuleikha or myself will always stay with cables, and only buy devices which offer a proper headphone jack. There’s no way around it. KISS principle anyone?

You probably don’t mind the lag if you’re listening to your phone while jogging. But we do – we simply have to. And we’re the ones you’re listening to (or so we hope, but I speak for all musicians here).

So please stop these claims of having ‘low latencies’ if you don’t even consider musicians.