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"The only frontiers are in your mind"
29 | 08 | 2014
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Get Blogged by JoKi

Jochen Kirstaetter (2014)

The only frontiers are in your mind, welcome to my blog sphere. Your host at is Jochen Kirstätter aka JoKi.

Dive into the weird world of a professional Software Craftsman and follow his daily victories and struggles with modern technology at IOS Indian Ocean Software Ltd. I am a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) for Visual FoxPro, was Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for Visual FoxPro in 2006 and 2007, and from spring 2004 until end of 2006 I organized monthly user group meetings as regional director of German FoxPro User Group (dFPUG). Based on this community activities I am also member of Microsoft Community Leader/Insider Program (CLIP) and PASS Deutschland e.V.

This blog is also about Flic en Flac and the beautiful island of Mauritius, my home.

Sincerely, JoKi



Already 3,333 tweets...
General 20 August 2014 - 

Almost everything is about numbers, and this short blog entry includes the number of tweets written so far. ;)

Quite frankly, I joined the Twitter bandwagon late... February 2010 or so. And within those 4.5 years I just came across an interesting milestone: 3,333 tweets

3,333 tweets since February 2010
3,333 tweets since February 2010

Compared to some of my fellows here from Mauritius that's almost nothing...

Anyways, Cheers and for the next 3,333 tweets. This time faster, hopefully.

 
Game Review: Monument Valley
Android 16 August 2014 - 

Monument ValleyOnce again, it was a tweet that caught my attention... and the official description on the Play Store sounds good, too.

"In Monument Valley you will manipulate impossible architecture and guide a silent princess through a stunningly beautiful world. Monument Valley is a surreal exploration through fantastical architecture and impossible geometry. Guide the silent princess Ida through mysterious monuments, uncovering hidden paths, unfolding optical illusions and outsmarting the enigmatic Crow People."

So, let's check it out.

What an interesting puzzle game

Once again, I left some review on the Play Store:

"Beautiful but short distraction

Woohoo, what a great story behind the game. Using optical illusions and impossible geometries in this fantastic adventure of the silent princess just puts all the pieces perfectly together.

Walking the amazing paths in the various levels and solving the riddles gives some decent hours of distraction but in the end you might have the urge to do more..."

I can't remember exactly when and who tweeted about the game but honestly it caught my attention based on the simplicity of the design and the aspect that it seems to be an isometric design. The game relies heavily on optical illusions in order to guide to the silent princess Ida through her illusory adventure of impossible architecture and forgiveness.

The game is set like a clockwork and you are turning, flipping and switching elements on the paths between the doors. Unfortunately, there aren't many levels and the game play lasted only some hours. Maybe there are more astonishing looking realms and interesting gimmicks in future versions.

Play Store: Monument Valley

Also, check out the latest game updates on the official web site of ustwo

BTW, the game is also available on the Apple App Store and on Amazon Store for the Kindle Fire.

 
Vacations on Rodrigues 2014
User Rating:★★★★★ / 1
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General 14 August 2014 - 

And now something completely different compared to the usual technical or community related articles here on this blog. Yes, this time I'm writing some lines on my (and my family's) activities during our long weekend stay on Rodrigues. So, please bear with me, it's eventually a bit more personal...

Grab a soda, some popcorn and a cosy place to continue to read.

Special promotions during school holidays

Originally, our children started to ask more frequently about going on the plane again. Obviously, after their aunty from Germany was around during May, they were really eager to travel again. So, we decided that it might be a great opportunity to book some vacations during their school holidays.

And just in time the local hotels and hotel groups started to advertise their special promotions for citizens and residents. After collecting multiple brochures over several days, we got attracted by various hotel packages on Rodrigues - most interestingly the expenses for the stay and flight ticket were less compared to other resorts here on the main island. As we have been to Rodrigues already back in 2008, we followed up on this idea and got in touch with a couple travel agencies. Well, I have to report that you should be really careful about the promotions from some of them. We had a very negative experience with Shamal Travel Agency in Quatre Bornes regarding their adverts and the actual price levels and age definition for children. Please, stay away from them if you are interested in transparent cost and services.

Anyway, after some arrangements with two other close families we managed to confirm our stay at the Cotton Bay Hotel in Rodrigues. Given the fact that we already stayed there, and the hotel has been renovated recently, and it is under new management all looked very promising and relaxed for our vacation.

Counting the days...

As we already booked in July our children were counting down the days. And it got more interesting as soon as they were on school holidays finally. Well, the day arrived and waking them up at 2:30 hrs wasn't a problem after all. Quite the opposite it was fascinating for us parents to watch them waiting for the transport and later on during the airport transfer. Despite the early hours both didn't fall asleep and it was all so exciting. We are taking the plane!

Well organised by the Cotton Bay Hotel

Honestly, it was a breeze and a smooth ride during our stay at the hotel. From the airport transfer, the cleanliness of our bungalow, the organisation of our day trips, and the SPA - all very well and enjoyable. The children had great fun, and although it was a bit too windy to plunge into the pool they had a lot of fun with other activities on the beach and at the Kid's Club. Oh, and we had our private petting zoo with cows, sheep and goats just close to the terrace.

Some of us went to check out the SPA facilities and I have to admit that the services regarding Hammam and Sauna are better than at some other hotels in Mauritius. I don't know after how many months or years I was once again enjoying a very hot sauna. Little draw-back but nothing to worry about... There is no cold water or at least ice cubes to cool down the body, but hey there was a nice breeze coming over the hills.

Some day trips to mention

Based on a friend's recommendation we walked to a "restaurant" called Chez Solange & Robert. Hahaha, restaurant is widely stretched in this case, as we enjoyed a great BBQ with fresh lobster, whole fish, and pieces of chicken breast in an open cottage. Just some wooden structure covered with dried palm leaves on the roof - island feeling pure!

The other day we went to the Giant Tortoise & Cave Reserve Francois Leguat to observe the giant Aldabra turtles and to visit the Grande Caverne. The biggest limestone cave on the island. Compared to our last visit this was a novelty after checking out the Caverne Partate. The formations of stalactites and stalagmites are very impressive and imaginative. Our guide had lots of funny terms and despite the low light conditions the kids had a great time wandering around on the narrow wooden paths and stairs.

And last but not least, we decided to check out the Tyrodrig zip lines... Everyone was allowed to join the trip through the air, and our little ones stayed close to our field guides. But finally went on their own on the very last traversal. Puuuh, it was astounishing to glide over the valley, and for sure something to repeat next time.

Impressions of our vacation on Rodrigues 2014

 

Next stay has been discussed already

Oh yes, Rodrigues baby! We are going to come again! Tentative dates have been discussed already and now it's up to us to earn enough our next holiday on that wonderful remote piece of paradise. Eventually, a little bit longer than this time. We'll see...

 
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