Thursday, 29 March 2012

Beuth-Denkmünze (Beuth-Memorial medal) for Michael Breidthardt

My former manager, Michael Breidthardt, was honoured by the German DIN with the Beuth-Memorial medal for his long-standing successful work in a number of DIN committees and for representing the German delegation at international level. There is a very nice appreciation of Michael and his work in standardisation on the DIN website. Please take a look and join me in congratulating Michael.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Antonio Tabucchi died

One of my favourite authors - and a great thinker and great European - Antonio Tabucchi, died last weekend. President Barroso expressed the grief and the loss very well in his condolence message:
"On my own behalf and on behalf of the European Commission I would like to pay heartfelt tribute to the Italian writer Antonio Tabucchi, a naturalised Portuguese, a European citizen committed to spreading European languages and culture and honoured with major literary awards in Italy, France and Spain."
 This is very sad news. Antonio Tabucchi will certainly live on in his novels and writings and keep inspiring readers of all ages and Nationality with his deep humanity.

ICT Multi-Stakeholder Platform: first meeting yesterday

Yesterday I had the honour, as the representative of OpenForum Europe, to participate in the first meeting of the new EU ICT Multi-Stakeholder Platform (MSP). The MSP is an advisory group to the European Commission with a number of tasks to provide advice on ICT standardisation and standards policy matters. The MSP was announced in the Communication on a strategic vision for European standards - COM(2011)311 and it was installed by a Commission Decision of last November. This Commission Decision also outlines in detail the tasks for the group.

What makes me so excited about this MSP is that for the first time in Europe all stakeholders come together ready to contribute and cooperate on issues concerning standardisation in support of EU policy priorities. I think it is fair to say that for a number of years, since the discussions about a modernisation of the EU's ICT standardisation policy started, there has been a lot of interest for the discussions in Europe - in a declamatory way you could say that the world was looking at Europe. While the final discussions on the EU Regulation on standardisation are ongoing, the MSP is a further confirmation of the joint will and efforts to support public administrations in their work in an open, mutual dialogue.

The first meeting of the Platform was very good and constructive. It was an initial meeting, so big decisions were not yet made, big discussions not yet held. But it was impressive to have everybody around the table. Certainly a great starting point for future work in a highly innovative and dynamic sector. I am looking forward to the upcoming meetings and to fruitful debates.

A new poem - tribute to the finest time of day

It's been a while since I last published a poem. So here's a new one. In German again. It's a tribute to the finest time of day, the so called "blue hour" - or "l'heure bleu" to quote the original French term. The poem refers to the evening time. Perhaps some of you like it. Or perhaps you share my appreciation of that time of day.

blaue stunde

langsam fällt alle schwere
fällt ab und weicht
fast magisch

ich spüre wie ich atme
ich rieche die welt um mich herum
sauge den geruch ein
will mein schwammiges gehirn sich daran vollgesaugen lassen

kurz der moment
und doch so dauernd

ich sitze oberhalb des flusses
der von ost nach west
dorthin treibt
wo jetzt noch ein lichter schein zu sehen ist;
in der anderen richtung
setzt sich dunkelheit über die bewaldeten hügel
und im spiegel der wellen
sind hell und dunkel sich ganz nah
fast eins

sinne verschmelzen
riechen, sehen, fühlen eins
ich fühle den horizont
ich sehe den duft der blumen, der wälder, der stadt um mich herum
ich rieche die leichtigkeit des moments

so kurz
und doch so dauernd

die hintergrundmusik des feierabendverkehrs
schlägt ununterbrochen den takt
während die stadt sich takt um takt verwandelt
geschäftigkeit erschlafft
und noch nicht wieder vollgesaugt

der moment
in dem ein schiff in der schleuse verharrt
bis es die nächste ebene erreicht hat

so kurz
und doch so dauernd

es war eine ewigkeit
in der ich so da saß
oberhalb und doch ganz in der welt
mehr vielleicht als sonst
es war ewigkeit