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At GROSSWEBER we practice what we preach. We offer trainings for modern software technologies like Behavior Driven Development, Clean Code and Git. Our staff is fluent in a variety of languages, including English.

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Posted in NonTech at Monday, 11 June 2007 17:22 W. Europe Daylight Time

Surprise Geocaching Rallye

Danke für das schönste Geburtstagsgeschenk!

Marci, Robert, Robert, Markus, Claudi, Ebi, Sabine, Gunnar, Antje, Sabine, Silke, Martin, Sabine W., Susanne, Anita, Gesa, Susi, Torsten, die Alex, Äffchen, Anna, Kay, Maria, Evy und Andreas vom Späti.

More On Rocket Science

Posted in Fun Stuff | NonTech at Saturday, 09 June 2007 19:42 W. Europe Daylight Time

Like last year, I was having a very relaxing and fun Whitsun weekend with my friends two weeks ago.

This year we continued our attempts building and launching water rockets, so our engineers Marci and Robert continued and refined their efforts building rockets that deserve their name. In 2006 we had only single rocket with one stage (i.e. a 1,5 liter Fanta bottle), but they ventured on designing some multi-stage rocket models. This is where the real fun begins. According to this DIY plan you can create rockets of indefinitely joined bottles. And do not to forget the multi-rocket human missile launch.  Today Jens uploaded the videos he took while we were lying in the grass preparing the rocket launchs.

We also had two rockets exploding because of excess pressure. While bursting one model basically destoyed Robert's self-made launch pad (an empty bin, placed upside down and equipped with a Bowden cable launch mechanism).

What else did we do? Let me tell you, there was quite a bit of barbecue involved. Robert recorded one of his excellent mixtapes live in front of the whole crowd. Slick.

Robert on the decks

Now Playing [?]: Extended Spirit – Caprice

Smoking Fingers

Posted in Fun Stuff | NonTech at Friday, 18 May 2007 13:34 W. Europe Daylight Time

Expect your fingers to turn yellow the next day when you're doing this twice. But yeah, it actually works!

Update: According to Ryan's comment the "trick" produces a highly toxic chemicals. Don't try this at home, kids!

Yellow Fingers

Now Playing [?]: WaldeckThe night garden – Fallen angel

Alpha Centauri: Leider aus und vorbei

Posted in Fun Stuff | NonTech at Monday, 12 February 2007 20:51 W. Europe Standard Time

Alpha Centauri mit Prof. Harald Lesch Seit vielen Jahren schaue ich eine Sendung im deutschen Fernsehen besonders gern: Alpha Centauri mit Prof. Harald Lesch. Bereits vor einigen Jahren (damals schrieben wir ein anderes Jahrtausend) bin ich beim nächtlichen Durchzappen der Fernsehsender auf Alpha Centauri aufmerksam geworden. Ich habe die zweite Hälfte einer Sendung, immerhin 7 Minuten, gesehen und war sofort begeistert. Leider habe ich mir damals den Namen der Sendereihe nicht sofort notiert und sie so wieder aus den Augen verloren. Die Sendezeiten aller zwei Wochen donnerstags mitten in der Nacht waren auch nicht mit meinen Lebensgewohnheiten kompatibel. (Mittlerweile läuft die Sendung mittwochs 22:45 Uhr auf BR-alpha.)

Vor zwei Jahren bin ich durch Markus wieder auf Alpha Centauri aufmerksam geworden, weil er sich den Satz DVDs gekauft hatte. Nach dem Durchsehen der DVDs bin ich auch auf die Webseite von Alpha Centauri gestoßen, die ein Archiv aller Sendungen enthält. Seither habe ich den gesamten Bestand abgegrast. Prof. Lesch gelingt es wie keinem zweiten, Informationen rund um astonomische und physikalische Themen innerhalb von 15 Minuten verständlich auf den Punkt zu bringen. Dabei beweist er ein unglaubliches erzählerisches Können und vertraut auf anschauliche Erklärungen anstelle aufwändiger Grafiken. Prof. Lesch bündelt die oft theoretischen wissenschaftlichen Fakten in faszinierenden populärwissenschaftlichen Darstellungen und spannt so den Bogen zwischen zwei Welten. So habe ich mittlerweile ein gutes Gefühl für die verschiedenartigen kosmologischen Vorgänge in unserem Universum bekommen.

Leider werden vorerst keine neuen Folgen von Alpha Centauri produziert. Bis der Bayerische Rundfunk seine Entscheidung hoffentlich überdenkt, gibt es das Archiv mit über 200 Folgen als RealPlayer-Streams. Ich empfehle Real Alternative zum Abspielen des Streams.

Now Playing [?]: Trip to the Andes – Youth – Half moon

A New Bike

Posted in NonTech at Monday, 04 September 2006 01:48 W. Europe Daylight Time

I wanted to blog about this for some weeks now but have been distracted by technical stuff, which one my readers complained about.

Balloon TyreFor several years I've been riding an classic red Mifa bike that was manufactured sometime before 1990. Earlier this summer it was time to give the bike a full repair cycle as the crank bearing was broken last year and the overall condition of the vehicle was less than optimal. Time for a new bike – I was toying with the idea of buying one of those stylish balloon bikes that are fairly often seen these days in Leipzig. These bikes have extra thick tires (50 or 60 mm wide) that provide comparable suspension to normal spring forks on streets. Balloon tires aren't a recent invention, the idea behind modern tires like Big Apple and Fat Frank actually date back to the 1930s. Actually balloon bikes were the predominant bike type at that time. However, manufacturers came back to the idea of built-in air suspension because it has a better response where the ground is covered with little bumps and potholes like on cobblestone streets that are pretty common in Leipzig. Balloon tires provide better comfort when riding in the city:

Cologne Sports University field tested the Big Apple tire using a regular (non-suspension) bicycle where approx. 25% fewer vibrations were experienced. In comparison, a full-suspension bicycle reduced vibrations by 33%. In addition the tire suspension responds very sensitively [...]

I did a little research and found several bike stores in Leipzig sell balloon bikes. Some balloon bike brands are very expensive and look stylish, I wanted to go for a rather functional bike that provides more value for the Euro. The guys at Radkombinat told me more about the whole story and let me test different models. The model Potsdam manufactured by Patria had all the features I want: A technical up-to-date bike with balloon tyres, 18 colors to choose from and most importantly, they build the frame to one's measurement. You purchase a tailored bike that fits like a glove, although shipping times are up to a month during summer. I also opted-in to a saddle suspension which I can definitely recommend. Riding this bike is pure pleasure even on rough ground.

Besides the common notion that thick tires have a higher rolling resistance this is actually not the case for balloon tires:

With an air pressure of 30psi (2 Bar) the rolling resistance is about 30 per cent lower than a 1.3/8 (37mm) wide tire.

Some pictures of my bike taken on our Geocaching tour today in Leipzig. We were successful at the Traumzauberbaum and Silbersee caches, but at the beautiful Trau dich! location the microcache kept hiding from our eyes.

Patria Potsdam Patria Potsdam

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