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First question: Is there any better way of getting rid of its fear concerning technology than to do something which is fun and makes use of technology at the same time? In my view there is none.

So the little plug-in I would like to present is just a perfect symbol of my personal way through our BusApps course. Starting with a good portion of skepticism I gradually realized that IT is not stressful and annoying per definition. In contrast, it provides us with enormous simplifications in everyday life (it took quite a while untill i got that point). Same thing about our last post. My first thoughts: Oh no, talking about our fears towards technology, all that interconnected with some add-on stuff.. don’t bother me. But then I found one little application which kind of changed my mind, impressively showing me all the advantages of Information Technology.

Although you all are familiar with downloading songs from YouTube – it’s an online taboo topic in most cases, isn’t it? But I’m pretty sure that almost all of us know the following situation: You want to listen to a certain song, browse the internet to find it and the first website to offer that song is usually YouTube. So you enjoy your song and after that the feeling arises that it would be nice to really have this song. Not being dependent on YouTube anymore; you rather wish to store it durably on your hard drive or your mp3 player. (more…)

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How to give Goliaths a hard time

Posted: June 22, 2011 by maxsc21 in environment

In my last post I told you about all the business Goliaths hanging around, sometimes capturing whole markets. They usually are excellent in certain aspects – only for that reason they could become a Goliath. But in most cases they are annoying clients as well as rivals with their unappealing dominance.

In this post I will tell you how exactly even the tiniest David-Companies can succeed in their seemingly hopeless fight against superiority. But due to the fact that this is my last post of the Bloglink Odyssey announced in post two I will seek to end up this entry telling you a story about Flying Childers, the lovely 18thcentury racehorse. If you think “What the hell is he doing?” please read my second post again.

But first things first: The biblical myth of David versus Goliath teaches us that you cannot challenge the giant by using the same weapons that he does. So the economical David will also make use of tricks to survive; he will have to find ways to get around the threat – but he would never dare to provoke the colossus in his core area. (more…)

Around 1000 years BC the Israelites were at war with the Philistines. In one decisive battle Goliath the Giant stepped out of the Philistine rows and challenged the Israelite soldiers: If anybody was able to defeat him the Philistines would knuckle down and serve the Israelites ever after. However, if Goliath should turn out as the victor of the duel, the Israelites will be the slaves of the Philistines henceforth.

After an hour of silence the young shepherd David finally accepted the offer and agreed to dedicate his life to the glory of Israel. Knowing that Goliath is practically invincible when it comes to a duel, David decided to leave sword and shield behind. Carrying nothing but a pack of stones and a slingshot he stepped before Goliath and killed him with one single shot at his forehead.

According to the biblical myth neither David nor Goliath wore business suits. But nowadays there are a lot of pinstripe-suited Davids and Goliaths running around, all camouflaging their real nature. (more…)

What about the odds?

Posted: June 5, 2011 by maxsc21 in sports

I’m pretty sure that each of you did numerous bets in his life. In our early years they were about who can run faster around the jungle gym. Or who can hold his breath for one minute. Or maybe who dares to sniff at the trainers of your classmate after PE lesson.

What’s betting?

Per definition, a bet is nothing more than the statement that some event will produce a certain outcome; your opinion held against that of at least one contra-bettor. Further on it is important to distinguish between the content and the wager of the bet. The content is the thing the bet is about (e.g. who can burp the loudest) and the wager describes what has to be done or paid after the bet (e.g. who has to order the next beer). The wager does not always have to be money; it can be every kind of action agreed in advance. What’s also possible is that the only thing you want to achieve is honor.

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Half-Time Whistle

Posted: May 30, 2011 by maxsc21 in development

To stay in the scheme: After a strenuous fight in the first half the referee finally blows his whistle, giving the teams the opportunity to recreate and to reconsider their tactical alignment. For the players this is the moment to sit down, have a drink and try both listening and contributing to the coach’s cabin speech.

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Tackling Emotions

Posted: May 22, 2011 by maxsc21 in sports

June 27, 2010; Germany vs. England; 39 min: The Reds, just having reduced their arrears to 1:2 one minute earlier, attack again. Friedrich duels Defoe down on the ground;  the ball is taken over by Lampard just at the edge of the box, Lampard shoots, no chance for Neuer to take action; the ball hits the crossbar and enters unexplored regions around the goal line. People in front of TV screens scream; showers of beer spill over your shoulder and finally the question arises: Was it a goal? (more…)

Among the shades of GPS

Posted: May 15, 2011 by maxsc21 in development, politics

After having discussed the story of Toll Collect in my last post, I started thinking about Positioning Systems in general. How exactly is it possible to trace the position of the trucks via satellites in space and a receiver in the vehicle? And of course, how can I use this topic in order to end up writing about Flying Childers, the lovely horse, soon? (Still no idea what I’m talking about? Just read THIS)

Digging through Wikipedia again I realized that the roots of GPS, the Global Positioning System, lie far back in the past, strongly connected with the life story of one man. The idea of locating objects via satellite has already been developed before the Second World War in the brain of a German scientist, called Karl Hans Janke. (more…)

Do you remember Toll Collect?

Posted: May 7, 2011 by maxsc21 in politics
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Today the Bloglink Odyssey will take you to your second destination on the way from Political Participation online to Flying Childers, the world-famous 18th century racing horse.

If your first thought now is “WTF?”, then I greatly recommend you to fill this serious gap in your knowledge by reading my second blog entry. However, if you belong to those, who know what I’m talking about, then just lean back, enjoy this feeling of superiority and let the journey continue.

When speaking about IT in connection with politics, there is one thing which immediately comes to my mind: Toll Collect, or said otherwise, the seemingly endless discussions about the imposition of a road charge for trucks in the early 2000-years.

The background of this idea was of course the chronically empty household budget of the German government. Since for most people trucks are inconvenient contemporaries anyway, the red-green coalition led by Gerhard Schröder decided to tax the movement of trucks on German highways. (more…)

The Bloglink Odyssey

Posted: May 1, 2011 by maxsc21 in about us
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There’s always one bad thing about every creative writing assignment: You have to find a topic. To be honest, to me this process is an old enemy. Glad to have finally found one for the first blog, I am now confronted with a new problem: What to write in the second post? And how to stretch that subject to a length of about 12 entries?

Of course my first idea was to continue that political participation thing. Okay, running up Google; searching for things like “politics online”, “taking part in politics” and similar stuff. Dry topic. Tough to find more stuff for other case studies. Besides it is quite hard to imagine that somebody in the course would stand another 11 examples of online political participation without falling asleep. So the next idea was to become more general. (more…)

Clicking the Political Participation Button

Posted: April 24, 2011 by maxsc21 in politics
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I don’t know whether you are one of the 580,223 fans having officially liked the „Wir wollen Guttenberg zurück“-Campaign lately spreading through German facebook-accounts. Neither know I whether you supported the Free Tibet demonstrations by online-purchasing a vintage style v-neck T-shirt proudly presenting the flag of the wannabe independent province. But what I do know is that political participation gradually has become a commodity in the information age, ignoring the point that effecting changes usually demands for more than expressing your consensus with one click. (more…)