Moments that change life

Today 5 years ago I was driving on the german Autobahn A5 at 05.30 in the morning, when a sleepy van driver changed onto my lane unexpectedly I had to dodge it and crashed into a lorry nearly unbreaked.

Thankfully I was not injured but my car was totally destroyed as I had hit the lorry with about 130km/h.

A moment that changed my life. This is what I took from it:

  1. Big german cars save lifes – literally 😉
  2. Always expect the unexpected
  3. At a certain speed, physics is just physics – no software or hightech can help. When life hits, every mm crumple zone counts

After the crash I was not driving for 4 weeks. I was too afraid. Eventually I got back into the cockpit and there is no anxciety anymore. But my average speed is down significantly.

life Music

Listening to spotify music – on your iPod classic

The other day I was drawn into the retro wave and got out my old iPod classic. I still love the iconic interface which set new boundaries.

I especially like that is has no internet connection and thus no notifications or other connectivity which distracts from – well, just listening to music.

On the other hand its annoying, that you have all these subscriptions: Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, and can’t download the songs to your iPod directly. Enter python and spotdl.

Once you download it, and install ffmpeg addiotionally, you feed it a link to either a spotify song, album or playlist and it translates this to a youtube music link. ffmpeg then grabs the link and meta data like album art and converts it to 128kBit mp3 on your HD.

Is this legal? I am not sure. And I don’t care. As I do have all these subscriptions and don’t share the downloaded mp3, I see it as just another channel on accessing what I am paying for.



I was using LittleSnitch years ago and installed it again yesterday. LittleSnitch is like a neat little firewall (basically it’s a socket filter for macos) – but it also now has this neat map in a great design showing at a glance, where your data is going to geographically:

Where is my data going to?

Its funny to see, how some apps are even sending data home where they were not supposed to. I don’t get why deepl, my favourite AI translator, hosts its data in the US, wheras its just a kilometer away from my office in cologne. They should not.

LittleSnitch comes in a „silent mode“ which by default allows all traffic, but sends you a notification as soon as a „new“ connection is established – and you can then decide if you want to allow or forbid that.


Getting better at SQL with ChatGPT or: the lazy mode for complex queries.

As I mentioned previously, ChatGPT is quite good (but not only at) at SQL. I think its a great opprotunity to really learn to code (if you want to call SQL querying „coding“ but that’s another discussion). I mean, only this information is SO valuable, I would have searched stackoverflow for hours finding the reason for my SQL bug:

I now can change the query or update mysql.

So here is my lazy setup to create complex SQL queries:

  1. I am using the graphical query builder of metabase for all the complex joining of data

2. I then review the result and convert the results to SQL.

3. For the lazy mode I then paste the sql to ChatGPT, and asking it to add modifications, adjust it – and all in natural language.


White lotus: the instagram style series of our time

Having binged The White Lotus season 1 I have to say, it reminds me of a long-format Instagram movie. Filters being applied to the scenery are just beautiful, but I find them sometimes a bit too much. The soundtrack, though, is incredible. It got 10 emmys recently.

Update: I found series 2 even better than series 1 – it’s more complex and the ending is…. 😉


ChatGPT and SQL

ChatGPT and SQL seem to be a natural ally: one can write queries in natural language using ChatGPT and then getting the SQL code to edit in your favorite SQL editor. In my case, I am a keen user of Metabase for doing any kind of BI stuff directly in the database and from there modifying the queries with ChatGPT. What I find _very_ special is, that ChatGPT makes mistakes – and bluntly apologizes for it and corrects itself. That’s amazing. 

ChatGPT apologizing and correcting itself
IT life

Does it make sense to have both a private and a computer for work?

I am in front of my computer most of the day. I am using a Macbook Pro with Studio Display, Magic Mouse and Magic Keyboard. My Software setup is as follows:

  1. I am using Apple Mail since ages – its fast and I really love the search function
  2. I recently switched to Visual Studio for coding due to the discontinuity of Atom
  3. Google Workspace for most Office related stuff
  4. Excel for calculating things
  5. I am fully in Safari, embracing the deep integration of KeyChain
  6. Apple Calendar and Reminder for ToDo stuff
  7. SmartGit for the Versioning
  8. Jira and Freshdesk for Ticketing
  9. Mastonaut for Posting on Mastodon
  10. Whatsapp Desktop Client
  11. and Slack for keeping it al together

    Thing is – when I want to switch to „private“ mode and use the computer e.g. to make music with Logic Pro or Edit my Photos in Lightroom, there’s always the feeling of „work is too close“. I know I can have mulitple users on the machine, but it „feels“ work.

    Therefore I am thinking of adding a private machine, so that I can put the Macbook aside on weekends or holidays and „enjoy“ private computer time on… a mac mini? How is your setup? Do you have a separate machine for work and private stuff?


    Should we use Generative AI like ChatGPT in Journalism, schools or communication?

    As it comes out, CNET has been using Generative or Assistive AI for month to create articles or better said, to „assist their authors“ in writing articles.

    Together with the recent announcement of Microsoft integration ChatGPT into their suits (namely Outlook etc.) we will step into an age of text not only being created by humans exclusively anymore. 

    In my opinion we will still find differences and nuances in solely AI generated texts and human generated text – but the assistive function of AI will have an impact on the style and especially length of texts, as long format will become vogue again due to a higher writing efficiency of AI Assistants. 

    When using Microsoft Githubs Copilot, my writing of code also increased, and I can imagine a similar effect when writing ChatGPT powered texts in e.g. Word. We already have that since years in the Google Search suggestion box, and we all love it, albeit this will expand to whole text blocks.

    Generative AI as an Assistant to enhance writing productivity – it compares to me like the calculator in school: I can calculate in my mind, but the calculator does it better and faster. Nonetheless I still need to figure out, what should be calculated.

    Allgemein life

    Weniger Häme würde uns guttun

    Ronaldo verschießt Elfer gegen Österreich bei der EM 2016. Armer Kerl 😉

    Als ich vor ein paar Monaten von Twitter aus Frust zu Mastodon gewechselt bin, war ich sehr glücklich über die Gesprächskultur hier – ausgewogene Themen, lustig, interessant, fachlich, aber nie einseitig.

    Seit mehr und mehr Nutzer von Twitter, auch Follower von mir, zu Mastodon wechseln merke ich aber, dass sich die Kommunikationskultur ändert – und ich finde das total schade.

    Gestern wurde das Thema „Amthor // zur Löwen“ durchs „Dorf“ getrieben, heute ist der Auftritt von Wissing in einer Talkshow gestern Abend. Dominanter Duktus dabei: Häme und Spott. Und ich verstehe es nicht. Ich finde es unsäglich ermüdend, toxisch und  kleingeistig.

    Für Häme, sagt uns der Blick in die Definition, muss ein „Schadensfall (z. B. Unglücksfall, Verletzung, Missgeschick) beim Gegenüber eintreten. Dieser tritt ohne das Zutun des hämischen Orators ein. Der Schadensfall steht im Zusammenhang mit dem Spannungsverhältnis zwischen den beiden und stützt die Meinung des Hämikers. Ziel des hämischen Aktes ist die gefühlte Erhöhung der Machtposition des Hämikers auf Kosten des Gegenübers.“ 

    Wenn doch dadurch eine gefühlte Erhöhung der eigenen Position eintritt, dann heißt das, dass ich mich vorher unterlegen fühlte. Warum fühlen sich so viele Menschen anderen so unterlegen, dass sie meinen, durch Häme und Spott sich selber in eine andere Position bringen zu müssen? Wo ist das Selbstbewusstsein der Menschen geblieben, dass auf die vermeintlichen Fehler der anderen nicht mit Spott, sondern mit Mitgefühl oder im besten Fall Gleichgültigkeit reagiert. Ich möchte mir gar nicht vorstellen, was ein Shitstorm bei den „Opfern“ emotional auslöst, aber alleine an der Seitenlinie zu stehen und sich das mit anschauen zu müssen finde ich schrecklich. Und es vergiftet die Timeline und macht ein wunderbares Medium wie Mastodon  schwieriger.

    Ich möchte hier gar nicht von alten Tugenden oder so fabulieren, aber ich denke, die Frage nach Höflichkeit und Sanftmut, Gelassenheit und Kritikfähigkeit in der Kommunikation sollten wir uns bei einer neuen „Chance“ wie hier bei Mastodon stellen und hoffentlich so beantworten, dass wir die kleingeistigen, wirklich toxischen und beleidigenden Umgangsformen von Twitter endlich ablegen.

    AI IT

    How does an AI Strategy fit into an IT and Business strategy?

    An AI strategy is a plan for how an organization will use artificial intelligence to achieve its goals. It fits into a business strategy by identifying specific business problems that AI can help solve, and outlining the steps that will be taken to implement AI solutions. The AI strategy also fits into an IT strategy by outlining the technology and infrastructure that will be needed to support the AI solutions.

    An AI Stratgey is part of an IT and Business Strategy

    Example Retail

    For example, a retail company may use AI to improve its customer service by implementing a chatbot that can answer customer questions and help them find products. In this case, the AI strategy would be a part of the company’s overall business strategy to improve customer satisfaction. The IT strategy would need to include the implementation of the necessary technology, such as the chatbot software, and the integration of the chatbot with the company’s existing systems.

    Example Healthcare

    Another example, a healthcare company may use AI to improve patient outcomes by developing predictive models that can identify patients at high risk of certain conditions. In this case, the AI strategy would be a part of the company’s overall business strategy to improve patient care. The IT strategy would need to include the implementation of the necessary technology, such as the predictive modeling algorithms and the necessary integration with the company’s existing systems.

    Questions? Comments? Want to chat? Contact me on Mastodon,Twitter or send a mail to ingmar@motionet.de