Welcome on HeinPragt.com
The site heinpragt.com has been online since 1994 and it has grown to more than 330 theme pages and several thousand visitors every day. The main part of this website is written in Dutch and has three general topics: people, culture and technology and the site is meant to be a kind of online reference. The purpose of the site is to provide positive, friendly, reliable information to inspire the visitors. The English part of this site is much smaller and it covers only a few topics, but by using Google translate you should be able to read the Dutch pages as well. My name is Hein Pragt, I have been a professional musician for 6 years when I was younger and I have been performing in bands for all of my life. At the age of twenty five I became a professional software developer / ICT engineer and in my private time I have written a lot of small applications and games, most of them freeware, that you can download from this site. Since a few years I write point and click adventure games in the Unity game engine. I also like DIY projects and electronics, I design 3D parts, I have a 3D printer, I have a lot of small animals at home and I am a proud father of five children. I am also interested in psychology, philosophy, spirituality, I read a lot and write about new insights. Curiosity, creativity and integrity is my lifestyle and this website does reflect this. You can contact me with the contact form in the header of this page, I like to get to know new people. You can also contact me on the next social media sites: personal facebook page of my Linkedin page of my YouTube chanel of my Instagram page. Regards, Hein Pragt.
My view on integrity
We often use the word integrity to judge the character and behavior of someone. The word integrity is derived from the Latin word "integritas" that can be translated as wholeness, honesty but also decency. A person of integrity is being consistent at different times and in different situations and most of the times they show honesty, openness, sincerity, loyalty, dedication and harmony. On this page you can read my view on integrity.
My view on integrity page...
The meaning and origin of animals as symbolsOn this page I give my own impression of the meaning and origin of animal symbols. Animal symbols are very universal and appear in mythology, legends and religious scriptures in virtually every culture on Earth. Some animal symbols contain a secret code and other animal symbols are related to the traits of the animals they represent or traits formerly associated with animals, often through superstition. Animal symbols and the granting of special powers, traits, meanings or abilities to animals is expressed in proverbs and sayings and provides insight into why certain animals are used in films, stories, poetry, art and even advertising. Animals are also widely used as symbols in jewelry, amulets and in tattoos, often because the wearer wants to indicate that he finds these animals beautiful, but also because of the special and sometimes hidden meaning of the animal as a symbol.
Click here for the: page about animal symbols.
The meaning and symbolism of gestures of fingers and hands.In many parts of the world, finger and hand gestures are made for protection or to evoke good luck and these gestures were sometimes converted into a statue or pendant to offer the same protection as an amulet. When they are an amulet or statuette, they never stop working. Most of these amulets are found in Italy, but also in Spain, Portugal and all their former colonies in South America they are very popular.
Click here for the: page about the meaning of gestures of fingers and hands.
The symbolic meaning of numbersIn almost every culture a special meaning is assigned to certain numbers. For example, many people see 11 as the crazy or fools number and in 13 the bad luck number. The symbolic meaning of many numbers sometimes goes far back in time and can differ greatly in different cultures. Many numbers are described in the Bible, the Quran and Greek antiquity. Some numbers come from the orbit of our earth and the planets (the six-digit system), some numbers (also our decimal system) originated from our hands with 5 fingers each with a total of 10. Also, in the past, stories (oral tradition) often used the same numbers because it was easier to remember.
Click here for the: page about the symbolic meaning of numbers.
The meaning of Amulet or talisman.Almost everywhere in the world people carry some talisman or amulet with them, its shape is different from country to country and culture to culture. In general the amulet or talisman was taken very seriously and was endowed with helpful, magical powers. Sometimes it had to protect the owner from bad luck and sometimes he had to bring the owner good luck. There are also funny cultural differences, so in Africa many women wear fertility figures in their clothes to increase the chance of pregnancy, in the West the opposite is happening and people use contraception to prevent pregnancy. Mostly in the Middle East, amulets and inscriptions of proverbs from the Quran are widely used.
Click here for the: page about the symbolic meaning of Amulet or talisman.
Love and reciprocity
reciprocity in a love relationship is the feeling that giving and receiving are in balance. Reciprocity can be explained in a business sense as the mutual obligation to respond to a gift or manifestation with a returning gift or a returning manifestation or consideration. This returning gift, manifestation or consideration can take many forms, it can also be attention, gratitude or solidarity for now or in the future. In love relationships there must be at least a sense of reciprocity, if one of the partners gives more than he or she receives, there will be feelings of debt or obligations.
Lees meer over wederkerigheid in liefdesrelaties.
Chemistry of love
Strictly speaking, falling in love is simply a caused by a chemical reaction in our body the moment we perceive a compatible person with all of our senses. In recent years there have been indications that humans also use pheromones, many animals use these substances to unconsciously indicate to each other that they are prepared to mate. So for fun we could also speak of love at first smell instead of love at first sight.
Read more about chemistry of love.
Adventure games reviews.
Ever since my first computer in 1979 I was addicted to adventure games. It started with text adventure games like “Hounted house” and “Pyramid of doom” followed by all of Scott Adams games. In response to an article by Scott Adams in “80 Computing” I also wrote at my first own text adventure. I ended up writing the first Scott Adams adventure interpreter that I could use on a Windows computer and later also Andoid devices to play all Scott Adams text adventure games again in a more modern windows environment. Later the Kings Quest followed series, the Space Quest series, Day of the Tentacle, The seventh guest, all parts of Myst and Riven with the recent highlight “Broken age” and "Fire Watch". Sometimes adventure games really disappoint me and some I haven't even finished. My rating is not sacred, it is my personal rating (review), depending on taste one can think otherwise.
Read the Adventure games reviews.
Adventure game - Bon Vivant
For everyone who loves first-person, point and click adventure games on 6 January 2019 I released my own adventure game, Bon Vivant - the tale of a mysterious guesthouse. After half a year of programming and designing (in C # and Unity) it is finaly ready. The game takes place in an abandoned and boarded-up guest house in a forest somewhere in the middle of the Netherlands. Ten years ago a drama took place in the guest house and since then it has been abandoned and boarded up. In the nearby village it is said that mysterious things still happen around the old guest house and children are told that they absolutely can not go there. You are planning to investigate the mysterious guest house to discover what has happened. You can download the game for free from this site and I would like to invite you to download and play the game. The game is donationware and you can play it in either Dutch or English.
Download the game on this page
Scott Adams game interpreter 3.0.4.
In this version (3.0.4) 2018 the window can be resized so the complete text of the inventory is visible. With this adventure interpreter program you can play the old text adventures of Scott Adams (Adventure International) on your Windows PC. Fourteen original adventure games are in the same zip file. This version has a greatly improved (English) user interface, buttons for the most used commands, a separate one inventory window and dropdown lists with all commands and objects. This portable version of the program makes it easier to use this old one adventure games to play with a modern user interface. This program is also released in the USA on an Adventure Game collect CD.
Download on this page
Hpmef (Hein Pragt Minimal Emulator Frontend
There are a number of great emulator frontends available on the Internet, I use retropie on a mini Nes with a Raspberry pi. But for my Windows 10 desktop there are only programs that are huge, with a lot of artwork and sounds, not user friendly and sometimes very hard to configure. After some disappointing experiences I decided that I needed a very simple frontend, just select a game and double click it and it will run on the correct emulator. The program comes with several pre-installed free emulators.
Download this program on this page
Simple HTTP Health monitor
As a technical application manager I face the problem of having a complex application with many servers and lots of api services, and sometimes one or more of the many http servers or rest api's fails. There is excellent tooling to monitor an application farm but a lot of companies do not invest in this kind of maintenance tooling especially not in de development area. I am a programmer so decided to build a small portable dotnet program that could generate a real time status view of all the http(s) services in an application suite. It is a simple http server that will run on any chosen port (default 8080) and it reads a simple xml file with a list of url's it has to poll and what result status code is expected. When the expected status code is returned it will show a green bar and when the status is different it will show a red bar with the server name and the error code.
Download this program on this page
Freeware Z80 IDE
To be able to program for the z80 you need an assembler or compiler. I personally still like to write in Z80 assembler but I could no longer find tools for Windows 10. There were still some programs to download but most of them worked at DOS level. After some searching I decided that it was time for a new hobby project, building a complete integrated Z80 development environment. I found a pretty good assembler and good portable C code from an emulator and the rest I had somewhere in my code library. The result is Z80 workbench, a portable x64 Windows program that includes an editor, assembler, disassembler, emulator, single step debugger, Intel hex read / write function a terminal window, an MPF-1 compatible seven segment display with 8 LEDs and keyboard support.
Download this program on this page
PragtTextUtil is not an ordinary editor although the basic functions to edit text are present. The program is intended to perform operations on text such as converting to capital or lowercase letters or removing HTML tags and converting it to neat paragraphs. But there are also many Unix utilities such as WC, trim, uniq, sort, grep, head, tail and filtering in this program included but also complex editing such as a sorted word frequency overview. You can also use a log file for all rules filtering that contains a certain word or does not contain a specific word. Also a nice option is search and replace with the possibility to use CTRL characters in the search but also the replacement text. A very handy portable program when you are a developer or administrator or have to perform a lot of edits on texts. In the latest version 1.07 sorting is made ten times faster.
Hmp_reversi for windows 3.02 (freeware) 64 Bit
This is a recent version of my reversi (or othello) program where I have applied several optimizations. First, it is now 64 bits so that a field can be stored in two 64 bit words. The game uses bitboards, an efficient and smart flip algorithm, alpha beta pruning, hashing / caching, move ordering, opening book and evaluation based on patterns. The game can look 12 to 20 ply deep and has no setting to make it play weaker. The game always plays at the best level just like a human opponent. For me, winning a reversi program that is set to a low level is just right something like winning in a running race when the opponent has a rope around both legs. This is not a real win when you gives the opponent a handicap. The game is very basic with only the possibility to take back and a game save or load. The game plays pretty strong, it unfortunately loses from zebra and nboard when they are set to a high level. The game is portable, it consists of one exe file that does not needs to be installed. The program has been zipped and has to be unpacked after download. (64 bit version 3.02)
Download: Hmp_reversi voor windows.
Reversi for windows (WIn 32). (freeware)
I wrote my first version of reversi or othello in basic on the trs80 computer. This was a very simple version with O and X as pieces the field and a simple 2 level min / max calculation. Later on the first PC it was re-written for windows 95 but this time using visual studio and the programming language C and assembler. Since the computers were not yet so fast, every small optimization was welcome to be able to calculate more moves. The routines to play and evaluate fields were therefore written in a very compact assembler. My son thought the background was too boring and thought up a funny look for the game. I made the latest version of the game 1999 but since the design of the game was a min / max with smart dynamic field values and the evaluation of 4 to 6 levels written in assembler, further improvement of the game was very difficult. In 2000, I am the result of a backup error all sources were lost. So this is a small and portable version of the game reversi for windows, it is not a super strong version but sometimes surprising in his game. The graphic background was designed by my son Robert at the age of 12. (Version 1.04)
Download: Mickey reversi for windows.
Wise sayings and quotes
I also like wise sayings and quotes, I have a lot of them hanging around in my house. On this page there is a list of famous wise and inspiring sayings and quotes that I like, or that mean a lot to me. I also put some of my own quotes on this page that I tried to translate from Dutch to English. I like inspiring sayings and quotes for as long as I live, and I have collected a lot of books filled with inspiring sayings and quotes. Most sayings and quotes are short powerful sentences, somtimes with some humor, somtimes cynical, and thay are able to explain complex matters in a simple way.
Goto sayings and quotes page.
I really like short inspiring stories, most of these stories teach us an important fact of life. On this page is a collection of some inspiring stories and poems that I have collected over the years. Most of the stories are public domain, they are very old and the origin is sometimes not clear. Some of the stories are originally English and some of these stories I have translated from Dutch to English. Read these short stories and let them amuse you, lighten up your day or give you something to think about.
Goto short inspiring stories page.
Inspiring story about trying
(By: Unknown, translation: Hein Pragt)
A guru advised his students to meditate three times a day. Most of his students watched him with some burdened ands most of their comments were almost identical: "I will try." The guru nodded wisely and while he walked back to his seat, he dropped the book he had under his arm and it fell to the floor. He turned around, bent over, reached for the book, but could not get it. Time after time he grabbed but could not get the book. His students looked at him in amazement. "You try to pick it up," he said to one of the students. The student walked to the book, bent over, picked up the book and handed it to his guru. The guru hit the book out of his hands, back to the ground and said: "I did not ask you to pick the book up, I only asked you to try".
Many people just want to be themselves, be authentic and think they have some kind of pure unchangeable identity. Often this Identity is good, beautiful and pure and this "me" almost only has positive qualities. This may go so far that when somtimes they act jealously, stupid, hysterical or wrong, people say “I was not myself”. Most people try to play the role (the ego) of the person they would like to be. But the funny thing is that you can never be anything but yourself, all those beautiful and less beautiful sides, that's you. You can stop looking for yourself, you already are. The only thing you can do is to accept all those different sides of yourself and even start to like them, because this is you. (Hein Pragt)
According to an old Chinese definition of happiness, "something to hope" is one of the three ingredients. The past has shown that whatever hard circumstances people had to face, hope was often the motivation to continue. We often see in desperate acts that people indicate that they have lost all hope. For example, we do not have a life sentence in the Netherlands because we believe that taking away any hope of ever being free is inhuman. Hope is an important driver for people, but hopelessness can be deadly. It is important in life to never lose hope and to even find hope in a tiny sparkle. That's why giving someone else some hope for the future, or helping someone to see some hope, is such a valuable gift. (Hein Pragt)
People suffer the most from their opposition to reality. The stronger the ego, the more people think they have influence on things that are happening to them and to the world around them. But when you look back, how often did things happen exactly as you planned them or the way you wanted them to happen? I almost never think, and when it did happen the way you planned, it was often just a coincidence. Life is what happens to you while you had other plans, I cannot state this often enough. By not being able to accept that "it is what it is" and "it goes as it goes", resistance arises and this resistance causes suffering and sorrow. If you honestly dare to look at feelings and emotions that afflict you, you can often discover this resistance. By letting go of the resistance and accepting that is what it is, you can start to learn to enjoy what is really there. (Hein Pragt)
Judging quickly, often based on prejudice and then sentencing, is a very human habit that is ingrained in our genes. It makes life safe and well-organized when we are able to quickly divide everything into good and bad, friend or enemy, beautiful or ugly. In prehistoric times it was useful to be able to quickly assess whether someone was a friend or an enemy. And the chance of survival was higher when you were not so optimistic, it was safer to see more enemies. You could say that sentencing is embedded in our genes. I decided at a young age to leave this judgment behind and I tried to see who someone really was. That has given me very special encounters and a lot of insight. Only when you can leave your judgments, prejudices and convictions behind, you can see who someone really is, until that time you really only see yourself.(Hein Pragt)
I have learned
Quick judgment, often based on prejudices and condemning, is very common human behavior that's in integrated in our genes. It makes our life safe and clear when we are able to quickly divide everything and everyone into good and bad, friend or enemy, beautiful or ugly and in prehistoric times it was useful to be able to quickly estimate if someone's was a friend or an enemy. And the survival rate was higher when you were too conservative and did not thrust too much. You could say that prejudices and condemning is part of our prehistoric genes. I learned at a young age to try to omit this judgment and to be interested to see who someone really was and that has led me to many special encounters and a lot of insight. Only when you can leave judgment and prejudices behind, you are able to see who someone really is, until then you will mostly see yourself. (Hein)
Wall of positivity
In several places in my home I have so called positivity walls, for instance in my toilet you can look at a pinboard containing a lot of positive quotes and images. And also in my bedroom there is a big board across the bed with inspiring positive quotes to remind me everyday of things that are important to me. Does it work, yes it does, every day I am reminded of my personal values and things that make me feel good. Even studies learn that focusing on the positive rather than the negative is not only good for your mental wellbeing, it's also good for your physical health.
Goto wall of positivity page.
I live in the Netherlands
I am proud of my little country, we are one of the most open-minded countries in the world, and we are a country of big inventions, creativity and personal development. The Kingdom of the Netherlands was formed in 1815 and is located in the West of Europe, bordering the North Sea. Our climate is marine, cool summers and mild winters. The Netherlands is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which consists of the Netherlands, the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba in the Caribbean. The Netherlands is a constitutional monarchy, located in Western Europe. It is bordered by the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east. The Netherlands is often called Holland. This is formally incorrect as North and South Holland in the western Netherlands are only two of the country's twelve provinces. For more on this and other naming issues see terminology of the Netherlands. The Netherlands is a geographically low-lying and densely populated country. It is popularly known for its traditional windmills, tulips, cheese, clogs (wooden shoes), delftware and gouda pottery, for its bicycles, its dikes and surge barriers, and, on the other hand, traditional values and civil virtues such as its classic social tolerance. But primarily, the Netherlands is a modern, advanced and open society. An old parliamentary democracy, the country is more recently known for its rather liberal policies toward recreational drugs, prostitution, abortion, and euthanasia. The Netherlands is also one of the most densely cabled countries in the world; its internet connection rate is 87.8%, the 2nd highest in the world. The Netherlands has an international outlook; among other affiliations the country is a founding member of the European Union (EU), NATO, the OECD, and has signed the Kyoto protocol. Along with Belgium and Luxembourg, the Netherlands is one of three member nations of the Benelux economic union. The country is host to five international(ised) courts: the Permanent Court of Arbitration, the International Court of Justice, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Court and the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. All of these courts (except the Special Tribunal for Lebanon), as well as the EU's criminal intelligence agency (Europol), are situated in The Hague, which has led to the city being referred to as "the world's legal capital." The terrain is mostly coastal lowland and reclaimed land (polders). The population is about 16,067,754 (July 2002 EST.)
I was born in the town Bargercompas
I was born in the small town Bargercompas in the southeast corner of Drenthe in the Netherlands. Bargercompas is located not far from away from the German border, near the town of Emmen. Until my eighteenth birthday I lived in this little town and I spent my complete childhood in Bargercompas. Barger-Compascuum is a small town in the Dutch municipality of Emmen in a peat-producing region of Drenthe near the German border. The village area of Barger-Compascuum consists of a combination of agricultural (peat reclamations in the past) and nature. The very nice nature includes not only the Berkenrode, but also the Oosterbos. The town is surrounded with large natural areas. The main attraction in the village is the National Veenpark museum where the history of the town and the peat reclamation is shown and told and the town like it was one century ago is rebuild. In the center of the village you can find the St. Joseph Catholic Church that was build in 1924, a Roman Catholic and a Protestant Christian school, sports fields, supermarket, a post office and several other shops and restaurants.
This is my current hometown Veenendaal
I currently live in the town Veenendaal an I would like to tell you something about the country and the city where I live in. I have provided some maps to give a better indication about the exact location. A famous question that someone from America will ask you is, "you are from Holland, I have a friend that lives there, maybe you know him?". Then I will explain that our country is very small, but about 16 million people live here, and I only know a few of them....(Smile!)
The city of Veenendaal is located in the center of the Netherlands near Utrecht. It has about 60,000 inhabitants, 2900 enterprises and 553 shops. Veenendaal is a very active town with numerous public facilities and its a very attractive town with separate residential and industrial areas. The cities of Arnhem and Utrecht are less than 30 kilometres away. Within a short distance of the town you can admire the beautiful scenery of woods, hills and the national park. Veenendaal is a municipality and a town in central Netherlands, it is part of the province of Utrecht. Veenendaal is the only population centre within its administrative borders. The municipality has 61,681 inhabitants and an area of 19,81 square kilometres, most of which is covered with built-up area. The original village was founded in the 16th century as a peat colony from which it got its name. 'Veenen' is the old (plural) Dutch word for peat and 'daal' for valley, so literally the name means 'peatvalley'. Until just after World War II, Veenendaal remained a small community with only a few thousand residents. In the last fifty years the town grew rapidly to the 60,000+ inhabitants of today. Until the second half of the 20th century, Veenendaal was divided into two parts, a 'Gelders' and an 'Utrechts' part ('Gelders' comes from Gelderland and 'Utrechts' from Utrecht, both Dutch provinces). This is because in the first few centuries of the town's existence it was too small to be its own municipality. The southern half eventually became independent from Rhenen and Renswoude in 1795. The northern half separated from Ede in 1960. In 1997 it was elected the greenest city of Europe and in 2004 of the Netherlands. In 2000 the town was elected best bicycle city of the Netherlands.
More about Hein Pragt
At the age of 18 I quit school and became a professional musician and moved to a two room apartment in the town of Emmen. When I turned 24 I decided to go back to school and became a software engineer and I have worked as a software engineer ever since. However I never stopped playing music, I have played in a lot of bands and played all kinds of music. Currently I only play at home on my guitars and digital piano and I have a little Tascam 8 track homestudio. I have been working as a software engineer in several countries like France (working for Philips), Great Brittan (London, working for Psion), Norway and Finland (working for MTD). I have some friends outside of the Netherlands and that's why I decided to translate part of my website to English. I currently live alone and am blessed with four sons, Robert, Rick, Rene and Raoul Pragt and in 2005 my little daughter called Romy Pragt was born. I like to read and write a lot and I am still interested in all kinds of new technology, but also in sprituality, filosofy and other cultures. Read even more about me on my About Hein Pragt page.
Last update: 22-01-2019