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Monthly Archives: February 2018

When Lola is happily relaxing, she lies on her back with her belly exposed and no worry in the world.

Often she stretches and yawns just like a human and raises her front paw into the air as if she’s ready to fly off like Buzz Lightyear going to infinity and beyond.

Lola loves to lie on her back. When she stretches, she raises one front leg into the air.

Lola loves to lie on her back. When she stretches, she raises one front leg into the air.

It’s the cutest thing. 🙂

Buzz Lightyear doing the To infinity and beyond!

Buzz Lightyear doing the “To infinity and beyond!”

 

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The problem with computers is that somehow us humans ended up having to learn how to command a machine.

If a PC is really supposed to help us, it’d be programmed to speak human to us.

 

Luckily thanks to customer centricity and it’s broader acceptance in all aspects of business, human to machine interfaces are improving.

Here a great example how to avoid technical jargon with the typical error 404 code and reassure your users with a customised message that it wasn’t their fault:

Something didn't work. Instead of technical jargon, the user is being reassured: "It’s not you. It’s us. Give it another try, please."

Something didn’t work. Instead of technical jargon, the user is being reassured: “It’s not you. It’s us. Give it another try, please.”

 

 

Sometimes you take a funny snap that triggers some comical associations:

A snapshot from the beach: Gigi looks like she is grinning at me with her mischievous triangular eyes, tiny floppy ears, wide toothed mouth and long pink tongue.

A snapshot from the beach: Gigi looks like she is grinning at me with her mischievous triangular eyes, tiny floppy ears, wide toothed mouth and long pink tongue.

 

This pic somewhat reminds me of Disney’s Stitch:

Disney's "Lilo & Stitch": Stitch with his tongue hanging out - enamel pin

Disney’s “Lilo & Stitch”: Stitch with his tongue hanging out – enamel pin

 

Especially as Gigi has more than just her looks in common with this naughty little creature. 😉

 

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SAfm's weekly Radio Drama is worth a listen.

SAfm’s weekly Radio Drama is worth a listen.

 

On Saturday evening at 7pm I listen to SAfm’s radio play. If you haven’t heard it yet, I highly recommend it:

 

Mostly the story is quite good and if it is weak, the high quality production makes up for it.

The sound effects are great! They once had a ghost story and the audio execution of the ghost transferring messages was giving me goosebumps.

Sometimes the storyline can be a bit predictable, but that only means the story is solid.

Be rest assured SABC will throw in the odd bit of dialogue for political correctness, but why not take the opportunity for some ethically sound teachings here and then.

The voice actors are all excellent, drawing you in with their storytelling skills.

Every radio play addresses real life situations, refreshingly set in unexpected scenarios like science fiction voyages or golf course philosophy.

 

Since I stumbled across their radio play for the first time – about a police officer investigating a murder under a bridge in Cape Town – I’m trying to make time to listen to it.

 

What I love about podcasts is that you can still do productive things while listening, such as cooking, painting, photo editing, cleaning, gardening, knitting, jogging, the list is endless. TV in comparison is so lame, there’s not much you can do besides sitting in front of it.

So when the radio play comes on I know I can do something cool while listening to an entertaining story.

 

And these stories are coming from real people, as SAfm runs a competition open to anyone to submit radio plays. What a great way to keep storytelling alive.

 

Unfortunately SAfm is not providing any information on the weekly radio plays. So in true storytelling style, you got to listen closely, as you only get to hear it once.

 

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Review Antony Gormley Drawings at the British Museum

Review Antony Gormley Drawings at the British Museum

 

This review of Antony Gormley‘s Drawings at the British Museum was first published here: www.freewebs.com/creativecommunicationswrithings/Writhings/AntonyGormley.htm

 

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Starsky & Hutch are looking for a forever home. Please adopt these cuties.

Starsky & Hutch are looking for a forever home. Please adopt these cuties.

 

We don’t know much about Starsky & Hutch. They were rescued from a street hawker as puppies – undernourished, neglected, full of ticks.

 

It’s easy to assume they’re brothers, and they do look similar: Both have huge ears, a friendly round snout, a somewhat curly tail, are of similar size and have the same light tan colour.

But then of course, they’re also very different: Starsky has black mixed into his coat and is of stocky build, reminding a bit of a Rottweiler. Hutch is plain tan, but has black coming out in this tail which ends in a white tip, he is a bit lighter on his feet, looking more like an Africanis.

 

Maybe they are brothers from another father?

 

Dogs are not monogamous, and their polygamy can go as far as polyandry where a female can mate with several males during her estrus.

If you ever wondered about the size of your dog’s bollocks – it’s because they mate (with) a lot, just like rats and lions.

 

So it’s very well possible that dog litters can have more than one father. That could explain why Starsky & Hutch are brothers, but look quite differently: They’re actually half-brothers.

 

Either way, even if they weren’t blood related, these two are certainly brothers in spirit. They’ve always been together and love and watch out for each other that it melts your heart.

That’s why we hope they can stay together and find a forever home that is big-hearted enough for the two of them. ♥ Please adopt these two cuties! Kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

#AdoptDontShop

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Wait what? But that’s already past! Why didn’t I hear about it?

After the event and still "Awaiting an update on Safer Internet Day 2018 activities."

After the event and still “Awaiting an update on Safer Internet Day 2018 activities.”

Well, maybe because the Safer Internet Day (SID) initiative is still “Awaiting an update on Safer Internet Day 2018 activities” from the South Africa Safer Internet Day Committee – Film and Publication Board.

And there’s no reference whatsoever to the Safer Internet Day 2018 on the Film and Publication Board website: http://www.fpb.org.za/press-statements

 

The only reference I could find googling was this PR info, published on 6 Feb late afternoon: Google partners with FPB to inform kids on Safer Internet Day.

There are a few more mentions, but only from tech publications.

 

This might give an idea why there’s such a digital divide in South Africa: The content it would take to create awareness – if it exists, it’s still not being spread to reach its audience.

Perhaps a bit of VAC could help?

 

The good news is, there’s always another one: The next Internet Safety Day will take place on Tuesday, 5 February 2019.

 

In the meantime, you can still pledge your support of Internet Safety in SA: http://internetsafety.org.za

 

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Jungle Track at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre ~ Sepilok, Sandakan: Sabah Borneo

Jungle Track at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre ~ Sepilok, Sandakan: Sabah Borneo

 

Image from JourneyMalaysia.com: “This is the jungle at it’s most pristine. It can get hot and muggy and then there could be a thunderstorm in the next instance. And which ever way, your clothes will take forever to dry. Nights can get a little chilly especially during the rainy season. And when the rains come, leeches are aplenty. The jungle is unforgiving and yet it is so enchanting, it may sometimes leave you breathless.”

 

When in the rainforest, you do a little walk, right? Or trail, to be correct: You do a little – or longer – trail.

So off I go, making sure I’m ticking all the boxes of things to do: Jungle trail to the water hole – tick!

 

It’s indeed a trail with mangroves growing upside down: roots that look like a labyrinth of branches.

But signage was good and when else do you get the chance to walk a rain forest track.

 

So I was in good spirits when I met a forester who explained me all sorts of things including that the jungle is full of leeches.

 

And that’s how I found out that I have a phobia for leeches! I can’t stand any sort of parasite, especially ticks, so the thought of leeches set me instantly on high alert.

 

It was the weirdest thing: Where I had just hopped innocently like little red riding hood, I now stared at the ground and trees in total panic, trying to spot these evil leeches, still hopping, but this time out of fear of touching the ground for too long.

Every little itch was an imaginary leech and every little pinch was another one.

 

The good thing was that this sent me flying back to the resort, as the sun was already setting and I had to make up on time.

 

When I finally reached the safety of the camp I told my roomates the shocker of the leech alert and Kellie, being Australian, just laughed: She knew how to handle them and helped me get over it:

She had to take my wet and muddy shoes off, as I could not bear looking at my feet in case there was a leech attached to it!

The first foot was fine, but the next: Oh my gosh! A leech!

 

If she hadn’t told me I’d have never known. In fact I still don’t know, because she did a quick trick by lighting a match and holding it close to the leech and it fell off and I never felt a thing.

I realised it wasn’t a big deal and remembered how leeches are supposed to be good for you, as they’re thinning your blood.

 

After a nice hot shower I was as good as new again.

 

So there you go, in one day I learnt about my leech phobia and how to overcome it.

 

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Walkway at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre ~ Sepilok, Sandakan: Sabah Borneo

Walkway at Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre ~ Sepilok, Sandakan: Sabah Borneo

 

22/03/06 Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.

Jungle Trek to Sepilok Jungle Water Hole. (Full story to follow soon, just this much: I totally freaked out about these leeches, ah, no way, I so cannot stand them!)

Nice eve with the girls, this time joined by Francis and Chuck.

 

Originally published on Saturday, Mar 25 2006, 07:45:35 am, here: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1501929.

 

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It’s a simple thing to remember:

The day after the event everything advertising the event is outdated.

 

Yet, we somehow always only ever seem to plan up to the event.

 

But the day(s) after the event are just as crucial:

 

As the reviews are pouring in, photos being uploaded, colleagues telling their stories at work, most people who missed the event and hear about it afterwards would probably like to make sure they catch the next opportunity of such an event.

 

However, very often I find event pages leading up to an event stay frozen on their “Register now!” hype:

The day after the event visitors to the event page are still invited to register for the event.

The day after the event visitors to the event page are still invited to register for the event.

The registration of course no longer works as you have to frustratingly find out when clicking the button.

"The event has completed and registration is now closed." Ok, so what next? Registration is not possible, Log-in is not applicable for first time visitors.

“The event has completed and registration is now closed.” Ok, so what next? Registration is not possible, Log-in is not applicable for first time visitors.

 

A missed chance of connecting with the people who would make a repeat of the event possible.

 

A tip to make the best out of your event is to think one step further:

 

After the event is Before the event.

 

If you treat the day after the event like the first day of the lead-up to a new event, you run little risk of leaving your event promotion material outdated.

 

Even if you don’t intend to repeat the event, this mindset makes you consider what comes next and can help you cater for those who have missed it or attendees who are checking back for more information.

 

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The dogs are having a jol at Milnerton Beach when all of a sudden Gigi spots a seal swimming in the waves!

The dogs are having a jol at Milnerton Beach when all of a sudden Gigi spots a seal swimming in the waves!

 

It was Gigi who spotted the seal first:

 

She was actually so excited, she ran into the water towards it!

 

It looked like she was barking at the waves when all of a sudden the head of the seal popped up out of the ocean, looked at us for a moment there and then continued to surf the breaking waves.

 

 

This was the first time I ever watched a seal surfing the waves, having so much fun.

 

The dogs were all like: Us too! But they didn’t venture into the deep waters. The waves of the atlantic ocean are something to reckon with!

 

Well, unless you’re a seal that is.

 

Because this seal was just enjoying itself, not having a care in the world, also not about the barking dogs.

 

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Yungbulakang Palace in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China by Yumian Deng on Bing Homepage 12 Feb 2018.

Yungbulakang Palace in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China by Yumian Deng on Bing Homepage 12 Feb 2018.

 

I really have nothing good to say about Bing, from the name to its performance.

 

But.

 

One thing they do incredibly well is choosing a photo of the day.

 

If you enjoy photography, and have the time and data, head over to bing.com and flick through their images.

 

And if you know something else that’s good about Bing, kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de

 

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Handsome rattie boy Poeksie! And yes, that's his balls bulging out from beneath his bum.

Handsome rattie boy Poeksie! And yes, that’s his balls bulging out from beneath his bum.

 

Rattie boys are much more placid than girls, but you wouldn’t think so looking at the package they carry beneath their tail: Male rats, or bucks, have proportionally huge testicles, I mean, they’re almost as big as their head!

 

That’s because of their mating behaviour: If there are many rats around, females, or does, can breed with many males. This is called polyandry and results in sperm competition: If multiple males mate with a female, it’s up to their sperm to finish the race. And a good chance that one of your guys makes it to the eggs is if you deposit a lot of them. Hence the big balls, they hold a lot of sperm.

 

There is a direct relationship between testicle size and sperm competition, so this applies to all animals with a polygynandrous mating system such as lions and dogs.

 

So there you go, rattie boys are little stud farms on their own, but having big balls does not stop them from being absolutely adorable!

 

Rats Make Great Pets 🙂

 

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Sandakan Sabah Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

Sandakan Sabah Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

 

 21/03/06 Sandakan – Sepilok

Flew out to Sandakan mega early in the morning.

After checking out all the options, I decided to stay at the Sepilok Jungle Resort. A wise decision, as I met the most nicest girls: Kellie was staying in the same room with me, we shared a dorm. Jen and Melissa were also roommates and us four ended up being a great travel group, having a lot of laughs, sitting together at dinner.

Hitchhiked to Sandakan. Shock! Terrible city centre, dirty, ugly, nothing interesting to see. Had a curry in the city, a decent meal is about 5RM, that’s less than 1 pound. Missed the last bus back to Sepilok, but hitched a ride from a nice guy who brought me all the way there after I paid for his petrol. A journey of 45 mins.

Heaps of laughs back at Sepilok with Kellie, Jen and Melissa.

 

Originally published on Saturday, Mar 25 2006, 07:42:45 am here: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1501927

 

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Movie review "Fuehrer Ex" by Winfried Bonengel, 2002

Movie review “Fuehrer Ex” by Winfried Bonengel, 2002

 

Movie review of “Fuehrer Ex” originally written in 2002 for Creative Week.

 

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Have you heard of coffee cupping?

It’s the method of smelling and tasting the aromas of freshly brewed coffee.

 

I’m not a coffee person, I drink tea in litres every day, and when I have coffee, then with lots of milk.

 

The more interesting it is to actually smell and taste coffee the way it’s done professionally.

If you get the opportunity I recommend to at least witness professional coffee tasting, it opens up the world of coffee:

 

Different coffees grouped by country of origin / plantation are presented in cups lined up on a large table. If you like, you can smell the coffee grounds before brewing, how often do you get the chance to compare so many different coffees.

Different coffees are presented in a line of cups and freshly brewed for #CoffeeCupping.

Different coffees are presented in a line of cups and freshly brewed for #CoffeeCupping.

 

The coffees are freshly brewed in the cup. Pouring the water over the coffee is an art in itself:

 

While the coffees are brewing, each coffee is being presented and described to give context and background:

 

For the freshest and most intense smelling experience, you get close to the coffee cup with your nose, and then break the coffee crust, pushing it away from you with a spoon. It’s like the coffee aromas are protected beneath the coffee grounds floating on top and you get the best smell the moment you crack through this thick crust of coffee:

 

Then foam and remaining coffee grounds are removed from the coffee with two spoons:

 

Now the coffee is ready for tasting. Just like tasting wine there’s a lot of slurping and swooshing the coffee around in the mouth going on:

 

It is absolutely fascinating to watch a professional coffee tasting, even if you don’t participate in it yourself.

I for one am inclined from now on to try the coffee black before I add milk, to actually really taste the coffee unperturbed by the sweetness of the milk.

 

 

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My pet rat Milka shows me her behind.

My pet rat Milka shows me her behind.

This is my pet rat Milka, as she sits on our bar stool in our kitchen, looking down the edge of the seat, pondering.

I just love this shot.

#PortRATure

 

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Check out this long url linking to this photo! It contains much more info than just the photo url, so make sure you clean it up first before you share it.

Check out this long url linking to this photo! It contains much more info than just the photo url, so make sure you clean it up first before you share it.

 

A url is not just a url in times of digital tracking.

 

After clicking on a link, chances are the url contains lots of cryptic tracking code.

 

An example in Facebook:

 

If I want to share a photo, the photo url can be a long tail containing more information than just the link to the picture. This could even be sensitive information, but is definitely unnecessary, and thus rather annoying:

https://web.facebook.com/pg/RatsMakeGreatPets/photos/a.508095925914082.1073741831.489807454409596/1663840230339640/?type=3&theater&notif_t=feedback_reaction_generic&notif_id=1517478207624645

 

Look at this long url! It tells me the Facebook page, the photo album ID, the FB page ID, the actual photo ID, some stuff in between, the viewing mode, some notification info and some more cryptic code.

 

On top of it, Facebook shows my browsing device, in this case ‘web’. However, some apps don’t recognise ‘web’ and what if I want to share this link with someone who is not using a desktop computer to browse Facebook, but their mobile phone.

 

In addition, Facebook adds the identification for a Facebook page ‘pg’, which is basically superfluous code that just stretches the url even longer.

 

Instead, this link gets you to the photo just as well: https://www.facebook.com/RatsMakeGreatPets/photos/1663840230339640

 

Once you click on it, Facebook might extend this link to their long url, but at least the url you use to share is neat, short, to the point, and does not run the risk to reveal more than you had intended.

 

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Kuala Lumpur

Kuala Lumpur

 

20/03/06 Kuala Lumpur

Checked out ‘Little India’ with all it’s markets and blinky kitschy stuff.

Went on a ‘Jungle in the City’ tour: there are several hectares of jungle around KL tower and they give you a free tour, fantastic!

Went up KL tower, amazing views!

 

 

Originally published on Saturday, Mar 25 2006, 07:35:20 am here: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1501925

 

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Review of German movie "Der Schuh des Manitu" ("Manitou's Shoe") by Michael "Bully" Herbig, 2002

Review of German movie “Der Schuh des Manitu” (“Manitou’s Shoe”) by Michael “Bully” Herbig, 2002

 

Movie review of “Der Schuh des Manitu” originally written in October 2002 for Creative Week.

 

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