News, Social

Get up, stand up! Let’s hear it for Tibet and you.

Yellow is not only the colour of easter; it’s the polar opposite of cowardice. Zefrank just started something called ColorWars 2008 on twitter (I loved his shows, by the way) – now, let’s all play.

yellow still means right

Do you know Tibet? You should. Get involved and support the freedom of speech and expression of Tibetans as well as every other human being. Wear yellow on your on your avatars, wear a yellow t-shirt in front of your local Chinese embassy. Wave a yellow flag, shout your lungs out for basic human freedoms in the US and world wide! Join Team Yellow on twitter – We are all humans and we all have a right to be heard.

News, Weird

WWII bomb found close to my apartment

Yesterday on the 3rd of January a British bomb (Image) of the “zehn Zentner” (German) type from World War II was found near my apartment in Cologne, Germany. As they were defusing the bomb, I was evacuated from my apartment complex and had to stay away for the night.


They managed to defuse it (German) during the night so I could move back in on the 4th. Many thanks to the insanely brave people of the bomb squad!

Have a look at some images of the situation as I was evacuated.

Plone, Social, Software

First day of Plone Conf 2007

It’s now the 11th of October and the second day of the conference so I’m sort of lagging, but here are my impressions from yesterday.

The next best thing I took home with me on the first day of the Plone Conference 2007 in Naples, Italy – after meeting a lot of dear new and old faces – was attending the “Top Ten Ways to Get Involved with the Plone Community” speech by Darci Hanning (Scott Paley has an excellent writeup on his blog) and the “How to market Plone the Web2.0 way” by Christian “MrTopf” Scholz.

The Plone community is amazing. It is Plone. That said, we can be somewhat insular. A lot of the time we are preaching to the already converted. I think we are all aware of that. However, we’d all like to see Plone spreading even further and bring more converts into the fold.

What I loved about Darci’s talk was the numerous points on how people who are not software developers can get involved in the community and make great and important contributions, really driving home point that the community is not just for code centric people. I think they serve as great motivational arguments to engage and motivate more people from the “outside” to join the Plone community.

Darci Hanning

I think Christian’s points about reaching outside of the community and spreading the word of Plone using web2.0 and social media was a healthy dose of long due common sense and I hope it will inspire more members of the Plone community to network on social networks, blog, screencast and podcast more about Plone. He’s also streaming talks at the conference.

Christian “MrTopf” Scholz

You can find the some presentations held at Plone Conf 2007 on

More images from me will be up on flickr later today. In the meantime you can see what others have already uploaded on flickr by searching for the official tag ploneconf2007.

Hardware, Lessons Learned, Software

Do you backup?

I was reading Chris Pirillo‘s latest blog entry about backup and file management this morning and it inspired me to share what I do to back up and mirror the important stuff. (Watch the show featuring Chris’ dad if you haven’t already.)

Backing up is important incase something happens to your computer or laptop. If you haven’t backed up and your laptop breaks, then you might lose all your work. While you can use this website to see product reviews that will help you pick the best laptop, nothing can replace your lost work. That is why individuals often use something Windows Backup, which is a built-in application. Using this feature, users can easily back up important data on the hard drive of their computer. However, some Windows users have encountered the error 0x800700E1 when backing up important files or data to an external drive. Note that this error code does not allow users to create a backup and requires further troubleshooting to bypass error 0x800700e1.

Anyway, let us come back to the original topic without further ado. The below-mentioned things can help you backup and mirror your important work. They can ensure that your data is never lost.

The hardware: Two cheap and identical 500 GB external USB hard drives from TrekStor. € 99,- / USD 135,- each.

The software: MirrorFolder for Windows XP from TechSoft. € 28,5 / USD 39,- per computer license. (If anyone knows of a better software solution for mirroring and for other platforms, please leave a comment!)

Important files and folders on my workstation(s) and laptop are set to be automatically mirrored on both of the external disks. Projects, music, settings, etc are all mirrored on both of the disks for redundancy. So in event that one hard drive breaks down, it doesn’t automatically translate to an entire loss of backup data.

In a similar vein, when keeping more than one backup pair of hard drives (say one pair for your work files and the other for your personal files), it can get confusing to know which external disk contains what information. Here, two-part asset tags can prove extremely helpful in discerning one pair from the other. Those interested in learning about tagging devices and equipment can go to this site for an in-depth understanding.

Another clear advantage of keeping redundant external drive backup is that I can take one of the disks with me on the move without worrying too much about data loss.

Works for me ™.

What do you do? Please share your experiences and leave a comment!