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Sheogorath's Blog


Depending on the time of the day a friend, a colleague, a wise guy. The beauty of the world is its sense of humor to show humans their way by letting them search their own.


  1. Oh my goodness, it's called packet

    Today I learned that I’ve been using the wrong term for network packets, since eh… ever. For my entire life I’ve been talking about “network packages”. I have no idea how that slipped through, but somehow it did in all conversations with network engineers, sysadmins, network professors, and more. I even got a degree in Internet Engineering without noticing. You can imagine my surprise to learn it’s called a “network packet” not “network package”. …


  2. Starlink resource waste

    Today I learned about the expected TTL of Starlink satellites, which is roughly five to seven years, according to Wikipedia. In order to operate properly the network is expected to be made of more than 40 000 satellites, which, once their TTL is up, are supposed to be pushed down into the earth atmosphere and burst into fire. That means in 20 years, one can expect between 120 000 and 200 000 high tech satellites that were made of rare materials, that like involved child labour to extract, and are burned to nothing, making it impossible to recycle any of the material, just because it is “too expensive” deploy fibre optics to more places, that are rather cheap to produce, easy to repair and reasonable to recycle to some degree. …


  3. Package-loss in China

    Today I learned about the factors of packet-loss around the Chinese internet. Internet within China is not slow. Especially in larger cities your speed-test (app) will probably show very respectable number. However when it comes to talking to “the real internet” outside of China, you’ll notice packet-loss. This originates in multiple factors, first and foremost probably to “the great firewall” which assigns foreign connections a suspiciousness score and automatically introduces packet-loss, according to Wikipedia. But a research done by Pengxiong Zhu, which is discussed on the APNIC website, discusses another possibility which points at economics around the Chinese ISPs, which might tried to artificially shortening peering to drive prices up. However the research points out that it requires more research to verify this. …


  4. Words matter

    Today I learned that the knowledge about a word for something has a noticeable impact on the ability to remember this thing. In a study by Jules Davidoff he showed that children and adults had noticeable higher error rates to notice and remember differences in simple colour pallets when they their culture didn’t have a word for a colour. …


  5. Cat's table

    Today I learned about the “Katzentisch”, a German word which literally translates to “cat’s table”. In modern language in English as well as in German (at least in my experience), it would be called “Children’s table”. However, since the term originates in medieval times when cats were symbols for bad luck and witchcraft, a “cat’s table” was a negative term, basically a synonym for the floor. Means to say someone was eating from the “cat’s table” was basically saying that someone was so lowlife or poor that they can’t afford a proper table. These days, as already mentioned, it’s sometimes still used to talk about the children’s table some might know from larger birthdays but has way less of its original negative meaning. …


  6. OpenFoodFacts

    Today I learned about another food-related Android app on F-Droid called “OpenFoodFacts”, which helps to identify food and set up expectations about its healthiness. The app works simply by scanning the barcode of the product you bought or want to buy and the app will look it up online in a crowd sourced database of products. If you ever scanned the product before it’ll automatically find the product even when you are offline and provides you with all the infos you need to know to make an informed decision about it. …


  7. Private calorie tracker

    Today I learned that F-droid has a privacy aware calorie tracker called “Food Tracker” developed by a group at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). The trackers are privacy-aware in the sense that they are transparent by being open source, not including any cloud service and also being free of trackers. Making it a nice experience overall and feels good to use without worrying about were this data ends up. One of the major downsides is that the database provided with it, that contains a collection of possible food, isn’t very great and I had a hard time finding anything. However, less than 30 seconds of research provides one with a good estimate of calories per 100 gram and from there it’s easy to add own food. …


  8. Nginx proxy_cache directive

    Today I learned that nginx requires to setting the proxy_cache directive to use the configured cache for reverse proxy setups. Without this directive, even with configured caches nginx will simply ignore the cache and proxy things directly. Along with this, I also learned about the usefulness of setting a caching header add_header X-Cache-Status $upstream_cache_status;, which will send along with the request whether the Cache was successfully hit or not. If the header is not sent, the cache is not configured correctly. …


  9. The Paris Syndrome

    Today I learned about the Paris Syndrome, which is a severe form of culture shock and can cause hallucination as well as an delusional state of mind along with symptoms such as sweating or dizziness. Probably it originates from over-romanticised expectations by a misrepresentation in the traveller’s origin country, resulting in the city of Paris not living up to the visitor’s expectations. The syndrome is most commonly experienced by Japanese but also Chinese tourists. The Japanese embassy even set up an own hotline for people experiencing it. …


  10. We don't know why bicycles ride

    Today I learned that it’s still not figured out, why bicycles remain stable while riding them. Various theories have been established over the years but were disproved as well. Resulting in own study programs being founded to figure it out. And various prototypes of bikes being built, that cancel the effects considered responsible for the stability. Just to find out, that the bike was still a bike, with it’s stable functionality. Until now it stays unsolved, why a bike is stable. …