The danger of a single story

During my ATHENS course about accessibility our professor showed us a few inspiring TED Talks. One of them really made me thinking and now it is one of my all-time favourites. It is called “The danger of a single story” by Chimamanda Adichie and it demonstrates how our opinions and views are biased. I discovered that I have some single stories in my mind. Please take a couple of minutes and watch the following video:


ATHENS program in Madrid

End of March I participated in the ATHENS program, a kind of summer school within a network of European technical universities. Here is my official statement about my experience (which I also sent to my university) and below some photo impressions.

Going abroad for a full semester takes a lot of time and effort. While requiring a relatively low amount of work, the ATHENS program gives a pretty good impression on why everybody should go on exchange and why it is worth the effort. In just one week you experience a compacted semester abroad, i.e. you meet a lot of great people from all over Europe (or even further afar), get to know a new city and study at a foreign university.
I took the course Accessible Web Design (UPM14) in Madrid. The teachers put a lot of effort into changing the way we think about accessibility – not only in web design – and they did so with great success. In interactive collaborative learning sessions we came in contact with otherwise boring guidelines. The university also arranged sightseeing and cultural activities as well as parties with other ATHENS students.
For me, the program turned out to be one of the best weeks in my live with wonderful people in a magnificent city.

Yet another blog relaunch

Once more I’ve done a complete relaunch of this blog with a new URL, new design and new software. It is now a merger of my former private blog “Flo4u” and my abroad experience blog “FloAbroad”. I’m afraid some old entries are in German, I will stick to English in the future. You can select the old contents via the menu above. In the future I will focus in interesting stories I find on the web, like interesting links or TED Talks. Now and then I will write about some IT related topics and maybe some personal stuff. Hope you enjoy it ­čśë

Wechsel an die TUM

Im September letzten Jahres habe ich erfolgreich mein Bachelorstudium der Wirtschaftsinformatik an der Uni Paderborn abgeschlossen. Die Zeit zwischen Bachelor und Master wollte ich nutzen, um ein wenig Abstand von der Uni zu gewinnen und meine Interessensschwerpunkte herauszufinden. Daher habe ich im Wintersemester zwei sehr spannende Praktika in M├╝nchen und Bonn gemacht. Nach reichlicher ├ťberlegung und unz├Ąhligen Gespr├Ąchen habe ich mich nun dazu entschlossen, meinen Master an der Technischen Universit├Ąt M├╝nchen fortzusetzen. Kommende Woche geht es los und ich freue mich schon sehr auf die neuen Herausforderungen an der Uni und nat├╝rlich auch darauf, eine neue und coole Stadt wie M├╝nchen kennen zu lernen.

Auslandssemester Erfahrungsbericht

ich habe zwar sehr ausf├╝hrlich auf meinem Auslandsblog ├╝ber meine Erlebnisse und Erfahrungen w├Ąhrend meines Erasmus Semester in Helsinki gebloggt, aber nat├╝rlich wollte meine Uni einen zusammengefassten Erfahrungsbericht auf Deutsch. Diesen habe ich vor einiger Zeit erstellt und nun m├Âchte ich auch hier darauf hinweisen. Ihr k├Ânnt ihn unter folgendem Link als PDF herunterladen: Erfahrungsbericht_FS_FINLAND_WI10.
Servus, Florian

Urlaub in New York

Seit Beginn meines Studium 2008 war ich nicht mehr richtig im Urlaub (wenn man mal vom Auslandssemester absieht ­čśŤ ) und daher wurde es nun mal wieder Zeit. Ich war 10 Tage in New York, ohne Notebook! Der Tagesablauf war meistens gleich: Von unserem Hotel in Queens zum n├Ąchstgelegenen Diner erst mal ordentlich fr├╝hst├╝cken mit Bacon und Pancakes, dann mit der Subway ab nach Manhatten und Sightseeing, am fr├╝hen Abend einen McDonalds/Wendys/Burger King o.├ä. aufsuchen, noch ein wenig Abendprogramm und wieder zur├╝ck nach Queens.

Wir hatten f├╝r 7 Tage einen New York Pass, welcher den Eintritt f├╝r diverse Attraktionen enth├Ąlt und h├Ąufig auch eine verk├╝rzte Wartezeit erm├Âglicht, daher sehr zu empfehlen. Neben den ├╝blichen Touristen Attraktionen wie Empire State Building und Freiheitsstatue, haben wir uns auch das Broadway Musical Phantom der Oper und ein Konzert in der Carnegie Hall angesehen. Die letzten beiden Tage ohne New York Pass haben wir in den anderen Stadtteilen von New York City verbracht, sprich Brooklyn, Harlem und die Bronx. So, jetzt lasse ich mal die Bilder sprechen:

My Erasmus Time – A Review

My Erasmus semester ended about two months ago and in my opinion it’s time to reflect my experiences. Obviously, I had a really great time in Helsinki. During this four months abroad I met a lot of interesting people and I’ve seen so much new places. However, it feels like I could have done so much more but the time was running too fast and suddenly four months were over.

I expected to get homesick at some time and to miss Germany, but during the whole time I had so much fun that I never felt bad. In contrast, I got homesick when I got back to Germany. The first one or two weeks are quite hard, it feels strange to be “at home”. You have to get used to your home environment like you got used to be abroad at the beginning of your Erasmus time.

Now back home, I have to do the last organizational things like writing a report or get my courses accepted. I’m afraid that the contact to most of the people got weaker and will eventually break, even in times of Facebook.

Nevertheless, this blog will stay online since I hope to convince some people to do a term abroad in Helsinki. Don’t hesitate to apply because it seems like a lot of work, at the end it’s not that much and it’s nothing compared to what you get back. And if you have any questions please write a comment or send me a mail.

To conclude, I want to thank everyone who read my reports and of course everyone I met for having such a great time. Kiitos paljon!

Studienfahrt nach Augsburg

Vergangenes Wochenende habe ich an der Studienfahrt nach Augsburg des FSR Winfo teilgenommen. Am ersten Tag haben wir Eurocopter besichtigt. Die F├╝hrung durch die Produktion verschiedener Hubschrauber war sehr interessant, wenn auch f├╝r Wirtschaftsinformatiker etwas zu technisch. Am zweiten Tag waren wir bei der KZ Gedenkst├Ątte Dachau. Auch wenn ich dort 2007 bei der Abschlussfahrt nach M├╝nchen bereits gewesen bin, war die F├╝hrung wieder ├Ąu├čert lehrreich und interessant. Die restliche Zeit haben wir mit Sightseeing in Augsburg verbracht. Sehenswert ist beispielsweise die Fuggerei, dies ist die ├Ąlteste noch benutzte Sozialbausiedlung, oder der Goldene Saal im Rathaus.

Oslo – The end of my term abroad

At the end of my stay in Finland I flew to Oslo, Norway, to visit a friend of mine who has done a term abroad there. We had three days for sightseeing and Christmas shopping. We have been to the Christmas market, the Oslo Opera House, the Nobel Peace Center, the Oslo City Hall, the Vigeland Park, the Holmenkollen ski jump, the Munch Museum and the National Museum (wow all in less than three days). So we have seen the most important things in Oslo. It is a very nice city with some amazing heated pedestrian ways.

Then we drove back together to Germany, through Sweden and Denmark. It is a long trip and it was quite slippery on some roads, so we decided to make a break in Flensburg and stayed the night in a hostel. On 21st of December I was “at home” again, even if it didn’t feel like home that days.

Overview of my courses

For everyone who wants to study at the Aalto University School of Science and Technology I want to give a brief overview of some courses I attended:

  • Introduction to Software Business and Venturing P (2 ECTS): Principles of business models especially in the context of the web. Four individual assignments have to be written.
  • New Venture Development I (3 ECTS): Interesting course about being an entrepreneur. Graded with some individual assignments and a group assignment.
  • ICT Enabled Service Business and Innovation P (4 ECTS): Basics of services and how they relate to innovation, also touches IT Governance. I have chosen to write an exam only, but you can also write some reports to get 2 more credits.
  • IT Governance P (4 ECTS): Basics of IT Governance and corresponding frameworks. Two assignments and a final report has to be written.
  • Read Effectively (2 ECTS): Very good English course about reading and writing academic papers and articles.

This is just a selection of my courses, but I was quite happy with all of them. Often you can choose if you want to write assignments or an exam. I strongly recommend the assignments. For more questions write me an email.