Monthly Archives: July 2001

Tuesday, July 31 2001


Eben in meinen Referrern gefunden: Pastaweb hat eine sehr umfangreiche Sammlung an Rezepten rund um Pasta. Da kriegt man gleich Hunger!

Und dazu gibt’s auch noch das pasta::log. Iris, die Autorin, lebt in Rheinbach, also gleich hier um die Ecke.


Remember the bats in my parents’ house? It seems bats bats visit other people as well, and they even know how to get them back out (Please note that the trick with the open window does not work if there are more bats outside!). And before releasing them, other people even take the time and snap some pictures of the bat in order to post them on their website.

Link via LalaBlog.


Letzte Woche in der Zeit: Bitte melde dich!, ein interessanter Artikel über die neun häufigstgenutzten Kommunikationskanäle: persönliche Begegnung, Brief, Telegramm, SMS, Postkarte, Telefon, Handy, Email, Fax.

Dazu gibt’s auch weitere Infos: Neun Kanäle und eine Umfrage.

Bei mir siegt eindeutig die Email als liebstes Kommunikationsmittel. Schnell, preiswert, immer mehr Leute erreichbar. Wenn nicht gerade der Mailserver spinnt…


There are several links to interesting sites in this MeFi thread:

  • My Physics Lab
  • Explore Science: Multimedia activities (requires Shockwave)
  • The Virtual Physics Laboratory
  • And of course – the Soda Constructor, to which I’ve linked several times before.
  • Playing with these applets is, of course, much safer than trying to fix the hairdryer if you are a physicist.

    Don’t try this at home, kids! – Part II

    Update to yesterday’s hairdryer story.

    Garret commented on my story:

    careful there, andrea. you’ve got direct current over there in europe, as i understand. that can give a nasty shock and burn. whenever a plug-in device goes bad, chances are the wires the insulation have parted wherever the wire bends … usually just inside the plastic handle. you have to be able to disassemble the entire device, just to be safe. i’m impressed, however … our resident mathematician’s resourceful. we should all chip in and send her a set of torx drivers …

    No, we have alternating current in Europe. The difference between Germany and the USA, however, is the voltage: We have 230 V while the US is using 120 V (I believe). But of course 230 V AC is still something you don’t want to make direct contact with.

    Garret is right about the fact that the insulation suffers if you bend the cable too hard or too often. Below is a picture of the cable where it comes out of the hairdryer. Looks pretty scary because I enlarged it.

    And what are torx drivers? I didn’t find it in my dictionary. Anyway, I took a photo of the screw as well. Does anyone have a screwdriver that fits?

    kabelbrand: schraube:


    Yay, the email server is working again. You can reach me via again!

    Monday, July 30 2001


    Find your next decimal birthday. I’m 9540 days old today, and my next Major Decimal Birthday is my 10000th day on Saturday, 2 November 2002. (And I will be 9600 days old on 28 September 2001.)

    Don’t try this at home, kids!

    Update: See photos here.

    A couple of days ago, my hairdryer developed a loose contact. I think to myself, hey, I’m a physicist, I can fix this! Out with the screwdrivers. But it seems the hairdryer manufacturer doesn’t trust their costumers, since they put special screws in the dryer that can only be unscrewed with a special screwdriver [see photo], which I don’t have, of course. Hmm…

    I plug the dryer in again and try to figure out where the loose contact is. It seems to help when I wiggle the plug in the socket, so I conclude the loose contact must be inside the plug. I even make sure the loose contact isn’t inside the socket by trying it on different sockets. The effect is the same in every socket, so it must be the plug that is broken.

    Off to the hardware store I go. I buy a new plug and try the dryer one more time last night. Yep, the loose contact is still there, so I cut the old plug off and prepare the cables for the new plug, then screw it on. Bummer, the cable is too thin, you can pull it out of the new plug. After a while I figure out how to fix this so the cable stays put.

    The whole operation takes more than half an hour, and finally I prouldly put the brand-new plug into the socket and try the hairdryer. After switching it on, there seems to be a slight delay before it starts humming, but it works – for about ten seconds. Suddenly sparks emerge from the other end of the cable, and the room goes dark. It seems I burnt a fuse.

    After recovering from the shock and putting the fuse back in, I find out that the loose contact was in fact on the other end of the cable, at the point where the cable enters the hairdryer, probably because the cable gets bended too hard there and was worn out after seven years.

    I bought a new hairdryer today. Does anyone need a brand-new plug? It was used only once.

    And by the way, I didn’t buy a hairdryer with an air purifying filter. I actually saw that one in the store, though. What will companies think of next in order to make you buy their stuff?

    Wednesday, July 26 2001

    Hello, anybody there?

    Hmm… not even my photo got to put me on the updates list. Weird. Does it decrease the number of scans if you don’t post anything for a couple of days?

    Whatever, I need to go to bed now.


    This is another one of the photos I took Sunday. I’m not sure why the colours in this photo are so different from the other photos. It was the same time and the same place, and I didn’t photoshop it. Seems like my camera likes to add its personal touch to the pics…


    I don’t get it. Now that Oliver has managed to get The Far Side of My Mind back on the update list, my updates don’t appear any more. I flipped the page this morning around ten (GMT +2), but it didn’t show up. Let’s see if this change goes unnoticed as well.

    Too bad, I can’t reach Dangerousmeta at the moment. But Hal writes his heart is okay. Great news!

    Schön, reich und berühmt…

    … wird jetzt vielleicht der Schockwellenreiter, denn er ist in einem Artikel der Zeit erwähnt: Intime Notizen für alle.

    Meine regelmäßigen Zeit-Links mußten in den letzten Wochen wegen Examensvorbereitung ja leider ausfallen, aber heute hat Jörg meinen Job übernommen.

    [Und da Jörg in seinem heutigen Eintrag zu mir linkt, kriege ich von seinem Ruhm vielleicht sogar ein bißchen ab – in Form von Referrern. ]

    Sunday, July 22 2001


    Today’s sunset. The photos were taken on the Meßdorfer Feld in Bonn and near Alfter-Oedekoven (the panorama) between 9 and 9:30 pm. A beautiful way to end a busy week…






    Click to see a bigger image.

    More photos

    I’m still working my way through Jeff‘s Alaska photos. Fortunately, the photos are loading much faster now than they did a couple of days ago because we got an ADSL internet connection on Friday. ISDN was fast, but with DSL everything loads almost as fast as if the stuff were on your hard disk. Wow!

    I think I need a separate site for my photos. While I like the light blue background, it’s not very good for displaying photos on it. That’s why I add the white frame to all the pics, but I think the perfect solution would be black, white or grey (like Jeff uses) background.