rolisz's site

Scraping for houses

Having moved back to Romania, I decided I would need a place to live in, ideally to buy. So we started looking online for various places, we went to see a lot of them. Lots of work, especially footwork. But, being the data nerd that I am, I wanted to get smart about it and analyze the market.

For that, I needed data. For data, I turned to scraping. For scraping, I turned to Scrapy. While I did write a scraper 5 years ago, I didn't want to reinvent the wheel yet again, so I turned to Scrapy because it's a well-known, much used scraping framework in continue.

Synology and Docker

After more than a year of using my NAS only to collect dust and the occasional backup, I decided this month to start self hosting various web apps on it. Synology has a visual Docker interface, so I installed that and I started trying to install my first app: Monica, which is a personal re­la­tion­ship manager (I love to track things).

Un­for­tu­nate­ly, modern technology has not yet solved this problem of deploying apps seamlessly. :(

Installing from the Docker registry

Installing Monica from the Docker registry

Installing the Monica Docker container was fairly simple: you search for it, click download, set the en­vi­ron­ment variables in the GUI, carefully copy pasting their names from the doc­u­men­ta­tion, continue.

Man versus nature

Me hiking

Some friends in Oradea are big hikers. They had plans to go to Curcubăta Mare, the highest peak on a 500 km radius, being at 1849m, but they were always foiled by weather. Finally they decided to go last Saturday, because the tem­per­a­ture had risen slightly and the forecast wasn't too cloudy. They invited me to go along, so I joined the group of 5 people.

We went by car to Vârtop, which is a ski resort. On the way there we saw some beautiful winter landscapes. I didn't know that Romania could be so amazing in winter. You definitely don't need to go 1200 kilometers continue.

N.T. Wright in Cluj

NT Wright and his translator

N.T. Wright, one of the world’s leading New Testament scholars and an expert on Pauline theology, was invited by Edictum Dei to hold a conference in Cluj last week. I found out about it the day before, when there were already no more tickets available. But, I persisted, asked around and managed to find some friends who could lend me some, so I went to the first session, out of three.

The first topic was based on his book “The Day the Revolution Be­gan”ti­tle case and in it, the professor explained the meaning and the power of the cross and how today, many people mis­un­der­stand it. continue.

Dell XPS 13 review

While I worked for Google, I had a work Macbook and that was enough for my personal usage as well when I was travelling. But now, I needed a new laptop, so a month ago I splurged on a shiny new toy. Facebook proved itself useful for once: I asked for rec­om­men­da­tions and got a lot from my friends. I wasn’t too impressed by my previous Macbook and Lenovo seemed to have ruined their laptops. But one laptop that caught my eye and quickly convinced me to buy it was the Dell XPS 13. The bigger question was which model to buy: the 2018 one, which continue.

Goals for 2018

Because of my move to Romania, I decided to postpone any big goal setting until I’m finally here. Packing, driving 3000 kilometers, unpacking, dereg­is­ter­ing from Switzer­land and reg­is­ter­ing in Romania all take un­pre­dictable amounts of time, so I just thought about what goals I want and they will be my Martisor’ res­o­lu­tions.

Most of the things will stay similar. For example, my get to 82 kg goal is still there, for a third year in a row. This time it will stick, I promise! But, now that I’m no longer at Google and I no longer have the “all your in­tel­lec­tu­al property belong to us” clause in my continue.

An update on rolisz

My Google Guest Badge

After 3 years and 5 months at Google, time has come for me to move on to my next adventure. Yesterday was my last day at Google. I will be moving back to Romania, where my wife still has one year of university left.

On one hand, I'm super excited about the changes the future will bring. I have a super in­ter­est­ing job lined up. It will be nice to be able to understand again everything that is spoken around me. Having friends and family close by will also be a huge plus.

On the other hand, I can't say I'm not a bit continue.

Mass Effect Andromeda

Mass Effect Andromeda poster

I have been a huge Mass Effect fan. I loved the first game as soon as I played. I found the story fas­ci­nat­ing, the science there amazing. I played the games and read the books and got to know the universe pretty well. But then Mass Effect 3 came out and I was fairly dis­s­ap­point­ed by it. And now, after a long break, the latest game in the series came out, Andromeda.

As you can guess from the name, this game happens in the Andromeda galaxy, so it's a complete break from everything we've seen previously. All new planets, all new starts, all new enemies. In fact, continue.

2017 in Review

Blogging got put on the backburner this year, for a good reason though: I got married, so other stuff become more important. While I did still have a blogging goal, it was more reduced, to 1.5 posts a month, which I did actually managed to beat. I wrote 22 blog posts last year, averaging 1.83 per month, which is around 33% less than the year before.

Pageviews tracked number of posts in their downward trend, dropping by 29% to 26 thousand. Number of users went down to 10 thousand, but at least session length stayed around the same (1 minute and 5 seconds, compared to 1 minute continue.

Let's go to Africa

Arriving in Mauritius

Because of work, I couldn't take a long, proper vacation right after our wedding, so we decided that after some deadlines at the beginning of September, we would do a nice, two week honeymoon. Given that I love flying and I need the frequent flier miles, while my wife was not so thrilled about the idea of spending more than 10 hours in a tin coffin whizzing around the air at 900km/h, we had to find a middle ground. After lots of searching on Pinterest for honeymoon locations, we decided to go to Mauritius. It's fairly far, it got me the miles I needed to keep my continue.