rolisz's site

Look what I found on Uetliberg

Hands with rings

Scarcely had I hiked up Uetliberg when I found the one my heart loves. I held her tightly and I put a ring on her finger! (to paraphrase Song of Solomon 3:4)

Indexing IM logs with Elasticsearch

Remember my old project for processing instant messaging logs? Probably, because I wrote about it five years ago. Well, the project is only mostly dead, every once in a while I still oc­ca­sion­al­ly work on it.

I mostly use it as an excuse to learn tech­nolo­gies that are used outside of the Google bubble. One thing that really impressed me with how well it works and how easy it is to set up was Elas­tic­search. Elas­tic­search is a search engine. You give it your documents and it indexes them and enables you to query them fast. There are other projects that do this for you, but ES can continue.


Silence poster

Silence is a movie by Martin Scorsese about two Catholic priests, Rodriguez and Garupe, who go to Japan in the 17th century to find their mentor, Father Ferreira, who is rumoured to have lost the faith.

It's a really good movie, even though it's extremely brutal. It makes you think about some really hard questions, such as where is God among suffering and when He is (or seems) silent, despite all your prayers.

It's based on a book by Endo Shusaku. I read the book when I was 12 or 13. I found it too long and boring, but I forced myself to finish it. I continue.

Backing up 2: The NAS

Photo of Synology DS916+

My DS916+ NAS hidden behind next to a drawer in my living room

As I mentioned in my previous post, it's good to have various kinds of backups. Today I'm going to talk about on-site backups, in a Network Attached Storage.

Network Attached Storages (NAS) are small form computers which usually have at least two hard drives. The hard drives are often hot swappable and can be taken out without dis­as­sem­bling the computer. They are meant to be always on, so they don't consume a lot of power.

You can build your own NAS. It's not harder than building your own computer, but if you want it continue.

Backing up

Burned down

What can happen to your computer

In today's world, our data and our in­for­ma­tion is one of our most valuable assets. I have photos going back to 2008. My sporadic journal has digital entries from 2010. I have IM logs from 2009. I have a list of my monthly expenses since 2012. My blog goes back to 2010. I have loads of projects in various stages. Most of this in­for­ma­tion is ir­re­place­able (I'm never going to be 16 again, to take those photos once more :( ) and most of it is quite valuable, some having sen­ti­men­tal value (photos), some from a financial point of view, some pro­fes­sion­al­ly continue.

Winter sports

From up close, it looks just like the wallpaper from one of the Mac OS

I've been in Switzer­land for almost two and half years now, but I haven't done the typical Swiss things (except eating Fondue). Last winter I was either not here or busy at work, so I avoided all winter sports.

But this year two op­por­tu­ni­ties came up when I could go with colleagues to do skiing or snow­board­ing. So I finally tried both. I had a little skiing experience from two years ago, but that was it.

One Friday at 8 PM a colleague asked me if I wanted to go to Laax for skiing the next day. I didn't really have any plans, so I continue.

Sous vide with Anova Precision Cooker

Frontal view of Anova Cooker

Last year I bought an Anova Sous Vide Cooker. The name is slightly misleading, because it's not generally used to cook in a vacuum, but for cooking at very precisely controlled tem­per­a­tures.

The advantage of using Anova is that you can cook various foods at tem­per­a­tures below 100 degrees, for several hours. This way, you can avoid the degra­da­tion of certain proteins. For example, egg white starts to become solid at around 65 degrees, while the yolk at 70. If you cook the egg at just 65 for half an hour, you can get a perfect soft boiled egg, with really runny yolk, while the white is solid. continue.

New year, old goals

Same same, but different, but still

My attempt a year ago to set public goals was quite successful. I achieved most of them and the average completion score was 0.7. I took a break in the second half of the year, but now I'm well rested and I want to start again.

I learned some things that work and some that don't. For example, tracking number of books read is not too useful, at least not in Beeminder, but tracking number of minutes spent reading is much better. This way, if you are reading through a really thick book, you are not derailed as easily. Also, tracking pro­duc­tiv­i­ty can be done really well continue.

2016 in review

Wow, this post is finally done on time! Yaaaay!

This year was the first time I had a goal for writing on my blog, at least for the first half of the year. In January I set up a goal to write 3.5 blog posts per month, for the first half year and I stuck to it. In the second half of the year I took it easier, so I posted on average only twice a month. In total I posted 33 times, which is more than the year before, when I posted 30 times.

The number of pageviews went down by 21%, from 46 thousand continue.

Shalom from Israel

Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem

Three jeeps, filled with mostly young and idealistic Westerners and driven by former Special Forces members, are going along the mine fields between Syria and Israel. They arrive to an abandoned Syrian hospital, with some soldiers in front of it. They go up to the rooftop, through the crumbling hospital, carefully going up staircases that have been bombed. Once they get up, their tour guide says "See that building 300 meters away? There's an Al-Qaeda sniper looking at you from there! Don't worry, if he wanted you dead, he'd have shot you a long time ago.".

That was just a short part of my trip to Israel. I continue.