Friday, December 16, 2005

Signing off

Our 4th transatlantic move is in progress now (see below). Will be offline for a few days. See ya' on the other side of the pond!

... not the greatest way to celebrate - but anyway:
Happy birthday, Julian! Posted by Picasa

... but the time has come to wrap things up. The movers have been busy all day long ... Posted by Picasa

We really love our home in Kirkland ... Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

CNN.com - Merkel: U.S. admits CIA case error - Dec 6, 2005

CNN.com - Merkel: U.S. admits CIA case error - Dec 6, 2005: "'We also recognize that any policy will sometimes result in error and when it happens we do everything we can to correct it.'"


I am curious about the results of such course correction.

"There is strong evidence that television advertising of foods and beverages has a direct influence on what children choose to eat,"

- Forbes.com: "'There is strong evidence that television advertising of foods and beverages has a direct influence on what children choose to eat,'"

Hello! This is news ...

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

"Was nützen 1000 Volt in den Armen wenn oben die Birne nicht brennt."

: "Was nützen 1000 Volt in den Armen wenn oben die Birne nicht brennt."

Nette Sammlung.

I am getting old

I am old, really old. 94 years old - did you know?

In preparation for leaving the U.S., I went out to to obtain my cost free annual credit report. Before being let in, I answered all the personal questions that are supposed to make the content of the site - your credit report - secure.

The second one of the three national credit reporting agencies - TransUnion - surprised me in a fundamental way. In order to log onto their site for the first time, they challenge you with a number of personal questions. There was an easy one - at least I thought so - my year of birth. I entered it once: "invalid response!"
- Gee, that can't be, try again: "invalid response!" - what?

Fortunately, they gave me a choice of other personal questions to get around this one and still get into the report. When I finally retrieved the entire report, I was flabbergasted: my date of birth was 01/1911. Surprised? Well, if your credit report says so, it must be right! Right?

At the end of the day, these organizations make their living by providing factual, neutral and credible information to whichever party that is interested in figuring out whether you are creditworthy. Now isn't your age one of the pivotal attributes that determine whether you would be worth a credit, in other words, whether a lender providing you with monetary instruments today runs any abnormal risk of getting that money back from you - typically within your lifetime?


How did this incredible error happen? What is the source for that totally wrong piece of information? Who has provided this data about me to TransUnion and confirmed to them that this would in fact be my date of birth? Do I now have to be concerned about who else might have this wrong information about my date of birth that I need to track down and get corrected whereever it happens to be filed? Are ther any other bad consequences that may I incur because of this data error?

Just in case this date was entered as a mere matter of speculation - then why did TransUnion pick this particular date? If this date was in fact a mere speculation, how can a recipient of the credit report now trust the reliability of the rest of its data? Would it be possible that during the entry of a new personal record, the computer system was prompting the entering user to provide a date of birth - even if they didn't have any evidence about it?

Anyhow, I just had to call TransUnion, find out that they needed me to send a copy of my drivers license and hopefully they will correct my credit record on their file.

My takeaway - remember: nobody is useless, they can always serve as a bad example - I see this as a great example of why it is really important to be in touch with what somebody has put on record about you. Particularly, if that somebody could be instrumental in guiding other person's decisions about things that may affect you personally in a deep way.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Moving on

This is an interesting time. I have recently resigned from my position at Microsoft. Yesterday was my last day in the Redmond office. My family and I are looking forward to moving back to Germany in a few weeks. We hope to be able to spend the Christmas holidays with our family in Germany.

Hope to see you at the other side of the pond some day ...

I need to sit down and reflect about my experience in Redmond at some point. It certainly was a very intensive one!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Thanksgiving is over ...

A young man named John received a parrot as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird's mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity. John tried and tried to change the bird's attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to "clean up" the bird's vocabulary.

Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back. John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder. In desperation, John threw up his hands, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total silen! ce. Not a peep was heard for over a minute. Fearing that he'd hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer.

The parrot calmly stepped out onto John's outstretched arms and said, "I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I'm sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior."

John was stunned at the change in the bird's attitude. He was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, when the bird continued,
"And may I ask what the turkey did?"



Thank you, Andrea!

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Friday, November 11, 2005

failure - Google Search

1. Go to Google
2. Type in the word "Failure"
3. Spread the word before the people at Google "fix" it

Thanks, Harald!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Die Zeit - Deutschland : Feigheit vor dem Freund

Die Zeit - Deutschland : Feigheit vor dem Freund: "Wenn das Berliner Projekt scheitert, dann auch deshalb, weil Leute wie Stoiber, die vor dem Risiko und der Verantwortung zurückscheuen, ihre Rest-Karriere lieber gleich in Sicherheit bringen – aus einer Angst, zu der sie selber den stärksten Grund geben. Man kann das auch Feigheit nennen. Also tun wir es doch."

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Where are the next giants? - Boston - MSNBC.com

Where are the next giants? - Boston - MSNBC.com: "'We used to do better compared to California. Just taking into account the amount of investment dollars that have gone into local software companies, we should have done better.'"

Thursday, October 20, 2005

CNN.com - Bush's growing credibility gap - Oct 17, 2005

CNN.com - Bush's growing credibility gap - Oct 17, 2005: "Maybe Bush does not understand sacrifice. After all, earlier this year, he revealed he did not share the common meaning of 'ultimate sacrifice' with most of his countrymen, who reserve that term for Americans who have given their lives in military service, when he spoke of the drawbacks of political life: 'It's the ultimate sacrifice (sic), really: sacrifice your privacy. It's sacrifice of time with your kids.'"

Monday, October 17, 2005

Back from Victoria

Just returned from a nice little trip to Victoria, B.C.

The famous Fairmont Empress, Victoria, B.C. Posted by Picasa

We were impressed by the relaxed athmosphere of the city, the many nice little shops and tea and coffee houses. I can highly recommend such a visit. Even though we didn't stay in the famous Fairmont Empress, our hotel was also quite nice - particularly the pool :-)

We also enjoyed the great Butchart Gardens north of Victoria:

Butchart Gardens Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 10, 2005

Trapped in the Corn Maze

The Farm: "This unique 12 acre maze is a giant map of our state. It contains over 250 actual roads and 400 places and towns marked by signs (with interesting historical facts about each). There are 4-1/2 actual miles of highways and country roads within the maze."

This was great fun - trying to avoid getting out through the wrong maze exit and being labelled 'maze whimp'. Thanks, Lon, for taking us there!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Tourists to Florida Get a Warning as Greeting - New York Times

Tourists to Florida Get a Warning as Greeting - New York Times: "'Do not argue unnecessarily with local people,' and 'If someone appears to be angry with you, maintain to the best of your ability a positive attitude and do not shout or make threatening gestures.'"

CNN.com - Giving 'The Hammer' his due - Oct 3, 2005

CNN.com - Giving 'The Hammer' his due - Oct 3, 2005: "The Germans have a word for the emotion that seized many Democrats after hearing of the criminal indictment on money-laundering charges of House Majority Leader Tom Delay, R-Texas."
What a rare chance to serve as a model for this nation ...

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Sunday

 

Looks like last weekend was the last sun for a while around here ... Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

How many?

Donald Rumsfeld is giving the president his daily briefing.



He concludes by saying: "Yesterday, 3 Brazilian soldiers were killed."

"OH NO!" the President exclaims. "That's terrible!"

His staff sits stunned at this display of emotion, nervously watching as the President sits, head in hands.

Finally, the President looks up and asks, "How many is a brazillion?"

Monday, September 26, 2005

The Seattle Times: Opinion: Why can't we be more like Finland?

"Finland is a leading example of the northern European view that a successful, competitive society should provide basic social services to all its citizens at affordable prices or at no cost.

This isn't controversial in Finland; it's taken for granted. For a patriotic American like me, the Finns present a difficult challenge: If we Americans are so rich and so smart, why can't we treat our citizens as well as the Finns treat theirs?">The Seattle Times: Opinion: Why can't we be more like Finland?
: "Finland is a leading example of the northern European view that a successful, competitive society should provide basic social services to all its citizens at affordable prices or at no cost.

This isn't controversial in Finland; it's taken for granted. For a patriotic American like me, the Finns present a difficult challenge: If we Americans are so rich and so smart, why can't we treat our citizens as well as the Finns treat theirs?"

Saturday, September 24, 2005

The Seattle Times: Latest news wires from the Associated Press

The Seattle Times: Latest news wires from the Associated Press: "Half of European citizens speak a second language, according to a European Union survey released Friday."
...
"In the United States, by contrast, 9 percent of Americans speak both their native language and another language fluently, according to a U.S. Senate resolution designating 2005 the "Year of Foreign Language Study.""

Druckversion - Handy verschluckt: Kuh klingelt - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Druckversion - Handy verschluckt: Kuh klingelt - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Als sie dem Klingelton folgte, musste sie feststellen, dass das Geraeusch aus dem Bauch einer Kuh kam. "
Spannend waere es gewesen, wenn das Gespraech auch angenommen worden waere ...

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Thursday, September 15, 2005

"Wall Street Journal": Say it Slowly - Zukunftsangst - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

"Wall Street Journal": Say it Slowly - Zukunftsangst - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Everyone is terrified of everyone. As if of its own accord, the word 'fear' attaches itself to the word 'future' -- Zukunftsangst permeates the German mind. Fear of reform, fear of stagnation, fear of a failure of democracy and now -- as the frantic climax of this collective neurosis -- the fear of a further growth of fear."

Monday, September 12, 2005

Relax, Bill Gates: It's Google's Turn as the Villain - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

Relax, Bill Gates: It's Google's Turn as the Villain - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "'Microsoft is becoming I.B.M. and Google is becoming Microsoft.'"

Grausige BSE-Hypothese: Menschenfleisch im Tierfutter? - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Grausige BSE-Hypothese: Menschenfleisch im Tierfutter? - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Die Beweiskette ist dünn - aber wenn sie sich doch als tragfähig herausstellen sollte, wären die Schlussfolgerungen grausig: Der Rinderwahnsinn, der zunächst England und dann ganz Europa in den neunziger Jahren heimzusuchen begann, könnte vom Menschen verursacht worden sein - und zwar buchstäblich."
Einfach unglaublich!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Spendendesaster: USA blockieren Hilfe - und die Deutschen knausern - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Spendendesaster: USA blockieren Hilfe - und die Deutschen knausern - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Ein mit 15 Tonnen EPa beladener Airbus der Luftwaffe erhielt trotz intensiver Bemühungen des Auswärtigen Amts keine Überfluggenehmigung für die USA. Am Freitagmorgen wurden die deutschen Care-Pakete in Köln-Wahn wieder ausgeladen und in ein Depot gebracht."

Das soll mal jemand den Hungernden in New Orleans erklaeren.

Monday, September 05, 2005

This is the great thing about ...


Pudget Sound Posted by Picasa

... the area we live in:


Ice caves Posted by Picasa
You can hike on mountains and walk the beach on the same day.

The ice caves on the picture above are quite fascinating. Even in late summer, there is permanently this formation of ice. It really gets noticeably colder as you approach the ice! It was a fun hike anyway.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

New Orleans: United States of Shame - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

New Orleans: United States of Shame - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "Stuff happens.

And when you combine limited government with incompetent government, lethal stuff happens."

...
"W. drove his budget-cutting Chevy to the levee, and it wasn't dry. Bye, bye, American lives. "I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees," he told Diane Sawyer."
...
"Who on earth could have known that Osama bin Laden wanted to attack us by flying planes into buildings? Any official who bothered to read the trellis of pre-9/11 intelligence briefs.

Who on earth could have known that an American invasion of Iraq would spawn a brutal insurgency, terrorist recruiting boom and possible civil war? Any official who bothered to read the C.I.A.'s prewar reports.

Who on earth could have known that New Orleans's sinking levees were at risk from a strong hurricane? Anybody who bothered to read the endless warnings over the years about the Big Easy's uneasy fishbowl."


Wonder who doesn't see a pattern here?

Friday, September 02, 2005

CNN.com - Katrina reignites debate over global warming - Sep 1, 2005

CNN.com - Katrina reignites debate over global warming - Sep 1, 2005: "The evidence linking global warming and hurricane intensity might be fuzzy, but it highlights a potential issue worth examining right away, some say.
'Maybe a connection here is yet to be clearly established, but it is also yet to be ruled out,' "

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Katrina's Trans-Atlantic Waves: German Minister Stands Behind Criticism of Bush - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

"Carsten Voigt, who coordinates German-American relations for the German Foreign Ministry, attempted to smooth over any hard feelings on Wednesday, by stressing Germany's concern for America's Gulf Coast states and suggesting that Trittin's comments -- albeit accurate -- were badly timed and somewhat misplaced, given the scale of the catastrophe. ">Katrina's Trans-Atlantic Waves: German Minister Stands Behind Criticism of Bush - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "Carsten Voigt, who coordinates German-American relations for the German Foreign Ministry, attempted to smooth over any hard feelings on Wednesday, by stressing Germany's concern for America's Gulf Coast states and suggesting that Trittin's comments -- albeit accurate -- were badly timed and somewhat misplaced, given the scale of the catastrophe. "

What a mess! - This is really bad timing for a discussion that would be worth having - once people in the Gulf Coast region literally have their head above water again.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Thursday, August 25, 2005

English selected as the official language of the European Union over German

The European Commission has just announced an agreement whereby English will be the official language of the European Union rather than German, which was the other possibility.


As part of the negotiations, the British Government conceded that English spelling had some room for improvement and has accepted a 5- year phase-in plan that would become known as "Euro-English".
In the first year, "s" will replace the soft "c". Sertainly, this will make the sivil servants jump with joy.
The hard "c" will be dropped in favour of "k". This should klear up konfusion, and keyboards kan have one less letter.


There will be growing publik enthusiasm in the sekond year when the troublesome "ph" will be replaced with "f". his will make words like fotograf 20% shorter.

In the 3rd year, publik akseptanse of the new spelling kan be expekted to reach the stage where more komplikated changes are possible.
Governments will enkourage the removal of double letters which have always ben a deterent to akurate speling.

Also, al wil agre that the horibl mes of the silent "e" in the languag is disgrasful and it should go away.


By the 4th yer people wil be reseptiv to steps such as replasing "th" with "z" and "w" with "v".

During ze fifz yer, ze unesesary "o" kan be dropd from vords kontaining "ou" and after ziz fifz yer, ve vil hav a reil sensibl riten styl. Zer vil be no mor trubl or difikultis and evrivun vil find it ezi tu understand ech oza. Ze drem of a united urop vil finali kum tru.

Und efter ze fifz yer, ve vil al be speking German like zey vunted in ze forst plas.

If zis mad you smil, pleas pas on to oza pepl.

_________________________

Done. Thanks for the pointer, Harald!

Guardian Unlimited | World Latest | U.S. Dodges Robertson Comments on Chavez

Guardian Unlimited | World Latest | U.S. Dodges Robertson Comments on Chavez: "State Department spokesman Sean McCormack called Robertson's remarks about Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez ``inappropriate,'' but stopped short of condemning them.

``This is not the policy of the United States government,'' McCormack said. ``We do not share his views.''"

A strong disagreement sounds differently.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

CNN.com - Robertson:�Chavez remarks misinterpreted - Aug 24, 2005

CNN.com - Robertson:�Chavez remarks misinterpreted - Aug 24, 2005: "'If he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it,' said Robertson on Monday's program. 'It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war.'"
It's all about "the values" - right?

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Konjunktur: "Economist" bejubelt deutsche Wirtschaft - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Konjunktur: "Economist" bejubelt deutsche Wirtschaft - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "So etwas gab es seit Jahren nicht mehr: Der 'Economist', das einflussreichste Wirtschaftsmagazin der Welt, bejubelt den Standort Deutschland. Den Aufschwung vermasseln, so mahnt das Blatt, könnten nur noch die deutschen Politiker."

Wer haette das gedacht? Wenn die mal nur Recht haetten ...

Smell of fear

CNN.com - Senate to hold gas prices hearing - Aug 19, 2005: "Driven by tight supplies and U.S. crude prices near $65 a barrel, average retail gasoline prices hit a record $2.55 a gallon this week, according to government data.
That's about 68 cents higher than just a year ago and the biggest weekly increase on record, which has triggered fears that high energy costs could hurt U.S. economic growth."


How about encouraging more fuel efficient vehicles (e.g. by removing tax breaks for SUVs), raising design & construction codes to require higher standards for insulation of buildings, …..?

CNN.com - Former aide:�Powell�WMD speech�'lowest point in my life' - Aug 19, 2005

CNN.com - Former aide:�Powell�WMD speech�'lowest point in my life' - Aug 19, 2005: "'I look back on it, and I still say it was the lowest point in my life.'"

Monday, August 15, 2005

Magazine - Is America the World's 97-lb. Weakling? - FORTUNE - Page

Magazine - Is America the World's 97-lb. Weakling? - FORTUNE - Page: "'Can America compete?' is the nation's new No. 1 anxiety, the topic of emotional debate in bars and boardrooms, the title of seminars and speeches offered by the liberal Progressive Policy Institute, the conservative economist Todd Buchholz, and countless schools and Rotary Clubs. The question is almost right, but not quite. We're wringing our hands over the wrong thing. The problem isn't Chinese companies threatening U.S. firms. It's U.S. workers unable to compete with those in China - or India, or South Korea. The real question is, 'Can Americans compete?' "

Very insightful analysis of the challenges raised by the globalization. A lot of this is not only true for the U.S. - but for Western Europe as well. Not quite sure why there is so much fuzz about a traditional U.S. brand such as Jeep being owned by a foreign company. After all, a lot of traditional non-U.S. brands have been acquired by U.S. companies over the past decades. Why is what has been good for GM some decades ago now all of a sudden a bad thing if the nationalities involved are exchanged?

Nevertheless, the whole point about high value service jobs being in danger of moving abroad is well observed.

Case in point: Here is another case study about IBM and its recent move of jobs - some of which were already highly profitable - from Western to Eastern Europe.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

I have a dream ...

Die Zeit - Leben: "Mein Traum ist ganz einfach. Ich träume davon, das Land aus den Händen der Republikaner zu befreien."

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

9/11 Panel Seeks Inquiry on New Atta Report - New York Times

9/11 Panel Seeks Inquiry on New Atta Report - New York Times: "'I think this is a big deal,' said John F. Lehman, a Republican member of the commission who was Navy secretary in the Reagan administration. 'The issue is whether there was in fact surveillance before 9/11 of Atta and, if so, why weren't we told about it? Who made the decision not to brief the commission's staff or the commissioners?' "

Let's see whether the administration's teflon shield works this time ....

onegoodmove: Bush Flips Out

onegoodmove: Bush Flips Out: "What incredibly infantile arrogant behavior from the President of the United States. He has no respect for the office. All class!"

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Analysts: Bill won't wean U.S. off foreign oil - washingtonpost.com Highlights - MSNBC.com

Analysts: Bill won't wean U.S. off foreign oil - washingtonpost.com Highlights - MSNBC.com: "Despite repeated calls by President Bush and members of Congress to decrease U.S. dependence on oil imports, a major energy bill that appears headed for passage this week would do nothing to reduce the country's need for foreign oil, according to analysts and interest groups."

But will it serve those who footed the (campaign) bill?

Monday, July 11, 2005

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Bush bruised in bicycle crash

BBC NEWS | Americas | Bush bruised in bicycle crash: "Mr Bush, celebrating his 59th birthday, was said to be going at a 'pretty good speed' when he fell from his bike. "
I didn't make this up, really!

Friday, July 01, 2005

German TV wird zum Jahresende eingestellt

German TV wird zum Jahresende eingestellt: "German TV, der im Jahr 2002 gestartete Auslands-Bezahlsender der Deutschen Welle, wird in der bisherigen Form nicht fortgefuehrt. "

Bummer! We kind of depend on this for reasonable TV program out here in the far west! :-(

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

CNN.com - Clinton rides on elder Bush's boat - Jun 27, 2005

CNN.com - Clinton rides on elder Bush's boat - Jun 27, 2005: "Former President Bill Clinton joined his one-time political foe, former President George H.W. Bush, for a boat ride on the Atlantic Ocean."

I guess they really don't have to fight with each other any more ...

Reminds me a little bit about Helmut Kohl visiting Willy Brandt not too long before Willy Brandt passed away.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Germany and the United Nations: A War of Diplomats - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

Germany and the United Nations: A War of Diplomats - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "a German permanent seat is a worthwhile objective in principle, he considers it too 'politically explosive' to risk yet another confrontation with Washington."
Not too much shared love between the U.S. and Germany ...

Monday, June 20, 2005

Bundeslaender-Ranking: Hamburg ist die Nummer eins - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

>Bundesl��nder-Ranking: Hamburg ist die Nummer eins - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Die Hansestadt Hamburg hat sich unter allen Bundeslaendern erneut als erfolgreichster Standort behauptet. Laut einer Studie der Bertelsmann-Stiftung schneidet der Stadtstaat besser ab als die Boomregionen im Sueden der Republik."

Hoert, hoert!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Be scared ...

Bloomberg.com: U.S.: "A warning indicated that coastal locations in the warned area should be prepared for flooding, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The first earthquake, measuring a 7.4 on the Richter scale, struck at 6:50 p.m. San Francisco time, centering 90 miles northwest of Eureka, California. A second earthquake measuring a 5.1 hit over land at 7:57 p.m. 92 miles northeast of San Francisco."

Friday, June 10, 2005

Report Details F.B.I.'s Failure on 2 Hijackers - New York Times

Report Details F.B.I.'s Failure on 2 Hijackers - New York Times: "The F.B.I. missed at least five chances in the months before Sept. 11, 2001, to find two hijackers as they prepared for the attacks and settled in San Diego,"

Druckversion - FBI-Ermittlungen vor 9/11: Chronologie des Versagens - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten

Druckversion - FBI-Ermittlungen vor 9/11: Chronologie des Versagens - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten: "Die Auflistung der Verfehlungen ist f�r die US-Beh�rden gelinde gesagt peinlich. Demnach habe ein der CIA zugeteilter FBI-Agent bereits 19 Monate vor den Terror-Anschl�gen auf das New Yorker World Trade Center und weitere Ziele in den USA Meldung �ber die beiden Verd�chtigen machen wollen. Sein Vorgesetzter bei der CIA habe ihn allerdings davon abgehalten. Dieser Vorfall sei nur eine von vielen Chancen gewesen, die Anschl�ge zu verhindern, kritisierte die 'New York Times' heute in einem Aufmacher auf der Seite eins die Arbeit der Beh�rden."

Opinion: Crumbs for Africa - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News

Opinion: Crumbs for Africa - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "The United States currently gives just 0.16 percent of its national income to help poor countries, despite signing a United Nations declaration three years ago in which rich countries agreed to increase their aid to 0.7 percent by 2015. Since then, Britain, France and Germany have all announced plans for how to get to 0.7 percent; America has not. The piddling amount Mr. Bush announced yesterday is not even 0.007 percent."

Thursday, May 26, 2005

NEVER : U.S., Mexico Spar Over Illegal Gun Trafficking

NPR : U.S., Mexico Spar Over Illegal Gun Trafficking: "Morning Edition, May 26, 2005 � The flow of illegal guns from the United States to Mexico is growing. Mexico makes it extremely difficult to buy a gun legally, and the government is unhappy that Washington has done little to stop gun smuggling, even as U.S. officials press Mexico to stem drug trade between the two countries."


I listened to this story on my drive to work this morning. This is outrageous. Given all the emphasis of the Bush administration on the global fight against terror and how other countries around the world should help ('be with us or against us') - it's unbelievable how little the U.S. is willing to do to protect their own people - cut down on weapon smuggling from the U.S. into Mexico so that drug dealers have less power to drive their business of drug trade into the U.S. - when it comes to standing up against the weapon lobby, NRA etc.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Why men are happier...

Why Men are happier than women

Men Are Just Happier People.
What do you expect from such simple creatures?
Your last name stays put.
The garage is all yours.
Wedding plans take care of themselves.
Chocolate is just another snack.
You can be President.
You can never be pregnant.
You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park.
You can wear NO shirt to a water park.
Car mechanics tell you the truth.
The world is your urinal.
You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one
is just too icky.
You don't have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt.
Same work, more pay.
Wrinkles add character.
Wedding dress $5000. Tux rental-$100.
People never stare at your chest when you're talking to them.
The occasional well-rendered belch is practically expected.
New shoes don't cut, blister, or mangle your feet.
One mood all the time.
Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat.
You know stuff about tanks.
A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase.
You can open all your own jars.
You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness.
If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend.
Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack.
Three pairs of shoes are more than enough.
You almost never have strap problems in public.
You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes.
Everything on your face stays its original color.
The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades.
You only have to shave your face and neck.
You can play with toys all your life.
Your belly usually hides your big hips.
One wallet and one pair of shoes one color for all seasons.
You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look.
You can "do" your nails with a pocket knife.
You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.
You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25
minutes.
No wonder men are happier.

Send this to the women who can handle it and to the men who will enjoy
reading it.


Thanks, Harald!

Triumph the comic insult doc on Star Wars

May the force be with you!

Monday, May 16, 2005

Careers - 50 And Fired: Are You At Risk?

Careers - 50 And Fired: Are You At Risk? - FORTUNE: "50 and Fired
Getting fired during your peak earning years has always been scary. You’d scramble for a few months, but you’d find something. Today it’s different. Get fired and you can scramble for years—and still find nothing. Welcome to the cold new world of the prematurely, involuntarily retired."


Not a great future perspective. It seems fascinating how people in the U.S. keep trying to look at the bright side of such economic shifts the their profound impact on people's lifes. Contrast that with the current debate in Germany about the results of globalization and capitalism.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

50 people without a pay raise - 13000 without a job

IBM: Restructuring Will Save Up to $2 Billion: "IBM later announced that 50 of its top executives would not receive raises until performance improves. The restructuring is aimed at aiding that improvement. However, it also will mean a charge of $1.3 billion to $1.7 billion in the second quarter, primarily due to the job cuts. "

Pataki and Bloomberg Endorse Changes in Ground Zero Tower - New York Times

Pataki and Bloomberg Endorse Changes in Ground Zero Tower - New York Times: "Seeking to restore public confidence in the pace and vision of the rebuilding effort at the former World Trade Center site, Gov. George E. Pataki, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the lead developer at ground zero said yesterday that the soaring office building known as the Freedom Tower would be significantly redesigned to satisfy security concerns."

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Made in USA

Made in USA: "Americans are good at some things and bad at others. We're good at making movies and software, and bad at making cars and cities. And I think we may be good at what we're good at for the same reason we're bad at what we're bad at. We're impatient. In America, if you want to do something, you don't worry that it might come out badly, or upset delicate social balances, or that people might think you're getting above yourself. If you want to do something, as Nike says, just do it."

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

How to Start a Startup

How to Start a Startup: "You need three things to create a successful startup: to start with good people, to make something customers actually want, and to spend as little money as possible. Most startups that fail do it because they fail at one of these. A startup that does all three will probably succeed."

Agreed. (co-founder of a former start-up)

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Hamburger T�mpel: R�tsel um explodierende Kr�ten gel�st - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Hamburger T�mpel: R�tsel um explodierende Kr�ten gel�st - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Sind Erdkr�ten auf der Balz, kommen sie - dem Menschen nicht un�hnlich - mitunter recht aufgeblasen daher. Ballongleich bl�hen sich die Tiere auf, um quakend nach Partnern zu suchen. Einige Hundert Hamburger Erdkr�ten trugen allerdings auf diese Art nicht zur Vermehrung, sondern zur spektakul�ren Dezimierung ihrer Art bei. Mehr als 1000 Tiere haben sich am Rande eines Hamburger T�mpels aufgepumpt, bis sie sich platzend aus dem Diesseits verabschiedeten."

Monday, April 25, 2005

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: The Oblivious Right

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: The Oblivious Right: "Is the administration's obliviousness to the public's economic anxiety just partisanship? I don't think so: President Bush and other Republican leaders honestly think that we're living in the best of times. After all, everyone they talk to says so. "

THinking about our recent vacation ... Posted by Hello

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal

A book well worth reading. I have 'digested' this one during our recent vacation. Not that I really liked fastfood chains before - now I know very well why I don't like them.
Amazon.com: Books: Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal: "Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
by Eric Schlosser"

Druckversion - Debatte um Ratzinger-Vergangenheit: "Das kann nur in die Irre f�hren" - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Druckversion - Debatte um Ratzinger-Vergangenheit: "Das kann nur in die Irre f�hren" - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Ratzinger ist aus allen m�glichen Gr�nden gew�hlt worden, aber nicht wegen der Tatsache, dass er Deutscher ist. "

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Britische Presse zum Papst: Eine Insel sieht rot - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Britische Presse zum Papst: Eine Insel sieht rot - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Ratzingers Kampf gegen den Marxismus, so der 'Independent', sei 'weit �ber den von Papst Johannes Paul II. hinausgegangen, der als Pole doch Sympathie gehabt' habe. Das allerdings ist neu: Dass Papst Paul Johannes II. Sympathie f�r den Marxismus gehabt h�tte, weil er den Kapitalismus so sehr verachtete? So etwas k�nnen nur Leute schreiben, die sich erst seit vorgestern in die katholische Materie einlesen mussten."

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Forbes.com: IBM In Denial Over Lotus Notes#Static#Static

Forbes.com: IBM In Denial Over Lotus Notes#Static#Static: "The marketing folks in IBM's Lotus division are starting to sound like the Black Knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, who insists he's winning a fight even as he loses both arms and legs: ''Tis but a scratch,' the Black Knight declares after one arm is lopped off. 'Just a flesh wound,' he says after losing the other. 'I'm invincible!' "

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Schroeders China-Kurs: Gegen die Mauer - Die Weitsicht unseres Kanlzers

Schr�ders China-Kurs: Gegen die Mauer - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Noch im Juni 1989, als die DDR bereits heftig aus dem Leim ging und dem redlichen Diktator sowie dem lieben Egon das Volk �ber Ungarn und die CSSR abhanden kam, befand Schr�der f�nf Tage vor dem Tag der deutschen Einheit: 'Nach 40 Jahren Bundesrepublik sollte man eine neue Generation in Deutschland nicht �ber die Chancen einer Wiedervereinigung bel�gen. Es gibt sie nicht.'"

Falscher konnte man damals nicht liegen.
Falscher konnte man damals nicht liegen."

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Die Zeit - Politik : Abschied von den Experten

Die Zeit - Politik : Abschied von den Experten
Beispiele, wo Expertenrat Fehlentwicklungen hätte verhindern können, weiß er zuhauf zu nennen: Vor der Auflösung der irakischen Armee und der Baath-Partei hätte jeder gewarnt, der mit dem Irak vertraut gewesen sei. Die Armee habe kaum gekämpft, wohl aber im engen Kontakt mit den amerikanischen und britischen Streitkräften gestanden. Die Kommandeure und Soldaten seien zur Kooperation bereit gewesen. Die Abschaffung der Armee habe dem Chaos den Weg bereitet. Auch dass der große Nutznießer des Krieges Iran sein werde, sei unter Nahostexperten Konsens gewesen. Halliday zitierte einen iranischen Diplomaten, der ihm gesagt habe: „Jetzt haben wir vom Hindukusch bis Beirut das Sagen, ohne einen einzigen Mann verloren zu haben.“

Best Commercial Ever

This has to be the BEST Commercial ever. Be prepared to be amazed and shocked by this soopa fly hip guy!"

Murphy Laws Site - Technology Laws

Murphy Laws Site - Technology Laws: "The attention span of a computer is only as long as it electrical cord."

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Ausgebremster Regierungschef: Zum Teufel mit dem Studium - UniSPIEGEL - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Ausgebremster Regierungschef: Zum Teufel mit dem Studium - UniSPIEGEL - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Fuer die Zeit nach seiner politischen Karriere hat Erwin Teufel einen Traum: mit 66 Jahren noch studieren, Philosophie, in Muenchen. Nur reicht die Mittlere Reife nicht. Teufels Studienwunsch und die leise Haeme in der Debatte darueber - beides scheint durchaus typisch Schwaebisch."
Bildungspolitik ist schon teuflisch kompliziert!

Monday, March 14, 2005

Ozzie eager to set up new 'Office' | Tech News on ZDNet

Ozzie eager to set up new 'Office' | Tech News on ZDNet: "What do you intend to tell Microsoft employees? What's your message to them going in, as one of the three CTOs?
Ozzie: Honestly, I haven't given it that much thought. If I had to, it'd be, 'What can I offer you from 20 years of some success and many mistakes?' You learn from your mistakes."

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Complicated History

News: "Lifting the veil on one of the least advertised and least edifying scandals of the Second World War, the US government has settled a complaint that American army officers requisitioned an entire train loaded with valuables seized by the Nazis from Jewish families in Hungary and then kept much of the contents for themselves."

Friday, March 11, 2005

Microsoft acquires Groove

"My guess is that Groove's integration in the MS Windows desktop will accelerate the collaboration market, and start a fruitful competition in this important IT-segment."
Valuable insight. However, I would push back about this very last point made in this comment:
"Apropos document based: I am not aware of a more powerful e-editor than the native editor "Notes-networks" would have. This is not a paper editor Groove is confined to with MS Word. The documents created with "Notes-Networks" native editor are even open for integration with corporate data (vision for "Notes-networks" Rel-7: could you please include this NSFDB2 DAV-table in your departmental application that we can tap your data easily for our transaction systems. YesSir - 15 minutes later)."

“Office Information Bridge” provides exactly that corporate data awareness for Office documents already today.
more info about IW Bridge
Erfinder von Lotus-Notes geht zu Microsoft - Golem.de: "Microsoft kauft das von Lotus-Notes-Erfinder Ray Ozzie gegruendete Unternehmen Groove Networks. Dieses bietet eine Peer-to-Peer-basierte Groupware-Loesung an, mit der Microsoft seine Produktpalette erweitern will - vor allem im Bereich Microsoft Office."

Wow! - Danke fuer den Pointer, Markus!

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Microsoft to buy Groove Networks | CNET News.com

Microsoft to buy Groove Networks | CNET News.com: "Microsoft on Thursday said it will acquire Groove Networks and make Groove's founder, Ray Ozzie, chief technology officer at the software giant. "

Welcome to the team, Ray!

Monday, February 28, 2005

andPOP | Halle Berry, George Bush Win Razzie Awards

andPOP | Halle Berry, George Bush Win Razzie Awards
Worst Actor went to George Bush (who sadly wasn’t acting) for his appearances in Michael Moore's documentary Fahrenheit 9/11.

The Seattle Times: Security and soured image take toll on travel to U.S.

The Seattle Times: Security and soured image take toll on travel to U.S.: "'We have developed an image in many countries as fortress America,' said Betsy O'Rourke, senior vice president for marketing at the Travel Industry Association of America, a Washington-based trade group. O'Rourke said tourists should be greeted as 'customers,' not potential 'invaders.'"

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Could somebody please explain Curious George how Europe works?

At least make sure to take of your gloves when greeting someone:

Das kalte Europa: Behandschuhte Bushs versto�en gegen Etikette - Panorama - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Unmittelbar nach seiner Landung in Bratislava unterlief dem US-Pr�sidenten ein Fauxpas: Anstatt sich protokollgem�� seiner Handschuhe zu entledigen, begr��te George W. Bush in voller Montur seine slowakischen Gastgeber. Offenbar seien die Bushs nicht �ber europ�ische Sitten aufgekl�rt, vermuten Benimmexperten."

The New York Times > International > Europe > Empty Town: The Germans Bush Wasn't Able to See

The New York Times > International > Europe > Empty Town: The Germans Bush Wasn't Able to See: "Still, Mr. Bush's seven-hour stopover was very successful, according to German and American officials focused on repairing German-American relations damaged by disagreements over the war in Iraq. But the isolation of Mr. Bush from everyday Germans seemed a metaphor for how far apart Germans and Americans have drifted."

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Bush in Deutschland: D�j�-vu in Mainz - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Bush in Deutschland: D�j�-vu in Mainz - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Schon einmal besuchte ein weithin unbeliebter US-Pr�sident die Bundesrepublik unter noch nie da gewesenen Sicherheitsvorkehrungen. Sein Name war Ronald Reagan, und als er im Sommer 1987 den Abriss der Mauer forderte, erkl�rten ihn die Deutschlandexperten f�r verr�ckt. K�nnte es sein, dass sich Geschichte gerade wiederholt? "

Da bin ich mal gespannt, ob er recht behaelt!

Bush in Germany: With a Hush and a Whisper, Bush Drops Town Hall Meeting with Germans - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Bush in Germany: With a Hush and a Whisper, Bush Drops Town Hall Meeting with Germans - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "During his trip to Germany on Wednesday, the main highlight of George W. Bush's trip was meant to be a 'town hall'-style meeting with average Germans. But with the German government unwilling to permit a scripted event with questions approved in advance, the White House has quietly put the event on ice. Was Bush afraid the event might focus on prickly questions about Iraq and Iran rather than the rosy future he's been touting in Europe this week?"

Thursday, February 10, 2005

The New York Times > Washington > 9/11 Report Cites Many Warnings About Hijackings

The New York Times > Washington > 9/11 Report Cites Many Warnings About Hijackings: "The Bush administration has blocked the public release of the full, classified version of the report for more than five months, officials said, much to the frustration of former commission members who say it provides a critical understanding of the failures of the civil aviation system. The administration provided both the classified report and a declassified, 120-page version to the National Archives two weeks ago and, even with heavy redactions in some areas, the declassified version provides the firmest evidence to date about the warnings that aviation officials received concerning the threat of an attack on airliners and the failure to take steps to deter it."

I wonder whether not having hidden this from the public before the election would have had an impact on its outcome?

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Only in America: CNN.com - Bill sets�fine for low-riding pants - Feb 9, 2005

CNN.com - Bill sets�fine for low-riding pants - Feb 9, 2005: "Virginians who wear their pants so low their underwear shows may want to think about investing in a stronger belt.
The state's House of Delegates passed a bill Tuesday authorizing a $50 fine for anyone who displays his or her underpants in a 'lewd or indecent manner.'"

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Borland Software Delivery Platform Boosts Collaboration

Borland Software Delivery Platform Boosts Collaboration: "Last month Borland acquired TeraQuest Metrics Inc., an Austin, Texas, process optimization consulting firm, and made its co-founder, Bill Curtis, co-author of the software Capability Maturity Model, Borland's first chief process officer.
Chris Barbin, Borland's senior vice president of worldwide services, said the process component TeraQuest brought to Borland's SDO focus will help customers better align teams, processes and technology in the software lifecycle.
Barbin said the acquisition 'rounds out the capabilities of our SDO vision and evolves the ALM story to drive the software delivery process. To achieve that we had to have process capability.'
Barbin said Curtis' role within the company is 'to work directly with our product groups and continue to drive our product strategy with process-centric thinking.' "
For us business process nerds that sounds like good progress.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Studie: Eltern sind im Web fitter als Teenager - Netzwelt - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Studie: Eltern sind im Web fitter als Teenager - Netzwelt - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Man kennt das g�ngige Vorurteil: Mama und Papa qu�len sich mit aus unerfindlichen Gr�nden dauernd abst�rzenden Rechnern stochernd im Zeitlupentempo durchs Web. Der hackende, 14-j�hrige Nachwuchs lacht sich derweil eins und vergn�gt sich abends heimlich damit, die Webseiten von Onlinebanken umzugestalten, einen Viren-Fight mit den Pickeligen aus dem Nachbarort auszutragen oder sich mal beim Pentagon umzusehen.

Das aber, behauptet eine aktuelle Studie aus den USA, ist ganz, ganz falsch.

Denn auch wenn es unter �lteren Digital-Analphabeten und unter den J�ngeren so einige Cybercracks gibt - unter dem Strich sieht die Sache anders aus. Demnach sind �ltere Jahrg�nge den Teenagern in Sachen Internet sogar �berlegen."


Na, dann haben wir ja doch noch eine Chance ... - Gestern habe ich die erste email von meiner Tochter erhalten. Mal sehen wie gut diese Studie in einem, zwei, drei ... Jahren unsere Realitaet wiedergibt!

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

CNN.com - Blair and Gates in doodle mix-up - Jan 31, 2005

CNN.com - Blair and Gates in doodle mix-up - Jan 31, 2005: "Experts who examined the tangle of boxes, circles, loops and notes on debt and trade variously described Blair as 'struggling to concentrate' or 'not a natural leader' and 'stressed and tense.'
But there was a problem."

Friday, January 28, 2005

Lotus Notes, Workplace said to boost users on the edge

Lotus Notes, Workplace said to boost users on the edge: "Central to Notes at the outset was the concept of a semi-structured data base and an object software metaphor that centered on documents rather than transactions. 'We built these forms-based things,' said Ozzie, 'I don't think we understood deeply the kind of applications people would build.'
'We were shooting from the hip,' Ozzie said of the early years of Notes development. The approach worked well where organization workflow was important, and was not necessarily embraced wholeheartedly by central IT.
'The fundamental belief we had was [in] the people who best know how to adapt software to their needs,' Ozzie said, referring to the business workers 'at the edge of the system.'
In the early days, he said, Notes applications were largely created by 'power users and line-of-business IT.' Notes, of course, later became more and more of an environment for professional developers."

Dick Cheney, Dressing Down (washingtonpost.com)

Dick Cheney, Dressing Down (washingtonpost.com): "At yesterday's gathering of world leaders in southern Poland to mark the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the United States was represented by Vice President Cheney. The ceremony at the Nazi death camp was outdoors, so those in attendance, such as French President Jacques Chirac and Russian President Vladimir Putin, were wearing dark, formal overcoats and dress shoes or boots. Because it was cold and snowing, they were also wearing gentlemen's hats. In short, they were dressed for the inclement weather as well as the sobriety and dignity of the event.
The vice president, however, was dressed in the kind of attire one typically wears to operate a snow blower.

Cheney stood out in a sea of black-coated world leaders because he was wearing an olive drab parka with a fur-trimmed hood. It is embroidered with his name. It reminded one of the way in which children's clothes are inscribed with their names before they are sent away to camp. And indeed, the vice president looked like an awkward boy amid the well-dressed adults. "

Globale Studie: Deutschland bei Umwelt-Ranking auf Platz 31 - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Globale Studie: Deutschland bei Umwelt-Ranking auf Platz 31 - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Deutschland, das sich selbst gern in der Avantgarde der Klimaschoner w�hnt, muss sich mit einem bescheidenen Rang begn�gen: Platz 31, weit hinter Staaten wie etwa Gabun, Kroatien, Litauen, Albanien oder der Zentralafrikanischen Republik."

MapPoint users in for long and winding road | CNET News.com

MapPoint users in for long and winding road | CNET News.com: "A bug in Microsoft's MapPoint software sends those looking to travel between two Norwegian cities on a trip across much of Western Europe. The suggested quickest route between Haugesund and Trondheim is a 1,685-mile journey through Belgium, England, France, Germany and Sweden to make the journey. With two trips across the ocean and a fair bit of overland travel, the site estimates the journey will take some 47 hours and 31 minutes. "

Oooops ...

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Blair mahnt Bush: USA sollen sich st�rker im Klimaschutz engagieren - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Blair mahnt Bush: USA sollen sich st�rker im Klimaschutz engagieren - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Davos - Die USA m�ssten bei ihrem Streben nach weltweiter Unterst�tzung f�r ihre Politik selbst auch die Interessen anderer ber�cksichtigen, sagte Blair in Davos. Wenn die Vereinigten Staaten wollten, dass der Rest der Welt ihre Vorstellungen teile, dann m�ssten umgekehrt auch die USA die Vorstellungen anderer L�nder teilen."

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

The New York Times > Technology > Google and Yahoo Are Extending Search Ability to TV Programs

The New York Times > Technology > Google and Yahoo Are Extending Search Ability to TV Programs: "oogle and Yahoo are introducing services that will let users search through television programs based on words spoken on the air. The services will look for keywords in the closed captioning information that is encoded in many programs, mainly as an aid to deaf viewers."
I wonder when they will search my IM chats, my conversations at home, my thoughts, ... |-)

Druckversion - Auto-Report: T�V stellt neuen M�ngelh�chststand fest - Auto - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Druckversion - Auto-Report: T�V stellt neuen M�ngelh�chststand fest - Auto - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Das Modell mit den wenigsten M�ngeln bei der ersten T�V-Untersuchung nach drei Jahren wies der Porsche Boxster auf. Er wurde mit einer Quote von 2,6 Prozent vor dem Mazda Demio und dem Audi A4 zum 'M�ngelzwerg' gek�rt. Ganz weit abgeschlagen auf den hinteren Pl�tzen liegen nach drei Jahren der VW Sharan (16,2 Prozent M�ngelquote), der Seat Alhambra (15 Prozent), der Chrysler Voyager (14,5), und der Ford Galaxy (13,6)."

Sunday, January 23, 2005

IFILM - Television: Fair and Balanced Inauguration

IFILM - Television: Fair and Balanced Inauguration: "A Fox News anchor flips out when a guest dares to question the nature of Bush's elaborate 2nd inauguration. "
If you have watched Outfoxed before, you won't really be surprised by this - at least measured by European standards - highly unprofessional behavior.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Microsoft BizTalk Server: Microsoft BizTalk Server Roadmap

Microsoft BizTalk Server: Microsoft BizTalk Server Roadmap: "Empowering Business Users - BizTalk Server 2006 will empower the business user by extending capabilities introduced in BizTalk Server 2004, such as Business Activity Services (BAS) and Business Activity Monitoring (BAM), better integration with Windows SharePoint Services, and real-time support for business activity subscriptions and notifications. "

Abducted In Iraq: Four Months on Planet bin Laden - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Abducted In Iraq: Four Months on Planet bin Laden - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "French journalist George Malbrunot spent 124 days as a hostage of Islamic fundamentalists in Iraq. The experience nearly broke him, but it also offered him stunning insights into the way jihadist groups operate. He returned convinced of one thing: America's policy is doomed. "

Friday, January 21, 2005

Internet Capital Group Engages Former IBM Executive to Drive Partner Company Growth

Internet Capital Group Engages Former IBM Executive to Drive Partner Company Growth: "WAYNE, Pa. --(Business Wire)-- Jan. 18, 2005 -- Internet Capital Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:ICGE) today announces the addition of Dr. Michael D. Zisman to its management team, functioning as a managing director."

Congratulations and best of luck, Mike!

Monday, January 17, 2005

The New York Times > International > Europe > Back Channels: A Crackdown Averted: How Top Spies in Ukraine Changed the Nation's Path

The New York Times > International > Europe > Back Channels: A Crackdown Averted: How Top Spies in Ukraine Changed the Nation's Path: "While wet snow fell on the rally in Independence Square, an undercover colonel from the Security Service of Ukraine, or S.B.U., moved among the protesters' tents. He represented the successor agency to the K.G.B., but his mission, he said, was not against the protesters. It was to thwart the mobilizing troops. He warned opposition leaders that a crackdown was afoot. "

Fascinating to see how history gets written.

Happy birthday, Pauline! Posted by Hello

USA: Aufstand der Milit�rs - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE

>USA: Aufstand der Milit�rs - Politik - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "'Ich h�tte mich in einem Volvo sicherer gef�hlt als in unserem Humvee', klagt Richard Murphy, der 15 Monate im Irak dienen musste. "
...
"Vor allem die Militärs selbst sind es, die aufgrund dieser Erfahrungen ein Umdenken in Washington fordern. Niemals seit dem Vietnam-Debakel musste die zivile Pentagon-Führung mit so viel Kritik aus den eigenen Reihen fertig werden. General a. D. Barry McCaffrey fürchtet sogar: "Der Armee fliegen in den nächsten 24 Monaten die Räder weg." General Peter Schoomaker, derzeit Stabschef des Heeres, warnte den Kongress bereits vor drastischen Konsequenzen: "Möglicherweise müssen wir die regulären Streitkräfte aufstocken" - was Rumsfeld schon aus Budgetgründen auf jeden Fall vermeiden will."

Friday, January 14, 2005

CBS News | Human Rights Watchdog Slams U.S. | January 13, 2005�14:00:07

CBS News | Human Rights Watchdog Slams U.S. | January 13, 2005�14:00:07: "The torture of detainees at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison and the treatment of those held in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, dealt a blow to the United States' credibility as the world's leader on human rights and the fight against terrorism, a human rights group said Thursday.

"When most governments breach international human rights and humanitarian law, they commit a violation," New York-based Human Rights Watch said in its annual report of human rights developments in 60 countries.

"When a government as dominant and influential as the United States openly defies that law and seeks to justify its defiance, it also undermines the law itself and invites others to do the same."
"

BBC NEWS | Americas | US 'erodes' global human rights

BBC NEWS | Americas | US 'erodes' global human rights: "Violations of human rights by the US are undermining international law and eroding its role on the world stage, a leading campaign group says.
Human Rights Watch says the US can no longer claim to defend human rights abroad if it practises abuses itself."

...

The group, the largest US-based rights organisation, says the actions of the US in such detention centres have undermined Washington's credibility as a proponent of human rights and a leader of the war against terror.

"Its embrace of coercive interrogation [is] part of a broader betrayal of human rights principles in the name of combating terrorism," HRW says.

...

However, according to the report, the impact of the abuse scandals has already seriously damaged the US's role as champion of human rights, reverberating worldwide.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Some Abstinence Programs Mislead Teens, Report Says (washingtonpost.com)

Some Abstinence Programs Mislead Teens, Report Says (washingtonpost.com): "'I have no objection talking about abstinence as a surefire way to prevent unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases,' Waxman said. 'I don't think we ought to lie to our children about science. Something is seriously wrong when federal tax dollars are being used to mislead kids about basic health facts.' "

Only in America: Aufklaerung a la Bush: Sex, Luegen und schwangere Teenies - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Aufkl�rung � la Bush: Sex, L�gen und schwangere Teenies - Wissenschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Der Mangel an jeglicher Kontrolle motivierte den demokratischen Abgeordneten Henry Waxman, eine Untersuchung der Inhalte der am h�ufigsten verwendeten Programme durchf�hren zu lassen. Die Analyse, die k�rzlich vorgestellt wurde, brachte es schnell an den Tag: Elf der 13 untersuchten Programme enthielten Behauptungen, die zwar den Moralvorstellungen der christlichen Hardliner, nicht aber dem Stand der Wissenschaft entsprachen. So wird M�dchen etwa weisgemacht, dass schwanger wird, wer einem Jungen zwischen die Beine greife - oder dass HIV durch Schwei� und Tr�nen �bertragen werden k�nne.

Der Waxman-Report kam au�erdem zu dem Schluss, dass die Enthaltsamkeits-Kampagnen bisher keinerlei Erfolge zeitigten - ganz im Gegensatz zu konkurrierenden Programmen, die zum Schutz der Jugendlichen �ber Verh�tungsmethoden aufkl�ren."

Only in America? Aberwitzige Warnungen auf US-Produkten: "Schneefr�se nicht auf dem Hausdach benutzen" - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Aberwitzige Warnungen auf US-Produkten: "Schneefr�se nicht auf dem Hausdach benutzen" - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "In den USA hat eine Interessengruppe einen Wettbewerb ausgeschrieben, bei dem besonders absurde Warnhinweise auf Produkt-Etiketten gesucht werden. Den ersten Platz 2004 gewann ein Schild auf einer Toilettenb�rste: 'Nicht zur K�rperhygiene verwenden'. SPIEGEL ONLINE zeigt aktuelle und vergangene Preistr�ger."

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

CNN.com - Vietnam service�political kiss�of death? - Jan 10, 2005

CNN.com - Vietnam service�political kiss�of death? - Jan 10, 2005: "Patriotism today has very little to do with what most of us learned in American history class. The patriot is no longer the admirable citizen who places the common good before his own individual comfort, who sacrifices herself for the safety and survival of her country. That definition is now quaint and obsolete. Patriotism, as redefined by tough-minded, tough-talking hawks, is not action, patriotism is ideology. This new, debased patriotism requires no personal risk, no sacrifice, no inconvenience."

CRN | Breaking News | IBM, Microsoft Chart Collaboration's Course

CRN | Breaking News | IBM, Microsoft Chart Collaboration's Course: "David Marshak, an analyst with Patricia Seybold Group, calls the next two years a period of disruption as it pertains to collaboration. Customers, he says, will be making decisions about messaging and portal solutions and platforms, and IBM and Microsoft�and their partners�should look to cash in.
'I don't know yet whose technology [IBM's or Microsoft's] is more disruptive, but customers are going to be forced to do something�at least an upgrade; at most migrating all of their users, mailboxes and logic,' Marshak says. "


Now I am confused - I thought David Marshak was joining IBM/Lotus managing their real-time collaboration products?!?

Monday, January 10, 2005

Microsoft to grow on its campus

Microsoft to grow on its campus: "To accommodate future growth, Microsoft Corp. said yesterday that it will build up to 2.2 million square feet of new office space on its Redmond campus over the next 20 years, delaying construction on land it owns in Issaquah but confirming the company's commitment to keeping its headquarters in the Puget Sound area."
As home owner in this area - sounds great to me!

Sunday, January 09, 2005

The New York Times > International > Europe > German's Claim of Kidnapping Brings Investigation of U.S. Link

The New York Times > International > Europe > German's Claim of Kidnapping Brings Investigation of U.S. Link: "'This is a very ongoing thing, and we are working together with the Germans to resolve it,' a senior official said. 'Our hope is we can get to the bottom of it.' The official declined to discuss whether the bureau had had any contact with the C.I.A. or Pentagon about the allegations."

CRN | News | Borman In Hot Seat

CRN | News | Borman In Hot Seat: "While IBM wants to entrench more of its software stack in any given account, customers are unlikely to discard rival infrastructure that works. Partners say that while IBM has customers for its Lotus, WebSphere and Tivoli brands, most of them use just one or two products. There aren't many companies that use Domino groupware, Tivoli systems management and WebSphere application servers together, for example.
It does not help that these products, resulting from acquisitions, overlap. Lotus caused a stir when it said it would replace the venerable Notes Storage Facility (NSF) with a DB2-based relational store and swap out native Domino capabilities for J2EE functions. That statement blurred the line between WebSphere and Domino, and company executives have spent much of the past two years trying to clear up the confusion. "

Internet: T�gliche Ration Wahnsinn - Netzwelt - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Internet: T�gliche Ration Wahnsinn - Netzwelt - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "In Deutschland sind Weblogs erst seit j�ngster Zeit auf dem Vormarsch: Vor zwei Jahren gab es 500, heute sind es bereits rund 50 000 deutsche Angebote. T�glich kommen im Schnitt 120 neue dazu."

Friday, January 07, 2005

Only in Germany: To Give or Not To Give?

German Papers: To Give or Not To Give? - International - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "With Germany at the financial helm of providing aid and relief to the victims of the tsunami disaster in South Asia, charges of a 'selfish donation competition' are already surfacing in national newspapers. Is Germany giving too much?"

USATODAY.com - Magazine names Seattle as fittest city, Houston as fattest

USATODAY.com - Magazine names Seattle as fittest city, Houston as fattest: "The fittest and fattest cities in the United States, according to a survey in the February issue of Men's Fitness magazine:

FITTEST CITIES
1. Seattle
2. Honolulu
3. Colorado Springs
4. San Francisco
5. Denver
6. Portland, Ore.
7. Sacramento
8. Tucson
9. San Diego
10. Albuquerque

FATTEST CITIES
1. Houston
2. Philadelphia
3. Detroit
4. Memphis
5. Chicago
6. Dallas
7. New Orleans
8. New York
9. Las Vegas
10. San Antonio "

"Eighty-five percent of Seattle residents get some exercise every month, and that's a really significant thing," Boulton said. The city's jittery love affair with espresso might fuel some of that activity, he noted: "There's not only a lot of it, it's pretty darn strong."


Hm, I guess we are living in the right area. :-)

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

CRN | Breaking News | Cooper To Leave IBM Software

CRN | Breaking News | Cooper To Leave IBM Software: "IBM confirmed that Cooper, vice president of worldwide channel marketing at IBM Software, is leaving, but the company hasn't announced the move. Cooper will join Nokia as vice president of Mobility Solutions, part of the company's Enterprise Solutions Business Group, a Nokia spokesman confirmed. "

Dinner for One - A German New Year's Custom - Miss Sophie and James

Dinner for One - A German New Year's Custom - Miss Sophie and James: "It's a bit bizarre when you think about it. A short British cabaret sketch from the 1920s has become a German New Year's tradition. Yet, although �The 90th Birthday or Dinner for One� is a famous cult classic in Germany and several other European countries, it is virtually unknown in the English-speaking world, including Britain, its birthplace."

vowe dot net :: The lights go out at Lotus

vowe dot net :: The lights go out at Lotus What a symbolism!

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Hasso Plattner: "Wir Deutschen suchen zu wenig nach Loesungen und zu viel nach Schuldigen"

Milliard�re: "Zum Wachstum verurteilt" - 2 - Wirtschaft - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Wir Deutschen suchen zu wenig nach L�sungen und zu viel nach Schuldigen. Wir brauchen den Willen zum Erfolg. Dazu geh�rt auch, dass wir nicht immer nur weinen und kritisieren. Letztlich sollte jeder von uns endlich bei sich selbst anfangen. Eigeninitiative als Antriebskraft fehlt der Politik, den Unternehmen, den Managern und auch den B�rgern."