Summer of 2019

a field of poppies

There are so many beautiful poppies this year. I captured some impressions on Flickr. It must be the additional rain that causes poppies to bloom. The field next to Fondation Beyeler is red with flowers.

a field full of poppies

Cycling anecdote

This morning the traffic lights jumped from yellow to red just as I was approaching a pedestrian crossing. I stopped. A man and a small boy were standing on the sidewalk, waiting. The man turns to me and comments angrily or sarcastically:

Zu müde zum velofahren? (= too tired to cycle?)

I responded that I have a red light.

Somewhat weird comment. And he sounded angry.

Perhaps I didn’t fit in with his view of “rowdy” cyclists that ignore traffic lights.

Flickr: Should I stay or should I go?

Smug Mug acquired Flickr in April 2018. The question every long-term Flickr user is asking:

Should I renew my subscription?

I’ve been on Flickr for a very long time. And seen many ups and downs. Probably more downs. And it’s 2019 and I still use Flickr.

Con:

  • Subscription has doubled in price: 50$ for 1 year instead of 2 years.
  • There is an ongoing downturn in community activity. Group discussions are rare.

Pro:

  • Without VIPs, social media influencers and advertisers, Flickr has become a quieter place far from the crowd. Which isn’t so bad if you don’t need to promote and sell.
  • The mobile app works. Nothing flashy but ok.
  • Flickr supports the main functions I need. Easy, structured photo storage that is searchable and shareable.
  • Currently, no new features are tested on unsuspecting users on a weekly basis.
  • I have nearly 15 years of links and embedded photos that I would need to update on this blog.
  • Sentimental value: faves, comments, tags, memories, stats, links.
  • Smug Mug isn’t Facebook / Google / Microsoft / Amazon.

I have some time until my subscription expires. I have a local copy of all of my photos and I’ve started to pull a backup of my Flickr account.

#biketowork #3rdJan2019 #backtowork #frohes #neues

The question is: Should I stay or should I go? And if I go, where should I go? And does it matter?

the road ahead

Jog log 2019

It’s the 6th of January. And… I already went for a run three times this week. I hope to continue my running streak throughout the winter months.

The plan is to carve out 30 minutes per day.

And perhaps I’ll write about it here. Because writing helps.

Single-origin coffee from Malawi

Roasted Arabica coffee from Malawi tastes great. Here’s my attempt to point to Malawi coffee brands.

Chipunga
Chipunga Arabica coffee. Grows in Mzuzu. Find out more at Chipunga Farm.
Njuli Coffee
Njuli Pure Arabica.  Grows in Chiradzulu, southern Malawi, at an altitude of 1000 m.
Satemwa
Satemwa coffee, grows in Thyolo. Find out more on their website at Satemwa.com.
Mzuzu Coffee
Mzuzu Speciality Coffee. Grown by coffee planters’ cooperatives in northern Malawi. Find out more about the coffee farmers on their site at mzuzucoffee.org

I’d love to see more single-origin coffee on European shop shelves. 

I’m a fan and miss the taste of roasted Malawi coffee beans.

Buying Malawian coffee by Malawian brands supports hardworking farmers and their communities. 

I’m not connected to any of the coffee farms that I’ve listed here. I didn’t receive any money or samples. I’m simply a fan.

The future of SEO

Much like how today I’d take 10 email subscribers to my newsletter over 1,000 Facebook “likes,” I think in the future, we’d all much rather have 10 Google searches for our brand name than 1,000 Google searches for phrases on which we’re trying to both rank and compete for a click against Google themselves.

Sparktoro