Blog: Slow sapping

Slow sapping
Slow sapping
Date: 2018-Nov-16 04:09:34 EST

It feels like today we suddenly entered winter; the walk to work was chilly, and partway through the day, during a talk on efficiency in olfactory encoding, I spotted the first snow of the year in NYC out the window. I held the third NYCCHAOS meeting after work, and then afterwards went out to a world of slush and light snow; was cold enough by the time I made it home that stepping inside felt like a huge win. Right now there's intense wind outside the window and I feel the building is not quite managing to stay warm enough; I will need to remove the AC unit from the window soon to get a better seal.

I'm still disappointed in my inability to get more turnout for my meetup. This time there was bad weather, but even had there not been I still imagine I would not have gotten too many.

I feel strange about the passage of the seasons - how strongly I forget during the middle seasons how hot summer is and how cold winter. There's enough time, but I still feel that the cycles over the years would end this visceral shift through the fog of memory and leave a lasting emotional impression of the seasons. Maybe that only seems to make sense and I'm seduced by my own poetry into hand-waved imagined meaning.

I have so much to do. Need to actually spend time doing the things I tell myself are important.

Some takes:

  • As always, I am appalled at how incompetent our current president is. Failing to get used to it.
  • Not sure why it's on the BBC, but this is a nice set of thoughts on the Peanuts comic strip
  • I'm intrigued by this read of the anti-pornography movement, and hope it's actually an obituary for activism on this front. As I think porn is free expression and healthy, even though most forms of its production have some very serious issues.
  • I'm glad to see at least one European nation taking violence and persecution against gays as a blocker for foreign aid.
  • I'm not sure what to think about redoing HTTP to work over a different protocol than TCP. Is that fundamental kind of network replumbing worth it given the enormous installed base and body of software designed to work with it? Maybe we're better off sticking with HTTP 1.1 forever. Although the new technology does seem well-thought-out.
  • Recently one of the other meetups I sometimes goes to mentioned hiddentribes, a website that tries to estimate which tribe we're in as individuals. I was measured by its questionaire as a Traditional Liberal, which maybe I have the most similarity to culturally, but in a lot of specifics I don't think I actually fit (being socialist, for example). Still, it's fairly rough-grained.
  • I feel weird about this message from Lessig on Beto, primarily because I think it's trying to draw really big conclusions from a fairly tight race. I think any time someone's doing that, they're usually making a mistake; if a race is close, then most points one can make about feasability are naturally weak because either result was feasable.
  • This kind of thing is tragic - I refuse to blame the technology; I think the culture must change, and for it to do so there must be a public education campaign combined with very strict, very visible consequences for people inciting as well as following that incitement.