• Apple's swiss army phone

    Well, it seems that I was wrong. The iPhone actually is worth the hype. It's not just a smart phone. It's a genius phone. It's...

    ...everything you need it to be:

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xXNoB3t8vM]

    Well, almost.

  • Using UMTS from Ubuntu Linux

    Everytime I go on my daily commute, I see people with blinking UMTS/3G cards in their laptops. Because I enjoy using my commute time to reduce my to-do lists, but on the other hand many of my tasks require internet access, I've been rather envious on their connectivity. When I had SUSE 10.0 on my laptop, I couldn't get it to work with my Nokia E61, so I started phantasizing about how a MacBook would improve my mobile productivity.

    Having installed Kubuntu 6.06 now, I thought I'd give it another try last week. Et voila: after about half an hour of configuration, the 3G arrows on my smartphone started blinking! (Now guess where I wrote today's first blog entries.)

    I'm happy. (Even if there's no real reason to get a MacBook any more.) And to make others happy, too, I updated the most-visited page on my website, my BlueTooth on Linux HOWTO I kept it in german because there's not as much documentation in my native language than there is in English.

  • How to keep geeks motivated

    Keeping a team motivated is one of the most important and sometimes most difficult tasks of leadership. I don't like saying "motivating a team" because you actually can't motivate people. People have to motivate themselves. But a manager can help a lot so that his subordinates don't have such a hard time getting there.

    In IT management, you lead a special kind of employees: geeks. Some managers find it difficult to understand those IT guys and their ways of thinking and acting. But the Retrospector found some common aspects that managers better keep an eye on. He titled his blog entry Top 10 Ways to Motivate Geeks, which I want to rephrase (for the reasons mentioned above) "Top 10 ways how to keep geeks motivated". The 10 things to give them are:

    Opportunities to learn

    Room to figure out things on their own

    A chance to be creative

    Good tools

    The right level of privacy

    Free stuff like t-shirts or food

    A certain amount of control

    Recognition where credit is due

    Freedom to choose and decide

    A proper compensation

    From my experience, those really are important aspects in managing geeks, but you have to keep all of them in mind. Free stuff alone won't be enough to maintain a team's asskickingness.

  • Another year of sequels

    2007 will again be full of new movies. Well, sequels of new movies at least.

    There's Spiderman 3, Pirates Of The Caribbean 3, Shrek 3 and many others. If you want a roundup, take a look at Andy's summary of 2007's sequels (german).

    Well, I like great sequels better than crappy new flicks, but come on movie makers, there's that thing called creativity, you know?

  • A different view on a dentist's office

    On Thursday, I went to the dentist for the first time in years. I didn't have toothache, but other parts of my body were already hurting from Carolin beating me for not doing regular appointments. :-)

    All was well -- of course there's some drilling to do, but Dr. Eschler is nice and seems to know what he's doing.

    His waiting room was the same as you see at every dentist. Every dentist? Why has a waiting room have to look the same everywhere -- mainly a room with chairs and magazines? That's what Dr. Lori Ann Kemmet must have thought, and she gives her patients a quite different experience waiting.

    Wouldn't it be great to have that at your dentist?