11 April, 2013

Times change

Times change and so does technology. Not only the fiber optic speedways, but also the low tech stuff as well.

I am on my way south on my favorite Bundesbahn and I noticed something. The railway tracks are built on cement pilings and not wood ones, as they once were. Gone are the days of my childhood in Canada when we would wander down railway tracks in the countryside, heading to the next village store.

I imagine the cement used now is some super duper bionic material that is completely impervious to weather conditions, all the while being amazingly strong and flexible at the same time. Strange to think of some engineer spending their time inventing such a material. Not media worthy news. Yet it is used over thousands of miles of tracks.

06 April, 2013

Another day, another cafe

One of the reasons I decided life in Germany is a fine thing, is its long standing tradition of cafes. In every town and city there are a wealth of cafes to explore.

The cafe in the photo is fantastic in its simplicity of decor, excellent lunch, and proximity to one of my favorite museums in Berlin, the Berggruen.

It is also the first place where I met with my new-found blogging friend, Charlotte, for the first time in person. So, if you are reading this, Char, in your home far away, greetings from Charlottenburg.

05 April, 2013

Grey day with sunny pursuits

The day rose grey and cold. We sat long over breakfast and got caught up with all those familiar topics friends talk about, who haven't seen each other in a year's time.

To outsiders it might appear we are serving ourselves to a smorgasbord of random thoughts and happenings, but to connoisseurs there is a method underlying our conversational meanderings. We taste certain sweet bits first and save the sadder, lovely bits for later. It doesn't matter what we are discussing, there is such a sense of good will, a fine tingling lightness lingers as I go and brush my teeth and get ready to go into the city.

We travel by bus, train, streetcar, bus, walk along long ugly streets whichwas once Eastern Germany. The endless uniform apartment blocks were built sixty years ago under the communist /socialist regime.

The last twenty, since the wall came down, there has been a lot of effort and money spent to create change. The only thing a stranger like I can see is in the diverse looks of the people' s faces populating the sidewalks and the fantastic organic food served in a nearby cafe.

The greyness permeates my outer winter self. The only warmth is in our laughter.

04 April, 2013


I am on my way to my favorite yearly outing to Berlin.

A long weekend of chatting over endless cups of tea, good food, lot's of laughter and exciting exhibits to see...

Will try and keep you updated. I'm trying to go mobile.

01 April, 2013

Guardian Goggles

Had a good laugh this morning. Don't know if you guys have been following the hype about augmented reality glasses. It started a year or so (maybe two!) when Google announced Google Glass.

And this is sort of where things are today...

When I was working at the local university a few years ago, I did some research in augmented reality application and pervasive gaming. It was a really interesting time in my life. The work showed there are some very silly, as well as very useful ways of using augmented information.

For instance, the ability for technicians to receive augmented information for the repair of machinery in dangerous and critical situations. This would allow someone in a seperate location to look at the present installation and then send relevant instructions to the technicians in exactly the form they need it.

Whether we, the normal folk, will ever need augmented reality glasses is doubtful. Our lives are often overloaded with information as it is!