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Tuesday·21·March·2006

RIP CitroNews //at 20:52 //by abe

from the no-news-are-bad-news dept.

CitroNews has closed its doors since there were no news for over two years. I liked the idea but it seemed to have neither that much readers nor many submitters. And since I’m not really that active in the Citroën or 2CV scene anymore, I seldom had something to send in.

Update, 20:37h: And no, this does not mean that I’ve sold or will sell any of my 2CVs. I just was on no 2CV meeting for IIRC nearly a year now. Too many Open Source events out there… ;-)

Friday·17·March·2006

What’s Your Summer Ride? //at 00:41 //by abe

from the cars-and-bikes dept.

When I was following the links to the What Are The Keys To Your Heart? quiz which was a common meme during the last weeks on Planet Debian, I noticed a quiz which made me much more curious than the above mentioned one or the What Language Should You Learn? quiz meme: What’s Your Summer Ride?

Since I know exactly what my summer ride is, I was curious what will come out. Since there were only a few questions (somehow I expected more), I was through after a quite short time:

Your Summer Ride is a Jeep
For you, summer is all about having no responsibilities.
You prefer to hang with old friends - and make some new ones.

Well, although there were a few question where I could have chosen more than one answer, the answer is not so bad. My perfect summer ride would be a white all-wheel drive 2CV, either a original, double-engined 2CV Sahara (Type “AW”) from the 50s or 60s or a “modern” 2CV with Weber 5-speed gearbox and Weber all-wheel drive.

Regarding the first question “If you had a ton of money, how would you spend your summer?”: I probably would take an all-wheel drive 2CV and would drive on small roads through Scandinavia or the Alps. Or along the Panameriacana or through the Yellowstone National Park if I wouldn’t have to travel to the USA for it.

So regarding the second question “Where’s the best place to go for a summer drive?” not only a forest path or a coastal highway are fine, but also a small path winding it way up a mountain which wasn’t mentioned in the quiz.

Regarding music in the car, I usually like the sound of driving and the car itself. But since there is also music which reminds of driving a car or even makes me wanting to take a ride in the car, I sometimes hear e.g. Jean Michel Jarre or Roxette while driving. (Hearing Roxette songs often makes me want to drive around with a CX which defaults to my own CX. :-)

And regarding the best summer smell, nearly nothing reaches the smell after a short but heavy summer thunder storm. Second place is probably a (not mentioned) fresh and salty breeze near the coast.

BTW: Second place (with changing only one answer — the secluded forest to the coastal highway) was the New Beetle Convertible falsely written as only “Beetle Convertible”. Well, since I hate the New Beetle, because it’s neither New (just Golf technic) nor Beetle (it has completely wrong proportions) and it’s plain ugly (ok, the convertible isn’t as ugly as the limousine but still ugly), I can’t agree with this answer. ;-) But I wonder, what are the other car answers are…

Now playing: Roxette — Sleeping In My Car

Athen plans to ban SUVs from the city //at 00:41 //by abe

from the Shit-Utility-Vehicle dept.

According to this Spiegel Online article Athen plans to “ban offroaders” from the centre of the city with the beginning of September 2006. Since the Greek governments argues about the traffic space these cars need, their drivers “only being posers” that have “nothing to do than driving around all the day”, I suspect, they mean SUVs and not offroaders. At least here in Germany, you usually don’t see offroaders in the cities, but a lot of Sport Utiliy Vehicles which usually just pretend to be an offroader (Wired, Guardian) but are perfect for parking with one or two tires on the sidewalk.

As outrageous as this sounds — it may have a real and reasonable reason: SUVs are usually bigger than other cars (especially in Europe), they need more parking space and have bad turning circles. They often have to back just to turn left or right in Athen’s narrow alleyways. Because of this, they are accused to cause most of the traffic jams in the centre of Athen

I’m still not sure, if I should believe this news, although SUVs are some kind of enemy concept for me. Why only SUVs? Why (AFAIK) also small offroaders like the Suzuki LJ or SJ? Why not being consequent and taking the Paris of ’50s (or ’60s? Can’t remember and Google and Wikipedia didn’t help…) as an example and creating a Zone Bleue (“Blue Zone”), in which only cars may enter, which have appropriate dimensions.

“Zone Bleue”? Back in the decades after WWII, Paris had problems with big lorries in the city, so Paris’ introduced the Zone Bleue (AFAIR) in the inner city, which was restricted to vehicles with a floor space less than 5m² or 6m² or so, so even some French car makers started build special “Zone Bleue” versions of their delivery vans with bumpers closer to the van body, tunneled rear lights and rolling shutter instead of outside lying sliding doors. And often high roofs for raising their capacity. (The only “Zone Bleue” van I found pictures of on the net was this Citroën HY Zone Bleue Pickup. You can best see the unusual rear bumper and the tunneled rear lights on the lower left picture.)

But back to Athen: Another reason which makes me sceptical about that news is that neither the Englisch Google News nor the the German Google News (also tried several other search terms…) finds any other news about this except the above mentioned Spiegel article.

Found via Ignoranz.ch.

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Hackergotchi of Axel Beckert

About...

This is the blog or weblog of Axel Stefan Beckert (aka abe or XTaran) who thought, he would never start blogging... (He also once thought, that there is no reason to switch to this new ugly Netscape thing because Mosaïc works fine. That was about 1996.) Well, times change...

He was born 1975 at Villingen-Schwenningen, made his Abitur at Schwäbisch Hall, studied Computer Science with minor Biology at University of Saarland at Saarbrücken (Germany) and now lives in Zürich (Switzerland), working at the IT Support Group (ISG) of the Departement of Physics at ETH Zurich.

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