Showing posts from 2014

Photos workflow on Android

I recently switched from iPhone to a Xiaomi that runs Android. Taking photos is one of those things one uses the phone for and that too had to change. This was my iPhone workflow Take photos in Camera+ .  Review, delete or edit photos in Camera+. Save to camera roll (long process that may required manually preventing iPhone from sleeping). Dropbox then pushed the photos to the cloud (again, quite a pain, because iPhone may decide to go to sleep while doing it). Pick up Photos on a laptop, move them to a non-Dropbox folder. After all I do not have an unlimited Dropbox space. Use Total Commander to rename them and assign the time and date of when the photo was taken as the file name. Reason: one never knows when a photo editing software would change the times embedded in the jpeg. Camera+, for example, changes the file modification date but not, luckily the EXIF dates.  Use Picassa for final editing and organizing photos into native Windows folders. Photos are too important

Saving Battery on Android

Android is quite liberal when it comes the use of battery power and tolerant towards apps that may want to run in the background. There are many apps claiming to save battery. But a few simple tricks using just the standard settings work as well. What is really important, however, is understanding how your phone or table work. While Awake There is not much you can do about conserving the power while you actively use your device. It just has to respond to whatever you are doing - reading books, browsing Facebook, snapping photos, watching videos or playing 3D games. There are a few things you can still do: keep screen brightness lower rather than higher. Just to keep the screen bright can use a half of all the power. If you have an OLED screen, make your backgrounds black. Standard LCD displays use a back-light that indiscriminately lights the whole back of the LCD panel and than the LCD just makes sure what gets through. OLED actively lits every pixel if it needs to be lit.

Data driven innovation:if you build it they will come

  In the EU we are often accused of having big government and public sector; spending too much; collecting too much information etc. But there may be a silver lining to it. In the globalized competition among the states, of course it is important to improve the level of services, cut costs and reduce the red tape. But it is also important to make the best out of the situation. Which is that the public sector is sitting on a treasure of data which costs taxpayer money to collect and maintain and in many cases citizen effort to provide. Therefore it would be wise to make sure the data is either put to use or stopped being collected. It is highly unlikely that the governments would come with the only and the brightest ideas on what to do with that data. On the contrary, the growth around the internet has shown the tremendous potential of innovation in the private sector and the academia. Zagreb Summit In the beginning of December I took part at a Summit “ Data Driven Innovation in Southea

Slovenia tries again

  Some Europeans are deeply respectful of European institutions and serious about the jobs of the persons that lead it. It is a valuable project that brought peace, prosperity and democracy to the continent. It deserves full support. On the other hand, the Slovenian center-left was cheering to the song that refrains “Europe is a gang of thieves”. Somewhere in between these two understandings is the second nomination for the member of the European Commission from Slovenia. Not serious Ms. Bulc has had a political job for a few weeks only. She has zero political experience. She has never been involved in policy-making. However,  Slovenia is a country of political opportunity . For some. After a poor performance of the center-left government of MS. Bratušek, the voters this summer did not give a chance to the opposition. Instead they awarded Mr. Cerar, a center-left “non-politician”, with a landslide victory. The current prime minister was never leading anything bigger than a chair at a U

Slovenia: State of Denial

  The landslide winner of snap elections in Slovenia is the “Party of Miro Cerar” that six weeks before the elections did not even exist. Its members and candidates are rather unknown, its policies are unclear. It is named and lead by a law professor and legal consultant with zero track record in executive politics. Strongest opposition party SDS with its leader jailed after an unfair trial just three weeks before the elections came in second. Half of the parliament belongs to two brand new political parties. The results are a culmination of economic, financial, social and political crisis in Slovenia and, one can always hope, a step towards its resolution. From poster child … Slovenia was a poster child of the former communist countries. It achieved independence almost without violence that tragically marked the breakup of Yugoslavia. Even before 1989 it had open borders, elements of market economy and substantial exports to the West. Its independence was a success story. It joined th

Slovenia and the Return of History

For nearly six years the alleged bribery in the case of procuring Patria armored vehicles from Finland has been the No.1 topic in Slovenian political discourse. It has had a strong impact on elections in 2008, 2011 and 2014, because the accused is Janez Janša, key political figure in Slovenia, leader of (usually) the opposition and former prime minister. But lacking convincing evidence against him this is no longer the case of alleged bribery. The case is increasingly about the rule of law and democracy in Slovenia. Known unknowns and known knowns No, I was not there when they were buying the Patria armored vehicles and do not know what was really going on. Was anyone bribed or were there business-as-usual consultancy fees, markups, margins etc? No, I did not read the 20,000 pages of the Slovenian legal case nor the additional 7000 documents that were used in the procedure in Finland (and where  all accused of bribery were acquitted ). And no, I was not present at any of the court hear

Echoes of the Past in the Future of Europe

  Lecture at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at John’s Hopkins University, Washington DC, May 28th, 2014. Full version with introduction in  PDF . Some people compare Europe to a bicycle. In order to maintain its balance, a bicycle has to keep moving. And in order to be stable, Europe has to keep moving. At least this is what we are led to believe. No other country or continent so often contemplates is future as Europe. The Future of Europe is a subject of visions, reflections, and strategies as well as political maneuvering among its institutions. Civil servants in Brussels can either be occupied with  day-to-day execution of policies , deepening the common market, distributing structural funds, passing directives, regulating anything from vegetable sizes to Google …  or with a grander task of building “an ever closer Union”. Trumping peace, prosperity and democracy It is not easy to find a sequel to the success the Union had – with bringing peace, prosperity and democracy to t