It’s okay, to be not okay …


Here is the story. I was in a networking event, meeting some old friends and discovering new ones. A good friend of mine was running toward an important thing (a cocktail,  a prospect, a cherry tomato, we don’t care…) and while walking in front of me, he smiled and launched a warm “hey Virginie, how are you today ?” without stopping his walk. I was in a kind-of-worried-anxious-tired-mood and I answered “Well…”. Immediate effect. That friend, lost his smile in a second, stopped his walk, u-turned, and staired at me with wondering eyes. I saw how my beginning of vague answer did affect him. I felt I had to reassure him “I’m okay, it’s okay, I’m okay, no worry”. Pretenting everything was okay, more then ever.

Not okay, really ?  I realized at that specific moment, the reason why I was most of the time reluctant to admit my bad feeling : it takes some energy and bravery to assume it. The possibility that something could go wrong is a bad signal that makes some people uncomfortable. But well, look at our crazy world : what can cause some bad feelings ? Potientally a lot : stress, multiple and constant social interactions, quick decision making, always on and ready, juggling different human facets and context. That, each day. And it may be hard to protect ourselves, in this multitude. Each of us has a kernel, that under attack will create ususally negative reactions, pain, sadness, violence, anger,… Well, I did not invent anything, I am not the first one telling that we all have a dark sidet (some french friends wrote about it [1] [2]). But the reason why I am talking about it is because I recently spent some times trying to understand my dark side and spent some time on my bad emotions. And I found few things to deal with those negative feelings.

Admit it. I do not question anymore, I am not hiding myself, I stopped denying. Admitting my dark mood and accepting the associated feeling has been a great victory (but the battle is still going on…).

Share with some. Not being okay can be dealt alone, but balancing this loneliness  with time spent with my friends and familly helps. So if I wanna share that bad feeling or state, with others. I choose them carefully. I take someone I believe will not be yelling or crying after my announcement, or who will not start denying, judging my feeling. This part is difficult, as our affective relations do not always allow to have the appropriate distance (which for me is empathy with no compassion). By the way, congratulation to the lucky winners, and thank you, friends, I love you !

Feel the feeling. My body and I are co-existing with that darkness (bad mood, bad thoughts, bad intentions, deep sadness, well, you see). That’s a fact, you have to cohabit with it. And I found that mindfulness can help : it suggests to recognize the physiologic signs in your body associated with the sadness, anger, all bad feelings. Once being able to detect from your own sensations where you are on your emotional scale, you can decide what to do with this :share it, keep it, monitor it, control it, or run away. Well, usually minfulness suggests to breath, but it’s up to you. There is no judgement here, neither a good way to manage that feeling. The objective is just to be in a position to choose how this internal feeling will affect your relation with the others and with the world.

Silence the feeling. Meditation is also an intersting exercice to create a DMZ. A white zone, empty, where nothing happens ! I just concentrate on breathing or noise around, filling my thoughts. Looking for that neutral state during ten minutes (or more, depending on how brave I am) helps also to relax the storm created by my internal fight between being kind and being that miserable thing able to yell at anyone.

Express the feeling. I have a wander-wonder mind. My thoughts are always climbing somewhere, making links, balancing, reminding something. I guess like all of you, there is always something happening. I have decided ot use that energy to write, draw, take picture, and share my thoughts on this blog. While doing those things, I have no shame (anymore) to integrate my dark filters. And I believe this is what makes me a human.

Learn. I am also trying to learn about the bad feeling source. Where does it come from, is there any explanation ? Any psycho or cognitive reasons. Explaning is not about judging or skipping, but about understanding, and thus helping better admiting (go back to point one of this post). Some side effect could be that bad feeling vanishes but this is not a quest for me, my own quest is understanding. At least this is my own mecanic that will allow me to survive the idea that I am not a perfect person. I recently had a great time looking at Brené Brown on how vulnerability is cool. I also got the difference between being aggressive and being violent. All those little pieces of information makes me understanding my own humanity and internal amazing life.

That’s a lot, right ? You can try some of those tools, or not. But experiencing that path is sooo interesting and rich, that I am just about to wish you veeeery bad days to give you a chance to play with it ! Mouhhaahhhaaaa…

[1] french blog of a french psy I like

[2] La bienveillance, c’était mieux avant

Some news on the Trusted Execution Environment side…



Few time ago I wrote about the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE), and how promising it was. Few months ago, I mentionned the arrival of Trusty TEE in Android, an API allowing mobile application to interact with TEE based services. One can still wonder in 2016, where is that technology positioned.

A reminder about what is TEE. Well, it is always an isolated environment, shipped into smart phones, offering a way to deploy some code that will be securely stored and executed. It could support any mobile application that may require some sensitive operations and a trusted user interface, to insure what you see is what you sign.

But the major question when we come to nice technology is : “yeap, your stuff sounds cool, but, who on earth is using it ?”.

Well. Let’s see the facts. On the GlobalPlatform website, you can find 8 products that did success in the functional official certification. You can check this yourself here. Among the certified vendors, one can note Samsung.

And what does the silicon valley say about it ? A recent event allowed to have an overview of the market. It was the TEE Seminar that happened in October in Santa Clara. This is a regular seminar which is gathering the usual suspects of the TEE eco-system. Speakers include ARM, Visa, Trustonic (one of the well known TEE provider, a gemalto owned company), FIDO Alliance, Linaro (which offers an open source version of a TEE, named OP TEE), Ericsson, Verimatrix (guys in the game of the content distribution and IP TV), plus gemalto (my company) and G&D (one of my company competitors). The key topics of the TEE this year was Internet of Things. While the TEE technology seems to be distilled in the smartphone market via official products (see Samsung statement, Android Trusty TEE API and Secure Enclave [PDF] in iOS), the next wave ready to take benefit of it is about Internet of Things.

Any diverging creative geeks interested ? In the same October month, there was an interesting event which happened also in the silicon valley. A TEE hackathon #BuildWithTEE, dedicated to get benefit of the technology. It was organized by BeMyApp and GlobalPlatform. It happened that 100 people joined the hackathon over the week end. The pitch exciting moment was made of 22 smart ideas, 12 went until the end of the sunday and 3 winners shared 10 000 US dollars. The material provided to participants was a Linaro Open TEE loaded in a Raspberry Pi 3, and all they had to do was to play with Linux and impelment thier idea, with the objective to use key asset of the TEE, aka the security, on a client or a server side. Ideas that won were about monitoring door lockers when renting your house, deploying a privacy respectful tracking system, a centralized password management server. The IoT use cases were the major ones that the creative geeks wanted to explore.

So, to conclude, the TEE is a technology alive and kicking and will definitely support nice innovation in the field of all-and-everything-connected !

Note : Picture from




About pleasant, good and meaningful life…


Coming back from a wonderful week in Helsinki, where I met dozens of interesting people and discussed hundreds of amazing stuff related to leadership and humans. I might have a lot to say and it will be distilled slowly in my coming blog posts. Nevertheless, there is one thing that I captured about happiness and balanced life that stroke me and wanted to share.

This relates to yet another possible way to read (and build) our life. During a workshop on motivation, the trainer mentionned a theory, named positive psychology, or the science of trying to understand how people are happy. I will not enter into the details of its founder, Martin Seligman, neither into the details of its theory, that I have not read in length. I will just report what I got and what I felt was making sense to me.

It seems that our life is made of …

Pleasant moments. Moments where our senses and body feel well (eating something tatsy, listening to good music, …). It could be intense happyness, but the pleasure you get from it vanishes quickly.

Good moments. Moments where your activity is in line with your own value, this differs with the previous moments by the fact that your are involved in that moment, by making choices, coming from your desire, your sensitivity, realizing some of the wishes that you have in mind and in heart. For example, preparing and eating some special meal with carefully chosen organic ingredients, or from a country you dream of, or that triggers some good remembers. Using your skills of cooker to reach something. Well, you got it, it is something that link the external world, and your internal world. It triggers some satisfactory feeling, definitely.

Meaningful moment. Moments where you are realizing something with some other people, listening to your value, again. It creates some feeling of aligning your value, with the society (because others are involved) and provides great happiness. For exemple, following up on the idea of food, it could be about creating a restaurant with associates, providing the food you like and you believe peopel should get for good price (if your value is to feed people with good food at afordable price).

My personnal feeling is that in that story of values and moments, no one judges your values, they are yours. To reach a meaningful moment, you just need to unveil those values to the world and embedds others with you.


The theory says that each of us can have either a pleasant life, a good life or a meaningful life. But the reality might be that our life could be made of a patchwork of all those kind of moments. One thing raised from studies is that  : the happiest people do have a serious rate of meaningful moments. Those meaningful moments create condition of a sustainable sense of happiness. Disclaimer : don’t ask me to show you the happiness-metering-tool, I have no idea – but you may find more here.

This may be *just* one exotic way of reading our life. But models are interesting because they force us to read our uses in a new way, with a different approach. And I felt that this one was interesting if you apply it in the various fields of work, friendship and love. It appears to me clearly that each of those fields deserves pleasant, good and meaningful moments. The last ones, meaningful stuff, may be complex to reach, because it implies to embed some other people with you, to be collaborative, to open your heart, but it seems that they are the ones that will make our life great and happy… Let’s try to cultivate them !


Some reference :

Poursuit of happiness,

Martin Seligman TEDx talk

Picture : Gary Winograd.

Extremalism, by Ballet National de Marseille (#merci)


Ce qu’il y a de chouette avec le fait de découvrir la danse contemporaine, c’est que un rien vous étonne et vous passionne. Preljocaj, Millepied, … Le week end dernier, j’étais au Grand Théâtre de Provence pour une représentation du Ballet National de Marseille. Le BNM. Une troupe jeune mais certainement pas débutante. Pour Extremalism, ils étaient trente sur scène, des corps divers, et une vertu commune, le talent.

Extremalism parle d’on ne sait quoi. On doit donc faire avec son imagination de spectateur.

Pour ma part j’y ai vu les hommes, le monde et nos sociétés. La troupe, forêt de bras, de jambes, solidaires dans l’adversité.Pour nous, sur cette belle scène, comme un feu, cette troupe craquait, soufflait, mais aussi regardait d’un seul homme, ployait d’un seul geste.

J’y ai vu une tribu qui honorait un dieu étrange, une tribu qui jouait les moulins à vents sur un Vivaldi exaltant.

J’y ai vu une tribu soudée, dérangée parfois par un regard singulier, une tentative d’évasion, vite réglée.

J’y ai vu une foule qui plébiscitait du spectacle, haranguait l’amour, le combat, avec rage.

J’y ai vu une tribu qui tombait. Fusillée.

J’y ai vu une tribu prisonnière de barreaux sombres, sous un ciel bancal et trop puissant.

J’y ai vu une foule qui se surveillait, les hommes supervisant les femmes, comme des chiens enragés, les femmes matant du regard les hommes, gardiennes inflexibles.

Et toutes ces tribus se mouvaient en groupe, avec une approche du corps étonnante. La synchronique des corps, même dans le silence absolu, paraissait magique. Les prouesses physiques résidaient surtout dans l’originalité des gestes, des mains tendues, des pas furtifs ou exigeants, en l’air, sur une jambe, un peu sur le sol. On souriait peu sur scène. Peut-être une ou deux fois lorsqu’un humain en sauvait un autre, le temps d’une brève étreinte, une tête posée sur une épaule, un instant de fraternité.

Lorsque la lumière revient sur scène, quatre-vingt minutes se sont écoulées. Une broutille dans l’histoire de l’humanité. Un instant précieux et trop court dans l’histoire de l’art. Les visages des danseurs enfin humains, souriants, beaux. Le public ne s’y trompe pas, il applaudit longtemps, avec ferveur. En sortant, pleine d’émotion, je croise Valeria, une des danseuses, au regard si présent, ouf, je peux lui dire mon admiration. Merci aux danseurs, et aux directeurs artistiques, EMIO GRECO & PIETER C. SCHOLTEN.

Référence : quelques mots sur la création de Extremalism

A little piece of human learning

Antique radio on retro background


Disclaimer : me talking about car is quite unusual, but this is a real story and I felt it was inspiring.

This week I had to use a car lended by my garage. The woman who gave me the keys said “the fuel gauge is fanciful, what ever it says, you’d better put few gasoline liters (or gallion) to make sure you don’t have unexpected breakdown”.

I said “yes, sure”, took the keys, thinking about my long day, drove at work, the gauge indicated full tank. I made my morning in the office, and drove, in a rush, to a lunch, 35 km far away. After 6 kilometers on the highway: a noise, a strident alarm-biiiip, fuel gauge  red. Shit. Body panic. I was missing an opportunity to be on time. I was balancing. Remembering the words of the lady : fanciful gauge. Was it ringing too early or too late ? Despite my willingness to be on time, I decided to drive to the first station, outside the highway, to make sure I’d reach my final destination. I wasted 15 minutes, got 20 liters, and felt okay. I came back on the highway and drove again towards my lunch.

At the first bump on the road: a noise, strident alarm-biiip, fuel gauge red. Shit. I thought “again…”. I panicked during one our two seconds and realized that the machine could not fool me twice. This time, I knew. I knew that the alarm signal was fake. I knew the tank was half full, at least.

Four kilometers later. A bump. A noise, strident alarm-biiip, fuel gauge red. Again. This time, not a single reaction from my body. Not a nano-second dedicated to think that something could go wrong. The alarm signal completely lost its power of alarm. And in the end, I will never know if the tank was empty or full.

This story is not only about a woman driving, taking risk to be late at lunch (I actually was on time). This is about our ability to improve our interpretation of the world.

What happened? I was given a framework, with some hints that it was erratic, but I had to make my own experience that it was fantasist, and after experiencing, I got it. I went once into the process of wrong interpretation, found a solution, then, experienced a second time, felt more confident (but still had some alarming reflex) and finally adapted to the fanciful behavior and ignored it. I integrated that the signal was wrong, untrusted, irrelevant.

What can I learn from that “alarm, biiip, panic, noise, and after few cycles, peace” story.

First. I was fooled twice. I had to go twice through this experience to finally feel comfortable. Provided the garage lady’s warning, twice, seems a lot. But this is how I am. Each of us learn his or her own way. The important thing is that I learnt.

Second. How does that apply to the signal we receive every day in our life ? I’d be happy to reduce that amount of bad noise reaching me via media, people, organization. I’d be happy to kill those alarming-but-not-always-backed signals. You know. The defeatism vision from politics, the pessimism of some people, the FUD* in the media, the panic wave in the office. How could I make this shut up ? I think that calm observation and education are key here.

My final take, is that I should spend more time understanding over-negative-reactions to finally dompt them and reduce the wrong noisy signals in my life.

*FUD is Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt, a well known method to avoid rational and reasonnable conversation.


We are not magicians !


Few months ago, I lost a friend. A friend I really appreciated. He did not die, we just stopped talking each other. We did not agree on something, he upset me, I had bad words, he answered briefly, and over. And I always had regrets. I always had the feeling I made something wrong.I felt sad and guilty. The other day, I was thinking about that story, in a taxi. I love taxi. This is one of the situation where someone else knows where we go and it gives me freedom to think in peace. And I got a serie of revelations.

Disapointment. The reason why I had bad words with that friend, is because I felt disapointed. Which is obviously driven by the fact that I expected something he could not give me, I expected too much. That person was not a magician. I got that clearly, in a second.

About the mirror. I realized that this person was not a magician. But neither was I. Just like he was not ready to suffer my behavior or opinion, I was not. I could not make the magic of being absolutely intuitive, sensitive and good, the magic to read his mind, the magic of respecting desires or avoiding scars, the magic of being perfect. I am not a magician. (Note that the worst resides in the fact that having an under-estimated image of myself, I did not even imagine that he could expect something like magic from me, and that I could disappoint him – no comment, thanks, I’ll keep this one for later and further thoughts).

So, we were equally not magicians. I stopped thinking about that lost friendship and gained some altitude. Okay. So. We are not magicians. No one is a magician. That was a shock. This seemed like a very bad news in that taxi. A kind of hurting “welcome back on earth, honey”. I breathed, looked for my optimism and thought. Well, if there is no magician at all, will the world loose all its glitter ? No. Because. The good news is that we have something which is much more powerfull then any magic wand. This is named words.

Words. We can make crazy things with words, such as writing love letter or, in case of problem, ask “are you okay with the situation ?”. We can warn when something goes wrong, when gaps and frictions start to appear. This is much less sexy then magic wand. Yes, I agree. But at least, we can express feeling, discomfort, anxiety, anything that can help the other to understand us and our (probably too high) expectations.

Words. Yes. But. The words used in this kind of border or tricky situation have to be true words. Not half words, not words to be guessed between the lines, not jokes or heard in. I discovered recently that there is a nice tool that can help, it is called assertive communication. The assertive communication concept is : you express your own perception of a situation or feeling, exposing the facts supporting your perception. Sentences like ‘I have the feeling that….’. And you invite the other to answer, comment, share his own vision. And the exchange can start. It can be quite interesting because you are removing from the communication all the noise of attacks, judgement, guess… In addition it is lead by respect, because you can not challenge the feeling of the other, you can not pretent he is not affraid, sad, sorry or confused, if he is expressing it (because this would be like denying his intimacy, his own personality). I’ll definitely keep on using that one.

But magic words can only happen in special cases. Off course, this kind of communication works if and only if: i) trust is a background, and ii) willingness is in the air. Willingness to listen and participate to the discussion, willingness to understand and be understood. With trust and willingness,  you can make magic and glitter back in the world. Realizing the existence of those ingredients made me peacefull. Magic does not exist but with words, we can stay on the light side of the life.

Note : And what about this special friendship ? I realized that willingness and trust were not part of our friendship when our disagreement appeared. Magic words were unusable, nothing could have saved us. I am still very sad for this friendship I lost, but I dont feel guilty anymore.

Hack is life !


Il y a quelques semaines, je discutais avec mon ami Jean Luc, psychologue, un peu philosophe aussi sur les bords. Sa vision de notre société est toujours intéressante, son point de vue particulier, forgé par les heures passées à écouter les hommes, les femmes raconter leur troubles. Et un matin nous discutions de la façon d’occuper notre temps, nous, les humains. Le travail, le loisir, la création… Et sur ce dernier point il me révélât un point majeur, qui changera je crois la perception de mes chantiers créatifs. Pour la vie.

En résumé et sans doute sans la nécessaire subtilité, je partage avec vous notre échange.

Je lui disais que je créais, poésie, amusement littéraire, photo, critique artistique, billets de vie. Bref, que je créais souvent, sur différents thèmes, et que je ne savais pas vraiment pourquoi, ni pour qui, en toute humilité, mais que c’était un besoin, inexpliqué. Et Jean Luc suggéra le point de vue suivant. La quête de la perfection rend immobile, me dit-il. L’immobilisme est une pulsion de mort. Le bricolage, imparfait, est l’expression du désir. Le geste de jeter au monde une création imparfaite, une idée en développement, un outil plus ou moins bancal. Tout cela. C’est l’expression de la vie, a-t-il dit. Une pulsion de survie. Ça m’a tellement parlé…

Voilà. Hack is life. Avec mes petits bouts de mots et d’images. Je me suis sentie vivante. Et confiante. Merci.

Ballet National de Marseille, tour de piste


Avenue du Prado. Au fond d’une impasse. Le parc. Le bâtiment. On y est. Le Théâtre National de Marseille. Soixante personnes, deux directeurs, Emio Greco et Pieter Scholten, une scène, du cœur, de l’énergie. Beaucoup. Le Ballet National de Marseille jouait portes ouvertes ce dimanche. Des ateliers pour les grands et les petits et des extraits de son répertoire. Pfiou.


En une heure, assis devant la scène, dans le noir, on est emporté par, la troupe de jeunes du ballet. Puis on savoure successivement un extrait de Pointless, de Corps, puis de Passione, et enfin Extremalism. Les ambiances, les émotions changent d’une pièce à l’autre mais l’énergie reste commune.

Ce ballet de danseurs et de danseuses est bien ancré dans l’échange, la recherche, le cross border, le mélange équilibré danse et musique. Les directeurs sont bavards et partageurs. Les danseurs se présentent un à un. Un prénom, chacun d’un pays différent, presque. Ici, point de frontières. On fait aussi un peu connaissance avec la troupe. Ici, pas de séparation corps de ballet ou soliste, chacun-e est soliste, responsable de son corps, et donne tout.


La saison commence bientôt, le BNM se produit ici et ailleurs dans la région, la Criée, l’Opéra de Marseille, le Grand Théâtre de Provence, La Friche… Il sillonne, gagne à être connu. Ça tombe bien, ouvrent bientôt un Café BNM et une bibliothèque BNM. Deux excellentes raisons de traîner plus souvent dans le quartier marseillais de la danse.


Miroir du désir et estampes japonaises


Le musée Guimet des arts asiatiques est un bijou, on le sait. L’exposition présentée dans sa Rotonde, en est une nouvelle illustration. Il s’agit de raconter le désir et les choses de l’amour, à travers une grande série d’estampes japonaises de la période Edo (entre 1600 et 1868), représentant la femme.

Dans cette Rotonde, au parquet qui craque, le visiteur passe de vitrine en vitrine, apprend bien des choses sur les femmes grâce à ces estampes, pièce unique, séries, paravent ou triptyques. A pas de galant, on peut ainsi se pencher sur l’entre soi des femmes, en reluquant quelques scènes de banquets ou tranquille féminité dans les parcs. On s’ébahit devant les pêcheuses Ama, à moitié nue. On se régale de quelques scènes sur l’oreiller où le plaisir ne se cache pas. On comprend enfin l’usage des petits étoffes ou mouchoirs sur les estampes érotiques (au choix, étouffer les soupirs des amantes, ou toiletter leurs cuisses). On balance entre les amours légitimes, interdites derrière un paravent ou un filet de pêche ou les amours rémunérées. Des estampes inspirées des célèbres quartiers des prostitués, on apprend que certaines de ces dames étaient philosophes et artistes. Enfin, les scènes de bains ne manquent pas d’intime, de beauté, puisque ici les corps sont les nus et propres, prêts à savourer un bain.


L’ensemble de ces estampes regorge de délicatesse, la représentation des hommes et des femmes laisse songeur. Quelques traits, de la couleur, de la transparence, de la légèreté. L’estampe est ici à l’honneur, un art à part entière, avec ses codes et ses merveilles.

Cette exposition Miroir du désir – Images de femmes dans l’estampe japonaise” est coquine et charmante, elle mérite le détour. Vous avez jusqu’au 10 octobre pour y faire un tour, et découvrir ces estampes japonaises de grands artistes.