Gerald Zhang-Schmidt

in the bambooHi, my name is Gerald Zhang-Schmidt, and I’m fascinated…

Fascinated with this world of ours, and with us humans. It is such a diverse and interesting place, and we are such a diverse and strange species – and then, though our lives are short enough and we are even conscious of it, we close ourselves off to all the fascination, and retreat into comfortable little worlds.

Okay, okay, I have to hustle to make money, too; I’d like a house to call my own, to use as my refuge against the turmoil of the world, too; I get lazy and dispirited…
Then again

  • *not* learning anything I can, but thinking I know it all?
  • *not* trying to really live, but only looking to be distracted?
  • *not* trying challenging things, but just aiming for comfort?

I don’t see the point in that.

Thus, though I don’t think you necessarily have to escape 9 to 5, the one thing I’m afraid of is to lose the fascination with the world. To just get into the comfortable trance of the rat race, burrow in, and wake up dead.

So, I use my background in cultural anthropology and ecology…

  • to explore how we can really become at home in this world, and
  • to journey along the intersections that make it possible for us to be living richer by living better, incidentally “for the planet,” too in the ecology of happiness.

The first of these is, of course, what this site is all about, and it also presents the ways in which I try and live #ecohappy myself.

It is still a struggle to make a living with that, but rather than just look for a job and be disappointed about the way “the economy” has developed, I’m looking to (also) invent my own businesses about it, and thus to go on with the work that I consider more-than-necessary, that interests and fascinates me, no matter what.

It is the journey of my life, and you are welcome to join and learn with me.

You may also like to read this post on why I specialize in not specializing


  1. Peter Crane

    Hi Gerald,

    My name is Peter Crane and I wrote a post you “liked” on the Movescount Facebook page today. So you’re probably wondering why I am writing to you, and how I found your site! Well, when your name came up on Facebook earlier I recognized it immediately. You see, before I bought my Suunto Ambit and started using Movescount, I watched one of your video reviews about the watch! That was a while ago now! So I just wanted to write and say thanks for putting up the detail on the Ambit and going to the effort to make that video. If I hadn’t seen it, who knows – I might not have bought the watch! I also noticed your German accent (I’m Aussie btw, and yes, it is almost 1am!!). My girlfriend lives in Innsbruck, Austria and I usually stay there for several months every year (I’m currently looking for a job as a filmmaker/photographer so I can secure a Work Visa and stay indefinitely!). My German could be better and I find it all really hard to learn, but maybe if I ever bump into you on the mountains somewhere we’ll chat in German then! It’s possible – the world can be a very small place sometimes!

    Liebe Grüße aus Australien, Peter.

    • Well, Hi Peter!
      Talk about a small world / six degrees of separation… Wish I could help, and certainly wish you good luck with the job search! As it were, I haven’t often made my way “all the way” to Tirol… ;)

  2. Minna Paul

    Hi Gerald,

    Chanced upon “Ecohappy” just when I thought I was the only freak of nature that looked at life the way you do. I have always brushed off the way I see life , attributing it to just being born with an aged soul and watched the mad rat race around me with sadness and resignation. Glad I saw that and glad also to share the world with you.

    At home in the world,

    • Hi Minna, no, no, we’re definitely out there, people like this. In fact, though I try not to fall into any arrogance this view might entail, I think that most people feel at least an inkling of this perspective, they just can’t live with the certain anxiety it causes and thus distract themselves… All the more important for those who can’t shake such feelings to step up and show how to live better not avoiding, but with and through them.
      Glad to “meet” you :)

  3. Loc Bui

    Hi Gerald,
    My name is Loc Bui. I am of Vietnamese descent but lived in the USA since the early ’70. I stumbled onto your posting while searching for China HSR. I respond to your “About” because of your background in cultural anthropology. It took me a while to realized that I shared your interest, may be because I was trained and educated as a scientist. I am interested in learning more about China but I have never been there.
    Glad to find your website. Keep on the good work.
    Loc Bui

  4. Matthew Gee

    sorry to bother you, but is it possible to add waypoints to a GPX file either before importing it into movescount or afterwards ? I am using Suunto Ambit 3 and cannot work this out

    • If you have a gpx file as such, it is possible to add track points. Even that is not a straightforward (or maybe it’s too straightforward) a thing to do, though. And the biggest question is what you’d need that file for. Using it in google earth works quite alright, an import into movescount as a route might work (and even those two scenarios might need tweaking and converting); anything else is likely not going to work.

      Dedicated waypoints (with name, label) don’t seem to work, only trackpoints… Those you’ll need to add later (for all I’ve ever seen; I could well be wrong)

  5. Edgar Hume

    Hello, Gerald.
    You have been immensely helpful in my understanding of the new Traverse watches, and without your detailed explanations I would have likely moved on from considering one. As it is I have purchased one and I’m very pleased with it.
    I’d like to mention that regarding logbook entries, there seems to be a way to not enter a move/track in the first place:

    From the main screen, instead of holding down the Start button to end a recording, tap Start to pause and then tap Back/Lap.
    There you are prompted to either end or resume the recording. If you choose to end it, you are then prompted to Save, yes or no.
    If No is selected, you are then shown the review as usual, during which time one could write down any details to be saved.
    After exiting the review, it appears to be gone, with no logbook entry visible on the traverse.
    I hope that is useful to someone, I’ve found it very useful for practicing with the watch without accumulating reams of junk logs.
    Thanks again for educating and sharing your efforts.

    • Oh, good recommendation. I think I’ve seen that before, but didn’t quite realize its usefulness ;)

      [Auto-correct edited as requested ;) ]

      And, I’m glad you like it :)

  6. Martin Burkert


    Many thanks for your great review of the new Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro. I have seen all your vids about this topic on youtube as well – eventually I bought it, and it is as expected.

    Greeting from Graz

  7. Sascha

    Hallo Gerald,
    ich wurde durch Deine Videos zu den Suunto Uhren (Ambit 3) auf Deine Seite aufmerksam. Es gibt leider, leider kein Support-Forum zu den Suunto-Uhren. Man ist völlig alleine gelassen. Mein Problem: Für eine längere Tour (Alpen-Cross) benötige ich die Möglichkeit, GPX-Tracks auf die Uhr hochzuladen. Ich habe schon einiges probiert, aber nichts hat geklappt. Auch ein Mail an den Suunto-Support brachte keine Antwort. Evtl. ging es auch unter. Hast Du einen Tipp oder evtl. einen guten Draht zu Suunto? Wenn die so weiter machen, werden die im Trailrunner-Bereich ganz verschwinden. Vor ein paar Jahren waren die Suuntos noch die Uhr bei den Wettbewerben. Mittlerweile sind das Exoten… Das ging verdammt schnell. Echt sehr schade, denn die Uhr ist wirklich ordentlich gemacht. Nur die Verbindung zum “Rest der Welt” klappt eben nicht. Aber das kann man doch im Jahr 2017 nicht mehr bringen!
    Ich bin für jeden Tipp dankbar. Evtl. steht ja ein größeren Update der Suunto-Plattform an.

    Mit besten Grüßen,

    • Wird Zeit, dass ich mal – dann gleich auf – Videos zu Movescount poste ;)

      Geh auf Movescount. Rechts oben das blaue Plus-Symbol bietet die Option “Plan a route”. Das anklicken.

      Es öffnet sich die Map-Ansicht zur Plannung einer neuen Route. Dort findet sich genauso ein blaues Plus-Symbol links unten.

      Das bietet die Option “Import route”, welche auch GPX akzeptiert. (Womöglich wird, um das auch auf der Uhr nutzen zu können, eine Reduzierung der Wegpunkte nötig. “Simplify Route” macht das meistens ganz gut; findet sich unten in der Mitte, iirc.)

      Schönes neues Jahr! :)

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