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Category Archives: Internet

Nothing Zen – Just Crop the Swimming Pool Photo

I56A0475 Zwembad gr

I56A0475 Zwembad

Nothing Zen – Just Crop the Swimming Pool Photo

Recently I was on a short city trip to Madrid.

When I prepared for the trip I was looking for a hotel with a swimming pool, as Madrid can be hot in September.

I choose the hotel on the basis of a photo like the first photo. I took this photo myself. The first photo is a crop of the second photo. I used a booking portal (OTA) to search and book the hotel.

When you look at the first photo, like me, you are likely to book the hotel if it features prominently on the booking site….When you look at the second photo, like me, You are unlikely to swim in this swimming pool ever with all those eyes that can peek at you from the surrounding high rises.

That is why I post this in the Zen category with the “Nothing Zen” connotation: With all the technique of Internet progressing and helping I still feel strong that you should watch your back and watch out for conman trying to lure you into something you do not want. Lucky for us it was too cold in Madrid to care for a swim and lucky for us the hotel had other amenities that fitted us well during this stay.

Pardon for Chelsea Manning?

Private Manning

Pardon for Chelsea Manning?

No mention of private Manning in the news anymore. Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison because he leaked to the (in)famous Wikileaks. A Year ago a request was lodged for a presidential pardon. I believe it’s time President Obama takes a decision.

In the meantime Bradley has publicly announced he wants to change gender and be renamed as Chelsey.

Part of the plea for presidential pardon.

The decisions that I made in 2010 were made out of a concern for my country and the world that we live in. Since the tragic events of 9/11, our country has been at war. We’ve been at war with an enemy that chooses not to meet us on any traditional battlefield, and due to this fact we’ve had to alter our methods of combating the risks posed to us and our way of life.

I initially agreed with these methods and chose to volunteer to help defend my country. It was not until I was in Iraq and reading secret military reports on a daily basis that I started to question the morality of what we were doing. It was at this time I realized that (in) our efforts to meet the risk posed to us by the enemy, we have forgotten our humanity. We consciously elected to devalue human life both in Iraq and Afghanistan. When we engaged those that we perceived were the enemy, we sometimes killed innocent civilians. Whenever we killed innocent civilians, instead of accepting responsibility for our conduct, we elected to hide behind the veil of national security and classified information in order to avoid any public accountability.

In our zeal to kill the enemy, we internally debated the definition of torture. We held individuals at Guantanamo for years without due process. We inexplicably turned a blind eye to torture and executions by the Iraqi government. And we stomached countless other acts in the name of our war on terror.

Patriotism is often the cry extolled when morally questionable acts are advocated by those in power. When these cries of patriotism drown out any logically based dissension, it is usually the American soldier that is given the order to carry out some ill-conceived mission.

Our nation has had similar dark moments for the virtues of democracy — the Trail of Tears, the Dred Scott decision, McCarthyism, and the Japanese-American internment camps — to mention a few. I am confident that many of the actions since 9/11 will one day be viewed in a similar light.

As the late Howard Zinn once said, “There is not a flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.”

I understand that my actions violated the law; I regret if my actions hurt anyone or harmed the United States. It was never my intent to hurt anyone. I only wanted to help people. When I chose to disclose classified information, I did so out of a love for my country and a sense of duty to others.

If you deny my request for a pardon, I will serve my time knowing that sometimes you have to pay a heavy price to live in a free society. I will gladly pay that price if it means we could have a country that is truly conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all women and men are created equal.

Via the Manning Support site.

Maybe an off topic but still interesting question: If a male is sentenced, can the same sentence be enforced upon a female when the male has changed gender?

Yahoo – Tumblr – Flickr

tumblr-logo

Yahoo – Tumblr

It is reported as a done deal: Yahoo made a 1.1 billion cash offer to acquire Tumblr and the offer has been accepted.

I’ll copy and paste some web reactions to the deal:

If you are interested in my thoughts about Tumblr, please have a look at Chair Blog.

A tongue in Cheek Gif was published shortly after the announcement:

Tumblr Acquired by Yahoo

Yahoo – Flickr

May 20 had been planned to launch a major refit of the Flickr site by Yahoo prior to the news of Tumblr being acquired.

Note: I’ve fallen in the same old trap again: Pushing the publish button rather than the save button. So I’ll flesh it out while it is online.

De Correspondent – Dutch Journalists’ Crowd Funding Success

De Correspondent Logo

De Correspondent – Dutch News Crowd Funding Success

We all know the paper press is in Dire circumstances. To Paywall or not to Paywall your content? What about the Paper Guidebooks apparently going down the drain now that Google has announced to ditch the paper Frommers Guidebooks. What will happen with the Lonely Planet Guidebooks? We all know there is an ongoing battle between Travel Journalists, Travel Writers Travel News sections of paper press and so on and so forth.

The more refreshing is the outcome of this experiment:

Target met within 8 days

De Correspondent- First Masthead
Only 8 days ago a group of Dutch reasonably known journalists, column writers and bloggers (see the above picture of their first “masthead”) teamed up and launched a membership site De Correspondent with the intention to source 15,000 members who solely based on the good name of the founders and a promise to start an alternative only online news presence, without a very clearcut idea of the form or the content….

Within 8 days more that 15.000 Dutchman have signed up and have paid their membership fee and the number is fast going up and counting (at the moment of publsihing this post the counter shows 15.239.

Very interesting to see how this experiment will go on.

Update

The final number of members after 30 days:
correspondent_counter_end_result

Counter copied from their blog post.

No Beard? No King! – Dutch getting Viral about King to be Willem-Alexander

King to be Willem-Alexander and Abdicating Queen Beatrix

Currently H.R.H Prince Willem Alexander of The Netherlands (left) is clean shaven. He will be the first King in over 100 years after his mother H.M. Queen Beatrix (right) will abdicate in favor of him on April 30, 2013. However according to a funny FacBook page Zonder Baard Geen Koning (i.e. No Beard? No King!) which started yesterday and collected some 20,000 likes in its first 24 hours, Willem-Alexander has still 90 days to grow a nice beard.