Sync Android contacts with CardDAV-Sync – disappearing contacts

addressbookI had to reset my phone over suspicious behavior. Either some bug has surfaced, or my telephone was broken into, but the camera started to say that it is “in use by another program”. To avoid unnecessary doubts, I simply erased the whole thing and started all over.

I can do that because my contacts are synchronized to DAV server using CardDAV-Sync free address book synchronization tool. It works well and synchronizes my contacts fairly well. When I need to start all over, I install it again and it pulls my contacts from the server. Nice.

This time, I set it up as usual and it synchronized, apparently, at least it did something for a long time… but no contacts appeared in the address book. Well, so I deleted the CardDAV-Sync, reinstalled it and configured again, with the same result half an hour later.

So, now I went to the server to check the logs. Everything looked normal, no errors. Reconfigured it all again, restarted the sync and watched in amazement how the phone pulled the address records but they were not appearing in the address book. After a very long search on the Internet and desperate walk through all possible and impossible settings in the phone I finally found what the problem was.

Address book has a filter accessible through Settings->Filter in the Address Book. Somehow, the filter was set not to show the entries from the CardDAV account. Once I switched on the contacts filter for the CardDAV, the address book was there. Several hours filled with desperation over a simple setting that got set wrong. But, next time I’ll know where to look.

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Broken events in ownCloud calendar

owncloud-square-logoSuddenly the synchronization with the ownCloud calendar stopped working. It gave me a strange message in the logs:

{“reqId”:”epU4rqrz1maFuP9hBxmu”,”remoteAddr”:”″,”app”:”calendar”,”message”:”Event (20150807T141714Z-27435_7a94261e27f2b60.ics) contains invalid data: End of document reached prematurely”,”level”:2,”time”:”2015-09-03T06:00:26+00:00″}

The interesting part here is the error message that says “Event contains invalid data: End of document reached prematurely”. Looking around I found out that there are some reports of broken VCalendar events stored in the database. So, using the mighty SQL statement

mysql -u owncloud -p ownclouddb -e “SELECT * FROM oc_clndr_objects WHERE calendardata NOT LIKE ‘%END:VCALENDAR%’;”

I found that the database contains 218 events without a closing END:VCALENDAR statement. All of the events were for the same event that I created recently mercilessly duplicated. And the event was not showing on the calendar, of course.

As soon as I deleted all of those broken entries from the database, everything came back to normal. Sync works again. My guess for the reason? Graphical smileys in the title. Try to stick to the pure ASCII there next time, I guess.

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She’s Funny That Way

shes_funny_that_wayWatched suddenly the “She’s Funny That Way” and did not feel sorry at all. The movie grips you from the beginning with its story and keeps you involved until the end. Yes, there is a couple of obvious moments where you go like “yeah, of course”, but otherwise it’s a lovely little entertainment piece.

Unfortunately, the movie lacks any sort of coherent idea, meaning that there isn’t really anything that you will learn from it, for better or worse. So it remains simply a light entertainment piece for a lazy summer evening. That absence of some higher idea or education in the movie was a bit disappointing at the end since I kept waiting for the punchline and it never came. Still, it remained a thoroughly enjoyable movie right through the end.

Overall, recommended, a good comedy with an interesting plot and a few twists.

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Being a manager would never have worked anyway…

Ah, now I finally know the reason why I cannot be a manager: a manager is supposed to hire people smarter than himself. That works for most management but where would I get people smarter than me? I am with Dilbert on this one :)

Dilbert - manager hires people smarter - dt150119

But, as we like to say, there is a grain of joke in every joke :)

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Cool! One can swim in Tokyo now!

Tokyo finally opened one of its beaches – in Kasai Rinkai Park – to swimming, reports Japan Times. The beaches of Tokyo were closed back in the sixties due to the pollution – it became literally dangerous to swim in the Tokyo bay. It is amazing that Japanese managed to clean up the environment to such an extent that swimming in Tokyo became reality again. I am looking forward to trying it out :)


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Why was Kennedy killed, after all?

Remember John F. Kennedy? How he was killed and nobody ever told us why? I guess saying this might have been signing his own execution order:

“For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence—on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. It conducts the Cold War, in short, with a war-time discipline no democracy would ever hope or wish to match.”

President John F. Kennedy,

Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, New York City,

April 27, 1961

John_F._Kennedy_motorcade,_Dallas_crop-800x537U.S. President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, at 12:30 pm Central Standard Time on Friday November 22, 1963, while on a political trip to Texas. Traveling in a presidential motorcade through downtown Dallas, he was shot once in the throat, and once in the head. Only 46, President Kennedy died younger than any other U.S. president to date. Lee Harvey Oswald, an employee of the Texas School Book Depository from which the shots were suspected to have been fired, was arrested for the murder of a local police officer, and was subsequently charged with the assassination of Kennedy. He denied shooting anyone, claiming he was a patsy, but was killed by Jack Ruby on November 24, before he could be tried. Ruby was then arrested and convicted for the murder of Oswald. Ruby successfully appealed his conviction and death sentence but became ill and died of cancer on January 3, 1967, while the date for his new trial was being set.

What a story.

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The phantom reality of Reuters

Reuters - Inventing NewsReuters has commented on the interview with Putin at the end of the International Economic Forum in St.Petersburg, Russia, reinforcing their own version of phantom reality that they pour into the ears of poor business executives world over. It is simply amazing how shameless a “news” agency may become in inventing stories and trying to undermine the reality in the minds of the audience.

Take the interview with Putin at the end of the International Economic Forum. The only thing Reuters could say about the Forum itself is that it “loses lustre”. The Forum is actually an annual event that happens for almost twenty years now and its development is described by other sources quite differently: “over the past five years the Forum has transformed into a leading global business event, attracting over 7,000 Russian and international participants, representing government and business leaders from around the world, joined by leading voices from academia, the media, and civil society.”

The Reuters actually manages to get quite a lot of propaganda into their short articles. Like the description of the Putin interview, for example, starts off with a statement from Reuters that “Russia can’t, or simply won’t, control its border to stop heavy weapons flowing to separatists in Ukraine”. After this, anything Putin may offer would sound like an excuse. However, we have not seen a similar statement regarding the massive flow of heavy weapons from Hungary and Poland to Ukraine, have we? Or something about the recent approval of U.S. parliament of $200 million budget for the supply of weapons to Ukraine? In real world, the U.S. and EU openly supply weapons to the war in Ukraine, while in Reuters world, Russia does that. Fortunately for Reuters, they don’t need to supply any facts or evidence in their own world, otherwise it may have become tricky.

And, of course, when there are no facts and no logic, Reuters must turn to the intellectually-dishonest debate tactics: discuss the personality of the opponent. Putin is always late, he is looking assertive, he is “veritable Vlad”, who “clings to perceived slights at the hands of West.” The whole report is just that: false assertions, irrelevant statements, personality attacks, and twisted claims.

As for the Malaysian Boeing shot down by Ukrainian military last summer, Reuters obviously did not read any reports on the investigations done by several parties that all point in the same direction. According to Reuters, there are still “Western suspicions that the separatists used a Russian missile to shoot down a civilian airliner”. It’s like they simply take anything that’s out there, turn the truth inside out, and hand it back to you.

I think the sole reason for the existence of Reuters is to publish ridiculous and outrageous articles that other, more “reputable” newshounds can quote in their own distorted reality shows.

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Americans want to nuke Russia to keep their “superiority”

Media analyst Mark Dice asked beachgoers in San Diego, California to sign a petition supporting President Obama’s supposed plan to launch of preemptive nuclear attack against Russia to help keep the United States of America the world’s leading superpower.

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The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Grand Budapest HotelI watched another movie just before I watched “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” but it was really so silly that I nearly forgot to mention it. It’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, another hotel movie, so to say. Technically, the movie isn’t really all that bad, although it is shot in the theater style, more like if you are watching a show at a theater with a story being told in the background, rather than a first-hand experience typical for a movie. That particular way of filming isn’t new and it is not a problem, it is even curious and entertaining. The problem is the story itself.

Typically, you would expect a story to teach you something, to tell you something new or entertaining, expand your horizons or reinforce your moral values. A movie is just a way to tell a story. Now, this particular movie does not really have a story to tell. It tells you that being stupid can actually work, it tells you that you can count on large inheritances from old ladies if you entertain them, and it tells you how important it is to have protection from the powers above you. Huh? And all of that in that weird theatrical way.

Frankly, if this was a farce, I could understand. The problem is it seems to pretend to be a serious movie while remaining a farce. And it fails miserably at both. Even more, I think this is one of those movies that actually actively destroy the human culture. I think censorship isn’t a bad idea after all…

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