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* all entries (445)
* concerts (28)
* misc (120)
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  `-bruxelles_07 (8)
  `-canada_14 (22)
  `-hongkong_09 (13)
  `-iceland_10 (14)
  `-ireland_16 (7)
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  `-paris_06 (1)
  `-poland_10 (3)
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* zoo (38)
  `-abroad (8)
  `-linz (3)
  `-misc (11)
  `-schoenbrunn (16)


08(01), 07(03), 06(03), 05(02), 04(02), 03(02)
12(02), 11(01), 10(08), 09(03), 07(17), 06(01), 05(04), 04(03), 03(02), 02(02), 01(06)
12(05), 11(02), 10(01), 09(01), 08(02), 07(04), 06(01), 05(02), 04(03), 03(02), 02(02), 01(01)
12(01), 11(02), 09(09), 08(16), 07(02), 06(03), 05(04), 04(03), 02(03), 01(02)
12(03), 11(01), 10(02), 09(01), 08(23), 07(03), 06(02), 05(01), 04(02), 03(02)
12(03), 11(02), 10(01), 09(01), 08(23), 05(02)
09(04), 08(01), 06(01), 05(02), 04(02), 03(01), 02(01)
11(01), 10(02), 09(15), 08(01), 07(02), 06(04), 04(12), 01(06)
12(05), 11(01), 10(06), 09(12), 08(02), 07(02), 06(01), 05(01), 04(10), 02(01), 01(05)
12(02), 08(01), 07(15), 06(02), 05(03), 02(02), 01(03)
12(05), 11(01), 07(24), 06(06), 05(03), 04(02), 01(01)
12(01), 11(01), 10(07), 09(01), 08(04), 07(05), 06(04), 05(06), 04(01), 03(04), 02(06), 01(04)
12(04), 11(02), 10(03), 09(04), 08(03), 07(04), 04(01)
07(01), 05(01)
08(01)
10(01)

Sun, 04 Sep 2011
day 05 in kiwi-land, (0 comments)
today we saw dolphins in a bay in ngunguru, yippieh!. we passed by with the car when i noticed loads of people standing next to the street, some with cameras, all staring at the sea. i then got a glimpse on some splashing water about 100m away from the shore and something that looked like a black fin. so we stopped, and joined the crowd watching several dolphins swimming in the bay. i think it were about ten to twelve dolphins. some people grabbed their canoes or surfboards and tried to get closer to the dolphins. although they were curious they still kept a little distance to the people. but very cute.
around 30 minutes later, the dolphins left the bay and swam back to the open sea. so we went on to matapouri, a lovely little village, where we followed a hiking trail that led us around the cliffs and back to the beach where we started - the whale-bay walk. also we had a short stop at the whale bay beach. again a wonderful beach. although there were a lot of houses it still seemed like a ghost town to us. no people, no cars, just us, and some birds. but we noticed all those real estate agent posts, that almost every house had in the front garden. seems like one could buy a lot of houses here, or even the entire village.
last stop for today was the hundertwasser toilet in kawakawa before we headed to the hostel in paihia. there was a cute cat on the other side of the road, but sadly i didn't get very close to it.
wohooo, we took a pee in the hundertwasser toilets! and it's also father's day today in new zealand.

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Sat, 03 Sep 2011
day 04 in kiwi-land, (0 comments)
today i got up and started picking oranges from the tree in the garden, as tony said guests of the hostel can pick them if they like. so i picked some, and then squeezed them to have fresh orange juice for breakfast, while nina was taking a long shower. nomnom, that was really good. before we left, tony gave us some more advice on what to see and where to go. and today it was nina's turn to drive the car. we soon got to waipu cove, a lovely beach right next to the street. there we met a father with two kids who was into photography and wanted to teach his kids some principles on photography (as he said). he also told us, that there's a nice path up the hill which will bring us to some lovely places. but before that we had to cross a little river. so we took off our shoes, passed it, and started our hiking tour.
and the guy right, we indeed saw some wonderful things, like cute birds, impressive trees, or shelly beach, with millions of shells - what a beautiful and colourful graveyard. some of them were really big. we also saw the guy then doing long-time exposures of water, while the kids were running around and having fun on their own, like hiding in the soft, high grown grass. it was really fun, because one of them was right close to our path, then jumped into the grass, and has disappeared. very cool.
when we returned, the water was almost gone, so we could hop over back to other side of the stream. we had a nice cupcake with a coffee at the nearby cafe, and then drove on to whangarei to spend the night there.

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Fri, 02 Sep 2011
day 03 in kiwi-land, (0 comments)
after checking out at the hostel and putting our stuff into lockers again, we headed back to "real groovy" to look at the awesome stuff they offer again. also the cafe had opened now, so we had our breakfast there with excellent coffee and delicious muffins. then we were strolling around auckland again, came by a museum which unfortunately was closed, went to the huge university campus and albert park where they have really awesome trees.
getting internet here is actually not an easy task. it's quite expensive (about 2EUR per 15 minutes). so we stopped at a cafe that had a "free wi-fi" sign outside. at least we could check emails, and nina had a delicious bagel. then we had to rush back to the hostel as we were fetched from there to be brought to our car. yippieh, finally a place to store our luggage. so a guy drove us to some other region of auckland and a little while later we had our car. a shiny nissan sunny, fully insured. i took the risk of starting to drive. it really is hard to go on the left side in the beginning, especially when taking a turn. but i know that soon i will be used to it. so, until then, i should avoid getting involved in any accidents. when driving state highway 1, we decided to go to the botanical garden of auckland, since it was free of entrance. it covers a huge area and it really would take you loads of time to see everything, so we were just walking around, not seeking any particular plant.
it's getting dark here pretty early, around 19:00 o'clock. so when we left the botanical garden, sun already started to set. we decided to spend the night in waipu, where they had a YHA hostel (which nina and i are still members, as we joined them in iceland, one year ago. but membership expires on 13th of september, but we can renew our membership then). at the hostel there was only us and one other guest, named tony. he was very friendly and gave us advice on what to do in the north, and what to see. quite helpful information for us. tony is on holiday right now, and his wife and kids are in germany, visiting relatives. funny thing is, his whole holiday trip, and also his wife and kid's trip is paid by some guy who spends his time in tony's house. what for? rugby of course. this guy spends all this money just to have an accommodation during the rugby world cup, that currently takes place in new zealand. lucky tony.

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Thu, 01 Sep 2011
day 02 in kiwi-land, (0 comments)
since the hostel could offer a twin room for only one night, we decided to try our luck today at some other hostel in auckland. but before that the reception lady got us a nice car offer. ha, the guy at the airport was wrong again! though it was not one of the low budget offers, it's still pretty cheap, and even cheaper than if we would have booked it beforehand via the internetz. so we have a car now, which we will pick up tomorrow at 14:00. or, to be more precise, we will be picked up to be brought to the car. we left our luggage at a locker in the hostel and started to explore auckland. so we went down upper queen's street to the harbour, where we wanted to get a ferry to rangitoto island, to go a little hiking and enjoying nature and a fabulous view over auckland (according to the guides). but unfortunately the last ferry has already left the harbour. so we decided to go to kelly tarlton's antarctic encounter and underwater world park instead. but before that, ninsti bought herself a nice second hand tele lens (70-300) at a camera shop with second hand stuff.
at kelly tarlton's we saw a replica of an old explorer's hut with woolen underwear and such, had a snowcat ride through new zealand's only colony of antarctic penguins, and were guided by a conveyor belt through an aquarium tunnel.
the huge tank was filled with stingrays, sharks, turtles, and all kind of fish, crabs, seahorses, octopuses, puff fishes, eels and sea stars.
a little later we were getting on the bus back to auckland again to see auckland's landmark, the sky tower. its height is 328 metres, making it the tallest structure in the southern hemisphere. unfortunately the outdoor deck was closed, so we had to stay inside. but they have some spots on the deck where they put glass windows into the ground, so you can step on them and look down. it actually was not that easy for us to step over them, but we did it. at the time we were on the upper deck the sun has already set, so we got a nice view over the city at night.
also they had a nice shop on the ground floor from weta, the guys who did the costumes and/or effects for movies like king kong, lord of the rings, and avatar with a live-sized uruk'hai statue, and the blue girl from avatar. on our way back to grab the stuff from to the hostel we found a lovely shopped named "real groovy" which had still opened. after a little shopping we got our stuff from the lockers and brought it to the hostel we will spend this night. auckland has pretty steep streets, so it was quite strenuous with all the luggage. but fortunately the hostel was not too far away, and once we had our luggage in our room, we went to get some food. nearby we found a chinese bbq, that looked nice. you have a grill on your table, grab the meat, fish, vegetables, and all stuff at a buffet, and then start to grill it. was fun and also delicious. some random stuff i noticed so far: we did not see or hear a single police car (but loads of ambulances), also i haven't spotted a single cat yet (ownoez), but we saw lots of asian people, and transfer is actually pretty expensive.

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Wed, 31 Aug 2011
day 01 in kiwi-land, (0 comments)
at 22:50 ninsti and i started our journey to new zealand at vienna airport. around 24 hours later we arrived in auckland. before we had a flight to dubai, lasting five hours and 40 minutes, then a stop in dubai for about three hours. at 10:15 (local time) we got on the next plane for a nineteen hour flight. additionally we had about one hour delay because of some fuelling troubles (or so the pilot told us). crossing 12 time zones, we finally arrived tomorrow, half a day later, at 13:00 o'clock. welcome to the future. that was pretty strenuous, since we did not get much sleep due to emirate's on-board movies. i had the latest "x-men", "thor", some awesome korean movie, "the greatest movie ever sold", "super 8". ninsti had "kung-fu panda 2", "midnight in paris", "african cats" (meow! great movie), "source code", and "win win". and i'm sure we both forgot some here to list. at about 08:00 o'clock we landed in sydney australia, to have the boeing A380 refuelled and cleaned. so we had to get off, wait another 45 minutes, and then get on again, back to the same seats we had before - only cleaner. the airbus from sydney to auckland was pretty empty, so i occupied four seats in the middle row and took a one hour nap. uuh, that was good.
we both were pretty tired and exhausted, so we got a bus to the center of auckland and headed straight to a YMA hostel we read about in ninsti's lonelyplanet guide. they had a twin room. we were pretty worried we wouldn't get one, because at the airport one guy at the immigration office at first asked me if we're here for the rugby champions league. i said no. he asked me where we are going to stay in auckland. i said we want to stay at a hostel. he asked if we had already booked. i said no. "good luck," he said. uhm... i get worried. "what about the other nights?" he asked. i said we'll get a car. "good luck". grrrr... but, ha! he was wrong. we got our double room at the first hostel we went to. i hope he's also wrong about the car. at our room we had a shower and then, instantly, fell asleep. what a hard day, but hey, we made it to new zealand - wohooo!

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Wed, 01 Jun 2011
site css (0 comments)
ok, after a veeeeeeery long time here's a tiny bit of nerdy tech bLog blabla. just a itsy bitsy nerdy one - i promise. well, i always thought about giving my homepage an additional inverted colour look, since loads of people always complained it's so dark and gothic and whatever. problem was, there are - by now - tons of galleries, or other links on my homepage. so this would mean a lot of changes if i would go through all those files by hand. but... of course there must be a better and also easier way out. and there was... luckily. i already had cleaned out the gallery sites to use only one css file a while ago - that was a big messy sed-battle that took my brain quite a while to process and get it right. also i had the css file itself cleaned (though i'm not a master of css styling, to be honest). same applied to the bLog css files - cleaned a while ago. so everything was ready for the big switch to be implemented. and here's how the trick works... 1. cgi scripts: for each css file, put a cgi-script in place that delivers all content of type "text/css". for me there were three files: the main sites css file, the gallery css and the bLog css file. also include some nice query_string and referer processing to deliver alternative css styles. perl (with "-w" and, of course, "use strict;") did the trick here - what else? 2. apache2 config: next, do some mod_rewrite + apache2 magic. create a rewrite rule that meets the following requirements: a) the query_string does not contain any alternate-style index ("a=<style_index>", where "style_index" can be one of "n"ormal, "i"nverted, "r"otated, or "f"lipped), b) the request_uri is not for a css, jpg, gif, png, or ico file, since there's no css to apply to those file types anyway, c) the http_referer contains some alternate-style index. if all those criteria meet, rewrite the url and append the alternate-style index to the request_uri to have the perl script from 1. deliver the right css content again. simple as that, here's what it looks like in the apache2 config file:
RewriteEngine On RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} !^a=[irfn]$ RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !^/(.*)\.(css|jpg|gif|png|ico)$ RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^(.*)(\?a=[irfn])$ RewriteRule ^/(.*)$ $1%2 [R,L]
3. apache2 mod_expires: set expire headers in apache2's mod_expires config for css files to zero, since they now are highly dynamical.
ExpiresByType text/css A0
4. inverted random images: modify the cgi script that delivers the random images at the bottom of the page to provide inverted images in the inverted mode, or deliver colour inverted post-graph on the bLog site. 5. make links on the main page to the alternative styles: easy. this all worked surprisingly well, only the css magic for the rotate and flip effect are... still a bit messy and unpredictable when it comes to browser compatibility. but... since this is just a nice bonus i hadn't planned to implement anyway, i'm fine with that. so, feel free to enjoy the new site in inverted, rotated, or flipped style. or the inverted bLog. but no rotated or flipped one, since the css here really totally messes the site layout up. oh, and i think the inverted style looks awful. but, that's what people get when they complain about the wonderful, beautiful, nice, well balanced, eye pleasing & catching, well thought out, lovingly assembled cyan/black combination. don't blame me.

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Sat, 21 May 2011
hoehenrausch.2 (0 comments)
back in 2009 when linz was the european capital of cultural there was one exhibition that was pretty fascinating, namely the "hoehenrausch" (which was the counterpart to the "tiefenrausch", one year before). due to it's popularity (i guess) it was a bit refined and reopened this month. since i really liked version one i was curious to see hoehenrausch.2. and so on saturday ninsti and i went there. the first object one gets to see is about icelandic waterfalls. it's a box where can pull out frames with pictures of the waterfall and the sound of the waterfall is played along. so wonderful, we totally enjoyed that. loads of waterfalls looked (and sounded?) familiar to us. next piece of art is a room[001-007] flooded with water. perfect for cooling ones feet. after some more art[008-010] we ended up on the roof of the museum. here starts the round[012-079] over some rooftops of linz.
the footbridge route was a little altered. this time it goes right through the church tower[019-033]. at the end one comes back to the place where the ferris wheel used to be back in 2009. now there's waterworks[045-054,060-066]. seems like this is the main attraction everyone enjoys the most. kids, but also grown-ups get the thrill of trying to stay dry while the hexagonal water pavilion (as it's called) starts to shoot up walls of water from jets. or course we tried to, and... failed.
another high-light (literally) was in the attic[105-118] of the church where blue neon lights were put. though the light and colours were quite nice, i more enjoyed being in the attic itself. wonderful place with lots of decay - oh, i liked that.
we stayed quite long at the exhibition, so we took a rest and enjoyed an ice coffee. then we grabbed some drinks and went to the linz fest which was taking place nearby right next to the danube. besides a lot of activity and live music we especially enjoyed the "blonder engel" performance. a mix of music and cabaret full of humour and satire. ninsti bought a CD and had it signed by the artist[121]. wonderful weekend that was.

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Mon, 02 May 2011
fliehende stuerme (0 comments)
^C: fliehende stuerme, arena sterne zwischen liebe duell der letzten fuehrerlos teilzeit stahl werk iii ein tropfen im feuer das chaos bruetet kaleidoskop spieler an einem besseren tag ziellose wege maschinentrauma still satellit kleines herz

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Sat, 30 Apr 2011
zoo schoenbrunn and vienna (0 comments)
since i took a view days off due to easter holidays, i went to vienna. and so i had another visit to the zoo of schoenbrunn. i thought there wouldn't be too many people since it was on a wednesday, but i was wrong. loads of tourists, school classes, etc. most likely also because the weather was excellent for a visit to the zoo i did not end up being there alone.
i focused on the big kitty-cats this time, like lions, tigers, cheetahs, and lynx. unfortunately i did not see the panther and the lynx. both were hiding, i guess. additionally there was a construction site right opposite the lynx cage, so i guess the cat was also annoyed by the noise they made. and the cage was full of trees and bushes and green. so no idea were it decided to take a nap far away from me. sniff. but at least most of the cats enjoyed lying around in the sun[02-09,39-41], or playing in the little pond with a ball[10-18].
of course i also stopped by all the other lovely cute little animals[01,19-38] they have there. was - as usual - a lot of fun with all the kitties around. a few days later i finally made it to the giger exhibition. though i have been to the last one too, this year's one had a few exhibits i haven't seen before. but i was happy to find the alien head in the exhibition once more, but this time they had another one. though again an original alien movie prop it wasn't the one with the wires i have seen the last time. well, one gets what they expect from giger art: penises, asses, breasts, and pictures of joyful coitus right next to strange creatures, and contaminated, deformed bodies. very enjoyable, i like this look and atmosphere in the pictures by h.r. giger. sunday we (ninsti, me, and some friends) went to the prater to enjoy the festival on the labour day. loads of bands on several stages (though some "stages" actually only were tents). after the concerts we found a maypole. i guess due to intoxication or boredom we decided, in accordance with austrian tradition, to take it with us. so five people ended up dragging the quite heavy and huge pole through the prater. loads of people went or drove by cheering for us, but actually no one seemed too much surprised to see some guys running around with a large tree. since the pole was really heavy we decided to not take it home with us, but rather re-erect the pole at the nearby pub called "fluc". with the help of some drunk people from the pub we really managed to tie the pole to some street lantern, where we finally left our trophy. puh, i guess i can mark this "you should have done that once in your lifetime"-thingie as done. maypole stolen - yippieh!

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Tue, 05 Apr 2011
paintball (0 comments)
for a long time the company i'm working for had planned to go for a paintball match. it has been postponed several times, but today it finally took place. i was really looking forward to this event, but since i had some issues with a rib, i didn't take part in the game. i didn't want to get a bullet... aehm... paintball right in my side. so instead of shooting bullets i took the risk of taking pictures with my cam. to not get shot by others, i got the special referee-dress, strips of black and white and a face protection mask[011] with little bells on it. after a short introduction[005-008] by the guy running this place and a little shooting to get customized[012-016] to the weapon... aeh... the painting-device, the battles began. first ones were team deathmatches[017-106].
then, after a break[107-119] to refill the guns... ahm... painting-device, the mode was switched to "CTD", capture the donkey[120-139].
after a few hours the guys were really exhausted[140] and pretty colourful[141].
during the game i was right in the middle of the battle field, always telling the guys were i was standing, so they wouldn't shoot at my (or, to be more precise, at my camera, because i wouldn't have cared too much about getting hit myself, but it would have definitely hurt if my camera got hit). this worked pretty fine for most parts of the games, only once i got attacked pretty hard, as i was hiding in some raised hide and one guy thought my camera was a gun that was pointing at him. since my body, and thus my referee shirt, was hidden behind a wooden slab the guy kept shooting at me. luckily i could hide[123] just right in time. no harm done. the game looked like pretty much fun, too bad i couldn't participate. but the grief got a little less, once i saw the wounds those little balls[125] can cause. one co-worker got three shots in the back, resulting in big red spots. this really looked like a lot of pain. but yet, everyone was happy.

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Sat, 12 Mar 2011
botanical garden in linz and vienna (0 comments)
so i've been to two botanical gardens by chance lately. first one was in linz where there were also butterflies in the tropical section of the garden. it was one of the first few warm and sunny days after the winter, so a lot of people where there, albeit it was during the week. i've already been to the garden the weekend before, but didn't have my new camera with me. but this time i brought it with me - yeah.
it turned out, behaviour of a full-frame sensor is totally different to my old cropped sensor of my canon eos 350d. so there will be much to be learned in the near (and maybe far) future until pics turn out the way i want them. but i guess that's the fun in it, right?
although most of the colourful and blooming stuff was inside the tropical house, there were a lot of flowers that just started to grow and get revived by the warm sun too. yet, most of the parts of the garden still were brown and seemed lifeless.
i also met the one-eyed cat again, that i've already seen on my last visit. unfortunately i didn't see the second cat that seems to be living in the house that is also the garden's cafe. but the one-eyed one was glad to have found someone who will pet it extensively. well, i was glad to take that part. three days later i went to vienna and nina showed me the botanical garden, that is just near her place. the entrance to this facility was for free, but one cannot enter any glass house. and they don't seem to have a tropical house. so, all the stuff one could see was outdoor. also here it was pretty brownish for most of the parts, with some buds, flowers, and leaves sprouting here and there.
since it was another warm and wonderful day full of sunlight, there were also quite a lot of people in the park. spring is such a wonderful time of the year. hm... though... autumn and winter are too actually. but it's nice to see all the life and colours come back to nature.
oh, the biggest drawback to this garden: they don't seem to have any cat there in the botanical garden. too bad :/

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Thu, 17 Feb 2011
new camera + lens (0 comments)
well, i got my new camera and lens today. i went for full-frame, thus i bought a shiny, incredible, awesome canon eos 5d mark II. and since my old lenses are all of EF-S format, i also had to buy a new lens. the 5d only works with EF lenses. so i also bought an awesome canon EF 24-70mm 2.8 L USM lens. the equipment is extremely heavy (almost 2kg, body and lens attached). this is definitely something i still have to get used to. but so far, i really like my new toy. don't worry, no tech talk now, no test-charts, critics, or reviews here. i'm just so happy with it, that i thought i'd share it here. of course (most likely) all pictures from now on will be taken with my new DSLR. ooooh february, so full of all kind of fabulous, amazing, wonderful, stunning, delightful, and pleasant new stuff. i like it.

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