Netherlands and more

Blog about life in Holland (and a lot of other stuff)

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Touchpad toggle script for Ubuntu Jan 17, 2017

Recently I've been busy learning the esoteric editor called Vim and figured out my laptop's touchpad is causing nuisance when you're working with the keyboard only—which is the whole point of using Vim. At the same time, some programs are nearly unusable without the mouse. In other words, I wanted to be able to switch the touchpad on and off—with the keyboard, of course.

Some laptops have a special key combination for it, but my Dell XPS 13" doesn't. Ubuntu also provides a switch in the Control Center, but it's hardly reachable without the mouse:

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Frozen beauty Jan 1, 2017

The New Year's Eve has seen a light frost of -2 °C in the total absence of snow. The green grass got beautifully powdered with rime. Hoarfrost grass.

The whitened trees alongside the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal (Amsterdam-Rijnkanaal), which passes next to Houten, became simply magnificent:

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So long two thousand sixteen Dec 31, 2016

The turbulent two thousand sixteen has come to an end. The year that has brought so much grief to our world. The year in which Sun Caged and Stream of Passion ceased to exist. I'm inclined to think it's good that it's over.

Happy 2017 to all the readers of this blog! I wish you lots of optimism, persistence and luck!

Following the tradition I'd like to look back on the last year—which has been quite positive on my part. So, in 2016 I managed to:

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Santa Run Houten Dec 18, 2016

Yesterday, December 17th, Houten hosted a charity event called Rotary Santa Run. For just €10 every participant got a red Santa Claus outfit, a couple of drink vouchers, and a possibility to take part in a funny and useful event. The collected funds will go to the organisations Jeugdsportfonds Houten and De Nierstichting. Rotary Santa Run Houten: the start.

A total of about five hundred Santas of all ages and walks of life have gathered at the central square of our Houten.

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The smartest traffic-light Nov 27, 2016

The present trend of dubbing everything "smart" based on mere presence of Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or Internet connection is a bit annoying. So we have seen smart washing machines, smart watches, smart smoke detectors, smart toothbrushes and so on. Now traffic-lights are next in line, according to our local press. A news article announces the very first smart traffic-light (slim verkeerslicht) in the country has been installed in Houten.

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Ayreonian craze Nov 26, 2016

Five days ago the mighty Arjen Lucassen has announced on his Facebook page two live shows of his Ayreon mega-project, which got the name Ayreon Universe. The shows were scheduled for 15 and 16 September 2017, with the official ticket sale starting on 24 November at 10:00 CET.

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