The Tibetan book of living and dying

I have finished reading the book. I have written already about this book previously (with some quotes). It is pretty heavy book, and it took me long time to go through it. Lots of difficult subjects, and I had to think some of the pages over which made the reading even slower. Some topics are inherently difficult, especially around the topics of impermanence and death. However, overall it is worth the effort and it contains a good mixture of thoughts, ideas, traditions and description of metaphors and rituals taken from the Tibetan tradition. There are good reviews of the book, for example this one.


David’s visit

David, my good friend from Koln, came directly to Schladming and we have met on the ski slopes. We did help, of course, to arrange the meeting with SMSes but the actual encounter happened literally on the slopes and was totally coincidental. Really nice feeling. I have not seen David for 2 years. We both got thinner on a vegetarian diets. The spirits are higher than before I guess. Snowboarding together was great fun. Later, short sightseeing trips around Hilmteich, Schlossberg and two main squares in Graz. David brought his slackline and we have played twice – awesome exercise and mental practice. Good workout for entire body. David worked on his MSc thesis while I was working in the institute and we spent afternoons together. David’s stay finished on Friday with the trip to Planneralm and another day of snowboarding. Nice time to catch up with an old friend.


Wintergraph 2011

Wintergraph, 6th Visual Computing meeting. On check-in everyone got ski pass and green ribbons. Breakfast between 7:30-10:00, then skiing. After skiing the meetings with short talks to introduce the groups.Then dinner. Then socializing, that is, playing werewolf game.

Wednesday

CGV group, Sven Havemann. 1prof, around 10PhDs students, 6 diploma thesis students. 5 journal+40 conference papers per annum (including all collaborations). Interests in surface reconstruction, convex polyhydra, stylized bulidings for computer games (collaboration with Activision), probado project: semantic search in 3D object spaces, virtual museum planner (multi-touch table). See www.generative-modelling.org

Fraunhofer Austria, Eva Eggeline. Non-for-profit, founded in 2008, head office in Vienna, applied research. Work associated with TU Graz, contract research. Physical based modelling and simulations, data vis., ambient assisted living, pedestrian flow simulation, multitouch table, material sciences, modelling heated surfaces (grain-growth with CMU).

TU Wien, Verner Purgathofer. 20-24people, 3 professors, 4 research assistants, Rendering group, terapoint project (2billion points interactive visualisation).

Andrew Straw. Working with Institute for molecular pathology. Fruit fly brain studies in the context of studying vision.

TU Vienna, Martin Haidacker (PhD student).

University of Bregnen, Norway (lectures on Mobile AR). Land cover data via crowdsourcing.

TU Graz ICG  “graphics meets vision” Horst Bischof. 4 profs, various research themes. Interactive Computing, Visual sorviliance plus visual learning, robot vision, SLAM, 3D reconstruction, Aerial vision, navigation and obstacle avoidance (quadcopter). Power line inspection project. Scene detection/analysis. Semantically meaningful change detection, tracking and reconstruction.

Georgios Sakas, Cognitive imaging and medical imaging. Liver segmentation and modelling.

AIT, Branislav Miscusik. In 2009 changed name and strategy. 900 employees. Surveillance, object detection, tracking, multiview survailance, human detection and tracking, machine learning, distributed inf. sys.

 

Thursday

TU Wien CVL. Document restoration, archeological reconstruction, object recognition, ancient coins DB and search, interest points detection in video sequence. EMOCAM project: creating a visual diary of a day by analysis of emotional states of a participant. Fall detection project: vision based scene analysis with cameras mounted in the house. Planning 2000 house deployment in 2011.

[cogvis] Michael Brandstotter

Linz, Johannes Kepler University, www. jku.at. Advanced imaging techniques. Enhanced TV modes.

vrvis.at, Georg Stonawski, Kresimir Matkovic. 70ppl, 4M annual turnover. Visualisation, rendering, visual analysis, interactive visualisation, complex systems.

Interactive System Group, Georg Csisinko. Detection and matching of low-frequency elephants vocalisations.

Austrian Academy of Science. Hamed Bouzari. Scientific visualisations. EEG study and brain activity visualisation. Brain activity in Musical Unexpectancy.

Imagination, spin-off from TU Wien. Bernhard Jung. 10 employees, funded in 1998. Scientific partners and industrial shareholders. Acquired by Qualcomm. A number of industry projects and products. Among others: FLARE – flash marker-based AR tracker. ioTracker (edutainment, infotainment). Redbulletin (magazine with AR content).

CG Club, TU Wien. Student driven working group of 12 (chosen) MSc students. Input into teaching. Working on rendering and authoring tool. Contact if interested: cg1.cg.tuwien.ac.at/wiki

 


Kudowa Zdrój

When Michał was coming back I took a ride with him back to Poland. The drive was quite fast, and we managed to get to Kudowa Zdrój in around 9hrs. It was great to catch up with my parents, sister, Tomek and Hubert. There was no snow, at least not enough for skiing. We played different games, drunk lots of different mineral waters from springs and took part in ionized cave session. Relaxing time. Trip back by train was long, over 15hours. Some work done though, as electricity plugs for laptops are available in some long-distance trains.


Skiing trip (Michal and Julian)

Austrian skiingMy brother Michal came to Graz by car on Friday night. Actually, it was in the early morning hours of Saturday. Really good feeling to have a visit from a family member. Made all the difference.

Pizza party

Lots of tasty food, good mood, and great company. We slept till quite late and packed up to go to Schladming for our first ever Austrian skiing adventure.

Thanks to Julian’s native German we managed to book a relatively cheap accommodation for 27euros per night in the area. My previous attempts were unsuccessful.

Michal and Julian on the slopes

The days passed quickly, and we had lots of fun riding the long awesome slopes of the Haus and Planai. The first night was a fancy pizza evening a half-an-hour walk off our accommodation (we actually had to walk to another village to find a restaurant). Funny enough, we got convinced by Julian to try out the local “disco”, which turned out to be rather un-entertaining (or we were there too early, and missed the actual party). The second night Julian fell asleep as soon as we entered the house, so no party intentions were observed.Julian left by train to Graz on Monday morning, and we squeezed in one extra riding day with Michal.

Michal stayed for another 2 days and we have visited the TU Graz institute, worked a bit on projects and did the usual tour around Graz.


Julian in Graz

On Monday, 31st of January, Julian visited me in Graz. He came from Koln. His plane arrived pretty late, and we had to take a taxi (which was pretty entertaining as the taxi driver was quite clueless both, about driving a car, and about the streets of the city).

We have had good time, visited the city, Schlossberg, and the Mur river. I have not convinced Julian to run with me in the mornings.

We have worked a bit on a book chapter, and run a number of tests on a fixed GPS point on TU Graz campus (Thanks Gerhard!). It was a bit funny to be running to the street with 5 mobile phones and taking the GPS measurements. We were quite an attraction for the passing pedestrians.

 

TU Graz mobile location accuracy studyMobile GPS accuracy testing