Minidisc – Torn Between Decluttering and Nostalgia

From time to time I need to do some decluttering. I guess everybody does. Usually, it’s easy for me to decide between the things that I won’t need anymore and the ones that I want to keep. I know myself to be both fast and rigorous about these decisions.

Today I stumbled across a box that broke my flow: my old MiniDisc collection and a Minidisc player. I know that all the money invested in the technology is lost (2 portable units, 1 Minidisc deck, one car stereo that had Minidisc, tons of Minidiscs, …) and I also know that I won’t use it any time soon, neither for recording nor for listening. Still, I seem unable to part with it.

It’s not even the Minidisc player that powered most of my teen years – that was a Sony MZ R50 and later a Sony MZ R90, which in terms of esthetics I only loved half as much as the R50. The discs, however, are the “originals”. I used to print labels for all of them with images that I scanned from the original CD. Most of them are blurry by now, as I only had an inkjet printer. I am humbled by how much time I must have spent on my Minidisc collection.

I guess I am going to allow myself to keep the Minidisc box around for another while and thus postpone the decision to throw it out. Yep, that’s living on the edge.

Baba und Foi Ned

New piano composition / Jazz tune out now! “Baba und Foi Ned”, Bavarian for “Good bye and don’t stumble”. Will bring it to one of the next jam sessions this fall.

And here’s the sheet music.

It’s Getting Warmer – Morning Data Points

In my previous post I described how I got data from my weather station into MATLAB to help me answer my primary questions:

  • When to open the windows in the evening, to let in cool air?
  • When to close the windows again in the morning?

The data I have available covers 10 days, including a late July heat wave. At first I tried to understand when the lowest outside temperature was reached and when it increased again by more than 0.5 °C and 1 °C compared to the minimum.

DayMin Temperature (°C)TimeTime +0.5°C Time +1°C
18 Jul 201916.305:54 06:5406:54
19 Jul 201917.005:56 06:5207:12
20 Jul 201920.405.56 07:0108:07
21 Jul 201920.705:45 07:0007:56
22 Jul 201919.905:56 06:2707:22
23 Jul 201920.406:14 07:0508:21
24 Jul 201921.405:53 06:4807:33
25 Jul 201922.106:16 06:5107:17
26 Jul 201922.905:42 06:1707:13
27 Jul 201923.105:50 06:3607:36

If I had more data I’d plot a histogram of the times to decide when to close the window in the morning. For now, I can only come up with a “manual estimate” based on looking at the table above. I conclude: During summer I should close the window by 7:30 in order to optimally protect the cool indoor climate.

It’s Getting Warmer – Using MATLAB to Visualize Netatmo Data

Global warming is a thing. There’s no denying that temperatures are rising.

In my quest to learn to live with it, I got a Netatmo weather station that measures outside and inside temperature levels (among other things) in 5 minutes intervals.

My goal is to keep the temperature in my apartment as low as possible without installing AC, so my primary questions are:

  • When to open the windows in the evening, to let in cool air?
  • When to close the windows again?

While the Netatmo website provides a coarse overview of the temperature levels, it’s not particularly helpful in answering these questions because …

  1. the weekly view shows data points in steps of 3 hours
  2. data from different sensors can not be merged into one graph to understand dependencies (e.g., outdoor vs. indoor temperature).

Here’s a plot I generated by exporting the raw data from Netatmo and some MATLAB coding.

Temperature over the course of 10 days.

With all the data available in MATLAB I can now go ahead with extracting some critical data points, such as when the outside temperature reaches its minimum or when it starts increasing again. More on that later.

Summer Rain

I thought about going to a Jazz Jam Session tonight, but then I ended up just jamming with myself and Ableton Live. Tonight’s tune is called “Summer Rain – Our Reckless Behavior”. It’s constructed around the idea that “Our reckless behavior will destroy it for us all”. Click here to download the sheet music.

My Funny Trainride

Work at Infineon requires me to go places. As a product architect I need to interact both with customers all around the globe and development teams at five different sites across Austria and Germany. To be able to tend to my inner music nerd while on the road, I got myself a small music keyboard with 128 sounds that fits into my backpack.

Here’s a version of “My Funny Valentine” that I did on that keyboard while on the train to Villach yesterday night. I call it “My Funny Trainride”.

Es wird scho glei dumpa – Merry Christmas from Austria

Download brass quartet sheet music: Es wird scho glei dumpa.

Here’s what it sounds like when played on a piano:

The Story Behind

I like Christmas. Especially the couple of weeks before Christmas eve. It’s getting dark and cold, but there’s candles and everything is lit in vibrant colors, we cuddle, drink tea and sing our favorite Christmas carols. At the some time everybody is busy shopping or trying to finish whatever they need to get done before the year ends, but we usually still find time to spend with friends and family. It’s a confusing but beautiful time. I tried to capture this weird feeling of enchantment mixed with numbing haste by arranging and reharmonizing the Austrian Christmas carol “Es wird scho glei dumpa” for brass quartet.

Word of advice if you want to play it with your band: The second half of the piece could be callenging and needs practicing.

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

The Repairing of Haraldbaumgartner.com

A couple of years back I did a website for a friend of mine, which I blogged about in The Making of Haraldbaumgartner.com. We did a couple of updates since then, but there haven’t been any changes over the past three years or so. Moreover I neglected updating the software behind the website, so it was still running off Joomla version 1.7.

About a week ago the provider disabled PHP 5.6, which Joomla 1.7 depended on, so the website was broken. It also meant that there was no path for automated upgrades any more.

After some brainstorming I had found my solution: I decided to recreate the setup that the provider had disabled (Apache, PHP5.6, mysql) in VirtualBox. All I had to do is to

  1. Download an Ubuntu 18.04 iso
  2. Install Ubuntu in VirtualBox and then in Ubuntu install Apache and mysql.
  3. Add some PHP 5.6 repository and install PHP 5.6
  4. Copy the mysql database over to my VirtualBox Ubuntu Server as well as all the files via FTP

Tada, the website was up and running again on my local machine:

With this in place I could restore all the stuff I nedded and migrate to Joomla 3.9. Finally http://www.haraldbaumgartner.com/ is back online! On the way there I also fixed all the file permissions, so that in the future Joomla would be able to update automatically.