34C3: Day Four

By The Literate Programmer, Sun 31 December 2017, in category 34c3

34C3, CCC, Hacking, Leipzig, Society, Tech, Volunteering


On this last day, I did two more translations, one which I really wanted to do and one which I didn't, but took anyway so that we would have a translation. The first one I wanted to do, because I would get to work with a friend of mine who really wanted to see the talk and I'm glad we did that translation.

The digital transformation of agriculture is amazingly far along already and there are many many fascinating developments. I thought I had a reasonable view of agriculture today, far from farming romanticism and age-old parctices, but I hadn't realized just how much technology is available and in use today for farm management.

The other translation I didn't want to take originally because I had wanted to sit in and just listen to the talk and possibly sneak out early so that I could attend the closing ceremony. However, SCADA - Gateway to (s)hell turned out to be great fun and super smooth to translate and, on top of that, all the prepared demos worked so smoothly that even with a long Q&A the talk ended early!

As they had to start a little late, I easily found myself some space for the closing ceremony and was very glad I did so. For me, opening and closing ceremonies provide a necessary framing of the Congress, setting the tone and the goals. I was glad to see that they didn't shy away from the controversy that had been going on, and generally found it to be a quite inspiring talk. It was certainly also wistful and introspective, looking back a lot, but with this year's motto of "tuwat"1 they tried to move on from there.

A stressful evening-after

So, with the 34C3 officially over, I gathered my friends and we went to a nice Indian restaurant, where we were going to have dinner and start a relaxing evening before moving on to a short RPG one-shot that I'd prepared.

Then, just as we'd finally filled up the restaurant with our horde and I sat down, I got an SMS from our AirBnB landlord.

"Call me asap, the house next to ours burned down."

Source: Leipziger Volkszeitung

It had been a huge fire and made it into the news2 too, but we at Congress obviously didn't hear anything. We had just ordered food, and been told that it would take almost an hour, given how overworked the restaurant was, so we3 didn't cancel our orders but simply ran to the nearest taxi and went there as quickly as we could.

The fire had been mostly extinguished at this point, after some 6 hours of firefighting, and they'd just finished determining that our building was safe to enter. Accompanied by a policeman and a firefighter4, we got let into the flat to grab all our stuff.

Ultimately, we got really lucky. For two of us, our stuff stank of woodsmoke, but was otherwise unaffected, for the third, whose stuff was unfortunately close to a window, it got soaked. Since we're nerds at a tech conference, we had all our tech with us5 leaving him with, as far as I know, nothing permanently damaged, as clothes will dry out again.

So we went back to the restaurant, where our friends had figured out our new sleeping arrangements already, food was just being served, and we somehow found a way to relax again. Phew.

34/3, would go to Leipzig for the CCC again.

  1. Do something 

  2. Which some of us had already seen on the news display in the tram. 

  3. That is, the three of us who were staying together. We still left some 20 people behind, ensuring that the restaurant wasn't just left with our food, no matter what. 

  4. Police to ensure we weren't stealing or the like, firefighter to open the temporary lock they'd put in after removing the original lock. 

  5. Well, I left my tablet there, but that was on a table, away from any windows and so was just fine.