Quick Update

Botrivier adverture, 3D CAD and IMAX…

Botrivier – photo by Mia
  • Week of 8-14 May.
  • Monday, blog editing, guesthouse breakfast, office, dentist visit, lunch with Michael, dev meeting, built a new production server for the Octotel automation system, a swim at the silo gym, some reading about Arista gear.
  • Write drunk, publish, edit sober.
  • Relentlessly resourceful.
  • Go leave a comment about the FCC Net Neutrality process: gofccyourself.com
  • Tuesday, some eBay shopping, office, dev meeting, tinkered with VirtualBox networking, a beer with Mike at Village Idiot – to chat 3D modeling, a burger and a beer at Junior, P&G, a rooibos tea, in bed early.
  • Wednesday, The Blue House guesthouse breakfast, office, Sababa lunch with Heleen, built another Ubuntu server, a walk with Georg from Clifton to Bakoven, Georg cooked a roast for dinner and gave me a few 3D CAD lessons with OnShape while we watched and old Leon Schuster movie on ShowMax.
  • 3D CAD / design is fun, I could get into it.
  • It really was awesome not to have a phone, watch or laptop at AfrikaBurn.
  • Thursday, yet another continental breakfast, had two small parts of my face burnt off at the skin doctor – walked out with a bit of a Fight Club look, office, catch-up chat with Dan, tinkered with an aquarium design, watched Mia’s hockey, an early supper with Mia at W Cafe, a glass of wine at Dirk’s while Mia watched MIB3.
  • Naulene had a wobble because I took Mia for supper after hockey… “I’m not available, make a plan!” and put the phone down on me, hmm, I tried to phone her on three phones, no answer, turns out she’s blocked my number. Kinda hard to let her know what’s going on if there is no way to communicate. Unreasonable people living on strange planets. *shrug*
  • Friday, my last continental breakfast for a while, Mia skipped school because of above wobble, office, dev meeting while Mia watched The Fifth Element with some hot chocolate, took Mia to the dentist for a checkup, Guardians of the Galaxy II in 3D IMAX – very cool – as good as the first one – Mia agreed, clothes and shoes shopping for Mia, road trip to Botrivier with some singing along to Killers / Sam’s Town, dinner at the Botrivier Hotel, dark Toblerone, 12h sleep.
  • Fleetwood Mac in GOTG2 made my day (-:
  • Saturday, I had less of a Fight Club look by now, extended breakfast at the hotel – with some marmalade, extended wine tasting at Beaumont Wines with Sebastian in the winter sun with a few very layed back dogs while Mia doodled in a notebook, lunch and a wine tasting at Gabrielskloof, epic nap, watched Willow with Mia – Val Kilmer the fantasy hero, we watched Dune – classic and strange, Amarula night cap at the hotel bar – with a Rushmore soundtrack, time well spent.
  • Here Comes My Baby – Cat Stevens
  • “It is by will alone I set my mind in motion. Fear is the mind-killer.” — Dune

  • I think we’re progressing fairly well with the geeky movies list.
  • Sunday, hotel breakfast with Mia, filled in the AfrikaBurn survey, we watched Ghost in the Shell – the original, wine tasting at Wildekrans, wine tasting and lunch at Benguela Cove – with two Sting songs by some one-man-band guy – Mia found it very funny after watching Dune, I read Mia the Sivers Directives, epic nap, watched Jurassic Park again – moral of the story: make sure you know what the nerds are doing, sunset walk around Botrivier, helped Mia make a slide deck for a school project, backups, notes and photo processing.
  • Nice to see Mia five days in a row.
  • Tune of the week: The Chain – Fleetwood Mac

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

Safety third…

Our Camp’s AfrikaBurn Artwork, photo by One Imagined
  • Week of 1-7 May.
  • Monday, last day at AfrikaBurn, Paul arrived at the camp as I woke up, mostly packing and cycling around to see a few last things, found Richard and Tom at the Loki camp, final packing and clean up, I drove the R355 dirt road stretch back to Ceres – thankfully no tyre issues on the way back, Paul and I stopped at the Spur in Ceres, drove to Stellenbosch.
  • No luck with that SU.org GIC thing.
  • Unlike last year’s AfrikaBurn, which involved damage on many levels, this year’s burn was very chilled… no damage done. Easy and predictable. All we needed was there. Group dynamics worked. Food was easy and just enough (the usual avo, lime, biltong, almonds), water worked out well. But, I suspect the best burn, for me, was still 2014.
  • Tuesday, processed some AfrikaBurn photos, published 146 photos – I’m pretty happy with the photos I took, some notes processing and blogging, backups, car unpacking, dropped my camping gear in storage, booked into the Mojo Hotel – pretty close to our office – visited the new Mojo Market for some oysters (brain food) and bubbly – which is very cool – many more lunch options nearby, half a shwarma with Heleen – who I had not seen in about 7 weeks, a Jamey and tiramisu at Posticino and a drive up Table Mountain to go view some city lights with Heleen – mostly chats about saving the world… and something about her not being sure about our relationship – which leads me to believe I’m single again.
  • “Hell yeah!, or no.”
  • “It’s a good place for cat typing on Valium.” — Paul, I can’t remember which place he was talking about though.

  • I now have 25 podcasts I subscribe to. I should maybe write a blog post about how to get into podcast listening.
  • I’m 60 podcasts behind after going to AfrikaBurn.
  • Wednesday, a 2 minute walk to the office, first day in the office for a while – so lots of email and RSS scrubbing, Uber ride while reading Pocket articles, meeting at MWEB, catch up chat with Dan, an epic nap, tapas and curry at Sundoo with Georg, we had a Belvedere Vodka Martini with some olives at Harvey’s at Winchester Mansions and then we pretended to watch some football, gelato at Mojo Market.
  • Love this guy… Quitting the Silicon Valley Swamp
  • Thursday, great shower – felt super clean for the first time after returning from the burn, office, moar email scrubbing, managed to catch up on my RSS backlog, Sababa lunch with Paul, mapped out some logic for Octotel’s ticketing system, did some reading on NOSs, found a good deal and checked into Winchester Mansions – Mojo Hotel was a bit lame, bar food and cat typing and fighting with my email backlog, I managed to confirm that I am in fact, now single, groovy.
  • “Let the first impulse pass. Wait for the second.” — Baltasar Gracian

  • You’ll probably forget the tough times.
  • Instagram ads are getting super annoying. Have to just browse with a web browser and ad blocker.
  • Memories of hearing this at the burn… Baz Luhrmann – Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen
  • Also memories of hearing this: Counting Crows – Round Here, great lyrics… to all the misunderstood Maria’s in the world.
  • Friday, hotel breakfast – bircher muesli with some Miss Molly and orange juice, office, more ticketing system configs, watched Mia’s hockey tournament – they won bronze medals, a drink at Van Hunks with Georg and the local bar dog (an actual dog – see below), Jason’s 90s Rave Party at La Parada – good fun, more than one good memory of 90s raves.
  • “Chicken or beef?” — Chris, about Tequila and Jagermeister

  • Being Lazy Is the Key to Success
  • If you have not yet read/watched (a lot) of the Derek Sivers and Jordan Peterson stuff. Do it. Do it this week.
  • Saturday, woke up with a glowstick around my wrist in Clifton, watched The Wedding Crashers again, back to Van Hunks to fetch my car, breakfast and a Bloody Mary with Georg and Chris, a swim at the Silo gym, cat typing with an activated chia and ginger shot, watched John Wick 2 at the V&A VIP cinema – senseless, but entertaining, a Hussar steak with Georg and a cocktail at La Vie, watched Heat again – epic movie.
  • “Don’t let yourself get attached to anything you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you feel the heat around the corner.” — Heat

  • I think my Stellenbosch living experiment failed. It was a fun summer. Winter is for working. Maybe now I’ll appreciate Cape Town more – for a while.
  • “I am capable of learning nothing from almost any experience, no matter how profound.” — Tim Kreider

  • Sunday, watched some John Oliver – mostly about the French election, a walk from Glen beach to the end of Camps Bay beach, catch up with Jurie and Georg at La Vie, backups, notes and hockey photo processing and reading.
  • “Get married and die of loneliness.” — Jurie, about how people lose friends after getting married

  • Have to wonder about people who mix their active wear brands.
  • Every now and again, I guess I have to say that many of the notes that make it into this blog are pretty random and probably don’t have any meaning. I’m really just doing this to live twice, at least the interesting parts of each week.
  • Tune of the week: God Moving Over The Face of the Waters – Moby / Kronos Quartet

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

AfrikaBurn 2017…

AfrikaBurn 2017
  • Week of 24-30 April… my 6th AfrikaBurn, 5th with Paul.
  • Monday, last minute AfrikaBurn planning and packing day, backups, laundry, parent teacher meeting at Mia’s school, haircut, shopping, more packing and fetched all my camping gear, drove to Paul’s house – we had the best intentions to leave at 3am the next morning, but we ended up being realistic and taking another day to prepare and pack.
  • After a teacher meeting this week, I really need to teach Mia some more Afrikaans.
  • When you start packing for AfrikaBurn you are at AfrikaBurn.
  • Can Exes Be Friends?
  • Tuesday, sorting and organising AfrikaBurn gear at Paul’s house, more shopping for batteries, avos and biltong, we had a nice lunch at Basic Bistro with a Kaapzicht white, packed Paul’s van, epic sunset
  • Wednesday, up at 3:00, road trip to AfrikaBurn with Paul, we were on the dirt road at around 6:49, we stopped at the Tankwa padstal, then we had a flat tyre, so we stopped and swapped the wheel – but, it started raining, then the jack slipped under the car, then the car would not start, so we flagged down a car to help jump-start us, then moved the car to get the jack out, swapped the wheel, and then made it to the Halfway House to fix the wheel, we arrived at the burn at 11ish (8 hours after waking up), we had a bit of rain, found Tammy’s camp and had a sunset walk.
  • We had just over 20 people in our camp this year under two connected stretch tents – and a few cool people camping next to us, including Jon – who I camped next to in 2012. We camped around 10ish… it was fairly quiet.
  • I met at least 10 new cool people at the burn.
  • Thursday, chilled around the camp, built some LEGO, not real other notes – pretty sure we went for a few walks.
  • Friday, solo exploring and photography walk, watched the sunset from the top of the Tree of Life structure with Paul, we found Lietsie’s space truck.
  • Saturday, more exploring, more photos, more sunset fun, walked around with Nelia and watched a burn or two.
  • No bike this year, but can’t say I really missed it.
  • I managed to pack fairly compactly this year – see photo below… that excludes water.
  • Sunday, coffee with Charl and Will, most of our camp packed up and left, Paul and I took a long walk and took some photos, spotted an Ode to Snowden artwork (see below), afternoon at Tammy’s, we went to go watch the Clan burn, I got some nice evening photos, but it was no the most impressive burn.
  • Btw. that tent company that screwed up and did not bring our tent in 2014 made good and borrowed us a tent this year. All went well, so I removed that blog post.
  • Find my 146 photos from AfrikaBurn here: Day 1 and 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5, Day 6.

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

Ernst’s 40th in Joburg…

Stellenbosch walk with Mia
  • Week of 17-23 April.
  • Monday, public holiday, Easter Monday brunch at Jacques’, we watched Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull again, Mia tinkered with a logo design, sunset vineyard walk with Mia, we migrated some photos off Mia’s phone – since she was running out of space, Mia watched Spaceballs – and loved it – while I processed some notes and worked on some Jolp ideas, we watched Groundhog Day… always cool.
  • Tuesday, last day of the school holidays, so I let Mia sleep nice and late, Mia watched Jurassic Park (“It’s a Unix system“) while I worked, lunch at Eikendal with Mia – the usual snails and bone marrow with Chardonnay (which is amazing), we went hockey stick shopping and found Mia a 37.5” stick and a glove – a green carbon Princess stick – a somewhat delayed birthday gift, dropped Mia off at her gran’s house, walked up a hill in the vineyards at De Zalze and took a (single take) video for a last minute entry to the SU.org GIC-SA challenge (after I learnt about it at a recent future of health talk at Workshop17), some quick iMovie editing – pretty sure iMovie has major UI changes every time I try and use it, Paul came over for a braai and some Hartenberg Chardonnay – we chatted AfrikaBurn logistics, some creative writing and submitted my SU.org entry, about 4 hours of sleep.
  • Seems I reached 1600 FB friends.
  • AfrikaBurn: elaborate strategy game of effort vs noise, where the organisers know this and make it harder every year.
  • Wednesday, up at 4:15, YC podcast drive to gym, coffee and cat typing, office, a walk and a Sababa lunch with Ian, tea with Michael, promenade walk, a sunset stroll around the Waterfront listening to podcasts and a Mondiall burger.
  • Step away from your RSS reader for an Easter weekend and you have like 500 things to filter through.
  • I’ve taken a break from the Vitality points thing. Interesting how gamification can be motivating and de-motivating. I’m just going to take a month off and do what I’d like to do without chasing points.
  • Thursday, up early, podcast drive to gym, swim, steam bath, office, I sent an email to 214 MPs to ask them to vote out our president (~10 opened the email – one responded), had an epic breakfast at Jarryds, took a walk to fetch a drone for Dirk, promenade walk, swim at the Silo gym, a glass of wine at Dirk’s house… left home before dark, arrived home after dark.
  • Gym at 5:30 seems to be a great place to catch up on some cat typing.
  • Check out Fasterdata
  • Nice read: Can podcasting save the world?
  • We made a little pitch deck for our aquaponics project this week. I think it’s looking pretty good.
  • The Curse of Creativity
  • Friday, just in time drive to the airport, flight to Joburg, Arista meeting, Uber ride, a visit to the Melrose Arch gym, swim, catch up and dinner with Ernst, a visit to Tom’s place with Anton.
  • Saturday, breakfast and a catch-up with Andrew, found Ernst a bottle of Talisker, ERnst’s 40th birthday party at their house, Tom’s birthday party at Emmarentia Dam with Anton – we stayed till sunset, back to Ernst’s party, Joburg adventure with Anton, And Club, Maboneng… deep Joburg.
  • I discovered the Jordan Peterson podcast.
  • Sunday, tea with Anton, very chilled breakfast and a beer at the airport, flight to Cape Town – with a nap and some Jordan Peterson podcasts, drove to Stellenbosch, a pink gin and elderflower tonic with Al at Balboa, a steak and a braaibroodjie at The Fat Butcher… very good, nice catch-up with Al, time well spent.
  • Joburg was fun. Thanks Anton. Thanks Ernst.
  • I’m at AfrikaBurn this coming week. See you there.

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

Easter in The Boland and some AfrikaBurn prep…

Spice Route
  • Week of 10-16 April
  • Monday, work, gym, took my car to check out an issue, tea with Dirk around Stellenbosch Square, shopped for three XL bathrobes – in the ladies section of the Woolworths – got a few strange looks.
  • Tuesday, up early, podcast drive to gym, swim, office, dev meeting, after work catch up with Michael, Dirk, Warwick, Ben and Mike at La Vie, Chenin Blanc Association event at The Grand / Granger Bay with Al and Georg – nice wines.
  • I learned a fair bit about micro-bursts, TCP speeds and packet loss this week.
  • Wednesday, work, lots of packing and minimising, gym, moar packing, a glass of wine with Paul and Janine – Paul came to fetch the bathrobes.
  • Don’t buy stuff. You’ll just want to get rid of it later.
  • Nice read: Goodbye Things, Hello Minimalism
  • Thursday, packing and moving morning, pro tip: pack the kitchen stuff first, a visit to Dirk’s house, a beer at Trumpet with Al, Ter and Janneman, Balboa with Al and various Stellenbosch locals – the town was pretty quiet because of the university holidays.
  • Friday, public holiday, brunch at Schoon De Companje with Al (die hoofseun), Milissa and Greg, a bloody mary at Trumpet, epic nap.
  • Nice read: Your homework: Impact positively the lives of a billion people
  • “our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter” — from link above

  • “The Clan are doing something, I can’t tell you, but I was working in the electronics tent with the LEDs and I did soldering and glue gunning and crimping and I got a lot of burns and stuff.” — Mia, after her early AfrikaBurn visit these last few days

  • Saturday, chilled morning of reading and Youtube, mostly read SU.org content, fetched Mia, a steak lunch at Hussar Stellenbosch, our usual chain bridge walk, we watched Boss Baby at the movies – pretty good, sushi at Ocean Basket, watched Need For Speed – which was actually very entertaining, 11h sleep.
  • Sunday, brunch at the De Zalze clubhouse with Mia and Al, Mia took another nap – while I processed some blog notes, Babylonstoren wine tasting with Mia and Jacques, followed by a CBC beer tasting at Spice Route, Trumpet Tree with Al and Thys – somewhat sombre chat with Al about the future of SA.
  • New Alt-J album out on 2 June. You can listen to the first two tracks.
  • Tune of the week: Clout – Save Me (original all-female South African rock group formed in 1977)

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

Zuma Must Fall protest, Fizzday and Pump Up The Volume…

  • Week of 3-9 April.
  • Monday, dropped Mia off at a holiday study workshop, work, Waterstone gym, office, decided against the next Wolfkop event, a swim at the Silo gym, my first Telegram voice call.
  • I now have 20 podcasts I subscribe to.
  • “Tough, calm, technical.” — Sam Altman on Co-founders

  • “Because you can’t not do it.”

  • Tuesday, up at 4:30, a16z podcast drive to gym, some cat typing about podcasting while keeping an eye on a 10Gig cross-connect upgrade, swim – alone in the pool, office, dev meeting, tacos at the new Mexican place down the road which I’ve been meaning to visit for weeks, Myog.
  • Happy I removed all the time wasting apps from my phone this year.
  • In 2001 I had a 64Kbps leased line at home. The general market price for this was about R5000/m. Considering inflation and how easy it is to get a 100Mbps home link now, fixed line home internet has improved a fair bit in the last 16 years. 1600x the speed, at 1/10 of the price… or sixteen thousand times better value!
  • I got a mention in this podcast at around 4:55 (-:
  • I now have 9 certs from Let’s Encrypt. Cool service. Pro tip: you can have more than one hostname in a cert… -d www.blah.com,blah.com
  • “A polymath is a person whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas; such a person is known to draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems.” …the original full stack developer.

  • Wednesday, up early, How to Start a Startup podcast drive to gym, cat typing about a few design ideas, spinning class for one, swim, office, SingularityU future of health event at Workshop17 – very interesting.
  • SingularityU Global Grand Challenges… food, water, health, learning.
  • Thursday, brunch at Ya-Ya, catch up with Dirk, the last First Fizzday of the season with Paul, JD and Lizanne, good fun.
  • I listened to that Smart Drug Smarts podcast about Flow again. Have a look at: Flow Genome Project
  • Georg is back after spending two months in South America.
  • Mia is in the Karoo. Heleen was in Australia and is now in China.
  • Friday, up early, Peter Thiel podcast drive to gym, cat typing with a matcha latte, swim, office, dev meeting, Zuma Must Fall protest at parliament with Georg, Van Hunks with Georg, Paul and Claus, Yours Truly, Diabi’s with Georg, Al and Paul.
  • Silo District Virgin Active has three problems: 20m pool, 4Mbps wifi and bad change room design. I can get over the first two, but small cramped change rooms are probably going to be a problem as membership grows. Now you know.
  • Just made my 850 Vitality points for the week. 2nd month of making all my weekly goals. I’m a bit worried that all this gamification is making me less healthy.
  • Nice read: Douglas Coupland: The nine to five is barbaric
  • The Black Keys – Little Black Submarines
  • Saturday, woke up in Tamboerskloof next to the plant from The Professional, chilled day at home, I figured it was time to watch Pump Up The Volume again after listening to an interview with the Mr. Robot creator, great movie, watched some Jordan Peterson videos – love that guy, 12h sleep.
  • “Do something difficult. Do something difficult and heroic.” — Jordan Peterson

  • Sunday, backups, photo processing, nap, took some pizzas to Paul’s house and watched some True Detective, came home and watched Snowden and a bit of the original Ghost in the Shell.
  • Luisa Sobral, sounds like Madelein Peroux

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

IMAX, Al Baire and a few birthday parties…

  • Week of 27 March to 2 April.
  • Monday, up early, podcast drive to the Silo VA, gym, swim, office, catch-up with Tammy.
  • Worth watching again: Steve Jobs 2005 Stanford Commencement Address
  • “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. Stay hungry. Stay foolish.” — Steve Jobs

  • PRADA presents “CASTELLO CAVALCANTI” by Wes Anderson
  • Listen to Reply All. Cool podcast.
  • “Courage is more important than confidence.”

  • Tuesday, up early, gym, cat typing, swim – I’ve been swimming more breaststroke recently, office, OS upgrade day for watch, phone and laptop, after work promenade walk, some notes processing at gym, late night swim, spa pool, steam bath etc.
  • “The LD50 for sugar for a rat is about 30gr/kg. So if you’re a human, who weighs 75kg, eating 2.2kg of sugar would kill you in 50% of the cases.”

  • “Continually divide your moment-to-moment concerns into two bins: the things you can control, and the things you can’t. Whenever you feel any sort of anger, desire or aversion, you look at the situation in terms of those two bins.” — The Only Thing You Need to Get Good At

  • I discovered the How to Start a Startup series in podcast form. Much easier than watching all the videos.
  • Wednesday, Headspace Level 3, work, brunch at Ya-Ya, catch up chat with Dan, fetched Mia and took her to a 5 hour hockey festival, more work and tinkering and a bit of photography while she played, supper with Al at Trumpet Tree – Mia pretty much inhaled a rack of ribs, gelato.
  • Watching some of Mia’s hockey – I honestly can’t remember a time we lost a junior school rugby game – and I’m sure we lost a few – which kinda proves that over time we only keep our good memories. I really have a bias for remembering things in a happy way… just wait a year and everything was a fun adventure.
  • Listen to: What It Takes, start with the George Lucas one.
  • Thursday, I woke Mia up with the Headspace Wake Up meditation for kids – she was not impressed, school run, work, coffee with Hannes, gym, office, networking workshop, promenade walk, gym – catch-up chat with Hilah.
  • How was your commute today, in the golden era when humans were allowed to drive?
  • Friday, Mia’s birthday, up early, podcast drive to the Silo gym, swim, nice catch-up chat with Tyler at gym – chats about time, teams, doing things for others, wearing the same uniform to work, health hacking and AirPods, office, dev meeting, fetched Mia – beginning of the school holidays, lunch at Vergelegen – always nice, went to go try out theatre mode in the new WatchOS by watching Ghost in the Shell IMAX-3D with Mia and Jacques – rad movie for IMAX – always liked Scarlett Johansson, pancakes and Star Wars XBox games at Jacques’s house.
  • AirPods look very cool.
  • Millionaire who operates 10 businesses while sailing around the world.
  • Saturday, chilled morning, usual brunch at Ya-Ya with Mia, wine tasting at Villiera with Paul an Janine, family braai at Jacques’ with cake and candles for Mia’s birthday.
  • Sunday, Mia watched some Simpsons including Cape Feare, ladies of leisure brunch at Melissas with Mia – the banana bread with honey mascarpone was pretty spectacular – Mia did her usual complaining about daily vitamins, swim, steam bath, picnic shopping, we watched Al Baire’s very last show at the last Kirstenbosch Summer Concert of the season – Mia’s other bday party with friends and parents from school, great fun, it was packed and Al Baire really put on a great show, time well spent!
  • “A-students work for C-students and B-students work for government. To be an A student you need to just memorize what the correct answer will be. C students are the dreamers like Albert Einstein, whose elementary school teachers thought that he was a foolish dreamer.”

  • Tune of the week: Al Bairre – We Move On

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

What nerds do, on evenings and weekends, part 2…

Bakoven 2010
  • Week of 20 to 26 March.
  • Limited photos this week. Phone stolen, see last week’s post. This week I have an old photo as the top header photo.
  • Stating the obvious, but… smartphones are pretty cool. Just go a week without one.
    Kinda weird not being able to take photos or make notes or listen to podcasts. I had to just sit through a lunch staring out the window – which is not bad, just different. Turns out two year old phone models are actually also pretty amazing devices.
  • Monday, school holiday, ice cream for brunch, de-cluttered my possessions a bit, swim with Mia, braai at Dirk’s house.
  • Tuesday, Human Rights day / public holiday, brunch at Ya Ya with Mia – chats about her teacher’s ideas for how well she should be doing – and why, found Mia a new gum guard for hockey season, swim, Mia moulded her gum guard with some hot water – seems they can be trusted to do this at a certain age, Mia watched Batman Returns with some dark chocolate while I attempted to load a school hours friendly iOS configuration profile on her phone with some CBC Pilsner in hand – since the Ourpact app was a bit lame, sunset walk, we shared a pomegranate, backups, Mia watched Casablanca while I processed photos and updated my blog.
  • Mia is now 161.5cm, 51.3kg, age 10, shoe size 7, 36.5″ hockey stick… she insisted her hockey stick was too small, so we had to go look it up. She grew 6cm and 4kg is the last 8 months.
  • “Even Ned Flanders couldn’t resist the temptation of Vegas.” — Paul, about Heleen in Vegas.

  • Don’t lose your self belief
  • Wednesday, school run, gym, office, catch-up chat with Michael – back from holiday, fetched an iPhone6 from Dirk’s house – a girly white one.
  • Thursday, up early – if I leave home at 4:50 I get to the Point gym at 5:30, gym, tinkered with an aquaponics doc while having a bulletproof coffee, swim, office, SIM swap, meeting at the Vodacom office in Century City – nice office space, office, rainy afternoon promenade walk, AfrikaBurn camp meetup at La Vie.
  • Friday, up early, podcast drive to the Silo VA, 300 Vitality points, swim, office, Claremont Police station to try and find my phone – no luck, catch up chat with Warwick, fetched Jacques, stopped for biltong, Jacques got stuck in a gun shop, showed Jacques the BIA machine in Stellenbosch, braai at Dirk’s house, good fun – some diagram drawing and Chardonnay, time well spent.
  • “Important things are interesting.”

  • “Your ability to execute is a function of skills, capital and network.”

  • Two ways things get done: 1) you love doing it and it happens anyway, 2) you are forced to.
  • After looking at my gym visit stats, I ended up joining the Silo gym, I seem to go 20+ times per month, I was just planning to go for one free visit, but it’s really awesome. Yes, yes – I know, don’t be a connoisseur. They only have 4Mbps wifi there – so it’s not all amazing.
  • I might be the most gamified health nerd. Watch. Shoes. Classic Collection Gym. Team rewards freebies. I just need to start flying more.
  • Saturday, Headspace meditation, backups, photo processing and general tinkering, more Headspace, epic nap, swapped an off-site backup hard drive, swim, dinner with Paul at Tigers Milk – very nice salads, Telegram chats with Heleen who is somewhere along the Colorado river, a quick Akker visit, in bed early.
  • “Dear Mia, I wanted to say again, super well done with the swimming and lifesaving this past season. I’m very proud of you. It took many hours of training, and I hope you feel it was all worth it. Well done with the medals… but, most of all, well done with the bravery to compete and swim in that freezing water. I little bit of discomfort never killed anybody. Lionhearted girl. X”

  • I’ve been pondering some strategies for a digital afterlife, maybe because I made a big backup this week. Hmm. How could I get this blog to still be on the internet in about 200 years?
  • Note to self: eat more oysters for brain health.
  • Sunday, breakfast for lunch at Basic Bistro with some notes processing – cat typing and Chardonnay – official nerd business – processed about 50 notes, gym – mostly some interval cycling to get points while listening to a 99percentinvisible episode, more cat typing, a glass of wine with Paul and my neighbours and some blogging.

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Quick Update

Pixies, La La Land and Star Trek uniforms…

  • Week of 13 to 19 March.
  • Health week: 4 day fast, usually I’d do 5 days, not smart fasting through a Pixies show.
  • Limited photos this week. Phone stolen. Some photos were lost. I borrowed a few of Paul’s photos.
  • Monday, fasting day, Headspace meditation, plumber came to unblock a pipe, work, gym for 300 Vitality points, catch up chat with Dirk and Dian, plumber returned and sorted out the pipe, nap, work, decluttered my apartment a bit, sunset walk, in bed early.
  • I’m thinking I should do a mini 3 day fast per month.
  • I managed to achieve all my weekly Vitality fitness goals last month, so the first 1/24 of the Apple Watch is free.
  • “First we know, then we learn.”

  • Tuesday, fasting day, up early, podcast drive to the gym, turns out the Nu at The Point gym serves bulletproof coffee – yum (yeah, I kinda ignore a tiny bit of fat in my fasting thinking), some weight training with a Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack, some interval training swimming sprints, steam bath and cold showers, office – document writing day, catch up chat with Dan, green tea and coconut oil, I randomly walked passed the VIP movies at the Waterfront and decided to watch La La Land – which was very entertaining, yet somehow hard to watch – the jazz theme is great.
  • “It’s dying, Mia. It’s dying on the vine, and the world says: let it die. It had its time.” — Seb, La La Land, about jazz. Touching moment, authentic, real belief draws you in.

  • “I care not for a man’s religion whose dog is not the better for it.” ~- Abraham Lincoln

  • Listen to this episode: Non-Ordinary States of Consciousness
  • Wednesday, fasting day, Headspace meditation on a rainy day, podcast drive to the gym, swim, office, attended the first Cape Town EdTech cluster meetup – not bad.
  • Seems I’m moving again soon.
  • Jacques and I are plotting a new challenge to lose 10kg by 21 April.
  • “There’s a podcast for that”, the new “there’s an app for that”.

  • Jacques has found a solution for people to stay at their target weight. We should all just wear Star Trek uniforms to work.
  • Thursday, Jaco gave me a tour of the farm he lives on, gym – had some eggs for breakfast – which tasted amazing after not eating for 4 days, office, smoothie with Heleen – who is going running in six countries for six weeks – and documenting it to create awareness of the global water crisis – this may just be the ultimate millennial job (-:, battled the traffic to get to the Southern Suburbs, chilled at a guesthouse in Bishopscourt with Paul, pre-drinks and a great selection of starters at Hudsons in Claremont, Uber ride to Kirstenbosch, watched The Springbok Nude Girls, watched Pixies, my phone disappeared – pick pocket – walking down the hill at the end of the concert, phoned it and it rang, but was soon switched off, tried Find My iPhone but no luck – seems they caught a thief with 11 phones, Forresters with Paul and Tara.
  • Note to self: only take cheap phones to concerts. :-/
  • The Nude Girls were rad. Pixies were good – music was very good, but it kinda felt like they were just going through the motions – limited interaction between band members, and between the band and the crowd, maybe a case of: don’t meet your heros.
  • Cat typing… never gets old.
  • “Most people are under-slept and over-caffeinated.”

  • Friday, woke up in a very misty Sea Point, coffee with Heleen, office, fetched Mia, the usual biltong shopping, a glass of Chardonnay at Dirk’s house – while Mia watched V for Vendetta, Col’caccios and gelato with Mia, we watched Agora – movie about a geeky girl trying to save The Great Library of Alexandria while a bunch of Christians destroy everything – interesting perspective.
  • Saturday, brunch at Ya-Ya cafe with Mia – fed Mia her usual dose of about 24 vitamins, phone chat with Heleen before her flight, coconut vanilla orange blossom banting ice cream at Cold Gold with Mia, we sent off some invites for Mia’s birthday party, nap, swim, watched Kong in 3D with Mia at the Eikestad mall – very entertaining, followed by a totally lame Spur dinner.
  • Stay away from the Spur. It used to be okay quality at a good price. Now it’s just expensive and bad.
  • I think I did about 7 loads of laundry this week.
  • Sunday, brunch at Basic Bistro – Mia and I edited our list of Geeky Movies for Kids, swim and steam bath – Mia swam 1km with the Apple Watch – she seems to like the stats, took a drive out to the end of the Jonkershoek road, wine tasting at Stark-Conde, a visit to the Ride In – chats about the hockey season and interval training, watched the end of Agora with Mia – good movie, nap while Mia watched Hackers, snacks finding drive and chats about ideas for startups, we browsed some of Mia’s old photos, made drinks with big round ice balls, I showed Mia a Paul Graham video – Before the Startup, mostly because she could not find any other movies she wanted to watch.
  • Make things people want.
  • Note to self: spend more time browsing old photos.
  • I miss being able to make notes on my phone.
  • “Aggressively, we all defend the role we play. Regrettably, time’s come to send you on your way. We’ve seen it all, bonfires of trust, flash floods of pain. It doesn’t really matter don’t you worry it’ll all work out.” — Exitlude, The Killers (Tune of the week)

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Geeky Movies for Kids

I have this weird worry that kids today have a huge list of great movies to catch up on. So, I started making a list of classic movies for kids, age 10-16ish, geeky gems, iconic cultural reference stuff. Movie education. Things you would wish you saw before they were referenced in a Simpsons episode. If that makes sense. Suggestions welcome.

Obviously check age restrictions and filter to suit your moral framework.

Seen by genetic offspring #1…

Back to the Future series
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
Star Wars and Clone Wars series
Princess Bride
Indiana Jones series
War Games
2001: A Space Odyssey
Galaxy Quest
The Last Starfighter
Studio Ghibli films
Guardians of the Galaxy
The Count Of Monte Cristo
Flash Gordon
My Fair Lady
The Royal Tenenbaums
The Truman Show
Star Trek series, the reboot mostly
Honey I Shrunk the Kids
The Mask
Ace Ventura series
V for Vendetta
Men in Black
Harry Potter series
Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang
Treasure Planet
Batman Returns
Jurassic Park series
Groundhog Day
The Fifth Element

Find and watch…

Ghost in the Shell (original)
Titan A.E.
Short Circuit
Edward Scissorhands
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
The Last Action Hero
Donnie Darko
Forrest Gump
Life Aquatic
Neverending Story
Karate Kid
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Corpse Bride
Night before Christmas
Secret of Nimh
The Dark Crystal
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1990
The Frighteners
Flight of the Navigator
Miracle on 34th Street
The Warriors
The Iron Giant
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Dead Poets Society
Little Shop of Horrors
The Lost Boys
New Batman series
Napoleon Dynamite
Time Bandits

Maybe not just yet, but good.

Pump Up The Volume
Shaun of the Dead
Army of Darkness
Being John Malkovich
12 Monkeys
Alien series
Blade Runner
The Prestige
Johnny Mnemonic
Pitch Black

Quick Update

Woordfees, Street Soiree, bone marrow and Chardonnay…

  • Monday, school run, catch up chat with Dirk at Stellenbosch Square, gym, podcast drive to the office, a salad at Sumo, VitB shot, supplement shopping like a gym nerd, stayed in the office fairly late, lifesaving photo processing.
  • Tuesday, gym, office, stayed at the office till well after it was dark, weekly blogging, found a note on my car windscreen.
  • I ran out of podcasts to listen to. Eek. Found a good show: Recode Decode.
  • Wednesday, Headspace meditation, work, gym, work, ginger shot and a chat with Dirk – I think we can all agree that meeting at the gym is distracting, Stellenbosch Street Soiree with Paul and Hanno – good fun – not too busy – nice weather, a burger at Steam (5 Ryneveld) – urgh, this whole “steampunk” thing is super lame, but the food was nice.
  • Thursday, up at 4:00, podcast drive to gym, office, installed a dating app and deleted it again the next day, found some new slops – walked right through the previous pair, sunset promenade walk.
  • Friday, podcast drive to gym, office, dev meeting, late afternoon visit to Dirk’s house, aKing Woordfees show with Paul, Al, Margot, Laudo, Dawid and Gelika, Balboa, ended up at Al’s house with Paul and Elmi.
  • Safe as Houses – great song.
  • Seems Paul has some history with aKing romance lyrics.
  • I suspect not having WhatsApp is some form of modern contraceptive.
  • Saturday, lunch at Eikendal with Paul, the bone marrow and snails starter with their Chardonnay was awesome, a nap turned into a 16 hour sleep.
  • Hmmm. Did I mention the bone marrow and Chardonnay combo.
  • You should make broccoli sprouts.
  • Sunday, watched The Legend of Kaspar Hauser – rather strange movie, lunch at Trumpet, nap, watched The Blues Brothers – one of those movies that’s really hard to believe that I had not seen it yet, took a walk up to the chain bridge, caught the last Woordfees show at Bloekomhoek with some of Gelika’s tasty lamb tacos, some photo processing and blogging while listening to a mix of Woordfees acts with a Newlands Spring Mountain Weiss, watched Blue Valentine – intense and sad.
  • Tune of the week: Vitalic – Poison Lips
  • I found a desktop app which lets me post Instagram photos. Now I can use Instagram again. I have not posted anything in about 3 weeks. Check out Flume. 500px was amusing for a while, but it’s not very social.
  • Best Sunday music: You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go – Madeleine Peyroux

Have a fun week, crazy kids.

Sennheiser Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones Fail

Dear Sennheiser

Why would the glue in your headphones fail in three places in one week?

Sennheiser MM 550-X

I’ve been a big fan of my Sennheiser MM 550-X Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones, until this week, when for no reason, the padding around the headphones just started falling apart.

All I can think is: Planned obsolescence.

Not what you would expect from a pair of expensive headphone made by a “German audio company specializing in the design and production of a wide range of both consumer and high fidelity products”.

“Planned obsolescence or built-in obsolescence in industrial design and economics is a policy of planning or designing a product with an artificially limited useful life, so it will become obsolete (that is, unfashionable or no longer functional) after a certain period of time.”

I’ve had them for just over two years. Nothing changed in how I use them. They were not exposed to heat or cold or water.

What is going on here, and how do I fix it?

UPDATE: 15 May 2017

Three months later, after many emails and delays finding the right replacement part (R830 for two bits of plastic)… I’m sticking with my story of bad design and planned obsolescence. I simply don’t trust the brand anymore. I’d rather spend the money on Apple AirPods. So long Sennheiser, have a nice life.