Thursday, January 17, 2019

January Reading

Well, the problem with recording reading, at least as far as I can tell at the moment, is way too much training.  I pretty much failed at keeping track in December. But I probably spent 40 hours in classes.  This month won't be much better - graphql, aws, github, react, vue, d3...two conferences on machine learning.  But I'm going to try anyway.  Reading small short articles is good for me.  I think better if I've got some variety.  Although I might record it here and then write more elsewhere if it's really interesting. So here more try.  My first though, however, is that a should code a short loop to spit out all the days of the month in the format I want....

  • 1/31/2019: 
  • 1/30/2019: 
  • 1/29/2019: 
  • 1/28/2019: 
  • 1/27/2019: 
  • 1/26/2019: 
  • 1/25/2019: 
  • 1/24/2019: 
  • 1/23/2019: 
  • 1/22/2019: 
  • 1/21/2019: 
  • 1/20/2019: 
  • 1/19/2019: 
  • 1/18/2019: Streampunks: YouTube and the Rebels Remaking Media by Robert Kyncl and Maany Peyvan via GetAbstract
    • [There's a variation of this in my own company for subs and what happens during an economic downturn] - Subscription services flail if they lack a “funnel” – a loyal group of “free users” the service can persuade to start paying. Subscription services must cope with the dreaded “churn” – viewers who sign up for a subscription but leave. Free services seldom have to deal with churn. But if subscribers stick around after a few months, they become unlikely to churn. The subscription turns into a normal monthly expenditure. That resilience matters greatly when the economy slows down. During the 2008 recession, Netflix and Amazon Prime held onto a large percentage of their subscribers.
    • [This surprised me - that's damn accurate] Content ID boasts a 99.7% accuracy rate at identifying uploaded videos. It compares anything uploaded against a vast reference file. More than 50% of YouTube’s payments to the music industry derive from ad revenue on fan-uploaded videos.
  • 1/17/2019: Trumppunk Resists Presidential Bunk Or, Updating Obscuring Mirrorshades with Revelatory Magnifying Glasses Enhances Seeing the Forces of Normalcy
    • Trumppunk—metafictional fictions about Trump’s fictions
    • Trumppunk, unlike Cyberpunk, does not have mirrorshades, because Trump looks directly at the sun.
    • "Literary agent Jonny Geller explains that the “commercial view among publishers seems to be that people are living it [Trumpism] and haven’t got the head space for reading it. . . . It is a lack of courage and imagination” "
  • 1/16/2019: Remembering ‘Babylon 5,’ One of the Smartest Sci-Fi Series Ever, 25 Years After Its Debut
    • no kids, no robots
    • not enough detail in the article - my wife and I watched the series when it was originally out and it was favorite for my friend Dan, who died last year, and me to talk about.  I remember how frustrated he was when an episode was moved.
  • 1/15/2019: Something Is Broken in Our Science Fiction: Why can’t we move past cyberpunk
    • there’s steampunk, biopunk, nanopunk, stonepunk, clockpunk, rococopunk, raypunk, nowpunk, atompunk, mannerpunk, salvagepunk, Trumppunk, solarpunk, and sharkpunk (no joke!)
    • Moreover, as SF scholar Sean Guynes-Vishniac argues, publishers always want to find evermore-narrowly-sliced microgenres, hoping to squeeze every aesthetic niche dry.
    • Cyberpunk derivatives on Wikipedia (may need to be its own reading entry)
    • At its root, then, cyberpunk is arguably a kind of fiction unable to imagine a future very different from its present.
    • retain the hope of writing fiction that confronts readers with new ways of thinking about their relationship to the future—our future
  • 1/14/2019: 
  • 1/13/2019: 
  • 1/12/2019: 
  • 1/11/2019: 
  • 1/10/2019: 
  • 1/9/2019: 
  • 1/8/2019: 
  • 1/7/2019: The ACLU made the Border Patrol reveal its terrifying legal theories
    • Counsel for CBP has cherry-picked legal precedents to produce a kafka-esque litany of excuses for stops, including being close to the border, being on a "known smuggling route," driving "inconsistent with local traffic patterns," being "from out of the area," having a covered cargo area; paying "undue attention to the agent's presence," avoiding "looking at the agent," slowing down on seeing the agent, being dirty, etc.
  • 1/6/2019: 
  • 1/5/2019: 
  • 1/4/2019: 
  • 1/3/2019: 
  • 1/2/2019: 
  • 1/1/2019: 

Sunday, December 09, 2018

December Reading

  • 12/23/2018: Sinus Trouble Can Lead to Depression, Lost Work
    • My wife sent me that link.  Depression, no.  Lost work, a bit.  Generally once in the spring and once in the fall when it starts to migrate into a sore throat and some physical exhaustion.  That could be interpreted as depression, but all I can say about that is not.
  • 12/22/2018: Allergies or Chronic Sinusitis? Most Get It Wrong and Don't Get Treated
    • Mine is sinusitis most of the time.  Allergies feel very different, and I can tell when they're in full bloom (ha) because when I'm riding my bicycling and there's pollen, my eyes will literally tear up for ten+ mile stretches through the lower verdant valleys of the Minnesota/Mississippi river systems.
    •'s not ruining my life in general unless it does the migrate to the throat issue.  E.g. not > 2x per year. But it can last awhile, and this year it's been tenacious. That said, I can breath out both sides of my nose, and although I'm sleepy earlier than usual, that's generally 11:00+ p.m. and I'm riding a bike for several hours a week at high speed.  I can definitely breath.
  • 12/21/2018: Scott Hanselman's Newsletter of Wonderful Things, December 17th edition.
    • I like curated lists.  A curated list once a quarter.  Even better.
  • 12/20/2018:
  • 12/19/2018:
  • 12/18/2018:
  • 12/17/2018:
  • 12/16/2018:
  • 12/15/2018:
  • 12/14/2018:
  • 12/13/2018:
  • 12/12/2018:
  • 12/11/2018:
  • 12/10/2018:
  • 12/9/2018: Facebook's Very Bad Month Just Got Worse - New Yorker
    • I hope every company I work for can always say they weren't (even passively) complicit in a genocide or a fucking up multiple democracies in the aid of totalitarianism.
  • 12/8/2018:
  • 12/7/2018
  • 12/6/2018:
  • 12/5/2018:
  • 12/4/2018:
  • 12/3/2018:
  • 12/2/2018:
  • 12/1/2018:

Monday, November 19, 2018

November Reading

No excuses, just pick it up again :)

  • 11/30/2018: My First Game - GML - Attacking & Collisons - Space Rocks (Part 3) (16:37)
    • This was good, although some of the glitches I ran into were rough.  I didn't quite get the "rooms" inheriting from "rooms" part until sleeping on it last night.  I might still be wrong when it comes to persistence between rooms, but I'm going to try it in a minute.  I also had issues with the restart logic on the ship.  I swear she just destroyed the whole game and restarted it, but that restarted lives and score, so I had to determine where to inject a life count and a restart on Enter.  It took forever because I had a misplaced }.  The problems in coding never, ever.....ever change.
  • 11/30/2018: My First Game - GML - Score, Lives & Effects - Space Rocks (Part 4) (12:38)
  • 11/30/2018: My First Game - GML - Sound Effects & Polish - Space Rocks (Part 5) (10:18)
  • 11/29/2018: My First Game - GML - Setup & Movement - Space Rocks (Part 2) (14:25)
  • 11/28/2018: My First Game - Intro to GameMaker - Space Rocks (Part I) (12:41)
    • Learning a new framework.  2D (so less overhead than Unity).
  • 11/27/2018: Service Now Request Fulfiler Training (30 minutes?)
    • These five courses were part of a seven course series I started in 2017 to get approval access in Service Now for my projects.  I generally ignored finishing up so as not to step on dev toes during approval.  But with the layoffs, I inherited the legacy corporate wiki and I have to be able to approve patches and ponder whether I should be figuring out how to shut it down (now that we have MS equivalent tools, the timing is good >> I should determine how to cut it all over to Office 365).  These took much longer than they say because of the reading-out-loud nature and the frequent work interruptions.  I'd guess the five classes were closer to 6 hours total.  The only thing I really appreciated was the description of the GsF process which is used when there's a significant outage to do a root cause dig and retro.  One of my projects landed in that space due to an outage (which is ultimately related to significant org-led turnover in the last two years and missing a best practice after we took on Oracle DB maintenance ourselves (woo, devops) to expedite work.  There was a huge post incident dig with groups I'd never met before.  Now I know why.  As Mort said - it's exciting to have a real example, because you can take the training and never encounter the actual in-practice reality until 6-24 months after the course.
  • 11/26/2018: Service Now Change Management Tool Training (40 minutes)
  • 11/25/2018: Service Now Change Process Training (60 minute)
  • 11/24/2018: Service Now Problem Management Tool Training (15 minutes)
  • 11/23/2018: ServiceNow Problem Management Process Training (18 minutes) 
  • 11/22/2018: Diary of a Concussion by Elizabeth Lopatto (2017 article originally on The Verge).
    • Took a year+ for me to feel normal again.  I've heard the same from others.  They usually fib a bit to friends, family, and coworkers once they can spoof it.  Tweeted her and got a response.
  • 11/21/2018: New – Predictive Scaling for EC2, Powered by Machine Learning - official AWS write up.
  • 11/21/2018: AWS Adds The Most Anticipated Feature To Amazon EC2
    • Whoa....predictive scaling.  Was utilization-based and schedule-based previously.
    • AIOps
    • re:Invent is November 26-30.
  • 11/20/2018:  'N*****fishing' Is the New Form of Blackface: The word describes white women who change their appearance to look black or racially ambiguous. We spoke to someone accused of this, and to the women calling her out.
    • I had no idea this was a thing.
  • 11/20/2018: Neo-Nazis Are Organizing Secretive Paramilitary Training Across America: The creation of a new social networking platform called “The Base” appears to be an effort to shift Naziism from a divided digital space to physical, violent insurgency.
    • the majority of extremist-related killings in the last decade were committed by right-wing extremists.
  • 11/20/2018: What is machine learning? We drew you another flowchart
    • supervised, unsupervised, reinforcement (trial and error - e.g. entropy)
  • 11/19/2018: Rare and diverse giant viruses unexpectedly found in a forest soil ecosystem
  • 11/18/2018: Researchers capture first representative of most abundant giant viruses in the sea

Sunday, October 28, 2018


A picture of Ron Stallworth right before he speaks at Town Hall at my office.  They've got a particularly good line up of speakers lately, including one of the attorneys from the Cosby trial.

Stallworth's story about joining the Klan back in the day, which became Spike Lee's BlackKKlansman, is fascinating.  It was interesting to hear him talk about how much of what he did was about prevention of terrorist acts (burning crosses for instance) not arrests.  The goal was to shut them down before they happened, even if it meant subterfuge (sending cop cars past planned burn sites).  He also talked about how he wasn't infiltrating only the Klan, but the left as well, basically getting a read on all potential violence in his city.

He talked for a while about getting the story/book to print and film, which was an interesting angle and got away from the basic story I'd already watched by watching the movie (and he covered where there was some artistic license like his girlfriend, although the cross burning on the day he was taken off the case was true).

Stallworth's outspoken (negative) opinions about our current president clearly made the coordinator (not the one on stage, but the one with the microphone) nervous.  I saw one audience member leave after the first 45 comment.  I'm ok with that.  One out of an audience of hundreds.  And the current administration isn't particularly friendly (ouch, that was a Minnesotan way to put that) to LGBTQ, or really anyone who isn't their core. That's not aligned with corporate values.

Great presentation - wish I could have been at the one later in the evening (elsewhere) where he talked about his recent phone call with David Duke.


I put the table cloth back on the table finally after it was washed to get my spills off it (better there than the computer).  I reached for my mouse and it wasn't there, so I used the pad.  Reached again, it wasn't there.  Back to the pad.  Finally I looked behind the machine and to the left because I knew I had observed it on the table.  

It's there.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Catching Up

I think I finally have a pile of photos all sorted, so I can catch up a bit.  And some books sitting nearby, and things.  But tonight...tonight I just went for a run.  Which was really more of a walk.  I picked up ZombiesRun again.  Eryn and I originally ran it back in 2013, so I qualify as a legacy member and get the first three seasons free rather than on a sub.  That's nice - because I think it's like 100 episodes.  That'll get me through months before I need to worry about what else I should run to, or if I want a yearly sub or if it's simply going to destroy my feet.

I bought some wireless ear phones and a phone arm band.  I don't intend to go full on runner, but I don't want an excuse like I can't hear in the winter without gloves.

But tomorrow I'm going to catch up on our Chicago picks from last weekend.  We took a short trip out there.  Primarily to eat.  But we also caught the field museum.  It was a fun trip.  Not as involved as our trips to Chicago in the past, but it's nice to know we're still capable of driving out there and back without falling apart.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Eight Minute Empire II

Well, at least when the easy AI is involved, my "goods" strategy holds up.  Go for the crystals and the "wild" resources and score yourself an easy six points.  That's usually more than enough to swing the win your way.  Doesn't mean I'll always win, but about 2/3 or 3/4.  Enough that I could make a living in Vegas playing board games.

....Vegas.  Board games.  Holy crap someone needs a board game casino.  In bed with the mob for wood, bricks, ore, and wool/sheep?  Crazy.  I'm almost of the opinion someone needs to sponsor me in the endeavor.   Wow....that doesn't exist except as betting on other games (I'm searching Google)?  That's wild...must be the time to income ratio.  But you'd think with high rollers that could be resolved.  Or at least made part and parcel of an existing casino.  

LOL...and then of course I'm proven very, very wrong moments later when I'm not approaching it from a balanced perspective...

Well....I did say 2/3 or 3/4....

Monday, October 15, 2018


I took my annual run up to the cabin to help my folks pack today.  I tend to leave early (e.g. 5:00 a.m.) and head to the Dunn Brothers in Elk River in order to avoid rush hour.  If it weren't for that, it would have been an amazingly short day.  With the smaller RV, they just don't have as much to pack.  It was mostly some sewing stuff, the freezer, and getting a few boats and chairs and vehicles into storage.  Ah...and getting the bikes on the rack.  That was tricky with my mom's women's bike.  Those things never rack up quite right.

So overall....four hours of driving and four hours at my folks place.  They gave me a cool googly eyed birthday card before they skip town and an Indian Head nickle.  And a Christmas (tree) ornament.  A bag of meat trash.  And a big box with lots of little stereo equipment in it for Kyle.  As they say at the Trylon BIG box.  Teeny Tiny stereo equipment.  BIG box.  Itty bitty little stereo equipment.

I stopped for breakfast in Onamia and enjoyed these two sites, in addition to the usual Halloween setup they have near the bathroom every year I head up.

The creepy pillow cleaning post by Connie.  I joked on FB that it was hard to tell if I'd get a pillow free of mites, or meet a serial killer.  Maybe both.  I missed it, but presumably Connie gets the "urge" to clean pillows on a regular basis.

And a raccoon poster.  With a rubber duck!  It's like a Dad and Mom poster all rolled up into one.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Eight-Minute Empire

Eight-Minute Empire was on sale (slightly), so I got myself a copy and won my first game after a few tries.  I didn't realize I was sharing the cards that were drafted with the other players.  Or that the one to the left rolled off each time (at least I think it does; maybe someone always grabs it). Yes, yes.  I beat the easy opponents, but I needed to get my feet under me.

It's fun...way more relaxing than Risk.  I could play hundreds of games of this in the same amount of time.  My first win was goods based.  That seems like a sold strategy against the easy computer opponents.  Six points is a big advantage against any strategic moves.  Bastards do kill my troops almost exclusively though.  Damn AI.

And Scootard is not offensive.  It's like Edward.  Or...Dankward.  Seriously, people used to name their kid Dankward as an option?  That didn't age well.

Vision Event

I had a weird experience at the coffee shop this morning.  I looked up and exactly one item in my vision was fuzzy.  Not the closest item.  Not the furthest item.  A coffee cup about thirty feet away next to several other items.  It had that jittery look that you get in science fiction movies when something is coming or going from this plane of existence (I think they did it in The Butterfly Effect, although in Back to the Future it was just a fade out), Bioshock Infinite when Elizabeth is phasing things in and out, or on The Flash when he's vibrating himself  to mask who he is (spoiler: he's Barry Allen).  I looked at my keyboard, looked back up, and it was still like that, not just a momentary glitch.  So I stared at it and it came into focus.

Intuition tells me it's my brain having a momentary lapse processing something it's used to seeing but that was in an unusual configuration (just turned in a way it didn't expect so it was trying to fill in the gaps with what it's used to seeing).  Or, second thought, it's those little bits and pieces in your eye that start to degenerate as you get older and one just happened to be in an unusual spot.  I popped out to Google to see if there was anything related to one object in my vision is blurry/fuzzy.  Lots about one eye being blurry, about near or far objects being blurry, but not one object.  Literally nothing.  I get a no results on "one object in my vision is blurry"; ditto for fuzzy.  It's wild to find something I can't Google in 2018.

Finding eye floaters was much easier and that looks like what it probably was.  Is it wrong that I think getting old enough for a weird eye floater event (non critical) is neat if it provides me the illusion I'm in a scifi movie?

Monday, October 01, 2018

Things I Read October 2018

Whoa....I simply failed last month.  That's bad because I'll miss blogging about things like Elastic(on)...ugh.  I'll backdate a few items at the bottom of October.  But this is restart.

  • October 2, 2018
  • October 1, 2018 - Queens of Infamy: The Rise of Catherine de' Medici (part I) - by Anne Thériault on Longreads.
    • "Truly time is a flat circle, or something."
    • "...the pope presented the king with a unicorn's horn mounted in gold" (wow, tacky)

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Danny Jo

My friend Dan, who also went by Dan'l and Danny Jo, passed away on July 16 while I was on TRAM.  His funeral isn't until next weekend so relatives could get into town, and that's left me a month to collect memories.

This is the dream catcher Dan gave me after I was in a coma for several days.  There are three primary objects I kept from that event. that I keep where I can usually see them  The glass from my window to remind that life is fragile, prone to breaking, and things are never as bad as they could be.  A stuffed zebra named Stripe my daughter filled and refilled with hugs for me while I was laid up.  And Dan's dream catcher to catch all the bad thoughts and the horrible nightmares.  The brain bruised lucid dreams I had then should have rightly filled it up, but I'd like to think there's space left to catch all the sadness about Dan being gone. Given memories are just a sort of dream, I want to list some memories about Dan that won't get caught in the corner of my living room...

  • More than anything, endless days and nights of Milton Bradley big box board games.  He, Kyle, Uncle Bill, and I played Axis and Allies, Fortress America, and Shogun to exhaustion in marathon binges.  The little white plastic chips in my Axis and Allies box are still a deep old-ivory yellow, not with age, but with all the nicotine off Uncle Bill's fingers.  Given how often we played those games, you'd have expected us to know the rules inside and out, but arguing about the rules of the World at War version was most of the fun, particularly as the night wore on, and it is a fond memory of Kyle, Dan, and I all arguing with Bill that he could not rail an aircraft carrier across Russia even if it was theoretically being shipped in pieces.  We played at:
    • Uncle Bill's old place in Big Lake where we once ended the evening with Dan deciding to jog back to Monticello.  Bill went looking for him while I parked myself on the big rock on the corner in Monticello and ordered a pizza from Domino's and waited for him to cross the bridge.  My old scoutmaster Dick showed up to deliver the pizza and asked why I was eating a pizza on the corner.  "Waiting for a friend to show up," I replied, which apparently fit with what he know of me as he shook his head affirmatively and left me to wait.  That might have been one of two times he lost a piece of clothing from my dad.
    • We played at Bill and Carolyn's new place in Maple Lake, which was also when we started playing Magic the Gathering (while simultaneously being a little confused about D.J.'s gigantic pog collection), until the house took a tree in one of the big storms we often played through.
    • We played in Mobridge, South Dakota.  Not just a day in those cases, but a full,
      extended, weekend, with breaks only to find a bison burger over by the river, run to the factory, or watch the cops pull people over in the front of the house after midnight while we played the Mexican hat dance on his alarm clock.  One time the perps actually ran away from the cops by sprinting in several directions at once at the alarm clock music took on the Benny Hill vibe Dan loved so much.
  • When it wasn't a strategy game, it was cribbage.  We even had a little toy harrier jet we found in the dirt that served as the trophy.  Some of my last time with Dan was taking the trophy to Lowell's place for a few games.  Or it was bocce ball wherever it could be played.  In the early days that was in parks, in yards, and particularly at Half Time Rec.  Although one time we had to forgo bocce as we were  the only guys at a cajun music gig of older women who needed dance partners.
  • And once, but just once, it was wrestling in the front yard of the Richfield duplex to see who was scrappier.  Katie lectured me for making his nipples bleed.  He can't contradict me now, so I will state, he definitely started it.

It's not just memories of gaming that make it past the dream catcher...
  • There was the time Dan and I threw tampons at Kyle in his Mustang as he follow us after sushi in Uptown.
  • Once we helped Lowell move some of the big machinery in Maple Lake.  We weren't particularly effective movers, and we dragged an edge and left a giant rut down the sidewalk.  We were never sure if Lowell got in trouble with the city for that.
  • We got pulled over while driving to pizza in Maple Lake by a cop who seemed to have lost his mind and gave us a ticket for an hour earlier, with a court date in the past, at a non-existent mileage marker, with a note that it was delivered in Malp Lake.  It's very hard for me to type Maple Lake, because Dan and I called it Malp Lake when we were together for over 25 years.
  • This story, where Eryn called her "Uncle Dan" to share a new word she had learned...
    • Eryn: ...hard to understand
    • Dan'l: "You're a tiny kisser?"
    • Eryn: ...hard to understand
    • Dan'l: "Tiny kisser?"
    • Me: "She said 'Titty Twister!'"
    • Eryn: "Titty twister! Titty twister! Titty twister!"
  • Dan being pigpiled by all the kid's at Eryn's fourth birthday party: 
  • The time he bought my sister Allison a whole bunch of naked dolls at an estate sale when she was little.  Her response was to color underpants on all of them.
So much will get through that sieve....
  • Jen and I picking him up in Monti and moving him into Minneapolis with his carboy full of coins. It must have weighed well over 100 pounds, but it probably kept the back end of the Cadillac El Dorado from fishtailing.
  • My wedding.  His wedding.  And a toast about streaking that his older relatives complimented me on.
  • Dan lived with me twice.  Once with Kyle and I at Cedar Riverside where he holed up in the corner of the front room in our one bedroom apartment in a literal nest of possessions.  I wish I had a picture of it as it's hard to imagine if you weren't there.  He'd periodically come out to eat and take his turn at the old AD&D turn-based game he, Kyle, and I hot swapped on because every time we threw a fireball we had to wait an hour to take the next action.  Later he lived with Jen and me in the Richfield duplex (less a permanent resident at that time and more of an almost permanent visitor, so I'm counting it.  Even more so because he was there so frequently my memory of who got ceiling catted is muddled).
  • How proud he was of being in the Marines and learning Farsi.  Jen and I shipped him crate after crate (after crate) of books from The Book House in Dinkytown.  He'd pass them around the USS Tarawa to the other troops on their way to Gulf .
    • He loved Farsi enough that when he found a stray cat left in an apartment while working in St. Louis Park and adopted it for a while, he named it Chesham, which I think is the word for eyes.
And more...
  • He, Kyle and I went to see a play at the history theater about Baron Von Raschke.  Most males who grew up in Minnesota in the 70s will appreciate that story simply as it stands.  Any trip to see a story about The Claw is a good night.
  • The night he and I ended up at the Moose and saved two nurses from a couple of  pests, later going to see one of them sing country songs.
  • The time he danced out from behind a place he probably shouldn't have been after bribing a bouncer, surprising Kyle and I, and not because he had great dance moves (although his stint in the service had made him very familiar with the electric slide and other moves, which his girlfriend in the Marines, once told me all about while driving back and forth down the road by Kyle's parents' house one night).
    • That reminds me of the time his mom and AuntT bracketed me on a bench/log at Dan's family baseball game (he had a lot of relatives) and kept bringing me drinks, trying to pry information out of me about Dan's girlfriend.  Apparently he'd been tightlipped about his relationship status in the Marines, but they knew there was someone and I was the avenue to finding out the details.
  • How much he liked Halloween with the kids.
  • The time he, Kyle, and I went to Morris and he disappeared and we started to worry about him.  He turned up a few hours later and he told us about how two women had picked him up to give him a ride.  From there it took a strange turn, and he insisted they had locked him in a basement because they were satanists and had plans for him.  Fortunately, their plans were foiled, and after that we went to my folks cabin and tubed all weekend until we couldn't move.
  • Speaking of not moving.  There was the time he was on leave from the Marines and went skiing with my sister Allison and me at Buck Hill until the wee hours, almost midnight.  Dan told me later that he got on the plane and he couldn't move.  He was literally worried he wouldn't be able to get out of his seat at the end of the flight.
  • He helped so many friends with their HVAC problems.  I still have a great big swath of marker on my furnace reminding me to change my damn filter (probably time to do that).  One time he got stuck between my furnace and the water heater.  I threatened to leave him there.
  • And thinking of HVAC, we went to Katie's new employer in Eagan, where she hadn't even had her first day on the job, because I tried to cut off the end off my finger making a delicious Valentine's Day salad for Katie.  He made sure I wasn't going to die, and then he left me with the doc while he went to inspect all the HVAC equipment to ensure Katie wouldn't spend the first day on her new job in an HVAC-compromised state.
The good memories go back farther....
  • We used to ice fish on the lake behind his house.  One time, we were helping Lowell get the fish house off the lake with the van.  We couldn't get traction so Dan and I pushed while Lowell got the thing up to speed, spinning the wheels.  We got it off the lake and...right between two trees.  Two trees that weren't wide enough for the van.  It ripped up the sides and took off the mirror and almost got the whole vehicle permanently wedged.  But the fish house was certainly off the lake
  • RPI...  We had our first year of college together in New York.  A few memories from there...
    • There was a required swim test.  Everyone at RPI had to swim.  Not a problem for me.  It was a definite problem for Dan'l.  They tossed him one end, watched him sink, and said he'd better make it to the other side.  He did....that was sufficient.  So he had to do what everyone else at RPI had to do.  Run.
    • That wasn't a problem.  Dan was always a runner.  What I remember at RPI was how they put us on a track and told us to just run for an hour.  Grade was based on improvement.  There were two people at the front of the laps, Dan and a guy who'd placed first in his state for cross country.  After that was me.  After that....100 math and engineering majors Dan and that other guy lapped several dozen times in an hour.  They lapped me too, but less than ten times.  That was always my goal.
    • The time he bailed on a frat party to go on a wagon ride to study for his physics test because he'd gotten an F--- on his first test.  Don't think that's awful.  It is, but it was also the grade for about 50% of the class.  He studied for days.  After our next test we went to see the prof and he was so proud that his the prof told him his packing structure diagram was 100% correct and exceptional and mine was total garbage.  He moved up to an F++.  RPI was brutal.
    • That bronze statue, that's the RPI nipple.  It was in the student union and rathskeller where we went to watch T'Pau's Heart and Soul on their drop down screen, even though we were too young to get a beer.  When we needed to meet up outside the dorms, it was often "near the nipple".
    • Just to put some perspective around that F++, he loved his engineering lit class, he crushed it.
    • The frat we were both pledging to had a tradition, on your birthday they would drag you into the shower.  This story is more about me, but on my birthday Dan told them that was a really bad idea, perhaps the stupidest idea he'd ever heard of.  He then sat in the frontroom at the bottom of the stairs laughing while brothers literally flew down the stairs.
    • Playing Muskrat Love on volume 11 in Troy, New York, while driving around town in the big green van.
    • When we were stopped at the Canadian border and the pretty young border agent took an inkling to Dan.  She found his radar detector, but winked and sent him on the way.  We weren't quite so lucky when we got stopped at the border in the van and the dogs found a disposable ashtray with marijuana residue on it we'd pilfered from the dorm for Mark McConnon's ash tray collection.  That was a long night.
    • This mug he bought me that my wife subsequently chipped.  Rude.

Let's go back even further....
  • Two bicycling trips together with our high school friends before we were old enough to drive.  Memories of planting trees, splitting wood, and doing everything my dad and Larry Kounkel could dream up that they could convince kids was worth $50 toward a trip to Chippewa Falls and Duluth.  Those trips alone are a cache of memories all set to Funkytown by Lipps.
  • That original trip to Wisconsin started as a joke about bicycling to Mr. Nelson's (the math teacher's) home town of Lemmon, SD,  after perfume and glue fights. Those are exactly what they sound like.  His room smelled like a boudoir.  It was after a super glue fight in the lockers where Dan ruined my favorite shirt (did I mention his hatred of my family's clothing above?) that we finally decided it was more fun to pedal, streak, and switch from perfume fights to baby powder fights with the Ben, Joe, the Cassanos and others.

And later... 
  • So many New Years' parties.
  • They always included that damn quarter game, and I swear if I'm not getting senile, it was his fault that inbetween is a yearly event that destroys someone's stake.
  • There were a bunch of Christmases as well including one where he gave me Aerosmith's Greatest Hits on CD, which was weird, because I didn't have a CD player.  Until a few minutes later when I got one from my folks.  And the Christmas where Jen got a package of underpants and threw them at Dan individually as he went into duck and cover behind the couch.
  • And at least one year they included Dan's nipples.  Maybe he was trying to show they'd all healed up after that Richfield wrestling fiasco.  I do not know who Kyle is calling to report on the state of Dan's nipples.  Katie was always at New Years, so who knows....
  • All the events with the kids.  All of 'em.
  • And here's Dan at the Dells.  I finish with this memory, despite a thousand more I could list, because it was a good one for all of us.  His family and my family, the kids still all little and full of nonstop fun... a nice susurrus for all of us before we got older and that dreamcatcher started catching more dreams and memories.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Things I Read August 2018

I better update those last two lists....I have some books and articles to enter/etc.  I have been keeping up.  I'm just not doing a very good updating job.  And I should stuff some real posts in here somewhere....maybe about the Trylon.  Eryn and I started going to the Spaghetti Western series.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Things I Read July 2018

  • 7/25/2018: Top 10 Big Data Tools in 2018
    • Kafka, Cloudera, Splunk, ElasticSearch, Flume, Apache Spark, TensorFlow, Mist, Qlik, Tableau.
      • I should play around with the public Tableau offering.  And I really need to spend some extra time on TensorFlow.
      • We use Microstrategy, Kibi/Kibana, Datameer....lot of others.
  • 7/24/2018:
  • 7/23/2018:
  • 7/22/2018:
  • 7/21/2018:
  • 7/20/2018:
  • 7/19/2018:
  • 7/18/2018:
  • 7/17/2018:
  • 7/16/2018:
  • 7/15/2018:
  • 7/14/2018:
  • 7/13/2018: Neutrinos Linked With Cosmic Source for the First Time
    • Combining detection sources to basically triangulate - usually traced back to a blazor (black whole eating something).
  • 7/12/2018: Minnedemo 29 (attended)
    • I liked Squigl, the technovation project (teen mentoring doing live tech work), the yoga presentation, and the musical presentation...really, they were all pretty good.  Funny crowd, although a very wet and musty smelling crowd given all the rain.  Went with Ming.
  • 7/12/2018: Major Thomson Reuters Launch: Westlaw Edge, West Search Plus, Analytics, Enhanced Citator and More - Dewey B Strategic
  • 7/11/2018: Dijkstra's algorithm in python: algorithms for beginners
    • I'm not sure it's a must know for any programmer - I haven't had to use it before except for managing graphs.  But it is fun.
  • 7/10/2018:  TotalBiscuit's Legacy And The Collateral Damage of GamerGate
    • "You do have a responsibility to make sure your audience doesn’t go do things that you don’t want to represent as your own brand"
    • These things don't seem quite equivalent and the language makes it feel almost like an equivalency despite dropping alt-right in there.  There's not an equivalency between alt-right and I-don't-want-to-be-assaulted... "While Gamergate went on to spawn and populate the alt-right and shape conservative language commonly used today, the women affected went on to support and publicize the #metoo movement and influence liberal messaging."
    • This is an interesting take on the lack of permanency despite an online culture.  "Another hurdle for his legacy is the fact that much of gamer lore, including about Bain, is oral, social -- it is told through videos, live streams, podcasts, group skype calls, team chat over headsets and in-person at tournaments. The majority of his history, like most top gamers and personalities, is not written down in an easily accessible format. It is in stories friends tell each other."
    • I'm pretty sure this is not the lesson.  I found the article to be an interesting take on Gamergate and an individual's place in it until I got to the punchline.
      • "...if there is a lesson in all of this, it’s that one must make peace and settle any internet beef you have with feminists while you’re still living. History is written by the victors, after all."
    • Kind of a mixed batch.
  • 7/8/2018
  • 7/7/2018
  • 7/6/2018
  • 7/5/2018: The largest tank battle in history began 75 years ago today — here’s how it changed WWII
    • Battle of Kursk
  • 7/4/2018
  • 7/3/2018: Queens of Infamy: Joanna of Naples - Longreads, Anne Thériault 
    • Trigger warning: climate change as a political benefit.
    • Exchange:
      • RAYMOND: I love you, babe
      • PHILIPPA: as much as you love taking money and property away from rich white people?
      • RAYMOND: LOL
      • RAYMOND: maybe next year we’ll buy Portugal
    • By all accounts, he lagged behind his wife when it came to social and emotional maturity (pretty normal for teenage boys, who apparently haven’t changed much since the Middle Ages)
    • so many fucking cousins in this story, sometimes quite literally
    • Meanwhile, in the east, two forces were preparing to invade Naples: the Hungarians, and the Black Death. Only one of them would make people poop blood (presumably; I mean, I don’t know what kind of spooky shit Louis of Hungary was capable of). 
  • 7/2/2018
  • 7/1/2018

Sunday, June 03, 2018

Things I Read June 2018

Rolling into month five (5).  Quite the mix of literature.  I don't think I'm catching everything and my reading has trailed a little bit despite losing the internet for a week, but I'm trying to pick up some speed.  There's a lot I want to read.  I listened to some more Seveneves as well, but not 1/3, so I have to get it back from the library until someone steals it from me again.  [Addendum: nuts, I'm not keeping my list up to date; need to do a better job].

  • 6/30/2018:
  • 6/29/2018:
  • 6/28/2018: The Young Milky Way Collided With a Dwarf Galaxy - Quantum Magaazine
    • They named the old galaxy Gaia-Enceladus
  • 6/27/2018:
  • 6/26/2016: How GraphQL Replaces Redux
    • I simply need to understand GraphQL better given we use it for our products.  Would be nice to set up my own little POC/spike project with multiple data sources.
  • 6/25/2018: Real-Life Schrödinger’s Cats Probe the Boundary of the Quantum World
    • “Schrödinger’s kittens,” loosely speaking, are objects pitched midway in size between the atomic scale, which quantum mechanics was originally developed to describe, and the cat that Erwin Schrödinger famously invoked to highlight the apparent absurdity of what that theory appeared to imply.
    • “But it is simply not known what will happen if you start making quantum states with around 10^23 atoms,” which is the typical scale of everyday objects.
    • Because of interaction with the environment, the quantum nature of the original particle leaks away and is dispersed. That’s decoherence.
    • we might wonder how far those effects can be sustained as we keep adding more atoms. Three teams have now explored this question, achieving quantum states for clouds of up to tens of thousands of ultracold atoms by entangling them in a state called a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC).
    • In a BEC, all the particles are in the same single quantum state, which means in effect that they act rather like one big quantum object. 
  • 6/24/2018: Abstract (by getAbstract via work): How to Lead a Quest: A Handbook for Pioneering Executives.
    • A bit dated, but it shares ideas with Sprint! an Inspired, so I had work order me a copy so I can read beyond the abstract (which rated it 9/10).  
  • 6/23/2018: How to Lose an IT Job in 10 Minutes: Whiteboard coding interviews can cost you a job
    • The only world where you would actually need to be able to recall an algorithm would be a post-apocalyptic one
    • learned about Javascript .reduce((a, b) => a + b) [that's a very loose bit of "code"] will basically "reduce" the array, so if you have a series of numbers, that would add them into a single value.
    • Here's a good example of reduce that's runnable.
    • "It's like a presentation with variables" (absolutely).
    • think, ask, pause, write, refine, test (or some variation)
    • Conversation in the comments here.
  • 6/22/2018: Dakota County Pedestrian and Bicycle Study - June 2018
    • 55 pages long.  Very interesting.  I wish my projects had documentation that involved.
  • 6/21/2018: How One Woman Found Her Calling As A Long Haul Trucker - Black Rifle Coffee by Maggie BenZvi
  • 6/20/2018: Stoya is 'Over' Talking About Feminist Porn - Jezebel
    • She has a book out: Philosophy, Pussycats, and Porn
    • and a movie, Ederlezi Rising
  • 6/19/2018: The Dark Side of the Orgasmic Meditation Company - Bloomberg
    • About OneTaste and whether it's a cult.
    • Very Scientology.  Very Wild, Wild Country (Netflix)
  • 6/18/2018: Get the Most out of Your Elasticsearch Logs -
    • I didn't even know the slowlog existed.
  • 6/17/2018: Search Slow Log [5.1] - Elastic Search documentation
  • 6/16/2018: Tune for Search Speed -
  • 6/15/2018: The Bike Share War is Shaking Up Seattle Like Nowhere Else -
    • "The entire city is starting to look like the backyard of ill-behaved 7-year-olds who refuse to pick up after themselves,"
    • Primarily about dockless bicycles.  Reminded me of the issues with the volunteer yellow bike program in the Twin Cities that was discontinued.
  • 6/14/2018: Elasticsearch: Tune for Search Speed
  • 6/13/2018: Elasticsearch: Tune for Disk Usage
  • 6/12/2018: Elasticsearch Querying is Terribly Slow
  • 6/11/2018: How AI And Machine Learning Are Transforming Law Firms And The Legal Sector - not very in depth.  Didn't dig into any of the categories, only a high level look.
  • 6/10/2018: Deadpool: The Complete Collection - Volume 3
  • 6/9/2018: Deadpool: The Complete Collection - Volume 1
  • (BOOK/STORY) 6/8/2018: Head On by John Scalzi
    • I liked this better than the last one even with the sports-centric theme.  A great mystery/action book.
  • 6/7/2018: An Elasticsearch Crash Course
    • Refresher on clusters >> indexes >> shards >> primary/replica (lucene indexes)
    • And....inverted indexes.
  • 6/6/2018: Overtaxed Working Memory Knocks the Brain Out of Sync on Quantum
    • You get 4-5 items in memory.  I have a note in my margins that says "unless we're referring to GSD tickets in which case you get two"
    • Three brain regions.  Two are sensory or real time (feedforward) and one is modeling (feedback) that tries to "guess" what the brain wants to see/interpret.  E.g. it's working with the sensory info to tweak internal models.  It's a predictive engine.  It's also the bus in terms of throughput because (presumably) model making/tweaking is slower than raw input.  Has some parallels to analytics work.
    • One scientist says that basically everything has to fit into a single brainwave (to be sync-ed across the three systems).
  • 6/5/2018: 9 tips on ElasticSearch configuration for high performance - Loggly
    • Tip 6 is Doc Values.
  • 6/4/2018: There Are No Laws of Physics: There's Only the Landscape - Quantum
    • I loved this article.  The idea that areas of different quantum properties are still attached via a physics we can't understand, like outposts of livability in a great wilderness.  Awesome metaphor.  "...instead of exploring an archipelago of individual islands, we have discovered one massive continent."
      • "Two completely different descriptions of the same physical system"
      • There are 19 constants of nature?
      • "In string theory, certain features of physics that we usually would consider laws of natures....are in fact solutions."
      • "Thinking of physics in terms of elementary building blocks appears to be wrong..."
  • 6/3/2018: Dungeons & Dragons, Volume 5 - Shadowplague (graphic novel, reading on Hoopla)
  • 6/2/2018: Dungeons & Dragons, Volume 4 - Shadowplague (graphic novel, reading on Hoopla)
  • 6/1/2018: The Slippery Math of Causation - Quantum
    • This is a puzzle around necessary versus sufficient causes!  I am not smart enough for this puzzle.  I'd cheat and use a computer to model up existing algorithms against my data set.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Lorem Ipsum

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Duis sagittis, lorem id dapibus iaculis, purus lectus dapibus neque, vitae efficitur Quis metus nunc in urna. Nunc eros ante, imperdiet et velit egestas, facilisis Quis iaculis magna. Vestibulum mollis lorem tempor iaculis finibus. Curabitur quis nulla ultricies, hendrerit mauris vitae, Quis facilisis odio. Aliquam a lorem sem. Aenean cursus arcu sed velit ultrices ultricies. Integer aliquam facilisis ipsum. Ut scelerisque finibus velit id imperdiet. Etiam ac ex sed orci vulputate posuere in id leo. Integer at feugiat ante, vel pulvinar nisl. Mauris ultricies, ligula vitae consequat congue, sapien lorem suscipit felis, id convallis mauris felis quis tortor.

Sed lobortis ante sollicitudin facilisis egestas. Proin tincidunt auctor hendrerit. Sed in ligula viverra mi maximus hendrerit. Suspendisse rutrum dui id nibh Quis molestie imperdiet nec eget lorem. Curabitur pharetra eget nunc ut porttitor. Maecenas lacinia lectus in dapibus pellentesque. Maecenas vel nisi sit amet sem sodales fermentum. Etiam diam justo, ullamcorper vel lorem eu, imperdiet molestie ex. Aenean non eros non mi consectetur scelerisque. Nulla et purus blandit, bibendum purus vitae, faucibus purus. Interdum et malesuada Quis fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Quisque egestas fringilla rutrum. Mauris tincidunt velit tortor. Pellentesque purus lectus, imperdiet sit amet vehicula in, aliquet sed enim. Integer imperdiet enim a arcu bibendum egestas. Aenean at augue placerat, auctor tortor eget, mattis lectus.

In porta massa id ipsum interdum eleifend quis ut ligula. Phasellus mattis, odio et tempor pretium, diam ligula pulvinar lorem, et congue dolor libero et arcu. Mauris luctus enim sit amet orci suscipit, ac fermentum ipsum egestas. Vestibulum condimentum urna sit Quis amet finibus posuere. Vivamus efficitur magna id dictum Quis tristique. Vestibulum pretium mollis nulla ut suscipit. In in diam sit amet leo mattis euismod. In fringilla accumsan libero, at tincidunt orci vehicula nec. Nulla quis dolor enim. Nullam eu vehicula arcu. Curabitur elit lectus, feugiat sit amet interdum id, gravida ut nisi. Aenean in aliquet ante.

Ut feugiat elementum erat, condimentum commodo lorem. Aenean pretium arcu ac urna euismod, nec egestas tellus ultricies. Aenean a dictum nulla. Vivamus quis finibus tellus. Nullam aliquet, nisl et euismod sodales, risus orci euismod nunc, eget ultricies sapien metus et ex. Praesent vel nisl dui. Pellentesque a est in risus lobortis euismod a condimentum erat. Mauris Quis efficitur quis enim quis semper.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The Metromaniacs

A week ago we went to The Metromaniacs by David Ives at Theatre in the Round. I wasn't sure what to concern was an early modern French period costume piece all in rhyme.

That's not what it was.  It was incredibly enjoyable.  He (or TiTR) modernized it a little bit with some purposeful anachronisms in talk (phones) and character (ditzy teen girl type) and pushed the rhyme in places to have fun with their farce.

Distilled, it was vaguely Austen-esque and Shakespeare-esque with numerous characters trying to find love with considerable confusion and misdirection.  It was just fun.

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Things I Read May 2018

On month four.  That's a good run...
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/31/2018: The Good Guys by Stephen Brust
    • I liked it, quite a bit, but it didn't blow me away.  I've met Stephen at Gameholecon and he's friends with Emma Bull and the Scribbly folks from the Twin Cities.  I've read two of his books and I think he and I have a slightly different writing style, which is probably more accurately a slightly different story telling style, which is probably more accurately a slightly different way of thinking.  I'd actually recommend it, although I'm not sure I'd read a sequel.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/30/2018: Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love
    • Excellent...I think I need to do a different post I have so many notes.
  • 5/29/2018: Immersive Learning in the Target Dojo - because we're looking at Dojos at work.
    • T shaped developer vs. I shaped.
    • No managers.
    • Come in different flavors
    • Target  has a lot more dojo material including tours.
  • 5/28/2018: Dungeons & Dragons, Volume 3 - Shadowplague (graphic novel, reading on Hoopla)
  • 5/27/2018: Dungeons & Dragons, Volume 2 - Shadowplague (graphic novel, reading on Hoopla)
  • 5/26/2018: Dungeons & Dragons, Volume 1 - Shadowplague (graphic novel, reading on Hoopla)
  • 5/25/2018: Queens of Infamy: Anne Boleyn on Long Reads by Anne Thériault 
    • I never had the opportunity to use "noted Tudor fuckboy" during my undergraduate degree.  I'm not sure Retha Warnicke would have appreciated it, but then again, she seemed pretty fun.
    • An entirely amusing paragraph on Anne bringing the blow job to England.
    • "Sadly, this A++ dick joke did not persuade the papal legate" is the best response I've ever seen to the "been to Spain" consummation tales about Arthur and Catherine.
    • "Henry, of course, could never resist the chance to be a tacky asshole." - probably spot on and, even more spot on in reference to Henry 8's wives, "they were all Henry's victims."
    • This made me wonder if people of the time ever said "Not my Harry" and "Not my King" and referred to him only as 8, implying a 9, or at least post-8, couldn't come soon enough.
  • 5/24/2018: The Theory of the Case: Competitive Intelligence Tips for Attorneys - University of Georgia Law, Suzanne R. Graham
    • I love the term "anecdata" based solely on a single incident.
    • More of a list - a comprehensive list - than a dig.  But the idea of "triangulation" as a way of validating the data is interesting.  And I respect her end-of-essay points about the unpredictable and that tools that "claim that past performance is the best predictor of future results" are not the only answer.
  • 5/23/2018: Analyzing the Analytics: A Review of Legal Analytics Platforms - The CRIV Sheet 39.2 (February 2017). - Diana J. Koppang, Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg, LLP
    • I liked her contention that she wants transparency in the search/results methodology and that's what she gets by crafting her own search.  
    • "know how we can trust the data and to what extent"
    • She also says you should always ask to have a dev in the demo for precisely those reasons.  
    • Go find her PDF!
  • 5/22/2018: Why Is New Orleans' Black Female Mayor Secretly Working With White Nationalists? - Splinter
    • Robert E Lee Beads, reinstalling racist statues, all sorts of crazy that surprised even me (who likes to read about crazies)
  • 5/21/2018: azn2azn (November 2017) - An Asian-American Twin Cities Zine.
    • I liked the poems, but the word "trigger" is used a little loosely.  From truly triggering events like police brutality, rape, and abuse, to questionable uses like Bollywood music during yoga (because it's traditionally a space for the elite pre-immigration and your ancestors might not have been elite? reminded me of the Singh story about the guy practicing yoga/healing who wanted to kill his faux-brother the king only to find out the king wanted to leave him material concerns so he could focus on spirituality), and being angry with friends only to say in the next statement the author got sober.  Triggering wasn't the issue there (presumably), alcohol was.  If it was, own it.
    • It was enlightening to read something so clearly different from my experience due to race, sexuality, identity.  A reminder that the world is very different through different lenses.
  • 5/20/2018: What's Next in Computing? - Chris Dixon (2016!)
    • Interesting to see the predictions from 2 years ago.  His focus on VR was pre-Pokemon Go (but not Ingress) and I saw an article for the first VR "kit" for online maps the other day, so it's coming of age.  IoT...yes, but still pretty quiet/centralized in some ways.  Machine learning/ on.
    • Great article about a truly dysfunctional culture.  Interesting to read this in light of Sprint and Inspired where the customer should be the focus, not the product.  Clearly, the product (and money and dates) were the focus for Theranos.
  • 5/18/2018: The Victorian Belief That a Train Ride Could Cause Instant Insanity
    • Kyle recommended this one from Atlas Obscura.  I don't think it delves enough into whether the train (and now, planes) causes the issue, exacerbates an existing issue, or for some people is an excuse because they have a foreign environment where they don't feel they have to behave.
  • 5/17/2018: Leaving Omelas: Science Fiction, Climate Change, and the Future by Vandana Singh.
    • Online essay.
    • "those who walk away do so because the Omelas paradigm allows them no agency in striving for a just and equitable social system."
    • I think she conflates dystopias and apocalyptic literature in some respect.  Per my thesis in college, I don't think a real dystopia has an escape, so the "great person" aspect is moot.  There might be an individual, but in the end they don't matter, only society can change society.
    • She's big on neartopias - finding the positive/ecological and societal change in society.
    • I very much enjoyed her Newtonian paradigm view of scifi.  That cause-effect isn't the end all of scifi, that everything is connected, and everything is interrelated.  Came through strongly in her story collection.
    • "Nature is objectified, transformed into a machine that is predictable and controllable, and we are outside it - masters of the machine..."
    • "Not all complex systems are sensitive to initial conditions..."
    • Posits place shapes the people....solid idea and one that makes scifi where there are so many places and inbetweens and emptiness-es, very interesting.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/16/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Requiem
    • A novella about global warming and Eskimos/Inuit and whaling.  Interesting story - very well written.  The scifi aspect had to do with the main character's aunt trying to create ways to live with other animals such that they could really start to understand them, and how animals were starting to communicate to eliminate human impacts to their environment (drilling machine/etc).
  • 5/15/2018 - Scalzi reread
  • (CODE) 5/14/2018: Data Science Essentials in Python: Collect - Organize - Explore - Predict - Value (The Pragmatic Programmers)
    • Chapter 2: Core Python for Data Science
    • Wrote a Top x words in a URL file program.
    • Wrote a file that indexes words and maps them to files in a directory using a dictionary.
    • Wrote a file that looks for phone numbers in a file.  That last one was only partially successful.  The 1- numbers not at the front or back of a file don't work as well.
    • Used PYTHONPATH to get to BeautifulSoup4 in my Anaconda3 directory (using IDLE usually, but I also have PyCharm and Sublime) as I'm in dev.
    • Used import sys and print(sys.path) to validate PYTHONPATH was returning the values I needed (BeautifulSoup wouldn't let me do a dual install and had dependencies of its own.  Could have mapped a path file in the project, but I'm playing, not pushing out production code).
  • (CODE) 5/14/2018: Data Science Essentials in Python: Collect - Organize - Explore - Predict - Value (The Pragmatic Programmers)
    • Chapter 1: What is Data Science - wrote a "Hello Scott" program.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/13/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Ambiguity Machines: An Examination
    • Three separate subtales about "machines" that transcend time and space and individuality.  They are generally structures/patterns.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/12/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Wake-Rider
    • This one felt incomplete.  Han Solo type (female) goes after a body that can stop a corporate-induced plague.  Ended with her floating and waiting.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/12/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Cry of the Karchal
    • I liked this even though it isn't strictly scifi.  More Arabian ghost story tying past to present via a woman who's a little like the mummy (in the modern movies), but...nice?  And a bird.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/12/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Sailing the Antarsa
    • Good story! About finding a different form of matter that flows between the stars and that it's comprised of life that can ride that matter.  Being immersed in it transforms the traveler.  Very "we're all in the same ecosystem" sort of story, but a great take.
  • (GN) 5/11/2018: KINO Volume 1: Escape From the Abyss
    • I assume this has to get better as it's primarily about a body in the clutches of a scientist who puts him in the equivalent of The Matrix to get his powers up to speed before he awakes.  There are competing companies/governments trying to get him back, but this whole book is just little in-his-head fights.  I wasn't enjoying it.
  • (GN) 5/10/2018: The Gravediggers Unions: Volume 1 - sort of a Cthulhu slant.  So so.  I discovered the Graphic Novel section on Hoopla, the online public library system.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/9/2018: Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh: Ruminations in an Alien Tongue
    • I liked this one!  There's a bit of the Star Trek episode (All Our Yesterdays) where a race abandons their planet by traveling to their own past.  In this story, they find alien artifacts that let them travel to other dimensions via the nexuses at the center of stars.  Because you can find a universe that best suits you, everyone just vacates.  One woman is left, and she tends to a traveler that comes from multiple dimensions (same traveler) and is always confused when he makes his way back to the lab/machines and the scientist who learned to use them.
  • (BOOK) 5/8/2018:  Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
    • Work-related book I was assigned.  We've done something similar on my teams, but there's a new push to determine faster ways to solve problems.
  • 5/7/2018: Product Conference (hosted by Dev Jam) at the Minnesota History Museum
    • Focus was on products and how to iterate and fail faster. 
    • Sara Cowles: Data Driven and Human Centered: Learning to Connect the Data for Maximum Impact  Talked about Ethnio software, the HEART Framework (Google Ventures), how we speed prototyping, and included some info about five (5) being the optimal number of testers per the Sprint book (above).
    • Mike Gillespie - Amazon's Culture of Innovation. Didn't get into enough detail.  Kind of boring.  The whole bit about no code until a press release, an 8 page product paper, and then a full user manual first really smells like old school waterfall in a way.
    • Vivienne Whifield - May you fail....over and over again.  Ok presentation.  Tied it to her kids and personal experiences with failure in the workplace.  I was wearing out a bit by end of day.
    • Keynote David Hussman - You're Definitely Wrong....  David looks in pretty rough shape physically, but he still gives a good presentation.    Pushing a variation of post-agile, beyond agile, deconstructed agile.
    • Jeff Sussna - Continuous Learning: Harnessing Change for Competitive Advantage.  I really enjoyed his keynote.  All about conversations and user-centered design and cross-functional design.  Good speaker - he's obviously been deep in this space for a while as a consultant.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/6/2018: Pretty Maggie Moneyeyes - Harlan Ellison, I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream
    • I think this one is also in Deathbird Stories and I have read it a dozen times.  There's quite a bit to unpack in this story, particularly about the characters and whether they got what they wanted or even deserved.  It makes sense it's in Deathbird Stories because it's about the worship of money, the worship of beauty, loneliness, and more.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/5/2018: Delusion for a Dragon Slayer - Harlan Ellison, I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream
    • One of my favorites.  I think it's also in Deathbird Stories.  There are some things it has in common with Lonelyache. But I like how it's handled better here in a magical Heavy Metal-esque world of legend with a harsh ending.
  • (BOOK/STORY) 5/4/2018: Lonelyache - Harlan Ellison, I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream
    • One of my least favorite of his stories.  The personification of dread and the heaviness of life as a thing in the corner.
  • 5/3/2018: Overview - Chrome Extensions
  • 5/3/2018: Getting Started Tutorial - Chrome Extensions
    • Yes, I did read both of those Chrome Extensions articles in full and modified - but not created - an in house Chrome extension for managing session tracking between our error system, session tracking system, enterprise tracking system, and Kibana (AWS logging).  Works like a charm, but I only had to do the configuration management to add the Kibana section.  Theoretically you could say it was coding because I had to use string concatenation, replacement, and character escape sequences, but that's just silly stuff.  It's more impressive that as a manager I checked my code into TFS and overrode the review and other policies (because it was POC, not mainline build).  That should scare everyone.
  • 5/2/2018: America’s Greatest Horticulturist Left Behind a Plum Mystery
    • Kyle posted it. Good article on Luther Burbank.
  • 5/1/2018: Kriegsspiel – The 19th Century War Game That Changed History - Military History
    • "all the cats living in the house hosting the game were banished"
    • This holds true for pretty much everything, including software teams, over one hundred years later.  "By giving his officer corps more responsibility, accountability and better understanding of tactics, the Prussians had a far more effective command structure."