Category: MyWorld

For this year, I wanted to take some time to write down some notes on things that I would like to prioritize in my life. Just as how WordPress is now putting the main efforts into three major focuses, I wanted to separate mine into three major focuses as well. For 2017, these are going to be health, contributing and relationships. This is the first post I have ever written like this, and for the most part it will be a list of things I want to pursue. I would like to be able to return to this post at any given time to remind myself of these things and also to write a summary by the end of the new year in relation to which of these goals I have accomplished, in which points I have improved and which I should probably put more effort into.

Health

A while ago I would have never thought that this focus is leading the list for 2017. And that is precisely why it now has to. I feel like I have cared way too little about my health in recent years, especially in 2016. Focussing on WordPress stuff and university duties, I was most of the time unwilling to spend additional time to work out or even prepare some good meals. While fitness has almost never been a significant part of my life, about three years ago I had a great time going to the gym regularly and eating clean, which made me feel much better generally. Some time between early and mid 2015 however this passion started to slowly vanish. I didn’t care too much about nutrition, and one of the worst things was that I was rarely motivated to cook up something great – resulting in eating a lot of either some unhealthy food at home or just too much food outside. I still play soccer twice a week, but this never made up those bad food habits. Consuming too much beer, as great as it is, added up to that. During my recent trip to the US I didn’t care at all about what I would eat – and I had done that during all of my trips there since they have some bad food and a specific brand of pop over there that I terribly love. This has not been a problem before since I had lived generally healthy, but now that it just added up to my general lack of health, it finally made me realize I need to improve things drastically. Now that I have the university (almost) out of my way, I think my efforts to improve that drastically are realistic, especially since I know I have done it once before. My goals are:

  • Do some sports every day. This would be alternating between going for a run (or bike ride) and building some muscle – only the days when I play soccer should be excluded. Obviously there will be times where it’s hard to perform even one of these two, for example when I’m at a WordCamp for a weekend. This is perfectly fine, but the general plan stands. There are some great workouts that take you only about 30 minutes and you can also go for a run in that same time. So I don’t wanna do anything too extreme, but I want to do it regularly. Really regularly.
  • Develop a more regular day routine during the week. While this has definitely improved in 2016, there’s still a lot of things to do. At least I don’t work at completely random times anymore (before it would be a day from 10am – 6pm, the other day suddenly from 8pm – 4am). But I still do not have a real routine. The end of 2016 I started waking up with an alarm at 8am, which already made me feel much better and more productive. However I would like to get up just a little earlier, at 7am, then work until 3 or 4pm, just as long so that I always have time and motivation left for my daily fitness routine. There will be a couple of days which have WordPress Slack meetings in the evenings, so these hours will add up to my work-time as well, just to consider this too. Having this routine also means going to bed at regulated times – I should probably aim for 11pm – at least never past midnight.
  • Eat better food. The first part of my health trip has losing weight as the primary goal. About three years ago I had more than 10kg less, and I want to get back to this. I know there’s always some bad food involved in life, and that’s good. But for at least January I would like to restrict myself completely to the clean and healthy stuff. Maybe I can stretch that period to last for another month, depending on how I feel about it. I definitely think doing this will improve my consciousness about how to eat healthy in general. I should probably do such an extreme month every once in a while to keep reminding myself, so that I don’t fall back into bad behavior as I did about two years ago. At some point hopefully eating healthy will just be a habit.
  • Drink less beer. Just like with food, at least January I will completely stay away from it. And then the general amount should get less afterwards too.
  • Do a short morning-routine of push-ups every day. This basically means after waking up I do some push-ups continuously until I feel like I cannot do any more. I have done that for a while, and this should continue. It means that even on a day where I for some reason can’t do any more sports, I at least have done something. And in long-term it helps for sure, although it only takes like 1 or 2 minutes.

Contributing

In early 2016 I really started contributing to WordPress core on a more regular basis. Before that my contributions were mostly in form of plugins, but I have recently put my efforts more into core instead of building open-source plugins (just some very small ones occasionally, plus possible core features that I would like to investigate). However, contributing to core has mostly happened whenever I felt like it. Especially during writing my Bachelor thesis for university I actually had quite a bit of time for contributing, since I had saved up some money before to be able to take time off work almost completely. But now I need to start earning some bucks again, so that leaves the question how much I time I can put into core contributions. They are a very high priority to me, and now as committer I wanna make sure to do my part in helping out. My goals are:

  • Grow as a contributor. This certainly is a very general goal, but I have learned so much during WordPress core contributions, and I would like to keep up the pace. WordPress shows you both good and bad things, but even the bad things in the end teach you how not to do it, so they all have their benefits. I also wanna try to be more critical, both of what I do and what others do. This might sound a little odd, but I feel like I often tend to not question my own ideas sufficiently and, on another note, accept other people’s decisions too easily. Don’t get me wrong here, I don’t want to become a troublemaker. I just want to improve in questioning things where appropriate.
  • Get a long-term multisite roadmap ready. We have talked about this in some occasions during the past few months, but our roadmap document is still merely a list of ideas. Together with the rest of the multisite contributors, I would like to work on an actual roadmap post for the make blog, which will highlight the features that we plan to work on, both in the short and the long run. While we have all these great ideas, many of which I’m sure will be in core some day, we now need to prioritize and figure out the way that working on these improvements makes the most sense.
  • Travel more. Now that my university studies are out of the way, I am free to work and contribute from wherever I want. While this is not exclusively related to contributing, travelling enables me to possibly attend more WordCamps around the globe and also to hang out with fellow contributors who live far away. The only trips that are certain at this point are Paris in June and Nashville in December, but I’m sure further plans will follow, and I cannot wait to explore more of this beautiful planet.
  • Figure out a way to do contribute on a sustainable level. I’m a freelancer and have never even measured how much of my work-time I put into core, but I need to find a good balance between open-source contributing and paid work, in terms of both time and finances. Whether through a higher income through paid work, some sponsored time or simply a better time management – I’m not sure how any of this is going to work, therefore I will investigate. I lead a relatively cheap life these days, but I know this is (unfortunately) not going to last forever. Therefore this is luckily not a too pressing issue, but I need some plan here sooner than later.

Relationships

This focus is very personal, so I will probably keep it short. I’m sure y’all don’t wanna know about all my crazy weird inner thoughts anyway. However, I would like to highlight what I mean with focussing on relationships here. I think I am sometimes a bit lazy when it comes to connecting with some of the people in my environment, some of my friends, and want to improve as a person here. My goals are:

  • Meet up more often with the people who live nearby, and call or at least text the people from further away more regularly. I would say I’m doing okay (not amazing though) when it comes to my very few best friends that matter to me the most. But sometimes I don’t put enough time into keeping the relationships with the other important people in my life healthy. Maybe because I’m thinking about my own stuff too much. Maybe because I’m too busy with work. This needs to change.
  • Collaborate on a new hobby. One of my best friends and I have started to produce some EDM recently as a hobby. It’s really fun, and I would like to put a little more time into this. Instead of just working on it randomly, I hope we can arrange one day every other week or so where we continue to work on it. While it’s just for fun, I think we both have high expectations for ourselves and want to get this good before eventually releasing it. Getting to that point is going to be a great challenge, and I’m sure it will improve the friendship as well.
  • Visit one of my other very good friends more often, who lives a couple hours away. Now that I’m free to work from wherever I want, I could even go there for a week or so (travel!). I have only visited him twice in the past 5 years which I feel is way too infrequent. He comes here more often since his parents live in town, but I truly feel like I owe him some visits as we don’t hang out enough due to the distance.

So this is my list of focuses for 2017. Maybe you have something similar, and if not, I hope I have encouraged you to think about your goals and write something up – a personal sheet, a blog post, whatever suits you (my sister created her personal keynote presentation!). I have never done this before, but just having written all these things down helped me figuring out my detailed goals, and I’m sure they will also remind me when I’m uncertain at some point. And now, let’s just end this with: Happy new year – may it be a great one for you! ❤️

Soundtrack of my Life

Music is a very important part of my life. I’m sure that is the case for many people, yet I wanted to explicitly mention it in this post. I listen to music during almost my entire work day, I have been playing piano since I was 8 years old and I also write songs occasionally and produce a few things using tools like Cubase and such. So yesterday I had the thought of looking back and thinking about the songs that I have listened to over all the years, songs that may even have shaped me in a way. I asked myself whether I could determine a song for every year that I associate the most with that time in my life. Things like that are just something I’m interested in, for example I’ve also been keeping track of my musical listening habits through Last.fm since 2007. It was also very nice to take some time to dive into old memories. So in this post I’m putting the list of songs out there. This is kind of a very personal post in some cases; maybe you’re just interested in such things the same way as I am, or you are curious about music recommendations, or you would like to know me better. For me the reason of writing this is that I simply want to keep track – after all, people used to call blogs weblogs, and that’s what I’m doing here – logging my favorite songs for each year of my life. Well, not my entire life: I will start with the year 2000 (I was 10 years old then), since I can’t quite recall anything before that and it would mostly have been entirely charts music anyway – and you will notice that especially in the first years of the list, my musical taste was still evolving. 🙂 By the way, to start things off, I’m pretty sure that I can say that German band Rammstein has been the only constant for as long as I can remember: Although none of their songs is present in the following list, I have listened to them at the same time I listened to Britney Spears, and I still listen to them now from time to time. But now, here’s the list of my favorite songs for each year as far as I can remember. Some of the years I would say there was more than 1 song I could have put there, but I think what I have there is a pretty good representation of my taste in music and also events in my life. Please note in advance that the songs represent what I’ve listened to for each year – it doesn’t necessarily mean that it was released in that year. (more…)

Four new composings of movie score

It has been a while – but now I’ve decided to release some new music I composed over the recent months. As most of the time, these tracks are all written with specific movie scenes (which actually do not exist) in mind – so it’s music which is part of a score that would be played in that specific scenes I had in mind when I composed it. But of course that doesn’t mean it can’t be used somewhere else – this is the cool thing about music, it has different meaning, different interpretations and such. But now, enough said, here there are the four tracks:

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How To Stream Spotify from Mac to Playstation 3

A while ago I thought about having my Spotify playlists streamed to my Playstation 3. My sound system is connected to that device, placed in my living room, so I needed to find a way to stream the whole sound output (also called “Stereo Mix”) from my Mac to the PS3. In this article I will explain how you can stream any sound from your Mac, for example Spotify, to any local device using WLAN, in this case my Playstation 3.
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10 Beautiful Pieces of Movie Score

Today I’d like to share my top ten of movie score pieces. Most of them are pretty beautiful, romantic themes, to relax, to think, to dream. At the bottom of this post, you will find a Spotify playlist which contains all the ten tracks included.

1. Elevator Beat (Nancy Wilson)

The most wonderful theme for a wonderful movie (“Vanilla Sky”). Elevator Beat contains so much melancholia that it always gives me a feeling where I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. While it is rather sad music, it still emphasizes some hope – beautiful.

2. La Valse d’Amélie (Yann Tiersen)

If you haven’t seen the movie “Amélie” yet, do it as soon as you can. To me, there is no other movie as interesting like this, and the music is great aswell. La valse d’Amélie is my favourite piece from the score, and, while there are an orchestral and another third version of this track, I prefer the piano version.

3. I Love You (Tyler Bates)

Beautiful music like I Love You isn’t what you would expect from a dark anti-superhero movie like “Watchmen”. Yet, I love this theme for its spirit of optimism.
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Working on another music video

I will soon release a new music video, another one for a song by my sister Christina Sophie. It’s called Island and it appears on her new album Secret Sinner to which you can listen below. Be excited as the music video will feature scenes shot in Thailand where we travelled in March this year. You might wanna check out the song first (it’s track 7)!

Or add it to your playlist on Spotify: Christina Sophie – Island

I’ll post the video here when it’s out!

Fixing errors in Corner Pin to Null by Video Copilot

A while ago I saw another very exciting tutorial on VideoCopilot.net where they showed us how to create a great-looking train explosion. As part of this tutorial, they introduced the usage of Mocha for After Effects. In this article I will conclude this for those who are especially interested in this kind of stuff or those who don’t want to watch the whole video (although I encourage you to do so). As an addition to that VideoCopilot tutorial, they offered a new After Effects presets file there which easily allows dynamic tracking in connection with Mocha. However, if you’re using a translated version of After Effects, you might have issues using it – how to fix these will be explained in the last paragraph of this article.
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Eye of the Storm – A brilliant Masterpiece

For today, I simply want to share something with you. But it’s not just something, to me it certainly is the most brilliant video masterpiece on the whole Internet. I mean the Internet is huge and I surely don’t know everything, but this is the best thing I’ve ever seen.

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