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The I read in June was , by Marc .

Europe's electricity grid stops functioning, and the ensuing chaos is described from the perspective of multiple characters. Only the major ones felt fleshed out, but they still were diverse enough to cover aspects of politics, engineering, the elderly, hospitals and many more, which gave a good overview of the situation.

And while the fiction was mostly okay, the science part seemed quite realistic, at least to my limited knowledge.

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Nearly 1,000 Paintings & Drawings by Vincent van Gogh Now Digitized and Put Online: View/Download the Collection

This semester I was looking for a suitable 's programme abroad and applied to several universities in Europe.

After a couple weeks of weighing each programme's pros and cons, I decided which one I'd like to attend, and today I sat down to decline the other offers.

It made me a little sad. After all, they were nice programmes, and they went to great lengths to make us feel welcome, even before we went there.

But each place I decline opens up for someone else, and that's a nice thought.

Besides not having water at home, our ongoing renovations are also causing frequent power outages. For the first time in many years I found myself at home and unoccupied, but without being able to turn to the computer.

Maybe it was a good thing. My book backlog was piling up anyway, and some days without a monitor would be good for my eyes.

I went with "Blackout", a book that - fittingly - describes a European-wide power outage. After a week, I'd read more than in the past two months combined.

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Not super happy with this piece, but it was a good learning experience. I spent a lot more time on the background mountains than the foreground and it shows :P

I really need to start working larger. Theoretically gouache is a good medium for small detail, but I get frustrated by how little paint the smallest brushes can hold at a time. Here I brought in colored pencil to help with those fine areas, with mixed results.

#mastoart #art #traditional #painting #gouache #learningexperience

Our apartment's water pipes are in need of a renovation, so everything inside the bathroom has to be torn down and rebuilt.

The first day it looked like a bomb blast site. The furniture and appliances were all gone, and the walls and floor completely broken, revealing the building's inner workings. The rubble covering the floor is being thrown into a container that's almost as big as the room itself.

It's a good reminder of how much work has gone into making the nice facade we see as houses.

The broad appeal of has always been a mystery to me. I enjoy running outdoors, or hiking, or playing football with friends. What is it, then, that draws so many people to a closed off, crowded, static environment?

Well, I am about to find out. Through a peculiar twist of fate I came into the possession of a gym member card, and will be entering this fabled place for the first time. Will the stories I've heard hold true? It will be an interesting endeavour.

Wish me luck!

Abgesehen vom gemeinnützigen Zweck, erscheint auch wunderbar gestaltet.

Die Seite lädt schnell, ist klar und sofort übersichtlich, und selbst Tastenkürzel wurden eingebaut (was das ganze viel angenehmer und schneller macht).

Alles in allem eine gute Seite, um 1-2 leere Minuten sinnvoll zu füllen:

After two years, I played Knights of Honor, a grand strategy favourite of mine again today. The goal is to lead a medieval kingdom to European domination.

After conquering half of Anatolia with Trapezond, I looked at my kingdom. I had access (either direct or through trade) to all available goods, and a huge trade surplus. My cities were fortified, and my people happier than any other. What more could one possibly hope to achieve through conquest?

I made one final save, and closed the game.

Strolling through the city's streets, one can see lots of beggars, reaching out with their hand or endlessly murmuring a mixture of wishes and appeals to generosity, which has blended into a strange kind of mantra.

There are also a few performing artists, playing a small role like statues or mimes.

On the foot of the Akropolis, an old man was sitting on the pavement, sunk into an old book. His white hair and beard resembling the ancient philosophers, and a coin basket next to him, he was both.

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15 years after leaving primary school, we had a small . About a third of the class was present, which was more than I'd expected. Most of us hadn't talked in years, not because we didn't get along, but just because life got in the way or we moved to different cities.

Meeting again with all those people I'd spent 6 years of my childhood with, evoked many memories, but most importantly a warm feeling of belonging. For a few hours, it was as if I'd never left this familiar environment.

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Finally, after months of guilt, suboptimal time management and lots of plan cancelling, the dissertation, that Beast, is finished!

Computer uptime: 1 day and 17 hours. Human uptime: Same minus 6 hours sleep yesterday. But it has been worth it, I would't want to have it another week on my mind.

Time for bed, and tomorrow's a new day.

Maybe it's because in my head, my is already done, but I dreaded the spell-check before handing it in. How do you even do that in LaTeX, does the editor come with red underlining and right-click-suggestions like in Microsoft Word?

And then I read about . It turns out, it was on my system all along. Typing `aspell -c -t file.tex` was enough, nothing complicated, no program loading. Every correction is a single keystroke, and I never had to touch the mouse. In 5', I was done.

While writing the theoretical parts of my , I tried to maintain as serious and formal a tone as possible.

But now, while writing about the experiments' outcome of pitting AIs against each other, I feel more like a sports commentator. And, upon second inspection, my way of writing has shifted towards this mindset as well.

I think I'll leave it as is though. There's enough dry literature out there already; it's nice to read something that takes itself less serious for a change.

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PSA: if a user habitually boosts stuff you don't want to see, you can turn off boosts just for them without unfollowing them

view their profile in the regular masto UI and you'll see a "Hide boosts from X" in the hamburger menu

this can make the whole experience a lot less annoying, but it's not well-known!

I'm currently writing my dissertation in , which I'm trying to learn in parallel. It is a long, arduous process, albeit an accelerating one.

One unexpected side-effect of typesetting the mathematical equations is that I actually get to learn how all the symbols are called in English.

So far I've only been taught in Greek, and even within an English text I mentally register the symbols using the Greek word - so up until now, I never had to learn the English terms.

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The I read in May was "Desert Flower", by Waris .

I didn't know what to expect; a rural African tale, or a rags-to-riches supermodel story. It turned out to be both, but thanks to Dirie's description of her view I never felt any dissonance between the two worlds.

Still, it is remarkable that these two worlds coexist. We're used to books taking us to exotic places, but they're either fictional or set in the past. Perhaps the world is still a little bigger than it appears to be.