DIY Raspberry Pi Laptop

In 2012 Motorola had a brilliant idea on how to change the mobile computing landscape. They introduced the LapDock to the world (yes, I guess the pun was intended) – a laptop? like computer dock for your mobile phone. The German marketing slogan for it was: die Zukunft mobiler Computer Technik! (the future of mobile computer technology).

This also describes the problem of the lapdock, it was too much future for 2012. Remember the Android phones of 2012? Using this thing must have been horrible. It also had a steep price point (around $450). Thus it never really revolutionized the phone market.

But today the lapdock can be put to good use. You can turn it into a raspberry pi laptop with a few cables. You can get one for around 60 Euros on eBay every now and then. If you asked me why (a friend did), the short answer is: because we can!

You can find the write-up of the project over at and build one to climb up a step on the Raspberry Pi nerd ladder.

Rereading the Classics

For design to become corporate competency, it has to be more than just a department of people with the cool shoes, more than the activity you perform just prior to commercialization. Design is a way of approaching problem solving, decision making, and strategic planning that can yield better outcomes. It’s an open approach, and anyone in the organization can participate […].

Subject to Change, 2008



Peter Merholz wrote that in 2008 – more than a decade ago. And organizations are still trying to get a grip on this.


No longer AFK

Hey, long time no hear. I hope you are still around and haven’t given up on me. The last two months were quite busy, so I didn’t find the time to write. Sorry for that.

But I have a long list of things I want to tell you. This post will be a short update on the things that have kept my attention.

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So what you gonna do when the DS-GVO comes for you?

Bis letzte Woche war ich noch entspannt uninformiert was die oben genannte Abkürzung angeht. Hätte ich raten sollen, was das sein soll, hätte ich gesagt: „Vielleicht ein Sprayer-Pseudonym oder ein neues Hipster-Label, das versucht ohne Konsonanten auszukommen.“ Leider beides falsch.

Wie ihr wahrscheinlich schon lange wisst, handelt es sich um die neue Datenschutzgrundverordnung, die am 25. Mai 2018 in Kraft tritt. Mit ihr gibt uns die EU neue Rechte zum Datenschutz im Internet und gleichzeitig bekommen Personen und Firmen, die Dinge im Internet machen, neue Pflichten. (Welche genau, lest ihr besser bei Menschen nach, die sich damit auskennen, z.B. [1], [2], [3], [4].) Das europäische Internet hat quasi einen umfassenden Datenschutz-Frühjahrsputz verordnet bekommen.

Für mich bedeutet das, das mein Blog komplett überarbeitet werden muss. Inhalte, Plugins und das verwendete Layout wollen angepasst und zum Teil ausgetauscht werden. Zum Glück ist mein Blog recht schmal (wenig Inhalt!) und reduziert (ich nutzte bisher fünf Plugins). So musste ich vergleichsweise wenig anpassen. Super! Aber Spaß geht anders…

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The Crumbling Nerd Barrier of Physical Prototyping

When I tell people that I build physical prototypes (a.k.a things with knobs, displays, and wires, which demonstrate how physical user interfaces of products that are going to get built will work) they usually smile, often sadly, and say: „Yes, but that’s easy for you since you are such a nerd.“

That’s of course a grand misconception. Of me (probably) and the general situation as a whole. People still believe that extensive programming and electrical engineering skills are needed, but that is no longer true. The nerd barrier has been torn down in quite a few places.

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Blogging Aspirations vs. Reality

The avid and attentive reader of this blog might have noticed another (silent) relaunch of my blog – the giveaway was the change of design.

This is the result of aspirations meeting reality. As I mentioned before, I wanted to use a small and lightweight engine for this blog and say goodbye to the behemoth called WordPress. Back in September I picked Kirby, since it ticked all the boxes. I bought a license and a decent theme, and loved the fact that I could now write my posts in markup and simply upload the files to the server.

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Detours with Arduino Code

“Umwege erhöhen die Ortskenntnis” (detours expand local knowledge) was a common saying of my philosophy professor after he went on a tangent during class.

I love the saying and I know the feeling pretty well – it frequently happens to me when I start to get interested in a topic. I start to research something, then I notice another interesting aspect, then another, and then another, and then… I guess you can see a pattern there. It’s similar to the process Dory experiences when she is trying to do something in Finding Nemo.

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