J. Martin

May 2, 2021

Rollin’, Rollin’, Rollin’, Keep Them Faxes Rollin’

In the spirit of last week’s topic, there was a job posting from a German health office for a courier with a scooter to deliver COVID-19 documents received by fax to another part of the building for further processing. But rejoice! More and more health offices are switching right now from hand-written lists to an app out of hell where ...
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April 25, 2021

The Land Where Time Stands Still

In Germany, public health departments work with handwritten lists which are transmitted by fax, manually typed into Excel sheets, and printed out for use. I’m not kidding.* It’s not as if software didn’t exist—one app was even developed in Germany and is used worldwide with great success! But most German health offices rejected using i...
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April 18, 2021

Where the Spring Curfews Bloom

The weather has improved around where I live, which is good. Otherwise, the staggering amount of political callousness, neglect, greed, and incompetence from those who’re in charge of handling the pandemic in Germany is something to behold—a toxic jumbo cocktail whose hangover will haunt everyone for a decade. Which is also already put...
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April 11, 2021

April Is the Cruelest Month

Last week I was swamped with a torrent of lectures with up to eight academic hours per day; one and a half migraines and a sore throat; and sudden hailstorms between bouts of snow. Yup, April. Thus, regrettably, I didn’t finish any blog posts. But I published two more albums on Flickr, Stuttgart I and Stuttgart II, and I also started t...
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April 4, 2021

It Must Be the Weather

Unsurprisingly, things look every bit as bleak in terms of prevention and vaccination in Germany as experts have predicted—where by “experts” I of course mean actual experts, not shady rent-a-scientists like you-know-who. It’s pretty weird to experience a major crisis in a country that’s comprehensively underorganized and overregulated...
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March 28, 2021

Pandemic Passover 2.0

Not much has changed since last year this time, except that the virus has become more varied and more viral; that Germany dropped the ball in terms of prevention and vaccination; and that the world doesn’t look so well in general, even though one of its most destructive forces is off the board since January 20. Besides all that, March ...
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March 21, 2021

Sunday Comes Apace

Evidently, today isn’t Friday—I decided to push this newsletter’s regular release date to Sunday. To have more time to get stuff done, that’s one thing. As another, it feels better to let these little retrospectives not end the old week, but start the new one! In the U.S., Japan, Israel, and many other countries, Sunday is the first da...
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March 12, 2021

Summertime Sadness

If one thing has become clear during the past weeks and months of the pandemic, it is that Germany's government agencies and political parties are singularly inept at doing the right thing, and that everybody—barring a miracle—can kiss their summer vacations 2021 goodbye. One of the most outrageous things happening with regard to the p...
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March 8, 2021

Hello Void!

Some of you may have noticed that I have a new* email address j.martin@hey.com. Essentially, HEY.com is a paid webmail service. But you get an incredible amount of mileage out of your bucks, trust me! Remember how I always told you, use messaging, don’t send me emails? That’s history. Email’s become fun again! So don’t shy away any lon...
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