See below for other notes that would fit in this section as well.

The Price of a Divorce

[...] On the financial settlement, or [Brexit] bill, [Theresa May] has conceded that Britain will meet its terms in full, implying a total payment that will amount to some €40-45 billion ($47-53 billion), albeit spread over many years. Source:

The Price of Oil

May 1980 114.23 NA
July 1986 25.01 (/ (- 25.01 114.23) 114.23) -0.78
October 1990 63.65 (/ (- 63.65 25.01) 25.01) 1.545
December 1998 16.28 (/ (- 16.28 63.65) 63.65) -0.744
June 2008 144.78 (/ (- 144.78 16.28) 16.28) 7.893
February 2009 43.66 (/ (- 43.66 144.78) 144.78) -0.698
April 2011 115.76 (/ (- 115.76 43.66) 43.66) 1.65
Source: WTI Prices since January 1946

2016-01-21 Some Music

2015-12-05 Cottages in the UK

2015-09-17 Chinese Stocks

Tencent Holdings Ltd

A good summary can be found here. Dividends paid can be found here.

Alibaba, Baidu, JD etc.

2015-09-03 Speeds of Data Transmission

Ethernet (September 19, 2015)

I measured the speed to transfer data from computer Alice to computer Bob in my home network. Alice and Bob are connected by ethernet via a router/switch. I measured 10 MB/s (773 MB in 76 seconds). The command used to transfer the data was 'scp'.

USB (December 16, 2015)

December 16, 2015: I tried to copy (unfortunately the copy job didn't finish) 5.5 GB (5500 MB) of data from the hard disk in my tower to the SD card in my Android phone. In the dialog window of the copy tool it stated 5.5 MB/s (5500 KB/s).

October 17, 2015: I measured the speed to transfer data from a usb connected hard disk to the hard disk in my tower. I measured 31 MB/s. This is about the speed of USB 2.0. The command used to transfer the data was 'cp'.

October 17, 2015: I copied from hard disk to USB using rsync. This was the speed.

sent 153552844322 bytes  received 5448571 bytes  13879720.96 bytes/sec 
total size is 162946826277  speedup is 1.06


sent 6819108554 bytes  received 3248160 bytes  6785039.00 bytes/sec 
total size is 11094800633  speedup is 1.63

Disk to Disk (September 3, 2015)

Next, I measured the speed to transfer data from a hard disk A (/dev/sdd) to the hard disk B (/dev/sda) in my tower. I measured 97 MB/s. The command used to transfer the data was 'cp'. Some information on the disks follows below.

# smartctl -a /dev/sda | grep "^ATA"
ATA Version is:   8
ATA Standard is:  Exact ATA specification draft version not indicated

# smartctl -a /dev/sdb | grep "^ATA"
ATA Version is:   8
ATA Standard is:  Exact ATA specification draft version not indicated

# smartctl -a /dev/sdc | grep "^ATA"
ATA Version is:   8
ATA Standard is:  Exact ATA specification draft version not indicated

# smartctl -a /dev/sdd | grep "^ATA"
ATA Version is:   9
ATA Standard is:  Exact ATA specification draft version not indicated
Of course I am a bit disappointed by that. I should take a closer look at that.

Disk to Disk (September 9, 2015)

Today, I used the 'rsync' command to copy 151 GB from a hard disk A (/dev/sdd) to the hard disk B (/dev/sda) in my tower. 'rsync' reported

sent 151619643580 bytes received 5471149 bytes  14703041.43 bytes/sec total size is 160886170828speedup is 1.06

Data Transmission in Mobile Communication (December 27, 2014)

I am in a chalet in Grächen (Switzerland) and measuring a network speed as shown below.

$ dd if=/dev/zero bs=1M count=1k | ssh me@someotherhost dd of=/dev/null
32+0 Datensätze ein
31+0 Datensätze aus
32505856 Bytes (33 MB) kopiert, 1808,04 s, 18,0 kB/s
My modem (mobile phone) indicates that it is using EDGE technology. Since this connection was to slow for my needs I bought a 'Easy Smart' sim car dfrom Swisscom. Network speed then went up to around 100 kB/s. According to Swisscoms prospectus maximum download speed for 'Easy Smart' contracts is 7,2 Mbit/s. A technician from Swisscom told me that there would be a LTE antenna in reach. This antenna has according to this technician a theoretical speed of 100Mbit/s and a 'practical' one of 20Mbit/s.

During my learning session on 'Mobilfunk' a stumbled over a table which summarizes 'Mobilfunk' technologies (source: Elektrotechnik-Kompendium).

Generation Technik Übertragung Bandbreite
1G AMPS analog, leitungsvermittelt -
2G GSM digital, leitungsvermittelt 9,6 kBit/s
2.5G HSCSD digital, leitungsvermittelt 57,6 kBit/s
GPRS digital, paketvermittelt 115 kBit/s
2.75G EDGE digital, paketvermittelt 236 kBit/s
3G UMTS digital, paketvermittelt 384 kBit/s
3.5G HSPA digital, paketvermittelt 14,4 MBit/s
3.9G LTE digital, paketvermittelt 150 MBit/s
4G LTE Advanced digital, paketvermittelt 1 GBit/s

2015-08-22 Castle Research

Goal of this project is to build a castle for children to play with.

Design Tools


Castle Architectures

Source: Aspex Software


Yeahh, I designed a tower wall using LibreCAD. The coordinates of this tower are (10,10), (160,10), (160,253) and (10,253).

Raw Materials

2015-07-01 Greek Dept

I found these numbers in Tages-Anzeiger. That is why text is in German. They say that they got the numbers from 'Open Europe'. I do not really know what 'Open Europe' is. I definitely like the word 'open' anyway. The numbers show who the creditor is.

Die griechischen Schulden belaufen sich auf Milliarden Euro 323 Mrd. Währungsfonds: 32, Private Gläubiger: 50, Griechische Staatsbank, ausländische Banken, Diverse: 16, Griechische Banken: 11, Europäische Zentralbank: 20, Eurozone: 194 - jeweils in Milliarden (billions) Euro.

Die Mrd. Euro 194 aus der Eurozone können wiederum aufgeteilt werden auf Frankreich: 42, Deutschland: 56, Italien: 37, Spanien: 25, Niederlande: 12, Belgien: 7, Österreich: 6, Finnland: 4 und Diverse: 5 - natürlich jeweils wiederum in Milliarden (billions) Euro.

2015-02-13 Greek Dept

IMF €25 billion
ECB €27 billion
European governments €195 billion
Delta €68 billion
Total €315 billion

The bail-outs Greece received in 2010 and 2012 shifted its debts to new creditors but, despite losses imposed on some private-sector lenders, did little to lower them. At the end of 2009 Greece owed €301 billion, then around 127% of GDP, mainly to the private sector. Today [February, 2015] it owes around €315 billion (175% of GDP), all but €70 billion of which comes from public lenders. The country’s new creditors are the IMF (€25 billion), the ECB (€27 billion) and European governments (€195 billion). Source:

2015-06-13 Database Design Tool

I haven't found a decent database designer tool for my Debian system yet. Here's a link to get started: DB Design Tools

2015-05-23 Restaurant Recommendations for Zurich

The list below is ordered from 'rather posh' to casual. For folks that just want to experience traditional food Weisser Wind is your best bet.

  1. Jules Verne for a drink
  2. la salle
  3. Brasserie Lipp
  4. Clouds
  5. Fischerstube
  6. Hiltl
  7. les halles
  8. Rheinfelder Bierhalle, recommended dish: 'Cordon Bleu'
  9. yooji's for Sushi
  10. Frau Gerolds Garten
  11. Helvti Diner

2015-05-20 Bit-coin

Today, I am doing some reading on bit-coin. While reading I came along the fallowing links:

To me seems to be the mother site of the bit-coin project.

I successfully installed Armory on my (still) Debian Wheezy system:

dpkg -i armory_0.92.3_ubuntu-32bit.deb
To me Amory seems to be a software that brings you up and running with bit-coin fast.

Key Statements in Satoshi's Paper


2015-05-20 Responsive Web design (RWD)

The other day someone in #web said that nowadays one should build websites according to the responsive design principle. A quite popular RWD framework seems to be Bootstrap.

2015-01-31 - Forex Trading Hours and Market Data

Forex market welcomes traders 24 hours a day. Forex market opens on Sunday 5 pm EST (10:00 pm GMT), closes on Friday 5 pm EST (10:00 pm GMT). Source.

By looking for forex market data I stumble over

2015-01-09 - Password Hygiene

Otto Kekäläinen has written a nice article titled 'Password Hygiene' (link). In particular he recommends a program called KeePass to store passwords.

2014-12-04 Web Application Firewalls

Here come some notes I took while reading an article on web application firewall by Gartner.

For url encryption: see

For positive security model: see

Moreover Ergon maintains a glossary which will be found here (

Security Buzzwords

2014-11-25 Cocktail con Limoncello

Today I received a recipe for 'Cocktail con Limoncello' from Fred Lachmann. Voilà.

2014-11-21 TopTradersUnplugged

My friend Marco Schai of Bluequote recommended listening to TopTradersUnplugged. There, in an interview Roy Niederhoffer recommends the book 'Thinking Fast and Slow' by Daniel Kahneman.

2014-11-01 Financial Terms

Mark To Market (MTM)

1. A measure of the fair value of accounts that can change over time, such as assets and liabilities. Mark to market aims to provide a realistic appraisal of an institution's or company's current financial situation.

2. The accounting act of recording the price or value of a security, portfolio or account to reflect its current market value rather than its book value.

3. When the net asset value (NAV) of a mutual fund is valued based on the most current market valuation.


Accrued Interest

1. A term used to describe an accrual accounting method when interest that is either payable or receivable has been recognized, but not yet paid or received. Accrued interest occurs as a result of the difference in timing of cash flows and the measurement of these cash flows.

2. The interest that has accumulated on a bond since the last interest payment up to, but not including, the settlement date.


2014-10-24 Finding Hardware for GNU / Linux


2014-10-18 HTTP Basic Authentication with nginx

$ # Add 'location /restricted/ {...}' as shwon below.
$ cat /etc/nginx/nginx.conf

        server {

               location /restricted/ {
                        auth_basic "closed folder";
                        auth_basic_user_file conf/htpasswd;

$ pwd
$ mkdir restricted
$ cd !$
cd restricted
$ echo "Hallo Welt" > index.html
$ echo "user:`openssl passwd mysecret`" > htpasswd
$ su
# mkdir /etc/nginx/conf
# mv htpasswd /etc/nginx/conf/
# ps aux | grep nginx
root     3187 0.0 0.2 10120 1040 ? Ss 18:53 0:00 nginx: master process /usr/sbin/nginx
www-data 3188 0.0 0.2 10280 1328 ? S  18:53 0:00 nginx: worker process
# chown root:www-data /etc/nginx/conf/htpasswd
# chmod 640 /etc/nginx/conf/htpasswd
# /etc/init.d/nginx restart

2014-10-04 Meat direct from Farmer in Switzerland

lamb, one hours drive from Zurich
various suppliers of lamb

2014-08-08 Hot The Agile Concept

About a month ago Mischa Ramseyer explained 'The Agile Concept' to me at Agile Breakfast Zürich by drawing the picture below.

2014-07-13 Hot Technologies

2014-06-03 Survival of the European Union

To survive the European Union has to

2014-05-12 Agile Modelling

Today I found a page which might be good: Agile Modelling

2014-03-29 Chinese Language

Please do appologize that I do not know better than just call it 'Chinese Language' to what comes next.中
翻译 - translate, interpret, translator, interpreter
英语 - English
文言文 - classical style of writing
粤语 - Cantonese
中文- the Chinese language; Chinese
名 - name
法 - method
人 - people
平民党 - Peoples Party
业 - industry
商 - business
新闻纸 - newsprint
2005年至2010年 - From 2005 to 2010
第 - article
第一 - the first
第二 - the second
第三 - the third

Next, I try to translate this: 哲学与人文科学. 哲 - [zhé] 学 - science 哲学 - philosophy
与 - and
人文科学 - humanities

On I learnt
基础科学 - basic engineering
哲学与人文科学 - philosophy and humanities
工程科技 - engineering technology
信息科技 - information technology
农业科技 - agriculture
社会科学 - social science
医药卫生 - medicine health
经济管理 - economic, management of the economy

2014-03-24, The Domain Name System

Updated: 2nd of April 2014
Pictured below are notes I took while reading about 'The Domain Name System' on

2014-03-03, Change Local Admin Password on Windows 7

Today I had to change the password of the local administrator on a Windows 7 powered laptop. I did that like so:

$password = convertto-securestring "pwd comes here" -asplaintext -force
$cred = new-object -typename System.Management.Automation.PSCredential -argumentlist "administrator",$password
Start-Process PowerShell -Cred $cred
# Next, a new powershell window opens.
# In this window type
net user administrator *
# ... and reset your password.

2014-02-08, Getting to Yes

Nicolas Schwotzer of treibauf AG introduced me to something called "Das Harvard-Konzept". According to Wikipedia the whole idea was first mentioned in a book by Roger Fisher and William L. Ury and is based on five propositions:

Update on 16th of May 2014: Stephen Covey summarizes 'Getting to Yes' in his book 'The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People' as follows: They [Fisher and Ury] suggest that the essence of principled negotiation is to separate the person from the problem, to focus on interests and not on positions, to invent options for mutual gain, and to insist on objective criteria - some external standard or principle that both parties can buy into. He argues that the underlying principles of 'Getting to Yes' are in harmony with his 'Win/Win' approach. To get to 'Win/Win' solutions he suggests following four-step process:

  1. First, see the problem form the other point of view. Really seek to understand and to give expression to the needs and concerns of the other party as well as or better than they can themselves.
  2. Second, identify the key issues and concerns (not positions) involved.
  3. Third, determine what results would constitute a fully acceptable solution.
  4. Fourth, identify possible new options to achieve those results.

2013-12-11, Diamonds

USA and EZB (The European Central Bank) are printing money as hell. Since I was an Economist in former life I am wondering when inflation will start eating away my wife's savings. This brought me to the idea turning my wifes savings into a diamond. As I had no clou about diamonds I started to explore the subject on the internet. I am stumbling over names like Star of India 563.35-carat or 112.67g according to or The Pink Star 59.60-carat sold for $ 83 million in November 2013 according to

Update on 8th of February 2014: Star of India is no diamond but a sapphire and GIA maintains a rather informative page on gems. A diamond can roughly be valued according to the four Cs: color, clarity, cut and carat weight.

2013-12-07, World's financial assets

According to The Economist the world's financial assets are $225 trillions ($225 × 1012). It would be interesting to see how they got to that number. Did they sum up all stocks on all exchanges over the world including all publicly traded bonds?

2013-10-25, Veil of Ignorance

During past six months or so the concept of Veil of Ignorance was often subject of discussions I had. And, I honestly did not have a clear understanding of what this Veil of Ignorance is all about. So, today I did some digging about this idea. I came across a book called A Theory of Justice by John Rawls. In this book there is a chapter on it. And this chapter starts like below.

The idea of the original position is to set up a fair procedure so that principles agreed to will be just. The aim is to use the notion of pure procedural justice as a basis of theory. Somewhere we must nullify the effects of specific contingencies which put men at odds and tempt them to exploit social and natural circumstances to their own advantage. Now in order to do this I assume that the parties are situated behind a veil of ignorance. They do not know how the various alternatives will affect their own particular case and they are obliged to evaluate principles solely on the basis of general considerations.

2013-10-18, Edit Domain User Accounts on Windows

Today I stumbled over dsa.msc. By hitting this command in Window's command line one can CRUD domain users.

2013-10-12, USA's Debts

Current debt ceiling of USA is $16.7 trillion ($16.7 × 1012) and probably will be raised on 17th of October 2013. In comparison nominal GDP of Switzerland in 2012 is $632.4 billion ($632.4 × 109) and the one of USA is $15.685 trillion.

Update on 12th of February 2014: In yesterdays online edition of it reads Republican leaders backed away from a risky fiscal confrontation with the White House on Tuesday, relying almost entirely on votes from their Democratic opponents to pass a bill to increase the debt ceiling. The measure, which passed 221-201 in the House, lifts the US Treasury’s borrowing authority until March 2015, postponing any future showdowns until after November’s midterm elections. One assumes that the senat will pass the bill since democrats hold a majority there.

2013-10-11, Search Folder on MS System

Today I used the command below to search for a folder on a MS System using Powershell.

PS C:\> Get-ChildItem -Recurse -Force "RootFolderForSearch" \
| Where-Object { ($_.PSIsContainer -eq $true) \
-and ( $_.Name -like "NameOfFolderToSearch") } \
| Select-Object Name,FullName | Format-Table * -AutoSizePretemplate

2013-10-05, HTML 5

Today I did some research on books about HTML5. I came across an interesting article JavaScript and HTML5 Now. It is available for free at O'REILLY. Within this article the author pointed out some references.

2013-08-15, Resource Record hat so wie es auschaut einen netten Artike über Resource Records: Link.

# dig
;; ...snip        
;           IN      A

;; ANSWER SECTION:    20768   IN      A

Oben ist ein A-Resource-Record-Beispiel dargestellt. Ein solcher Record gibt Auskunft, welche IP-Adresse welchem DNS-Namen zugeordnet ist.

# dig -x
;; ...snip        
;     IN      PTR


Oben ist ein PTR-RR-Beispiel dargestellt. Ein solcher Record gibt Auskunft, welcher oder welche DNS-Namen welcher IP-Adresse zugeordnet sind.