Website updates

December 28th, 2007

So, the webhost I used for several years has been giving me lots of headaches in the last few months. The site was down a few times, the database server didn’t work, eMail servers were changed (the last time to one which can’t forward email to gmail!) and other issues. So I finally decided to switch hosts and jump to a PHP/MySQL Linux-based solution rather than the MS IIS ASP one I had before.

So today I finally got around to rewrite the imageviewers in PHP and while I was at it, I updated the front page to show headers, post dates and descriptions of the five most recent posts here on the blog. Yay for technology!

Anyways, I wish all of you a very happy new year 2008! May all your wishes come true.

Okay, so Leopard officially sucks

December 12th, 2007

I’ve had lots of operating system upgrades in my past. Back when I was a technical beta tester for Microsoft, I basically installed OS updates every few weeks. And kudos to MS, most of the (beta!) builds were really really well put together. Sadly often better than the gold master.With my Macs I only run release versions. Starting with OS X 10.2, the upgrades were smooth. 10.2 -> 10.3: Awesome!. 10.3 -> 10.4: Great!10.4 -> 10.5: Oh my :(10.5 runs nicely until, god-forbid, I try to use my Apple TV and stream anything to it. After a minute or two my Mac completely freezes. I can still click on dock icons, but they don’t do anything. Neither can I switch nor kills apps. iTunes completely breaks down. So even with 10.5.1 now, I have a hot 46″ TV, but no programming to watch (I get all my shows off of iTunes). VPN to Google doesn’t work either. So, no more quick fixes of docs in the evening (I guess this can be seen as good or bad. But still! I wanna have a choice!). That combined with the fact that Leopard added no functionality I needed, except maybe quick view, leads me to say: this is a bad one Apple. Fix it. And fix it fast. Let’s hope Macworld will bring us joy – and 10.5.2

Thanksgiving trip to LA

November 26th, 2007

So I had a literally last-minute idea of driving down to Los Angeles, while I had my usual morning coffee at Coupa Cafe in Palo Alto Thursday morning around 1030ish. Going home, getting a hotel and packing my bags didn’t take long, so I was up and running and right on the road just about an hour later. The drive down 101 was wonderful, no traffic, sunny and warm. As was my time in LA. I think I really like it there. Shopping it up and having dinner in Beverly Hills, dancing in WeHo or strolling along Venice Beach…hm…
I wonder if I shouldn’t look for my next job in the West Los Angeles area…

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Happy Thanksgiving

November 22nd, 2007

Happy Turkey day to y’all!

Yay for having four days off in a row. It definitely has been a while that I had so many days off (well since Christmas last year in fact). Since joining Google I haven’t taken a single day off, as there was always so much to do and now I feel I really miss it. I’ve got like 20 or so vacation days saved up by now and hope I’ll take them this Feb/March and go on a big Asia tour. We’ll see 😉

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Googleween 2007

November 1st, 2007

Arrr… greetings! So, the big Google Halloween bash went down yesterday and it proved to be pretty nice. Lots of people were dressed up (though barely anyone from my team. Boo!). But hey – let pictures tell the story…

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The new Pirate of the Mobilean – Google Mobile PMM team (Lawrence et moi).

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Cyber Pirate. A little lost in today’s world…

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Urban Pirate. Completely lost in this world. Arrr.. what are carrrrrs?

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Lot’s of people came to Crittenden Campus.

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Our new mobile PMM lead – hail hail, Marc!

Yay – after 13 months of going through two labor certification rounds, EADs, APs, I140 and now the I485 approval process, I finally got my green card yesterday!
It just so happens that apparently I’m a permanent resident since 10/4 😉 Oh well… now I’ll use the time in the next couple of months to weigh my options and see how to best move on with my life. Exciting times indeed…

Green Card

This is a train running through a grocery market in Bangkok, Thailand. Apparently this is a regular occurance. Also see this video.

Sick of the iPhone? Never been an Apple fanboy? But you used Nokia products since the days of them selling Finish rubber boots?
Lucky you! There is help on the way:

The speed of moving

August 25th, 2007

Urgh, so the move is finally done and as was expected the movers took their time. They were paid hourly after all.
I’m still getting set up (especially my Comcast internet), but I wanted to share a little screenshot of joy with you. As many might remember, I’m coming from a 1.5 Mbit/s DSL line:
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Google Sky

August 22nd, 2007

Sooo… Google released a new version of Google Earth (4.2) with it’s new Google Sky feature. Ten days or so ago, I was asked by the Earth team if I could help them out with dubbing a demo video for their German audience. Of course I said yes and so I suddenly found myself in a sound studio not far from campus.
Without further ado, here is the result:


(and yes, I do think I sound weird)