This website is my private project. You can contribute by giving your feedback.
See my business card for basic information about me. In this section I will tell you even more about me.
Yes, I am the most interesting human in the world. For me. Because I am the only human whose heart I can read directly. I am the only human I can write about without offending others. Who, if not me, is allowed to speak about myself?
If you perceive this as arrogant or egocentric, then I ask you to forgive me.
Speaking about yourself is a form of gratefulness. Being grateful includes telling others about it. Telling others about me is one of my ways of glorifying God, who made me.
Speaking about yourself requires courage. It is dangerous because others are likely to laugh about you.
Speaking about yourself helps you to become more self-aware. Like every human I happen to have wrong images of myself. Showing my pictures to others invites my friends to correct me if I am wrong.
But note that I say “I try”, not “I claim”. Nobody is truly honest or open-minded all the time. I happen to fail. I happen to have an illusionary image of myself. Your feedback can help me to become more honest and open-minded.
I believe that Jesus calls us to develop an open mind and to be honest. I have communication problems with people who refuse to be open-minded. Yes, these people exist. They obviously don’t call themselves “closed-minded”, but they won’t follow me in Dare to change your mind.
Some of my friends say I am resistant to advice. Which is at least partly true.
- resistant to advice¶
A cynical compliment that actually means “who does not listen to advice from other people”. (de: beratungsresistent)
With every incoming advice it makes sense to ask first “Who gives it? Where does it come from?” This can avoid you wasting time with triaging useless information. On the other hand this first filter shouldn’t be waterproof, it should feature holes for exceptions.
And when an advice makes it through the first filter –either because you trust its source to be reliable or because it found an exceptional entry hole–, your next important question is to ask yourself “What does it mean to me?” You recognize a prophetic word by its fruits.
See also The Daniel effect.
I classify myself as a Christian, more precisely a Roman Catholic one. I grew up in a catholic family. The Catholics in my home town were rather open-minded than orthodox. My faith has been influenced by the spirituality of the Taizé community. After moving to Estonia I started to engage in several Lutheran church communities. I am a fan of Pope Francis who caused me to engage in the Catholic church as well.
I believe that one cannot be Christian and at the same time refuse the idea of the Church.
More precisely, I can even imagine that the Roman Catholic has the potential of reconciling all Christians back under one institution. Though they have to change a few things before this can happen, and I don’t expect it to happen during my lifetime.
I joined the scout movement at the age of 15, I was a cob scout leader (7-12 years old boys) for seven years, one year a leader of 15-18 yo boy scouts, and then, during a few more years, helped organizing trainings for young scout leaders.
I am no longer active in any scout group, but dare to say that the principles of the Scout Promise and Scout Law remain active in my heart. I believe that this world would be more human if there were more scouts and less people who don’t care about these principles.
“The World Movement of Scouting is in a very unique position to help the different peoples and cultures of the world find common ground from among their best traditions and beliefs. By this Scouting can help promote better world citizenship and world peace.” – Bryce Hall via scoutwiki.org
I moved from Belgium to Estonia at the age of 30. During the last twenty years I have never regretted this decision. I plan to die here (not immediately of course, but I have no plan to move back to Belgium or to some other country during my lifetime). I don’t see any need for changing my nationality. I will always remain a Belgian living abroad, I will never become an Estonian.
I feel well integrated, mostly because I am married to an Estonian. I love the Estonian people and their culture.
It took me about two years to learn the Estonian language to a satisfying level. I will never speak it without accent, though.
I love using computers as a tool for thinking. And –unlike many IT specialists, as it seems– I love humans as well.
My focus of interest is how to transfer knowledge from a human brain to a computer, and from the computer to another human brain.
I stumbled into this vocation quasi against my will. I did not choose this vocation, it chose me. My plan at the age between 16 and 20 was to become a biologist. I said “computers are nice tools for playing around, but I want to something useful”. After my failure in biology, my next plan during one year was to become a basic school teacher. I fully realized my vocation only after discovering the world of Free Software.
Blogging is writing a diary, but instead of keeping it secret, you do it in public. It is a kind of spiritual exercise: What do I want to say, knowing that anybody might read it at any moment, maybe somebody whom I really didn’t expect to read it, maybe many years later? For me it’s an interesting challenge.
Of course this hobby teaches me to think about confidentiality, copyright, privacy and other topics. As a blogger I must be careful to respect other people’s privacy.
During more than 25 years I have gathered some experience, but of course I am not a master. I never blogged with the goal of getting many followers. I blog because it helps me to digest my everyday experiences. Writing a personal blog is one of my ways to pray.
As a professional software developer I am trained in the art of using a computer as a tool for thinking about complex topics. I sometimes call it “thinking through your fingers”. It helps me because human brains actually manage quite poorly with the cognitive task of keeping in mind lists of things.
I recommend reading the book Free Culture by Lawrence Lessig. “Lawrence Lessig could be called a cultural environmentalist. One of America’s most original and influential public intellectuals, his focus is the social dimension of creativity: how creative work builds on the past and how society encourages or inhibits that building with laws and technologies.”
The politicalcompass.org website classified me as Economically rather Left and Socially moderatedly Libertarian. I believe that finding ways for global sustainable development is more important than keeping the consumer society running. If given the choice between an economic crisis and a climate catastrophe, I’d chose the former. We need new sociological methods in order to rule this world. Since September 2021 I am member of the social-democrat party of Estonia.
I believe that software should be free, and I try to avoid using non-free software as much as possible.
There is no Windows computer under my roof. My family occasionally complains about this, but I use my veto right as long as I am the main income generator. And actually they manage quite well.
I received a more than average education in solfeggio and singing, but never consider becoming a professional.
I love to sing alone and with others. But just for fun, I don’t love to work hard for it. I am not an “academic” style singer.