Archive for the 'Technology' Category

T-shirt printers copy

Wednesday, July 4th, 2007

T-shirt After demand I sould like to put the pint master of the shirts on the blog, because there is only a small quantity of shirt that have been printed. Feel free to download the master for the front and the backside of the shirt. CreativeCommons-ShareAlike 3.0 as usual.
P.S. “Anthu Ozindikira amagwirisa ntchito GNU/Linux Software” means “thinking human beeings are using GNU/Linux Software”.

Use of ODF = 70% more free diskspace

Sunday, March 25th, 2007


The Administration of the State of Zurich in Switzerland still uses the proprietary xls, doc etc. formats of the MS Office Suite. That’s why each an every worker of the state of Zurich has to write its timetable into a table of such a proprietary file. Today while transfoming my timetable.xls file into a ODF (Open Document Format) file I coincidentally found out that the timetable with its calculations and algorithms still works perfect in Openoffice. And it also does in Neo Office (on a Mac OS X). Further I noticed, that the file shrunk by 70%, although the content of the file was exactly the same. This means that a conversion of a xls file into the odf format cleans the file and keeps it neat. If the administration of the state of Zurich would switch to the ISO certified ODF Format we could economise 70% of our storage Servers, that could be used for example for another Free Software project in Malawi. 🙂

Thin-Client project in article

Friday, March 23rd, 2007

Melissa Draper from the Ubuntu Project recently posted an interesting article about Edubuntu on the portal. In the article the thin-client project, that I realised in 2006 at the Polytechnic, is mentioned.

Very important person

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

As long as switzerland keeps the banking secrecy and refuses it’s humanitary tradition the african rulers will keep their money at the Paradeplatz in Zurich and the World Economic Forum (WEF) will take place in Switzerland. While the so called “very important person” will meet this week in Davos i will run my attention on the World Social Forum (WSF), that is taking place now in Nairobi.


talk at snm

Saturday, January 20th, 2007

snm Past Wensday, the 17th of january 2007 I presented together with Nathalie Bissig the Malawi project at the dept. of new media studies. At the “day of the open doors” after my presentation there were Urs Hodel presenting his project “News Jockey” and Domagoj Smoljo together with Carmen Weisskopf their project Projekt Bitnik.

23C3 talk online now (updated)

Friday, December 29th, 2006

Lix23C3 Vortrag Ramon Cahenzli has recorded the talk, that I held this morning at the 23C3 in Berlin. The Film can be downloaded at this URL (The talk is held in German Language). Thank you, Ramon 🙂

The audio layer of the file is corrupt. A file in better quality will be put online asap.

23C3 Chaos Communication Congress in Berlin

Friday, December 29th, 2006


As every year I visit the Chaos Communication Congress. My speech will take place at 11:30 AM at Saal 3. It will also be streamed to the Internet.

Gates crocodile tears

Friday, December 8th, 2006

bill The “do-gooder” Bill Gates does now, after Madonna boght her little orphan, take care for Malawian orphans as well. After an article in the Nation Malawi Newspaper of yesterday, the 7th of December 2006, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation donates 2’124’992 US$ to the Malawian NGO OSA (Orphan Support Africa).
(My comment reserved).

disabled braille On the very same page of the newspaper there is an article about the Malawian organisation for disabled people complaining about the bad ICT infrasturctures for handicapped. At this point I would like to link to the GNOME accessibility projekt that allows blind people to use free software with the braille line. Also Gino Filadoro has worked with free software on a project at the dept. on new media studies together with a handicapped person.

Debian accessibility projekt

Wireless Networking at Poly

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

wireless Yesterday the Systemadministrator Maganizo Monawe came to my office and introduced me to the italian Carlo Fonda of ICTP who is working in the next 10 days at the Polytechnic with a couple of students and lecturers on a “Wireless Networking” Project. After a few italian phrases it was obvious that Carlos group from Trieste work with the same attitude with his project not imposing western ideas in an imperialistic way. As I read on Carlos Wiki-Website in June 2006 there was a training course taking place in Trieste and now the workshop continues in Blantyre to connect the colleges and hospitals around the Polytechnic.

sdnp Carlo was also shocked by the high ISP (Internet Service Provider) prices in Malawi and also about the fact that the VSAT equipment, that was setup by the United Nations Developpment Programme (UNDP) on top of the Polytechnic building is run by Paulus Nyirenda commercially. The Polytechnic pays 3000 US$ monthly to SDNP for the 256 KBit uplink and 512 downlink connection.

Carlo further talked about person of the Wirless community, some of them I know from the Chaos Communication Congress (like etc.). I watched a speech of Elektra Wagenrad at the congress last year about “Wifi Longshots” in Bangladesh. This know-how is also part of the ICTP wireless workshop and is a convenient technology for Africa. A lot of connection cables are digged out of the grounds and find different uses. The wireless technology can bridge big distances (world record 279 km) and cover wide areas. Together with the wireless meshed networking technology it can split many different access points with low bandwidth.


Official thin client handover

Tuesday, December 5th, 2006

handover1 Yesterday afternoon at 4:00 pm central african time (cat) the official handover of the thin clients was taking place at the library of the Polytechnic. The Ceremony was located in the audiovisual where one part of the thin clients (12 pcs) is set up. Because of his tight schedule the vice-chancellor of the University of Malawi did not join the handover. Martin Thawani, the librarian of the Polytechnic opened the ceremony by mentioning with a few words my last stay in 2004 when I worked for 5 month at the Polytechnic and set up the Servers and Network. Martin Thawani praised the Free Software project especially because of its massive success in the fight against Spam, Viruses and scarce bandwith problems in africa. (On the image above you can see the symbolic handover of the book “Free as in Freedom” between Alex Antener on the right an the librarian Martin Thawani on the left). After his talk I added, that we run in the ICT of the University of applied sciences and arts in Zurich all the servers of the students and lecturers on Free Software (GNU/Linux Debian) with a big success. und that the very same thin clients that the ICT is donating to the Polytechnic are used in our administration and that the students and lecturers of the Polytechnic also deserve to use the newest information technology, not having to use the used crappy outdated computer trash that most of the NGOs are donating. The principal Dr. Charles Mataya expressed his thanks and told us about his fistr experiences with Unix in 1981 when he did his PhD. Further he said that the Polytechnic and the University of applied sciences and arts are initiating an intercultural relationship with this project. At the end of the Ceremony the librarian Martin Thawani gave us 2 traditional malawian masks and and a carved africa map to underline his thanks.

handover2 handover3 handover4

In this place I would like to thank cordially my Boss Barbara Berger and her replacement Harry Rauter of the ICT of the University of applied sciences and arts Zurich for their support. Ramon Cahenzli as well as Gino filadoro deserve my warm thanks for their collaboration. To Nathalie Bissig I would like to express my very special thanks for her wonderful pictures which we all apreciate a lot.