How to set up Windows 10 BitLocker with a YubiKey

I use and advocate secure authentication, verification, and encryption methods. Naturally, I have used 2-Factor-Authentication for a long time wherever it is available (Google, Facebook, Dropbox, and many others). In addition, my computers and mobile devices use Full Disk Encryption, protecting my data at rest.

2-Factor Authentication enabled since 2013-01-19.

The YubiKey is a small USB device that augments different authentication methods to accomplish these tasks. I recently purchased two of YubiCo’s latest model, the YubiKey 4 to help me with 2FA and FDE.

My YubiKey 4


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Kafka in Vienna

Josef S. was sentenced yesterday by the Vienna Criminal Court to a prison sentence of one year (eight months of which are conditional on a three-year probation) for breach of peace (as ringleader), attempted aggravated assault and aggravated criminal property damage. [Update: The verdict is not final and may be appealed.] The prosecution against Josef was an attack on the rights of free speech and free assembly. His conviction is a disgusting perversion of law and justice. Continue reading

Ten Years with Type 1 Diabetes

Ten years ago, I returned from my student exchange year in Texas. When I got out of the plane in Vienna, I had lost a lot of weight compared to the time I boarded my US-bound plane a year earlier (this is very unusual for exchange students – especially those in the USA). Immediately after my arrival, my family and I went on a two-week holiday in southern France. There, I drank up to nine liters of water or juice a day and went to the bathroom accordingly often. I ate loads of food but still lost weight. I was tired, quiet and glum. Reading books was hard because my eyesight was strangely distorted.

After our return home, we called my uncle, a doctor. He told us to go to the hospital immediately.

Florian shooting a shotgun.

Clay shooting a few days before my return to Austria. I was really skinny; fortunately the recoil still did not knock me over.

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Vienna’s Finest – at Beating

Note: Many sources and links in this article are in German. These are marked with [DE].

Xenophobes march through Vienna

On 17 May 2014, the parafascist “Identitäre” movement staged a demonstration[DE] in Vienna. The group advocates xenophobia, race- and faith-based policy[DE], ethnic cleansing[DE] and a “return to traditional, Christian European values”[DE]. Up to 200 people from Austria with support from France, Germany and Hungary marched through town to wave their flags and disseminate their hate speech. It was the first significant right-wing demonstration in Vienna in years[DE]. Among others, Ludwig Reinthaler attended, a Neo-Nazi from Upper Austria whose political party was barred from participating in elections due to the imminent danger of re-engaging Naziism[DE].

Several organizations more or less from the political left (among them the University of Vienna Student Union) sought to block the Identäre march to demonstrate that they are not tolerated here. That strategy had been successful before in Germany, where even the President of Parliament participated[DE] in a sit-in to block a Nazi demonstration.

Vice News provides a very brief summary in this video:

 Police collaborates with Identitäre

The Vienna police made all efforts to enable the Identitäre to carry out their march. Under the guise of enabling the Identitäre’s legal demonstration, the police guided them around the counter-protesters. When the pressure from the counter-protest increased, one police officer told the Identitäre “Friends, it’s getting tight. […] I suggest we go to the subway and end this.” (My translation from the original German quote[DE]; emphasis added.)

At some point, the police seized a banner from the counter-protesters. The Identitäre posed with this banner a few hours later, without any explanation how they got hold of this confiscated banner.

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Israel on film

At the end of January 2014, my girlfriend and I traveled to Israel, primarily to see Jerusalem. It was a great trip full of inspirations and great impressions. The following are some of the photos I shot there.

All were taken with my Hasselblad 500 C/M (with an 80mm, 150mm or 250mm lens) or Hasselblad SWC and on Kodak Ektar, Kodak Portra 400, Ilford HP5 400 or Ilford SFX 200.

I would like to single out the Kodak Ektar, which has become my favorite film to shoot by far. Its crisp clarity and lifelike, yet still vivid colors are simply amazing.

Keeping time in Open Parliamentary Debates – A Debatekeeper Plugin

Smartphones are almost ubiquitous today and have replaced the traditional stopwatches as timekeeping devices for many debaters around the world.

Most smartphones have a stopwatch built in, but Chuan-Zheng Lee of New Zealand wrote Debatekeeper, a very useful app for Android phones which makes timing debates easier and more convenient for judges, timekeepers and speakers.

The program currently includes the British Parliamentary format as well as several other parliamentary debating formats. One great feature about Debatekeeper is its extensibility. It is trivially easy to use additional debate formats by writing a short and simple XML file and putting it on your phone.

With a view to the upcoming German-Language Debating Championship (2013-05-30 to 2013-06-02 in Munich), I wrote a file to use the Open Parliamentary format in Debatekeeper. Open Parliamentary Debate is an indigenous German format based on BP and invented by debaters of Streitkultur Tübingen. Its most notable features include two teams with three speakers each and three “Nonaligned Speakers” who get to speak for 3.5 minutes before the Whip speakers and may chose to represent either the Government or Opposition side.

You can now download the Debatekeeper OPD file. I also wrote a file with all human-readable text in German. Installation on your phone is easy (the following description was copied from Chuan-Zheng’s site):

You should create a directory called debatekeeper on (the root directory of) your phone, and place the XML file in there. It must have the file extension .xml. If you give your file the same name as one of the built-in styles, then your custom file will override the built-in style. Otherwise, Debatekeeper will just add it to the list.

For more information on OPD, please see Streitkultur Tübingen’s OPD service page (in German). A brief overview of the format is available as a two-page PDF file (in German).

ACAB and Soldiers Are Murderers – Two bourgeois slogans

Many leftist individuals and groups like to use the acronym ACAB as a slogan. It stands for “All Cops Are Bastards” and, obviously, expresses disdain for the police. Similarly, purported pacifists and anti-militarists use the slogan “Soldiers Are Murderers” (which appears to be more common in German-speaking countries).

Both slogans are strong, generalized statements. As such, they label an entire group of people and, by their internal logic, do not allow for any exceptions. This is the basic reason why these and similar slogans are not just factually wrong, but actually advance goals counter to those of the people most commonly using the slogans.
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Will the Shoa be historically unique?

I recently heard the following:

Antizionism after Auschwitz is, necessarily, antisemitism.

It got me thinking about a question which, I believe, influences many discussions on the Shoa (Holocaust), on the establishment and status of the state of Israel and on antisemitism:

Is (or was) the Shoa a historically unique occurrence? Continue reading

A Lawsuit’s Purpose

When thinking about a recent spat on my Twitter timeline (involving protests against traffic tickets perceived as unfair), a train of thought I have had many times already surfaced again:

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