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Engineering Manager / Trail Runner / Budapest, Hungary

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Kedvenc Mindenem a Biciklim

I was shown a new route to/from work yesterday evening that takes me through a river island instead of the embankment of the Danube. No traffic or lights, just trees and the occasional jogger for five to ten minutes, depending on how much I want to hurry. Soundtrack by the birds and the pair of Vittoria Rubinos. A much welcome change offering moments of true serenity at a time when it’s most needed.

24 óra

Mostanában az a helyzet, hogy képtelenség mindent belezsúfolni a rendelkezésre álló időbe. Úgyhogy átveszem Brainoiz módszerét:

“Ha ez egy tisztességes blog lenne, a következő dolgokról írtam volna az utóbbi időben:”

– a tény, hogy egyre kevésbé tudják megzavarni a nyugalmam olyan események, amelyekről korábban hosszú blogbejegyzésnyiket hisztiztem volna, például amikor egy nemrégi pénteken nem csak az eső kezdett el vigasztalanul zuhogni, de a biciklim is egy hátsó defekttel köszöntött a munkanap végén, pedig épp nagyon siettem valahová;

– azon sem tudtam magam szignifikánsan felbosszantani, hogy a MÁV csak az utolsó pillanatban a hangosbemondón keresztül értesítette az utazóközönséget, hogy más útvonalon megy a vonat, aminek a folyományaként szépen komótosan megkerültük az egész XIV. kerületet, hogy jó sokat késve végül befussunk a Keletibe;

– kaptam egy nagyon jó könyvet kölcsön, aminek hatására egészen sokáig fent maradtam olvasni, hogy befejezzem, pedig ilyesmi már elég régen nem fordult elő, maximum World of Warcraft miatt, ami azért nem ugyanaz;

– a cégtől tragikus hirtelenséggel elment az időközben barátommá lett munkatársam, meglepetésszerűen extra projektekkel bombáznak, így aztán már nem igazán tudok negyed órát lecsípni a dologidőből sem, hogy ide írjak, valamint rengeteget kell magyaráznom az éppen betanuló újaknak, ami egyébként érdekes feladat, csak iszonyú fárasztó.

BAM

BAM is “bringázz a munkába” which translates to “go to work by bicycle”. It is a joint project of the Hungarian Cyclists’ Club and the Ministry of National Development. Every spring and autumn – this time between 4 April and 8 May – people who ride a bike to work at least eight times are eligible to win prizes.

People can log their journeys on the website, join up with their colleagues to form company teams and compete with each other. Cyclists can indicate if there was rain on a particular day or if they got a flat tire.

Admirable the initiative may be the website itself is barely passable. The menu system and site structure is convoluted and unintuitive, the whole thing looks a decade old. The social aspect is severely lacking, for example I can’t check on my own teammates or find out how much they ride every day. There isn’t any option to invite people either, or at least I haven’t found one. Social media integration is limited to a Facebook app but its functionality stops at offering bragging rights for distance traveled. It’s ugly as hell and I couldn’t make it work either.

A shame really, because there are so many great possibilities here, as the Chromaroma project proved. If anything, riding the bicycle to work makes a perfect candidate for gamification. The whole project has been running since 2007, it’s high time to make it more enticing. Prizes are great but there could be an achievement system with award badges. Foursquare integration also comes to mind where routes are calculated from start and endpoint check-ins. People with smartphones could opt to use GPS apps to track their journeys. Monetization would be possible via targeted cycling accessory offers, etc.

Anyway, so far this month I traveled 128 km by bike which burnt 2580 calories (so little, compared to running). If I’d had a car I wouldn’t have needed to buy 10 Euro worth of gas and would have prevented 24 kg of CO2 from getting into the air.

The Device Has Been Modified

9.00 Reading tweet: Now Available - Portal 2
9.01 Firing up Steam
9.01 Decrypting Portal 2 game files
9.20 Decryption stuck at 33%
9.21 Restarting Steam, decryption finished
9.22 Downloading and installing Portal 2 update
9.25 Minimum requirements not met: requires 10.6.7: continue anyway
9.26 This game requires 10.6.7, this time no continue anyway option
9.27 Downloading 10.6.7
9.28 Giving up, going to work
9.48 Resignedly listening to The Device Has Been Modified on loop
[audio:http://sesam.hu/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Victims_of_Science_-_The_Device_Has_Been_Modified.mp3|titles=The Device Has Been Modified]

Of horses and men

Plans fall through, don’t they? I got ill on last Thursday and I’m still on antibiotics since then. This week every day there was some kind of meeting or event in the evenings so I couldn’t go running. Also as a result of leaving home at half past eight and getting back at close to midnight I couldn’t make myself wake up early for a morning run before getting to work either. 9-to-5 really doesn’t give much room for anything else it seems. (Yes, I know I’m lucky and everyone else works 15 hours a day.)