Hilarious keynote about being sceptic about machine learning and internet of things…

September 11, 2018

Some people enter the technology industry to build newer, more exciting kinds of technology as quickly as possible. My keynote will savage these people and will burn important professional bridges, likely forcing me to join a monastery or another penance-focused organization. In my keynote, I will explain why the proliferation of ubiquitous technology is good in the same sense that ubiquitous Venus weather would be good, i.e., not good at all. Using case studies involving machine learning and other hastily-executed figments of Silicon Valley’s imagination, I will explain why computer security (and larger notions of ethical computing) are difficult to achieve if developers insist on literally not questioning anything that they do since even brief introspection would reduce the frequency of git commits. At some point, my microphone will be cut off, possibly by hotel management, but possibly by myself, because microphones are technology and we need to reclaim the stark purity that emerges from amplifying our voices using rams’ horns and sheets of papyrus rolled into cone shapes. I will explain why papyrus cones are not vulnerable to buffer overflow attacks, and then I will conclude by observing that my new start-up papyr.us is looking for talented full-stack developers who are comfortable executing computational tasks on an abacus or several nearby sticks. [more]

Overall the video is really enjoyable and you should watch it if you want to know why you should be critical about machine learning, internet of things and so on. One thing i would criticize is his conclusion that dumbness, laziness or technology fanatism is the reason of all this bad things happening in the technology sector. How is this society organized? Who provides services or creates products? Companies do. But what are their ultimate goals? What need they do to stay alive? Of course: Making more money out of money. This is the drive that leads to missing security, questionable ethics in software development and a lot of other stuff. This is something James Mickens misses and is not talking about: Money.


[efail] Enigmail 2.0 and Debian testing

June 7, 2018

If you are someone like me – meaning you use thunderbird/enigmail on debian testing – you might be interested when enigmail 2.x is coming into the testing repositories. You know, because of efail.

There is one reddit discussion about the status of enigmail 2.0 in debian stable/stretch. But what about us testing users? There is the debian package tracker website where you can get more details on which package is on the way into stable/testing/experimental. The page for enigmail shows that enigmail 2.0.6-1 is on its way, but I have no experience how long it will take to trickle into debian testing.

Maybe some of you out there have any experience? How long does it take?

Why should I care about Progressive Web Apps?

February 25, 2018

If you are interested in web development you may have heard the term Progressive Web Apps. If you are not sure what the hype is all about or you know some things but want to get an easy transition into how to use some them, then I recommend you the InfoQ.com presentation called Up and Running with Progressive Web Apps. You will learn how the install, push notifications and offline functionality looks like and works.

Usefull resources/links presented in the presentation:

Kodi and problems when media source address changes

August 10, 2017

Maybe you have experienced something like that too. You have a network attached storage and  you connect it (for example via nfs) to your kodi system running on another machine (e.g. on a raspberry pi). You change something in your network configuration and – bam – nothing works. This could happen, because kodi gets it media data via a network address composed of IP addresses instead of a host name. If this happens to you – and it happened to me several times – this sucks. The first times I just created a new media source with the new IP address and imported all the media again. But wouldn’t i be nicer to just migrate the existing entries in kodi to their new location? This can be done relatively easy.

First: Use the /etc/hosts to define a hostname for the ip address of your NAS. Why? Because if there are new changes in your network configuration, you only need one change and everything is working again. Hint: If you are using librelec (like me), you need to set the hosts configuration in /storage/.config/hosts.conf .

Second: This doesn’t help you in the first place, if all your media entries are still linked to the old location. But there is a solution too: Kodi uses sqllite databases to manage its state. So you can use a sqllitebrowser like http://sqlitebrowser.org/ to change the wrong location of the media entries. Just follow the howto on the kodi wiki!

After this: Enjoy!

Can I use this feature in a given web browser in a given version?

June 22, 2017

If you are developing for the web you certainly were confronted by the question if a given web feature (webrtcURLSearchParams, …) is supported by browsers and which versions of them. To answer this question you can use the website https://caniuse.com.

Check if port on remote server is open without using telnet

June 13, 2017

If you want to check if a given port is open on a given remote server, you can use telnet. More and more telnet disappears on server. So the question arises: What can we use instead of telnet? Short answer: netcat. For example:

nc -zv 22

Which checks if the port 22 (SSH) is open on the server

Android Studio on Linux 64bit: Emulator Timeout Problem

May 21, 2017

As a reminder for myself and maybe as a help for others: If you try to start the android emulator via Android Studio and the console tells you only this:

WARN – run.EmulatorConnectionListener – Timed out after 300seconds waiting for emulator to come online.

Then maybe you have fix your problem by removing the libstdc++.so.6 provided by the Android Studio so it uses the system one. For example:

~/Android/Sdk/emulator/lib64/libstdc++$ mv libstdc++.so.6 libstdc++.so.6.bak

Source: Stack Overflow: Cannot launch emulator on Linux (Ubuntu 15.10)


HP Elitebook 840 G4 and Linux Mint 18.1

April 10, 2017

(work in progress)

A friend of mine got a new notebook the HP Elitebook 840 G4 with Windows 10.  In this blogpost I want to document whats working and what not.

More detailed information about the hardware (lspci). You can also look at the the output of lspci -v

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Device 5904 (rev 02)
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Device 5916 (rev 02)
00:14.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP USB 3.0 xHCI Controller (rev 21)
00:14.2 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP Thermal subsystem (rev 21)
00:15.0 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP Serial IO I2C Controller (rev 21)
00:15.1 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP Serial IO I2C Controller (rev 21)
00:16.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP CSME HECI (rev 21)
00:17.0 SATA controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP SATA Controller [AHCI mode] (rev 21)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Device 9d11 (rev f1)
00:1c.3 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Device 9d13 (rev f1)
00:1d.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Device 9d18 (rev f1)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation Device 9d58 (rev 21)
00:1f.2 Memory controller: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP PMC (rev 21)
00:1f.3 Audio device: Intel Corporation Device 9d71 (rev 21)
00:1f.4 SMBus: Intel Corporation Sunrise Point-LP SMBus (rev 21)
00:1f.6 Ethernet controller: Intel Corporation Ethernet Connection (4) I219-V (rev 21)
01:00.0 Unassigned class [ff00]: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTS522A PCI Express Card Reader (rev 01)
02:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Device 24fd (rev 78)
03:00.0 Non-Volatile memory controller: Samsung Electronics Co Ltd Device a804


I installed Linux Mint 18.1. The only non standard thing i had to do, was to shrink the Windows 10 partition with gnuparted. The installer had no option for that or I did not found it. Other than that, the installation went without a hitch and I was able to start both Windows 10 and Linux mint afterwards.

The kernel which is installed is linux-image-4.4.0-72-generic.


As the display of the notebook has 2560×1440 pixel, the user interface was very small and difficult to use with both the mate and cinnamon flavor. Cinnamon has a configuration (Settings-General) where you can scale the interface for high dpi displays as that one. With the option “double” the cinnamon user interface is quite nice and usable.

  • Sound works out of the box
  • Special keys like dimming the display or muting work



As of now, the wifi is not working. There seems to be drivers missing. Output of lshw

*-network UNCLAIMED
description: Network controller
product: Intel Corporation
vendor: Intel Corporation
physical id: 0
bus info: pci@0000:02:00.0
version: 78
width: 64 bits
clock: 33MHz
capabilities: cap_list
configuration: latency=0
resources: memory:d8a00000-d8a01fff

While lspci gives me

Network controller: Intel Corporation Device 24fd (rev 78)


  • The clock is changing in weird ways when booting into windows and linux.
  • Standby does not seem to work.

Comic: Days Off Versus More Pay

February 4, 2017
Days Off Versus More Pay

Days Off Versus More Pay

Comic: It’s not what it looks like

January 24, 2017
I swear to you - our bond was only emotional and physical, never contractual like what you and I have!

“I swear to you – our bond was only emotional and physical, never contractual like what you and I have!”