Featured

PATHfinder guide: ART-photography

PathFinder-ART-insert-1

The subject of photography as a possible art form rewards thought. So so many pictures have been taken. So many times three-dimensional reality has been reduced to two dimensions. What does it all come to? Is it just desire, and hope, or dream triggering muscular responses and brain synapses; or can photographic images authored by humans sometimes result in art? Art is a filtration, order from chaos. A Jackson Pollock painting of the exceptional kind is, believe it or not; an example of order from chaos. Chaos is infinite. What didn’t he include? Filtration. Order from chaos. Art.

A characteristic of art is that it rewards more than once. A rereading, or a reviewing, or a relistening rewards again. And again. And again. And ten years later, again. A seemingly bottomless well you fall down, tumbling and spinning and reaching out to grasp the changing reality of the experience. Don’t worry, it is a smiling thing and you will be happy for the falling and the tumbling and the spinning. My personal epiphany of this fact was the novel Moby Dick by Herman Melville. Every rereading has presented me with a different aspect of a work of art. Has a beautiful woman ever been looked at just once?

Are great, exceptional photographic images like this; or are most of them in the one-and-done category? If the best picture you have taken and/or the best picture you have ever seen is in the one-and-done category than it is not art. Not a deal breaker, you will still have fun with your camera; but an important definition.

You see this all the time in photo gallery shows. One look and people keep walking. Easy to blame the ignorant viewer but remember, these are the people who came to the show. Maybe it is not all their fault if a picture does not make them stop, and stare, and look, and ponder; and then restare and relook and reponder. Maybe a better way to think of these gallery goers is that they are searchers. Searching for the image that will compel them to stop. Searching unknowingly or subconsciously for art. The pretty girl in the singles bars knows what she is doing. She is a searcher. She is searching for the man experience that will make her eyes dilate and her heart race. She is looking for the male work of art.

Do people look at your photographs twice? Three times? Four times? Do they remember your photographs and think about your photographs when they are no longer standing in front of them? Do they look at your photographs from different angles, or distances, or different light sources? Maybe that should be a part of the big photography equation: to ask yourself how many times viewers are going to relook at your picture before you take the picture. If you do not take the picture are you going to remember it tomorrow or is it already forgotten? Well, if it is already forgotten, maybe it was not worthy in the first place.

Michelangelo’s sculpture Pieta was not a walk-on-by or one-and-done when he completed it and he knew it. He had the certainty of an artist completing a masterpiece. Do any of your pictures give you that feeling of certainty? Yes, delusion counts. I know it sounds silly or charitable, but at least you are on the right track. If you have taken five hundred pictures and you cannot offer up one example of what I am talking about maybe it is time to ask yourself what you are doing.

Daniel Tammet in his book Thinking in Numbers says: “I am reminded of Nabokov’s view that we can never read a book: we can only reread it. “A good reader, a major reader, and active and creative reader,” says Nabokov, “is a rereader.” Initial readings, he explains are always laborious, a “process of learning in terms of space and time what the book is about, this stands between us and artistic appreciation.”

In other words, the first time someone sees one of your photographs all they can do is register its existence. It’s too soon for finessing the experience. Rods and cones are too busy sending information to the brain to be registered as data. It is only on the reviewing, and the looking again, and the repeated gaze that the viewer can recognize how you have filtered order from chaos, created art. But the first interruption of the viewers reality state has to be compelling enough to make someone look again, and again, and again. This may only happen in a second or a part of a second, but the repetition has to be there for the picture to receive the attention that it maybe deserves. With a beautiful woman it is called art. The older man calls it seduction. How about your photos? Are they seducing? Should you be thinking more about art?

Are you walking around the Kingdom with a camera in your pocket or hanging around your neck? Are you looking for details, themes, novelty, the pretty girl’s smile? I see stories in Thailand to be a story-a-day place. But what of photography? How come I am not lugging a camera around if I am so smart and clever and alert and so sensitive to my environment? Simple. For me, I know my limits. I can see or feel a story easily, not so easily a picture. It has taken me a long time to accept the fact that pictures can sometimes be art. It will probably take forever for me to delude myself that I can recognize two-dimensional art (pictures). If you can see pictures-as-art where I can not see pictures-as-art: I respect your abilities. I wish I could mine the Kingdom for photographic art.

An ex-pat Internet friend of mine sends me with regularity pictures of meals-food-place settings-eating as a marker of civilization. His use of the camera

to mark civilizations slog out of the muck and the mire to brighter, happier days is inspirational. Almost art. Beyond what I can do. The argument could be made that he is getting more out of the Thai experience than I am getting out of the Thai experience.

Today he sent me a food-place setting picture from Pai with middle ground of crops and plantings–background of mountains and sky. The foreground was the table and place setting with a nice vase full of wild flowers. Art? No, not quite. Very close and in my opinion maybe his best work. But the distance between almost art and photography in the Kingdom as art is a great gap for the spark to jump. I wish I could do what he can do. I wish I could mine the Kingdom for photographic art.

You can see on our web-site “Thai-Retreats” galleries from Thailand-based photographers who are specialists in “ART-photography”.

Switch to our section  “THAI ART-photography” to learn more.

CO-WORKING

Co-working is no longer a fringe style of working just for hipsters and entrepreneurs. It is mainstream. The shift from traditional office and full-time jobs to flexible, freelance and remote work is spawning more co-working spaces.

For co-working space inhabitants there are significant attractions. Low cost space in prime locations, shared office resources and the flexibility to stay or go is highly appealing. But beyond funky furniture, technology, table tennis tables and snacks there’s something more fundamentally important.

If you’ve ever belonged to a space, you know that community makes the biggest difference. It is the people; the members who make the space that are willing to share their experience, advice and networks that make up the true intrinsic value of co-working. Special things happen when random ideas collide.

If you need further proof of co-working being mainstream, look at the world’s largest name in it – WeWork with over 40,000 members. The six-year old startup is now valued at $16 billion after it’s latest $430 million fundraising from Chinese private equity firms, Hony Capital and Legend Holdings. After dominating the U.S. and Europe, WeWork will aggressively expand into Asia.

Asia has a big advantage when it comes to co-working. Not only are startup ecosystems developing in a fast and healthy way, Asia is a great place to live and work with its deep talent pools, affordable lifestyles, awesome street food and amazing beaches. So it’s easy to understand why co-working is not just for locals, but digital nomads who don’t just see Asia as a travelling destination but a working one too. Digital nomads take advantage of the fact that all they need is a good Internet connection to get work done. The rest of the time is for adventure and relaxation.

To follow on from the story on ‘The 10 Best Co-working Spaces On Earth”, Leanne Beesley, Founder of Coworker, a ratings and review platform for co-working spaces, shared her research into the best co-working spaces in Asia. The rankings are based on a combination of member reviews, organic traffic, and her own experiences visiting co-working spaces around Asia. As you can see from the list, the spaces are not all about being a launch-pad for the next billion dollar startup, but highlights those that provide the best atmosphere to co-work.

POD archief-kast (1)

pod-archief-kast-banner-1

De redactie van de Nederlandse “VPRO Gids” luistert en tipt (althans volgens eigen mededeling) “de beste podcasts van het moment”. Of dat inderdaad zo is laat ik aan uw eigen beoordeling over. De VPRO-website-pagina “PODCASTS” kent een divers aantal categorieën, onder andere “familie-drama en bekende merken”.

Ik ben eind 1998 (direct na mijn pensionering) naar Thailand geëmigreerd, en luister graag via mijn iPhone, iPod, iPad of mijn laptop-computer naar Podcasts. Doordat ik de Engelse taal goed machtig ben luister ik zowel naar Engelstalige als Nederlandstalige podcasts. Ik heb me voorgenomen vanaf vandaag met enige regelmaat hyperlinks op deze website te plaatsen, naar “kanalen” (channels) via welke u podcasts kunt beluisteren. Een groot aantal zullen een ontspannend karakter hebben, een ander groot aantal ‘klassiek getinte muziek’ en ten slotte een aantal dat informatief is.

Deze eerste keer een podcast uit de VPRO-categorie “familie-drama en bekende merken” welke gaat over een suïcidale adoptiemoeder en een moordende vader, op het Australische (Engels-talige) podcast-kanaal “Happy Face”. De URL van het kanaal luidt; https://podtail.com/en/podcast/happy-face.

Rose en Keith ontmoetten elkaar bij de hamburgertent waar Rose werkte en waar Keith een hamburger kwam halen. Ze trouwden. Een paar jaar en drie kinderen later pleegde Keith Hunter Jesperson alias de Happy Face Killer zijn eerste moord.

In deze podcast #1 genaamde “CHILDHOOD” vertelt zijn oudste dochter Melissa hoe het is om de dochter van een serial killer te zijn. Ze gaat terug naar de plekken uit haar jeugd en praat uitgebreid met haar moeder over vroeger.

Huiveringwekkend …. dus beter niet luisteren voordat u slapen gaat

 

Groetjes; Hans Blok …..

VIRTUAL TEA TRIP

VIRTUAL TEA TRIP
There are thousands of different tea varieties out there, with many unique teas found only in certain parts of the world. Yet, despite the seemingly endless range of teas available, they all originate from one plant – Camellia sinensis. It is the different ways in which the tea leaves are harvested and processed that creates the various tea types.
Although one could spend a lifetime tasting and studying all these different teas, and in fact some Tea Masters do, all of the teas can be divide into a few types: white, green, yellow, oolong, pu erh, black and herbal.
 
The quality and character of the tea, not unlike wine, is also affected by altitude it is grown at, the climate and annual weather, the seasonality of the region it is grown at and the type soil. Although tea plants are very adaptable, allowing it to grow in many different locations, better quality teas tend to be grown at higher altitudes and also prefer a humid climate with some seasonality.
 
In terms of actual tea manufacturing, the main term to remember is oxidation, which is a chemical reaction that involves oxygen, and in case of tea, also enzymes. It is responsible for the darkening of the tea leaves, which in turn results in different flavours of the finished product. It is the same process that makes an apple turn brown when you take a bite out of it. Depending on the tea type, oxidation might be encouraged by bruising the leaves or actively avoided.
 
WHITE TEA
The term ‘white tea’ derives from the tiny silver-white hairs that can be found on the delicate, unopened leaf buds. It is traditionally made using that just little bud, but certain varieties also add one or two of the youngest leaves. It is an unoxidized type of tea with a fairly straight forward manufacturing process. The bud (and the young leaves) are picked with care, to avoid damaging the leaves, which could start oxidation. The tea is then left to dry, ideally directly in the sun, but special drying rooms are also used.
The infusion is very light, usually ranging in very pale yellows and greens hues, with a subtle and delicate flavour. It is very rich in antioxidants and a cup of white tea contains the least of caffeine out of all the tea types. Surf to the “WHITE TEA section” on GEE SÈN
GREEN TEA
Green tea, another type of unoxidiZed tea, dates back to Ancient China and it is the first type of tea to be ever manufactured. Over the centuries it has spread to other countries, but the best varieties of green tea traditionally come from China and Japan. Like with white tea, no chemical changes take place within the leaf. Although green tea will be sometimes left to wither to reduce its water content, oxidation is mainly avoided through the use of heat which kills the enzymes. Steaming (Japan) and pan-firing (China) are the two main methods, each producing a tea with a different character. The leaves then undergo an alternating set of rolling and firing, which both dries and forms the leaf. Sometimes the rolling is done by hand, creating distinct shapes, such as the pine needle resembling Lung Ching or the little pellets of China Gunpowder.
Finally, the tea leaves are dried until the water content reaches 5-6%. Surf to the “ GREEN TEA section ” on GEE SÈN
 
YELLOW TEA
Yellow teas are an expensive Chinese speciality and they tend to be amid the rarest of teas. They are produced in a very similar way as green tea, with the difference that there is an additional step added of post-enzymatic oxidation. First, the enzymes are destroyed with pan-firing. Then the leaves are warmed with light firing and stored under special mats or damp cloths for a few hours, steaming the tea in the process. This is repeated until the desired look and aroma is achieved. The resulting tea leaves have a distinct yellow-green colour. The infusion is similarly yellow-green and pale, lacking some of the grassy flavours so typical of green teas and instead offering a more mellow and sweet cup. Oolong teas, sometimes also known as blue teas, are partially oxidized teas, with the most known varieties originating from Taiwan and China. The name ‘oolong’ derives from the Chinese term ‘black dragon teas’.
 
These teas are greatly appreciated by tea connoisseurs, due to their complex character and often distinct fruity, nutty and even floral flavours and aromas. Oolongs are somewhere between green and black teas and as such they often exhibit the delightful freshness of green teas and the enticing maturity of fully oxidized teas. The names of the more traditional varieties are often very poetic, for example Iron Goddess of Mercy (Tie Guan Yin) or Big Red Robe (Da Hong Pao). Although the manufacturing process does in many ways resemble that of a black tea, oolong’s preparation requires great attention to both temperatures and timing of the various stages. Additionally, the whole process is not entirely linear, with certain steps repeated many times until the right level of oxidation is reached.
 
The general production cycle consists of picking the leaves and letting them wither to reduce the water content. The oxidation process is initialized by rolling the leaves in special baskets, causing just the edges of the leaves to bruise. The enzymes are then killed off with quick firing. Leaf rolling and shaping and then final drying comes ends the cycle. Although the range of oxidation can vary from few percent to nearly 90%, the typical oolong will have a 70% level of oxidation. Surf to the “ YELLOW TEA section ”
on GEE SÈN
 
Pu Erh
Pu erh is the only type of tea to actually undergo microbial fermentation. This highly prized tea was first produced in the Yunnan province and remained an exclusive Chinese speciality for many centuries, due to the region’s unique climate and soil type.
It was also this tea that the Chinese labelled black, whereas the tea type invented in mid-17th century for the European market, was called red tea. The discrepancy resulted from the fact that Westerners labelled the tea types based on the leaf colour, whereas China and surrounding countries based the names on infusion colour. Pu erh teas are characterized by the distinct earthy, woody if not slightly ‘mouldy’ flavours and aromas. These post-fermented teas often prove to be a bit of an acquired taste. They are considered to have special health benefits, which lends into their growing popularity in the West. They are predominantly believed to aid with digestion, high cholesterol and might even help shed a few extra pounds.
 
There are two types of pu erh teas – raw and ripe, the latter often being more appealing to the typical Western pallet. The raw pu erhs are the traditional ones and more expensive of the two, due to the long aging process, sometimes selling for thousands of pounds. To create a raw pu erh the leaves are withered and pan-fired to kill off the enzymes. This is followed by a rolling and kneading stage, after which the leaves are steamed and left to mature for up to a year. During this period, the water content in the leaves and oxygen in the air begin the fermentation process. The leaves are eventually pressed into cakes and aged for up to 50 years in controlled conditions. The longer the tea is left to mature, the smoother and less bitter its flavour becomes. The ripe or cooked pu erh was invented in the 70s, in order to replicate the distinct flavour of the post-fermented teas but in a shorter production cycle. The leaves are picked and withered and then mixed with water that contains bacterial cultures taken from long aged raw pu erhs. The leaves are then piled for up to 40 days, occasionally stirred to spread the heat and bacteria evenly through the heap. Some ageing takes place at the end to kill off the fermentation, resulting in earthy and mellow teas, that unfortunately lack the extraordinary complexity of raw pu erhs. Surf to the “ Pu Erh section ” on GEE SÈN
 
BLACK TEA
Black teas are the most oxidised of all tea types and because of that also tend to have the strongest flavours. It is most likely the most popular tea type in the world, apart from certain countries such as China. Unlike the less oxisides teas, it has a relatively long shelf life, allowing the compressed bricks of tea to travel across the world and become an important part of trade for many countries. Its production method varies vastly from country to country, but these can be divided into two main categories – orthodox and more modern CTC. Countries such as China, India and Sri Lanka and also Taiwan prefer the orthodox method, which is more time and labour consuming, but results in higher quality tea. After plucking, the leaves are left to wither to reduce the water content. This is followed by a bruising phase, where the leaves are rolled and pressed, which in turn starts the oxidation process.
 
A short cycle of sieving and further rolling can also take place, until the leaves are left to oxidised for a short period of time. Eventually the leaves are fired to end the oxidation and dried. The ‘Cut, Tea and Curl’ method, or CTC for short, is used primarily employed in the tea bag industry as it involves tearing off the leaves into very small parts, which produce a strong cup with a short brew due to the increased surface area. Surf to the “ BLACK TEA section ” on GEE SÈN
 
HERBAL TEA & FRUIT TEA
Initially introduced in the 1950s, on the back of the growing popularity of teabags, CTC involves similar stages to the orthodox method, with the difference that instead of rolling and pressing, the leaves are machine chopped. Herbals, including rooibos, and fruit teas encompass a very wide variety of teas that do not contain the tea leaf and as such have no caffeine content. They can be drunk throughout the day and are a great alternative for anyone who’s looking to avoid caffeine.
 
Herbal teas can be generally divided into two main categories – mono herbs such as chamomile flowers or peppermint and more complex blends of various herbs and spices, which in the case of Camellia’s Tea House, are designed to aid with specific health ailments. Fruits tea consists mostly of an array of dried fruits, from sweet to more tangy, which also work great as iced teas. Surf to the “ HERBAL TEA section ” on GEE SÈN, or Surf to the “ FRUIT TEA section ” on GEE SÈN

KeWa-E-oven recipe; Salmon with cauliflower and kale

Salmon-with-cauliflower-and-kale

Fresh and delicious with a Nordic touch

Treat yourself to a healthy meal made with simple and delicious nordic ingredients. In this recipe Salmon, a great source of omega-3, is cooked sous-vide with steam to preserve all vitamins and minerals. It is then paired with both cauliflower and vitamin-rich kale to make a fresh and delicious dish.

Ingredients

  1. 140 g of salmon fillet
  2. 500 g of cauliflower
  3. 1 liter of veggie soup stock
  4. 500 g of soy milk
  5. 100 g of apple vinegar
  6. 1 pack of kale  
  7. 50 g of olive oil
  8. Salt, brown sugar

 

Step 1

Split the cauliflower into pieces. Cut the very tip of the truss and set aside, make a couscous-like blend of it. Choose few the very best pieces and slice them thinly with a slicer.

Step 2

Put the fish into a sous vide bag and vacuum it with the Electrolux vacuum sealer.

Step 3

Cook the cauliflower in a saucepan on induction until half ready. Drain the water, add soy milk and cook until done. Put the cauliflower into the Electrolux MasterPiece blender, add a little milk from the cabbage boil and puree at a maximum speed for 3 minutes. Add the melted butter and puree once again for 3 minutes. If necessary, add some milk to get the desired consistency. Salt to taste.

Step 4

Set the “Electrolux CombiSteamPro” oven to Low temperature cooking mode (51 degrees Celcius). Place the sous vide bags with salmon in the oven for 25 minutes.

Thanks to vacuum packaging and low temperature the fish will keep its stunning taste and get incredibly delicate texture.

Step 5

Take a small bowl and mix vinegar and water, salt and sugar, and a little grape seed oil. Pour this vinegar pickle on the finely sliced cauliflower and mix well. When the fish is cooked, remove it from the bag and pat dry on a towel. For serving, place a spoonful of the puree on a plate with the salmon on top. Decorate with pickled cauliflower, a leaf of kale and cauliflower couscous

KeWa-QR

QRpedia is een op het mobiel internet gebaseerd systeem dat gebruikmaakt van QR-code om Wikipedia-artikelen te leveren aan gebruikers in hun voorkeurstaal. QR-codes die direct kunnen worden gelinkt aan iedere Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) kunnen eenvoudig worden gegenereerd, maar het QRpedia-systeem voegt meer functionaliteit toe. Het is sinds 2011 in gebruik bij instellingen, waaronder musea in het Verenigd Koninkrijk, de Verenigde Staten en Spanje. De broncode van het project is vrij herbruikbaar onder de MIT-licentie.

PROCES

Wanneer een gebruiker een QR-code van QRpedia scant op zijn of haar mobiele apparaat, decodeert het apparaat de QR-code naar een Uniform Resource Locator (URL), met gebruikmaking van de domeinnaam “qrwp.org”, en waarvan het pad (laatste deel) de titel is van een Wikipedia-artikel, en stuurt een verzoek voor het artikel in de URL van de QRpedia-webserver. Het zendt ook de taalinstelling van het apparaat mee.

De QRpedia-server gebruikt dan de API van Wikipedia om te bepalen of er een versie van het opgegeven Wikipedia-artikel is in de taal die gebruikt wordt door het apparaat. Zo ja, dan zendt deze het artikel terug in een mobiel-vriendelijk formaat. Als er geen versie van het artikel beschikbaar in de gewenste taal, voert de QRpedia-server een zoekopdracht uit naar de titel van het artikel op Wikipedia in de desbetreffende taal, en geeft de resultaten.

Op deze manier kan een QR-code hetzelfde artikel in vele talen leveren, zelfs als de instelling (in dit voorbeeld het museum) niet in staat is om zijn eigen vertalingen te maken. QRpedia houdt ook gebruiksstatistieken bij.

QRpedia werd bedacht door Roger Bamkin, voorzitter van Wikimedia UK, en Terence Eden, een mobiel-internetconsultant. Het werd op 9 april 2011 onthuld bij het Backstage Pass-gebeuren bij het Derby Museum, onderdeel van de GLAM/Derby-samenwerking tussen het Derby Museum and Art Gallery en Wikipedia. De projectnaam is een portmanteau die de initialen “QR” (Quick Response) van de QR-code en “pedia” van Wikipedia

TOEPASSINGEN

Hoewel het systeem van start ging in het Verenigd Koninkrijk, kan QRpedia worden gebruikt op elke locatie waar de telefoon van de gebruiker een dataverbinding heeft. Sinds september 2011 is het in gebruik bij:

De in Bangkok (Thailand) gevestigde https://asean-retreat.org is thans doende met het ontwikkelen van een QR-systeem voor de ASEAN landen

KeWa-QR (EN)

KeWa-ASEAN-globe-map-01-web

QRpedia is a mobile-based system that uses QR code to deliver Wikipedia articles to users in their preferred language. QR codes that can be directly linked to any Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) can be easily generated, but the QRpedia system adds more functionality. It has been in use at institutions since 2011, including museums in the United Kingdom, the United States and Spain. The source code of the project can be freely re-used under the MIT license.

Technical PROCESS

When a user scans a QR-code of QRpedia on his or her mobile device, the device decodes the QR code to a Uniform Resource Locator (URL), using the domain name “qrwp.org”, and whose path (last part) is the title of a Wikipedia article, and sends a request for the article in the URL of the QRpedia web server. It also transmits the language setting of the device.

The QRpedia server then uses the Wikipedia API to determine whether there is a version of the specified Wikipedia article in the language used by the device. If so, it will return the article in a mobile-friendly format.

If there is no version of the article available in the desired language, the QRpedia server performs a search for the title of the article on Wikipedia in the appropriate language, and returns the results.

In this way a QR code can deliver the same article in many languages, even if the institution (in this example the museum) is unable to make its own translations. QRpedia also keeps usage statistics.

QRpedia was conceived by Roger Bamkin, chairman of Wikimedia UK, and Terence Eden, a mobile internet consultant. It was unveiled on 9 April 2011 at the Backstage Pass event at the Derby Museum, part of the GLAM / Derby collaboration between the Derby Museum and Art Gallery and Wikipedia. The project name is a portmanteau that has the initials “QR” (Quick Response) of the QR code and “pedia” of the name “Wikipedia”.

APPLICATIONS

Although the system started in the United Kingdom, QRpedia can be used at any location where the user’s telephone has a data connection. Since September 2011 it is in use at:

  1. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis in Indianapolis, Verenigde Staten
  2. Derby Museum and Art Gallery in Derby, England
  3. Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona, Spain
  4. The National Archives in Londen, England
  5. Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte in Hamburg, Germany

The https://asean-retreat.org established in Bangkok (Thailand) has now started to develop a QR system that is aimed at the ASEAN countries and can be used, among other things, by shopping malls, shopping centers and all kinds of types. of meetings (eg exhibitions, museums and for educational purposes such as schools, universities etcetera.) The development of the KeWaSAN system is a ‘start-up’, it will take a few years before the system is operational. KeWaSAN will start with only pilot projects in Thailand, at a later stage it will be rolled out across other ASEAN countries.

The challenging problem for https://asean-retreat.org is mainly that virtually all ASEAN countries (at least most of them) use their own unique ‘script’ that is very different from that in Europe and America. Almost completely on both continents the “Roman script” is used and the use of the “English Language” as a communication medium is practically everywhere; it’s not so within the ASEAN countries.

Data is a critical asset for companies

cropped-site-icon-11.png

by Hans Blok Tuesday, 20 November 2018

What is NAS (Network Attached Storage) and Why is NAS Important for Small Businesses?

nas-synology-background-2002x660Data is a critical asset for companies

Without access to their data, companies may not provide their customers with the expected level of service. Poor customer service, loss of sales or team collaboration problems are all examples of what can happen when  information is not available.

Each of these issues contribute to lack of efficiency and potential loss of income if customers cannot wait for a data outage to be corrected. Additionally, when it comes to data storage, small businesses find themselves faced with other storage-related needs such as:

  • Lower cost options
  • Ease of operation (many small businesses do not have IT staff)
  • Ease of data backup (and it’s always accessible when you need it)
  • Growth capability

NAS devices are rapidly becoming popular with enterprise and small businesses in many industries as an effective, scalable, low-cost storage solution. IronWolf Pro hard drives are designed for NAS systems.

What is NAS?

An NAS device is a storage device connected to a network that allows storage and retrieval of data from a central location for authorised network users and varied clients. NAS devices are flexible and scale out, meaning that as you need additional storage, you can add to what you have. NAS is like having a private cloud in the office. It’s faster, less expensive and provides all the benefits of a public cloud on site, giving you complete control.

NAS systems are perfect for SMBs.

  • Simple to operate, a dedicated IT professional is often not required
  • Lower cost
  • Easy data backup, so it’s always accessible when you need it
  • Good at centralizing data storage in a safe, reliable way

With a NAS, data is continually accessible, making it easy for employees to collaborate, respond to customers in a timely fashion, and promptly follow up on sales or other issues because information is in one place. Because NAS is like a private cloud, data may be accessed remotely using a network connection, meaning employees can work anywhere, anytime.

Scattered storage arrangements will not work for SMBs.

  • Out-of-sync data
  • Reliability and accessibility issues if storage goes down
  • Delays in responding to customer service requests or sales queries

The Right Drive for NAS

Built for network-attached storage servers, Seagate IronWolf Pro drives are the best choice for NAS applications and are developed in close co-ordination with leading NAS partners such as Synology, QNAP, Netgear, Drobo and others to provide the best experience possible.

IronWolf Pro drives have the following features:

  • AgileArrayTM firmware for RAID optimisation and 24×7 use
  • RV sensors built into the hard drive to mitigate vibration in multi-bay NAS
  • IronWolf Health Management for drive monitoring is built into compatible NAS operating systems
  • Includes 2-year data recovery service and 5-year limited warranty
  • Built for multi-user environments by providing high workload rates for  heavy data transfer networks

NAS is growing in popularity. And with good reasons. NAS servers allow access to company data 24×7, and using the right hard drive will provide the best experience possible. IronWolf Pro-equipped NAS servers help provide tremendous competitive advantages, increase levels of customer service, and extend the collaborative reach across any project, at any company. In many cases, the only limit to the usefulness of having a NAS solution in your business may be not having one at all!

Related Products

IronWolf NAS Hard Drives

LEARN MORE

Vlaanderen is het ware Bourgondië

GENTSE-WATERZOOI-1-1024x820Vlaanderens culinaire rijkdom wordt Bourgondisch genoemd. In werkelijkheid hebben de Bourgondiërs hun gevoel voor smaak en kwaliteit van de Vlamingen afgekeken.

De kip is mals, heerlijk hartig naast de prei, de wortel, de bleekselderij in de met ei gebonden roomsaus, en over alles groent geurige gehakte peterselie. Jazeker, dit is de Gentse waterzooi, en waar kun je die beter eten dan aan de waterkant van de Leie, waar ooit de handelsschepen aanlegden die de stad haar rijkdom bezorgden? Nu glijden er rondvaartbootjes tussen de rijk bebloemde kaden. Wij  hebben er vanochtend ook een zonnige tocht mee gemaakt, vanuit het centrum tot aan de resten van de Prinsenhof, waar in het jaar 1500 keizer Karel V geboren werd en waar hij later residentie hield. Zou hij een gerecht als waterzooi gegeten hebben?

De culinaire rijkdom van Vlaanderen wordt dikwijls in verband gebracht met het oude Bourgondische hertogdom waar het deel van uitmaakte, en waarvan keizer Karel de Habsburgse erfgenaam was. Daar is veel voor te zeggen. Maar eigenlijk kunnen we het beter omdraaien: de Bourgondische keuken is eerder Vlaams dan omgekeerd. Vlaanderen was in de veertiende en vijftiende eeuw het rijke deel van het hertogdom en de hertogen verbleven dan ook juist hier, in Mechelen, Lille, Gent en Brugge.

Suiker en sop

De keuken van die tijd was duidelijk anders dan die van nu. Hartig en zoet werden niet gescheiden; er was geen dessert aan het einde van de maaltijd, althans geen opeenhoping van zoetigheid. Gangen waren er al evenmin. Of nee, ik zeg het fout. Gangen waren er wel degelijk, maar bestonden elk uit een grote variëteit aan schotels – zoiets als een buffet of een rijsttafel. Gerechten een voor een serveren is iets wat pas in de loop van de negentiende eeuw in zwang kwam. De oude Bourgondiërs – die dus dikwijls Vlamingen waren – snoepten van allerlei smaken door elkaar, en zoals gezegd: hartig en zoet stonden tegelijk op tafel.

Zoet kwam van fruit, honing of de toen nog bijzonder dure suiker, die uit verre landen rond de Middellandse Zee werd geïmporteerd. Suiker en specerijen werden aan het hof met gulle hand over hartige gerechten gestrooid, niet omdat men de smaak van twijfelachtig vlees wilde verhullen (wie anders dan de hertog kon zich het allerbeste, meest verse vlees veroorloven?), maar om de rijkdom te tonen.

Eten we middeleeuws als we in Brugge of Mechelen aan de waterzooi gaan, aan de stoverij met bier, de paling in ’t groen? Nou en of. Dit soort bereidingen kunnen we bijna ongewijzigd in middeleeuwse kookboeken terugvinden, ook al wilde men toen graag zaken toevoegen als kaneel, foelie en gedroogde gember, iets waarvoor we nu minder warmlopen (hoewel, wellicht moeten we het eens proberen?). Vlees en vis werden langzaam gegaard in geurige bouillon en dan dikwijls op een snee brood geserveerd. Die snede heette aanvankelijk de ‘sop’, een naam die later overging op de nattigheid waarin hij lag.

Franse invloed

De glorietijd van Vlaanderen eindigde in de Tachtigjarige Oorlog, toen de Republiek der Zeven Verenigde Nederlanden zich losmaakte. De Zuidelijke Nederlanden bleven onder Spaans-Habsburgs gezag en de welvaart verplaatste zich naar het noorden. Niet dat dat voor de culinaire opvattingen veel uitmaakte. Vanaf de zeventiende eeuw groeide de Franse invloed op alle culturele aangelegenheden, de keuken en de tafelmanieren incluis. Het Franse hof was het schitterendste van Europa. Daar werden de nieuwe smaken en kooktechnieken ontwikkeld, daar wist men hoe de burger, maar eerst nog de aristocraat, moest epateren.

In 1651 verscheen Le cuisinier françois van François de la Varenne, een toonaangevend werk dat vijftig jaar later vertaald werd uitgegeven als De geoeffende en ervaren keuken-meester, of de verstandige kok. Hierin werd voor het eerst saus gebonden met een ‘roux’ van bloem en vet. Fijne groenten als doperwtjes, asperges en artisjokken kwamen op tafel. En toen begon de zoetigheid op te schuiven naar het einde van de maaltijd. Vanuit Frankrijk kwamen in de eeuwen daarna de belangrijke nieuwigheden, zoals mayonaise en bearnaise, soufflés en bladerdeeg, waarmee onder andere de bouchée à la reine wordt gemaakt, nog altijd een gewaardeerd hapje in België.

De Spaanse Nederlanden werden in 1714 Oostenrijks, maar ook dat is niet terug te vinden in de keuken. In de negentiende eeuw was België eventjes onderdeel van Nederland, maar al in 1830 werd het een zelfstandige staat. De Franse haute cuisine regeerde in heel Europa en de Vlamingen lustten er wel pap van. Een rumsteak bearnaise? Komt u maar door. Tournedos Rossini dan, belegd met ganzenlever en overgoten met madeirasaus met truffel? Smakelijk! Deze exquise Parijse bereidingen gaven de toon aan.

Mosselen met friet

Onder die elitaire oppervlakte bleven de oude recepten bestaan, bij de gewone mensen thuis. Konijn met pruimen bijvoorbeeld, middeleeuws door het combineren van zout en zoet. Paling in ’t groen met handenvol verse groene kruiden. Bloedworst, die hier ‘zwarte pens’ heet. En er kwamen nieuwe dingen bij. Aardappelen bijvoorbeeld. Na hun ontdekking in het verre Amerika werden ze aanvankelijk alleen als veevoer gebruikt. Hongersnoden en veranderende opvattingen zorgden er echter voor dat in de loop van de achttiende eeuw de patatten ook de mensenmonden in gingen, eerst bij de arme boeren, later ook bij de burgerij.

Het frituren van reepjes aardappel is iets waarvan de oorsprong onduidelijk is. De Fransen claimen de uitvinding, maar waren het misschien toch de Belgen? Populair werd deze nieuwigheid pas aan het eind van de negentiende eeuw, toen de kosten van vet naar democratische waarden begonnen te dalen. In diezelfde tijd begonnen Vlamingen (en Nederlanders) hun stoverijen met aardappelen te stampen, met de ‘stoemp’ als resultaat.

En daar zitten we dan, dit keer aan de Meir in Antwerpen, achter mosselen met friet en daarbij een bolleke De Koninck – bier is immers de vloeibare trots van Vlaanderen. Die mosselen zijn de bovenstebeste uit Zeeland: de jumbo’s of imperials waar de Belgen grif voor betalen (de kleintjes gaan naar Nederland). De frietjes zijn gebakken in ossenwit, het vet dat er die kenmerkende Belgische smaak aan geeft. Straks nog een dame blanche toe, of een pêche melba? Klassieke Franse gerechten, maar hier kun je ze nog vinden; smaak en kwaliteit zijn het allerbelangrijkst. In Vlaanderen heerst nu eenmaal een andere attitude ten aanzien van eten. Men praat erover, men trekt gemakkelijker de portemonnee. Een erfenis van die oude Bourgondiërs? Welnee, die zijn hier de kunst komen afkijken, zoals ik al zei. Net zoals wij nu doen.

Van Onno Kleyn en zijn dochter, culinair historica Charlotte Kleyn, verscheen onlangs Luilekkerland – 400 jaar koken in Nederland (Amsterdam University Press).

Street Photography Tips Every Photographer Needs to Know (31)

BANGKOK STREET PHOTOGRAPHY – KRUNG THEP BY DAY [F.ZUIKO 38MM F1.8] by “My favourite Lens”

On the surface, street photography can seem like a simple practice: go out, wait for those lucky, incredible moments, and take the shot. But in reality, “street” is one of the most difficult forms of photography to pull off.

You often need to wait for a very long time for those spectacular moments to occur, and when they do appear, you can miss the moment or ruin the shot. Still, getting great street photos is not impossible. Read on for seven street photography tips which will make everything much easier, both technically and conceptually.

Practising these tips will help you roll the dice with much better odds.

  1. Raise Your ISO Street scenes move lightning quick. Some of the best moments will appear and disappear in front of you in an instant. To offset this, you have to set your camera to be able to catch these fast-moving scenes. The most important setting is your shutter speed. The shutter speed I prefer to use is 1/250th of a second, which will guarantee that your subjects will be sharp. At night you can go slower, to 1/160th or 1/125 in order to let in more light, but slower than that will introduce motion blur.
  2. Secondly, I prefer to use a smaller aperture (when possible) so that I get more depth of field in the image. This is a personal preference, of course. I prefer it because there’s less of a chance to screw up your images. If you miss the focus on your main subject slightly, a larger depth of field will minimise the chances of that ruining the photo. If you have multiple interesting subjects entering your scene at different depths or if you have a great subject and a great background, a smaller aperture will allow you to get them all as sharp as possible. But unless you are shooting in direct sunlight, the only way to use a fast shutter speed and a small aperture is to raise your ISO.