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This is the home-page of Karl Voit.

On this page you can see the latest blog updates. For further articles, please use the search bar or navigate through the blue tags. My recommendations are pim, privacy, or security.

I recommend any decent RSS/Atom aggregator to get notified on blog updates.

Most recent articles or updates:

2019-08-12: Contributing to Openstreetmap and Mapillary

I was travelling some cool locations in Asia. When I was using OsmAnd to navigate, track and looking for restaurants and shops, I noticed that in my area, most restaurants and shops were not mapped yet. Further more, I saw that there was no Mapillary-based photos available. Mapillary is a cool alternative to Google's Street View, if you don't know it yet.

This was where I decided that I could improve the situation a bit. And it was that easy that anybody can do it as well.

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2019-07-09: Managing Digital Files (e.g., Photographs) in Files and Folders

Update 2014-05-14: added real world example

Update 2015-03-16: filtering photographs according to their GPS coordinates

Update 2016-08-29: replaced outdated method with new filetags --filter method

Update 2017-08-28: Email comment on geeqie video thumbnails

Update 2018-03-06: Links zum Konzept von Julian Kahnert

Update 2018-05-06: Linked video of a 45 minute talk I gave at Linuxtage Graz 2018

Update 2018-06-05: Email comment on metadata

Update 2018-07-22: moved folder hierarchy explanation to an article on its own

Update 2019-07-09: Email comment on genealogy and characters to avoid in file names

I am a passionate photographer when being on vacation or whenever I see something beautiful. This way, I collected many JPEG files over the past years. Here, I describe how I manage my digital photographs while avoiding any vendor lock-in which binds me to a temporary solution and leads to loss of data. Instead, I prefer solutions where I am able to invest my time and effort for a long-term relationship.

This (very long) entry is not about image files only: I am going to explain further things like my folder hierarchy, file name convention, and so forth. Therefore, this information applies to all kind of files I process.

Before I start explaining my method, we should come to an agreement whether or not we do have the same set of requirements I am trying to match with my method. If you are into raw image formats, storing your photographs somewhere in the cloud or anything else very special to you (and not to me), you might not get satisfied with the things described here. Decide yourself.

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2019-07-09: Poor Man's Monitoring of a Remote Linux Host via Syncthing


I'm helping some old lady by administrating her notebook. I set it up with Xubuntu LTS GNU/Linux which comes with the very easy to use and fast Xfce environment: not bloated and offers everything necessary. I stripped down the "start menu" such that it only shows the ten apps she's using.

Remote access is done via TeamViewer if necessary.

Today, I set it up with a neat monitoring I'm going to explain in this post.

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2019-07-09: Hire Me: I'm Looking for a New Job

I'm looking for a new job starting with October 2019.

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2019-07-06: Why We're Going to See Only Clickbait Titles and Thumbnails in Future

Derek Muller who is doing the Veritasium YouTube channel has published this video.

I did not know him or his videos before but he is a magnificent example of how to present things in general. He has written a PhD thesis on this topic.

In the video mentioned above, he is explaining how you can influence if your video is going viral. He further explains that some YouTube stars do face some issues in keeping their view counts resulting in burnout effects. He found out that the viewers over time of a YouTuber channel follows a specific function, which is a very interesting discovery if this holds true for a large number of YouTube channels.

He criticises the number of views as a measure of quality, the tiny fraction of YouTube videos that are actually pushed at all and how the designers of YouTube recommendation algorithm are actually defining what you are going to watch.

For YouTube video producers, YouTube isn't a reliable environment where you are in a position to define if your video is going to be successful or not. In this situation, YouTubers are pigeons in a operant conditioning chamber following some assumed patterns that are not related to the end result, causing burnout effects.

He further explains that YouTube is moving from a subscription model to a kind of yellow journalism where clickbait titles and catchy thumbnail previews are a must. This is actually the opposite direction how journalism developed and was able to provide high-quality content.

It all boils down to maximizing watch time and click-through rate.

He further extrapolates the current situation for the media in future. Not to spoil his insights to much: this is not going to be better. On the other hand side, he is also proposing a way out of this situation in order to create a better future.

Watch it yourself.

2019-06-12: Jonathan Blow: Preventing the Collapse of Civilization

Jonathan Blow gave a talk at the DevGAMM 2019 conference in Moscow about Preventing the Collapse of Civilization (YouTube):

You can read some interaction between Jonathan and a few people on Twitter in the thread of this tweet:

Here's an upload of my recent talk,
"Preventing the Collapse of Civilization",
given at DevGamm in Moscow.

This one is English audio only, fixing the unlistenability of the post-stream recordings.
Hopefully there will be a Russian-only as well.

— Jonathan Blow (@Jonathan_Blow) May 18, 2019

If you skip all the references to game development, this talk is really something that summarizes many things I was thinking myself before. Could it be the case that there is a huge thing going on in IT where we actually face a decline of development with hardly noticing?

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2019-05-31: GLT19-Talk: Freie Infrastruktur für unfreie Arbeitsplätze

Bei den Grazer Linuxtagen 2019 (GLT19) gab es einen Talk von Goesta Smekal zum Thema Freie Infrastruktur für unfreie Arbeitsplätze (Folien).

Ich habe mir nun die Aufzeichnung nachträglich angesehen:

Die erste Hälfte ist eine Motivation für den Einsatz von freier Software in Firmen beziehungsweise ebenso ein gute Leitfaden, wie man für welche Fälle besser auf freie Software setzt und wann nicht. Ich fand das Thema gut umrissen.

In der zweiten Hälfte (Q&A) erzählte Goesta frei, wie er in seinem Betrieb den Umstieg von Outlook und Exchange auf Kopano (Fork von Zarafa) geschafft hat, obwohl das eine heikle Operation war. Da ich schon mal vor vielen Jahren in einer ähnlichen Situation war, fand ich seine Ausführungen dazu hochinteressant.

2019-05-27: Dan Bricklin, the Inventor of the Electronic Spreadsheet

Dan Bricklin gave a TED talk where he explained the story how he invented electronic spreadsheets like LibreOffice Calc or Microsoft Excel. Twelve minutes well invested for a good story.

2019-05-17: Textbausteine/Snippets als praktisches Helferlein im Alltag

Update 2014-08-02: AutoHotkey-Konfiguration von Keith

Update 2019-05-17: Warnung vor ac'tivAid und AutoHotkey als Ersatz

Diesen Tipp kann wirklich jeder Computerbenutzer (selbstverständlich immer auch die weiblichen Computerbenutzer einschließend!) in der täglichen Computerarbeit brauchen: das automatische Einfügen von Textbausteinen (Englisch: snippet).

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2019-05-06: What App am I Using for What and How?

Most recent check of the status of all entries: 2019-05-06

Here is a list of tasks I do on my computers and the software I am using for accomplishing these tasks. The first column also links corresponding workflow descriptions with further information on how I am doing things. At the very bottom, there are links to more workflow descriptions.

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2019-04-29: How Do I Profit from Free and Open Source Software? (GLT19-Talk)

At the Linuxdays 2019 in Graz I gave a motivational talk "How Do I Profit from Free and Open Source Software?" as I already announced.

It is be a motivational talk that mentions some arguments for free and open software. I tried to cover the point of views for normal computer users, companies deciding for software or source code producing persons deciding for a license model.

Due to technical issues with room speakers, the whole talk was suspended from minute 32 to 36. Please do skip the time in-between. You do not miss any content from the talk since I stopped talking until the issue was solved.

You can get the video also from the CCC media server which I recommend in contrast to YouTube.

2019-04-29: Clippings

On this page, I collect my public/media appearances of any kind.

Most recent updates:

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2019-04-23: Announcement: "How Do I Profit from Free and Open Source Software?"

This Saturday (2019-04-29) at 10am, I'm going to talk about the advantages of free and open source software (FOSS) for users, companies, developers, tax payers and so forth. The talk takes place in the lecture room i1 at the Grazer Linuxtage 2019. This year, the event is located at my Alma Mater, the Graz University of Technology.

It will be a motivational talk that mentions not all arguments for free and open software but maybe some that did not cross your mind yet.

Here is the URL to the talk. There will be a video recording of my talk available at Saturday evening.

See you!

2019-04-23: Fixing "Everything I Type Is In Times New Roman" in Word 2016

Update 2018-12-14: Problem Reappearing and fixed

Update 2019-04-23: Problem Reappearing

I had a very stupid issue with Word 2016 on my office computer and this my story about the journey to solve it which took me a couple of months.

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2019-04-17: Stellungnahme gegen das "Gesetz für Sorgfalt und Verantwortung im Netz"

Diesen Text habe ich an versendet.

Guten Tag,

Ich möchte eine Stellungnahme zum Entwurf zum "Gesetz für Sorgfalt und Verantwortung im Netz" abgeben.

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2019-04-14: Microsoft OneNote

Update 2019-04-14: Leider hatte ich früher recht als geglaubt: Microsoft gibt das "große" OneNote zugunsten der abgespeckten Version "OneNote for Windows 10" auf. Die Daten können leider nicht übernommen werden.

Microsoft lässt aufhorchen, da es Microsoft OneNote für Windows und OS X gratis weitergibt.

OneNote ist wirklich sehr gut aber leider langfristig ein absolutes No-Go. Dieser Beitrag hier erklärt weshalb.

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2019-04-12: Org-Mode Is One of the Most Reasonable Markup Languages to Use for Text

Update 2017-09-25: Simplified the table syntax even more

Update 2018-04-06: Comments on the standardization argument

Update 2019-04-12: Extended syntax examples, "Makes Sense Outside of Emacs", "Tool Support" and added more backlinks

Disclaimer: this is a very nerdy blog entry. It is about lightweight markup languages and why I think that Org-mode is the best lightweight markup language for many use-cases. And with lightweight markup language, I do mean the syntax, the way you express headings, lists, font variations such as bold face or italic, and such things.

Please do note that this is not about Emacs. This is about Org-mode syntax and its advantages even when used outside of Emacs. You can type Org-mode in vim, notepad.exe, Atom, Notepad++, and all other text editors out there. And in my opinion it does have advantages compared to the other, common lightweight markup standards such as Markdown, AsciiDoc, Wikitext or reStructuredText.

Of course, Org-mode is my favorite syntax. Despite my personal choice you will see that I've got some pretty convincing arguments that underline my statement as well. So this is not just a matter of personal taste.

If you already have a grin on your face because you don't have any clue what this is all about: keep on reading. It makes an excellent example for making fun of nerds at your next dinner party. ;-)

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2019-03-13: Restic Backup on Windows 10 with Babun/Cygwin

Update 2019-03-13: comments Florian.

I heard great things about restic for solving the backup requirement.

Since it does also support Windows, I gave it a try on my business Windows 10 and my babun environment, which is a user-land Cygwin with better presets.

Here are my findings.

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2019-03-09: Blumenerde: Vierzig Liter, die keine sind

Wir haben Blumenerde gekauft. Beim Ausladen vom Auto bin ich ins Grübeln gekommen. Warum sind vierzig Liter Blumenerde für mich vergleichsweise so einfach zu tragen? Vierzig Liter Milch könnte ich am Stück niemals so einfach ausladen und herumtragen. Doch diese Vierziglitersäcke konnte ich durchaus heben, ohne, dass ich mich übermäßig anstrengen muss. Hat Blumenerde so viel weniger Dichte als Milch oder Wasser? Was stimmt hier in meiner Kopfrechnung nicht?

Also habe ich mal kurz Maß genommen.

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2019-03-04: Gute Radwerkstätte gesucht (R.I.P. Schnabl GraBa)

Seit fast einem Jahrzehnt war ich mit all meinen Fahrradproblemen und für etliche Services beim 2rad Express Schnabl in der Grazbachgasse. Der nette Servicemann war sehr freundlich, kannte mein Rad inzwischen in- und auswendig und war nicht auf Gewinnmaximierung, sondern auf beste Lösungen für mein Rad optimiert. Das hat ihm zumindest mich als Stammkunde gebracht, obwohl ich vermutlich mit etwas Materialaufrüsten die Services (etwas weniger professionell) selbst hätte machen können.

Beim notwendigen Umstieg auf ein eBike wurde ich bei ihm leider nicht für den Kauf fündig. Sein geiles KTM Gran aus der Auslage hätte ich sofort gekauft, wenn ich kein eBike benötigt hätte! Jedoch vertraute ich ihm das neue eBike bei jedem Service an, das nicht den Motor selbst betroffen hat. Da fehlte ihm leider das Know-how und die notwendige Ausstattung.

Anstatt der teuren (leichten) eBike-Sondermaterialien empfahl er mir die billigsten (schweren) Ketten und Kranzln, da ich durch meine Kilometerleistung offenbar ohnehin 1-2x/Jahr alles tauschen musste. So manche Kleinigkeit reparierte er durch Improvisation und mit Ersatzteilen, die irgendwo herumlagen. Das fand ich immer sehr imponierend und wirkte sich aufs Trinkgeld aus.

So war ich ungefähr zwei Mal pro Jahr wegen Kassettenwechsel, Kettenwechsel, Reifenwechsel und einigen Kleinigkeiten zwischendurch bei ihm.

Mein Blog hat einige Berichte dazu.

Nun scheint es so, als ob mein Nabendynamo mechanisch kaputt ist/wird. Mit Schrecken habe ich heute Früh gesehen, dass das Geschäftslokal leergeräumt ist. Kein Zettel, der einen Umzug ankündigt. Die Telefonnummer ist auch schon abgemeldet. Das Internet fand mir keinen Artikel zum Schließen.

Diese Leere.

Natürlich weiß ich, wo in Graz die Reparaturwerkstätten für Fahrräder sind. Ich suche allerdings persönliche Empfehlungen für eine Werkstätte, die ähnlich gut arbeitet und wo man nicht abgezockt wird, sondern wo die beste Gesamtlösung fürs Rad gesucht wird. Dezitiertes eBike-Know-How (Bosch) optional.

Also: hast du da einen aktuellen Tipp für mich?

2019-03-03: 2FA Using oathtool in the Command Line

So far, I was using two-factor authorization (2FA) with TOTP and FreeOTP on my Android phone only. (I don't want to use the more popular Google Authenticator because of Google and personal preference.) TOTP provides a higher level of security in contrast to any text message-based (SMS) or network-based two-factor authorization.

A couple of days ago, I stumbled over a great blog post where the author explains how to set-up TOTP using oathtool in the GNU/Linux command line. This has the advantages that I am able to use TOTP authentication on my Linux machines without my mobile phone and it forces me to backup my TOTP secrets and not only some recovery keys.

However, the proposed method uses key-value-pairs of the services and their secrets within a clear-text file. This was a clear no-go from my point of view. It would expose my secrets to any intruder on a silver plate.

Therefore, I extended the shell script with a GnuPG encrypted file for the secrets.

Read the whole article ...

2019-02-16: The History and the Danger of Spreadsheets

Here is a (long) but good article from 1984 about the origin of spreadsheet software. The article does not only mention the story of the first spreadsheet program VisiCalc but also the danger of simplification and abstraction.

Read the article and learn how a tool shaped us in our daily business and our rationale.

2019-02-15: The Best Restaurants In and Around Graz


From time to time, I do love to eat in more or less fancy restaurants.

If I'm in the right mood, I blog about my experience.

Here is my list of my personal restaurant recommendations for Graz mostly in no particular order:

Please note that I did not get any money or other benefit for this list.

2019-02-01: Ichi Go Ichi E Ramen Bar

Update 2019-02-01: they have a minimal different menu for lunch (cheaper, smaller) and for dinner (more expensive, a few more things)

Today we've tested the new Ramen Bar called Ichi Go Ichi E which is a japanese expression.

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2019-02-01: Die Österreichische Post speichert oder verkauft unsere Parteiaffinität

Update 2019-01-28: Wenn man glaubt, es kann nicht schlimmer werden: Post: Die Datenaffäre weitet sich aus - Addendum

Nach dem jüngsten Skandal um das Profiling von Personen und das Weiterverkaufen der Daten inklusive Parteiaffinität habe ich ein Auskunftsbegehren nach Artikel 15 der DSGVO gestellt.

Als unmittelbare Reaktion habe ich Textbausteine bekommen, die offenbar derzeit generell von der Post versendet werden:

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