2020 Goals

Here are my goals for this year:

  • Further reduce my carbon footprint and continue to actively support Fridays For Future in the struggle to achieve climate justice
  • Reach at least a normal BMI, i.e. a BMI less than 24.9:
      • Reduce my weight below 174 lbs. (79kg) and start exercising
  • Submit at least three responses to Call for Papers / Meetup talks
  • Run regular Rancher meetups in Cologne
  • Process YouTube backlog, publish regularly on YouTube throughout the year, and improve my video and photo skills
  • Reach these Social Media milestones:
      • 10.000 Tweets
      • 1.000 Instagram posts
      • 100 YouTube videos
  • Earn enough credits to start my Bachelor thesis in early 2021

2020 must be the year in which CO2 emissions begin to drop!

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(#COP25 – posted by Aidan R. Gallagher)

Willkommen in Neuland

On November 5, @dieserDad (father of @dieserOskar) will release his new book “Willkommen in Neuland” – a travel guide for YouTube, Instagram and other social media platforms.

Knowing Tobias I’m pretty sure that it will be a very good resource for all parents and other concerned grown-ups, to get behind the scenes information from social media and the life as a Creator, and a better understanding of the digital realm.

The book will be published  by Kreutzfeld digital

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(Cover)

Feierabenddemo

Yesterday we had the first afternoon climate strike, organized by Parents 4 Future, Scientists 4 Future, Extinction Rebellion and many more, to support the Fridays and acknowledge our responsibility.

It’s the grown-ups who’ve caused the climate emergency, and it’s up to us to do our part to mitigate it – individually, of course, but also collectively as a society.

After the abysmal “Klimapaket” was presented by our government, the idea was born to add a weekly protest on Friday evening, to reach the people who are at work during the day, to increase awareness for the need for climate action, broaden support for the Fridays and compel our government to act.

Wish us luck!

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(Chlodwigplatz, Cologne)

PowerWatch Matrix

In 2017 I contributed to a campaign on Indiegogo for the PowerWatch Matrix.

An interesting and promising concept – a smart watch and fitness tracker that you’d never need to charge, because it would recharge using thermoelectric energy from your wrist.

Alas, after more than a year, I’ve now to decided to abandon it, for these reasons:

  • Frequent freezes. Nothing a reset wouldn’t fix, but since the watch does not have non-volatile storage, all data after the last sync is lost
  • Data. There’s nothing you can do with the data, except for looking at it from the app on the phone. There’s no way to export your stats, let’s say to Google Fit, or share it with other devices.
  • Global warming. Thermoelectric energy harvesting works off the delta between the case and your skin – more often than not I found that there no longer was a difference and thus had return to manual charging.

While freezing and manual charging were only mildly inconvenient, my main reason to leave the PowerWatch behind is the inability to use the data. I’m now using a refurbished Polar Loop – it needs charging every couple of days, but at least I have access to my stats.

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(Same skin and case temperature, no harvesting)

Encryption

There’s been a lot of discussion lately (again) on the need for encrypted Email or Messaging, and the pros and cons of various services, from WhatsApp to Telegram, from RCS to SMS.

I am not fully on the post-privacy bandwagon, but for sure people are aware that by using a third party service for Email or Messaging their messages can be read, aren’t they? We don’t call root super-user for no reason.

In the last century the Network Working Group wrote in RFC 1855 “Netiquette Guidelines”

2.1.1 For mail:

Unless you are using an encryption device (hardware or software), you should assume that mail on the Internet is not secure.  Never put in a mail message anything you would not put on a postcard.

That’s today as true as it was then – unless you own both sides of the encryption, don’t send anything through the Aether that you don’t want other people to see!

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(https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:13th_Annual_Wichita_Postcard_Club_Show,_Wichita_Postcard_Club_(NBY_17466).jpg)

Android Pie Backup Now grayed out

This week I migrated my phone from a Nokia 8 to a Nokia 9 PureView, for the impressive built-in camera.

After completing the migration I found that I was unable to perform a backup – the Backup Now button was grayed out and all items were in “Waiting to backup” (except for Contacts and Photos, which operate independently).  Google to the rescue!

I found many good posts, some recommending to temporarily disable Screen Lock. That worked – I then had a valid backup in Google Drive.

After I re-enabled the screen lock, though, the button became grayed out again – back to Google.

Several people recommended setting up Smart Lock, so that the phone unlocks itself, for example when you’re at home.

Enabled Smart Lock, no change, button still grayed out. Bummer.

This time though I decided to give it a couple of days – a good idea, since there seems to be a timer involved, too.

Issue is now solved, the phone performs automatic backups, if

  • it’s at home and automatically unlocked, and
  • the last backup is more than a day old

Good enough for me. But I will regularly check in Drive from now on …

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Spiderman: Far From Home

What a ride – first, Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse, probably the best animated movie this year with a lot of fresh ideas, then, Avengers: Endgame where Peter took the mantle from Tony Stark. And now, Spiderman: Far from Home

Far from Home is a great reboot of the Spiderman universe, portraying a cool super hero fit for the 21st century; at the same time it also showed a lot of continuity and references to past Marvel movies for fans, old and new alike

Highly recommended – go watch it, but stay until after the credits!

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(Movie poster outside of Metropolis)

Paintball

There’s always a first time for things – for us it was the first time for playing paintball this Friday.

We went to Paintball Revolution in Ennepetal, as they offer markers for 14- to 18-year-olds.

The staff on site was great, plenty of playing fields and game ideas, we played for hours – highly recommended!

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(Paintball Revolution)

Sherwood

Through the original family option of Google Play Music All Access we were migrated to YouTube Premium (YouTube Red in some geographies), and with this we also got access to YouTube Originals, which includes a variety of high-quality mini series.

One of these is Sherwood – loosely based on the legend of Robin Hood, the series is set in a world where the climate catastrophe has already happened and most of the world is flooded, it chronicles the adventure of Robin and her friends in their fight for justice and equality against the Sheriff of the upper city.

Very relatable characters, good storytelling and great animation make this a fun series to watch – highly recommended!

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(YouTube – Screenshot from Sherwood S1E7)

Red Hood Fan Series

Until recently I did not know that there were such things as fan series – boy, did I miss out!

I would like to highlight one in particular, the Red Hood Fan Series which is set in DC’s Batman Universe, following the adventures of the three Robins – Jason Todd, Tim Drake, and Damian Wayne – in their quest to take back Gotham from the Court of Owls

With professional camera, high quality editing and great actors such as Cameron Judd (as Damian Wayne), Ian Lang (as Jason Todd),  Nadav Jackson (as Colin Todd), and Madden Zook (as 7B05), the series is a must to watch

Season 2 was financed by a Kickstarter, which I missed, but I’ll definitely be in for season 3!

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(Instagram @redhoodfanseries)