a ba'b'ian journal

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  • September 17, 2013
The mathematical philosophy class has a section this week on quantum logic. It is pretty weird. For one, it doesn't do some kinds of distributivity. if there is a meaurement A and some related measurements B and C, it might be true that A and (B or C) but false that (A and B) or (A and C) because the uncertainty in quantum measurement makes both (A and B) and (A and C) false. And there are some things where there seem to be negative "probablities". I don't know how well he covered it. They are just weird.

I saw a job that said it required that you pass a credit check. That's not a good thing for me. And I don't really see what that would be for. Oh well.

I googled Wynne again. She has a pretty big web presence now, as she's on the faculty apparently at U Penn. There's like biographies or something. And you can find poems she's written. One thing she wrote about herself is that she's a proud mother of two girls. Well that's nice. One of her areas is palliative care. Ouch. I think that's where you can't do much, and you just try to make life easier for terminal patients. And she's a pediatric doctor, so it would be mostly kids. Ick. Her poetry is kind of grim, too. I can't imagine that I would ever talk to her again. Why would I?

So, things not going so good. Money really dwindling down. The bill collectors don't seem to be making much effort. They keep sending letters. Not sure what I'm going to do.

Chinese class got extra hard. We have to make compound sentences with the word for "but". I tried in class, but then ended up repeating myself and got yelled at to change it up. Oh well. My vocabulary is not so good. So I feel uncomfortable.

  • August 20, 2013
I got through section five in the ai for robotics class. I was not as bad as section foour, but it still had quite a bit of programming. There was one I got wrong, and then looked at the discussion and saw how to do it right, so I got a little help. Not quite so bad as the one I just didn't get in section four. Now I'm in the last section, which he said is about putting it all together.

I saw the lawyers at NST. it was Lisa Johns and Patrick Trotz. They aren't the main one's on the case, which would be Rachel Cohen and Corey Trotz. They got me to sign a bunch of forms and releases. So I guess I'm committed. But by the time I saw them, there wasn't much information to transfer. They had gotten all my stuff by then I guess. I asked about going back to work, and they talked about the limits. And I said I had been on disabiliy before, which they didn't seem to know. Not a great sign, because I had said that to someone before. They said they wouldn't stand in my way from working. So I might still have to. But they said talk to my doctor about it first. Like what limitations and things. I don't know what I'm going to do, but I'll probably wait a little bit more, now. That research software developer position at U of M looks interesting, but it only goes til a week in September, if that.

I'm tried some more stand-up comedy, but most of it I don't find funny. I'm not sure what it is. One guy, Ben Bailey from Cash Cab, I did like. Silliness and anger, but not so much depressing stuff.

I'm starting to watch _I am_ which is some kind of spiritual documentary from a directory of comedies. Lots of Jim Carry sorts of stuff. Stuff that I haven't seen and don't think I like. But his main questions he starting with are "what is wrong with the world?" and "what can we do about it?" So external. I guess that's typical of a comedy director. But it seems like a bad attitude to me, and assumes a conclusion. Ace Ventura. He talks to intellectuals, like Chomsky, and asks them if they've seen it. Mostly no.

Oh, man, it tried to use quantum entanglement to show that we are all connected. It talks about fields and consciousness. Bad science is not a good ground for a philosophy.

  • August 17, 2013
I think I saw a reddit submission that claimed that writing about your feelings has real benefits, so I need to make a point of writing more like I used to.

Chinese class was really rough a week ago as the teacher moved to talking all in Chinese as much as possible. It's harder to be yelled at in Chinese if you don't know what the teacher is saying, but it's much better for learning. The Berlitz people do that. And I'm getting better. She does end up switching to English if needed, but that's kind of a failure. A bonus is that the teacher is more comfortable, the minus of course is not always following everything. So the first class was unfamilliar and uncomfortable, but the second was better. My Chinese is not so good, but getting better. My tones are not so good, and my rhythm is terrible. I'm better than one student, who spends more time reading so her pronunciation isn't there. But I can actually hear her problems in speaking, which I think is a good sign.

Week four of the Udacity AI for robotics class was deeply brutal. There were maybe five Python programs to write, and I would just put them off for a bit each time, so it's taken several weeks to geet through. One program, I just didn't get. I missed a whole point of how to do it. I got something that didn't work, but submitted it anyway, and the grading program accepted it anyway, so I moved on and looked at the answer. I was way off, but it needed this whole new thing that he hadn't talked about. I just didn't care at that point that I had it wrong, and I hadn't understood it. Sometimes it's the teacher's fault. So I was happy to just move on. The whole thing had been much more work than I was expecting so I was ready just to be done with it. This time, though, I started writing the programs in a separate program. It has an integrated editor you can do your work in, but then you don't get to keep what you wrote. Now at least I have my copy. I'm using emacs, which has some kind of python integration, but I haven't tried it yet. It might be able to run the python locally, but I don't know yet.

I'm also in a mathematical philosophy class that was extra long this week. This one is from Coursera, which is different from Udacity in having real weekly deadlines, so I can't just procrastinate like in the other class. This class doesn't have real work though like the robotics class, so it has not yet been a problem. One thing it does have, though, is a lot of references and other reading you can do if you have time. So it basically has a lot of extra optional work. I was looking at stuff just about every day and it took like Monday through Friday to finish it. Some of that was just me stopping when it got boring. But some of it is because I disagree with some of the material. This week was about belief, and used the idea of sets of possible worlds, which I have a problem with. The idea is basically useless for AI and writing programs. I find out in the conclusion that it's also kind of controversial among philosophers too. There is no agreed on definition for it. Also, he got into degrees of belief as probabilities, which is something I personally have a problem with, having seen it before in AI. For one, people don't obey the rules of probability. For another, it doesn't capture the thinking that we go through when we are sure or not sure about something. We imagine alternatives, or think about proofs. We have feelings going all through it. It's an emotional process, and a probability number doesn't capture it. Dude wants to say they are people normative, and it's how we should ideally think, but I think even that misses a lot of the subtlety of belief. One important thing about beliefs is that they are learnable, and they adjust from experience and knowledge. That just wasn't captured. Anyway, it's a good class in getting me to think about stuff.

I've been trying to get a lawyer to help me with the appeal for the denial from Social Security. Turns out they have been calling me for weeks, but the call was from Jackson Mississippi, so I've been ignoring it. I finally answered it. Now I have an appointment with them on Monday. One problem now, though, is that I was thinking they weren' t calling, so I had just about given up and I figured I would have to find a job. I even started applying for a research thing at U of M. I still have to do a cover letter and a list of references. And I went to the monthly Java users group meeting, and saw a headhunter that I knew. But now the disability thing is still there to work on.

Yeah I'm up in the air. Maybe I will have to get a job, which in itself is not so easy. The money is dwindling. But it looks like Doug is about to get a job in DC. Some website that does army surplus. It is a site with stuff he is interested in, so he seems to like it. They might be up for him to work remotely, too. Hopefully it will be better than SF. And he goes to the carolinas a lot for relatives, so he might like it quite a bit. He's in California now for some kind of car show.

I'm running low on things on Netflix to watch. I'm watching a series on "film", but it's a little too visual. I actually tend to just listen while doing freecell, so this is not so good for that. And too artsy, maybe. For a bit, I was watching standup, but too many of the people I don't like. Too grim. Even Carlin seems too grumpy. I really liked Eddie Izzard, who is mostly just silly, not whiney. Severally of them, I will start, but stop because I didn't find them funny. My sense of humor has gotten different, I know. I don't like looking down on things, for one, which I thought was about a kind of empathy. I don't know.

Now that i'm going to Chinese, I'm right by the Midsouth Maker space, which has meetings every friday right after it, so I'm going down. I don't stay very long. I've got a weird thing where I'll plug in my raspberry pi, and it won't accept ssh connections, but I can ping it. And then when I unplug it, I can still ping it. That's weird. It must be something the router is doing, and that might be causing the ssh to have problems, too. But I tried it at home, and I can't ssh here either. But it's not getting on the network here either, so I don't know. I'm going to have to plug it into a monitor to see what's going on, but that sounds like work.

  • August 8, 2013
Well, my plan was that at some point I would move the stuff from Facebook back into this journal, but the more I waited, the bigger a task that would be. So I guess I should just give up. Maybe I could move stuff over, but it seems a little unlikely now. So, a six month break? I guess.

I've been trying to apply for disability, but in the first part of the process, they have denied me. They did a lot of work to say they think I'm not diabled. Maybe that's right. Maybe I could work, but I don't know. I'm now trying to talk to a lawyer at Nahon, Saharovich, and Trotz. My mom worked with them before. They have a lot of ads. But they didn't make it sound promising. It's a pretty hard sell, apparently, and I didn't have anything much to say. I may have to get a job.

I've been taking online classes. I took one in computational neuroscience. The homework was a bit demotivsting, as you could retake it 5 times, and they were mostly multiple choice question s, so guessing could get you to pass. I ended up not doing the programming for them, because I didn't quite get it, and it seemed pointless. That class had deadlines which kept me a bit on track.

I'm in Sebastian Thrun's AI for robotics class. That has no deadlines at all, so I don't do it very steadily. It has fairly good sized programs that you have to write. I'm in week 4 of 6, so I'm a good ways into it. But stalled, because a pretty large program I have to write. It's a maze search program. Who knows when I'll get back to it. It's in python, which is somewhat unfamiliar. I don't much like it, either. The programming is online, as opposed to writing it on my computer and uploading. So I dont even get to keep the programs. And I would have bugs, but it would pass the program anyway.

Another class I'm in is in mathematical philosophy. No real homework. A quiz at the end. But it has been interesting. The second week is about truth. I think he doesn't have a sufficient theory of meaning to allow for a theory of truth. He just assumes that we can evaluate what a sentence means and tell whether it is the case or not. It is using Tarski, and a thing with quotation and unquoting. Seems useless to me. 'Socrates is a philosopher' is true if and only if Socrates is a philosopher. That's his definition, roughly. 'A' is true if and only if A. Great. I'm not sure how that's helpful.

I wrote this on the discussion group, and put it on Facebook, so I'll put it here to, if I'm finally going to get back to blogging: Truth is an epistemic feeling. We have many types of epistemic feelings, where we hear or think of a sentence, and think it sounds familiar or doubtful, or maybe right, or any of the many ways we can feel about it. Truth happens when not only do we feel something is right, but we feel that other people will feel that it's right, too. So it uses some of our social understanding of other minds as well. This is what people mean when they says it's 'objective'.

  • February 22, 2013
OK. Back to truth. It turns out, you need a bit of psychology to understand some of this stuff. We have what would best be described as "epistemic feelings". The Greeks had a theoretical ideal that there are things that are true universally and forever, and we kind of inherit that. Math and boolean logic are the main, and probably only examples. I am happy to show the problems with those examples, but I want to get at something else. For an individual, we don't have access to anything like that. We only have feelings--emotions-- about what we believe are true. It's a tricky system, and nothing like what computers do with boolean logic, which is demonstrably sound. Mistakes easily creep in, and we have various corrective systems. It reaches the limits of human ability when it touches religion. Because there, it starts playing with unreliable quirks in our epistemic emotional system. I hate to have to use the Greek technical word. How about our truth-feeling system? It's more than just truth. We have feelings of maybe recognizing, but not being sure. We have maybe feelings. We have definitely feelings. We have hell no feelings. But they are all just feelings. Quite often they are shared in groups, and from that, we start thinking, maybe everyone does or even must feel this way, and with those things, we guess that they are true in that weird, idealized universal sense. OK but we have glitches. Deja vuis a glitch where we get a feeling of familiarity, that's not true. And where I'm going--spiritual experiences about god and such--these are glitches like that. It would take a lot to go into the, in detail, but that's all they are. They feel like truth. Funny how that works.

There is no secret to happiness. Not the sense of something simple and easy. But it turns out that it isn't commonly known, but there are many things that can be done to make you happier that take a lot of work, and that almost everyone is wrong about what makes them happy. Kind of a sad state of affairs really. Especially considering it's people in power working hard to keep people unaware that makes things like this. Happy people are hard to control.

  • February 21, 2013
Hey, how can I get in on the gun debate? I'd like to talk to some of the Second Amendment people about its meaning. It actually has a fairly evil historical context. I hate to be super negative, but at the time of the founding of the constitution, there were several things that were different, and the need for a militia was quite different. Sure, people hated the central government. Everyone always does that everywhere. Local government needs to be stronger, and maybe we need a militia to fight it. The founders, I forget the quote, but they expected repeated revolutions. Pansy Americans have given that up. So we have basically given up our militia rights, anyway. But also, it was about Indians. At that time, we were still fighting the native American population and stealing their land. Right or wrong, we needed guns for that, but that's over. Guns are fun can be no excuse for protecting gun ownership. Rape and murder are fun as well. Hunting? Hunting with high capacity magazine violates the need not to overhunt. Anyway, second amendment defenders need better arguments than it's in the constitution, because it was there for fairly bad reasons.

Three weeks since a blog post? It's Facebook. And not just that, but I use my iPad much more, and I don't have a way to edit my blog from my ipad. I need to get something, but paying for an editor when the greatest editor ever made, emacs, is free. And with the weird keybindings, probably could not be made to work on an ipad. I had to go for some crappy substitue, but looks like to have a complete life, I will need to.

So I put all my musing on Facebook. I guess I think I might transfer them here if I feel like. On Facebook, I can get some feedback, but nobody much says anything, and only my cousin Trudy seems to even see everything. Facebook actually does filtering, so I found from a friend that she simply doesn't even see everything I put out. Everyone's "news feed" has different amounts of stuff, so they naturally restrict, and mine would be a flood, I guess. I don't know how many of my "friends" have simply turned my posts off. So, not the greatest medium. And I am always feisty, so I imagine people don't like that either. My values and knowledge are so far from all of them that we have almost no common ground. I have no interest in being nice to people whose positions I find disgusting. Like Republicans. My brother Edgar and his family are Republicans. I'm just to hostile to them to even try to be civil. My nephew Daniel posted some crappy Republican propaganda story. A daughter of liberal parents is asked what she would do if president. She said give homeless people houses. Dude said, no need to wait, I can give you a job raking leaves for $50 and you can give it to a homeless person. And she says, why not get him to do do the work and give him the money. "Welcome to the Republican Party". This story is wrong on many levels, but Daniel said something about ain't it the truth. To which I replied, yeah, Republicans are jerks. I could go into the problems with the story, but that's not what I'm talking about. I wrote a post about needing to get an editor to blog instead of going on facebook. In a comment, I said I wrote on Facebook too much. Daniel, who has never tried to defend any of his crappy positions, or commented about anything I have said in any way, or ever even used the like button before for anything of mine, hit "like" for my comment about writing too much. I have made a decision to keep my relatives as facebook friends, even though, on that brother's side I basically can't stand anything they say. And I know they don't like any of mine. If you can't manage to be in some way friendly to your relatives, then you have serious problems. But, man, I'm not so sure.

I have a thing about not friending people I haven't met. I used to to that more, because I am often kindred spirits to INTP people, and I used to be on a mailing list with them, and had some of them on facebook. But then there was Heather Watson, a new agey person who runs One CommUnity center. She's in Memphis, and I still want to talk with her, but we aren't remotely compatible. We got matched on OKCupid, so she is looking for a guy. But she's super J. Friendly, though. I friended her. Mon ths went by and we did not meet, so I dropped her. But within the last moneth, I met her in person. She is super friendly. I keep going to classes there--it's inside Republic coffee. On Tuesday, two days ago, I went in for the zen meditation meeting. She was sitting in the coffee shop with her daughter. And she said, Hei Andi! As nice as you could be. And she guessed I was here for the zen, and pointed me there. But I think I've moved on. I kept sending emails, and I had questions about the school. I'm still considering trying to start up a spiritual atheist meeting, and I've discussed it with my wild party organizing atheist friend, Liz. Seems like Liz and Heather, both extroverts with tattoos, have things in common, and they might be good together. But I'm afraid that Heather is just not only not skeptical, but her openness would be as annoying to Liz as it is to me. Anyway, despite wanting otherwise perhaps, Liz is not my Facebook friend.

But I added someone, Shannon, from Kentucky, whom I've never met. I saw her from ISPE, the one in a thousand high IQ society. I just naturally love super intelligent women. And she blonde and kind of sweet. I know my naturally darkness is not her thing,, but for her, I try to be somewhat more sensitive. I think maybe she is a student in political science out there. She just got a gun carry permit. She posted something about something sciency, on maybe Maxwell's demon. The thermodynamics thing. I challenged her about thermodynamics, which I studied. I get the math in it, and people seriously abuse the subject. It's almost as bad as Quantum Mechanics. Then she said she had read some QM, and liked it. To me, when I hear that, I usually cringe. Almost no writer does even an acceptable job with QM. They almost always are wrong in various ways. But they make people feel like they know something. Edutainment. Only one person, Richard Feyman, has ever done a good job. In my opinion, read him, or you are wasting your time. And the best book is QED, which I recommended. On e of her friends, an astrophysics dropout, tried to dispute that, and came up with a bunch of popsci garbage. Like Steven Hawking. To Hawking, I said "God no". I know no one who saw that post got what I was talking about. I tried to explain further. Feynman, and he has talks describing this, knows what it talks to know something for sure, and what counts as talk that sounds like it means something, but real is nothing. Like knowing the names for things. That really doesn't tell you much. A lot of astrophysics, and almost everything written about QM, is just wild speculation and theories that just aren't known to be true. On that stuff, Feyman won't even get into, because it gives you the feeling like you know something, that you really don't. Entertaining, maybe, but not science, and science is interesting enough for him and really a lot of people, but not everyone. Some of it takes kind of deep math that takes a lot of work, though just doing the math isn't everything needed for an understanding, but without it, there is a limit to what you can do. I said it's likie buttefly collecting instead of studying biology. And I concluded with, all the rest is like bubble gum, but Feynman is the steak. Eat the steak. Shannon was diplomatic and said it sounded like I had thought a lot about my position, so thanks for sharing. It was only after that that I tried to argue with Mr. Physics wannabe, and try to explain my position. Deaf ears, I imagine.

OK, I've gone with FTP on the go Pro. So I'm editing this on my ipad. It will only be convenient when I use my keyboard, too, but it's something.

  • January 30, 2013
How do you prevent stealing in a world where people hoard things instead of sharing?

I'm not sure what to think. I'm at Republic Coffee again. There was a cute blonde tending the counter. She said good morning. I asked, is it morning? She said something about she was still on her shift. She said she liked my scarf. I asked her if she recognized it, and she said yes. She said she was trying to get one. I asked if she was getting it from thinkgeek.com, and she said no, but she did have stuff from there. Now, I don't remember if she asked what I wanted or not. I thought I remembered requesting hot green tea. She didn't give me that, but was going on about how she had a doctor who Christmas. Something about River when she stole something. Maybe she dressed like that? And she had a bunch of stuff. At some point, she was talking to the guy replacing her, and said he wouldn't understand. Ans she told him to take care of his customer, and I repeated my order of hot green tea. I know I said it twice. But I don't know which one I said it to the first time. That tricky memory.

Plans and schedules don't always work out. I had a lot of stuff kind of worked out as a plan, yesterday. But something that was tentatively scheduled to end at 4 ran long, and all the other stuff got bumped. I guess it was foresight that I didn't make them definite. Today I had one thing planned for lunch. It fell through at about 10. But I moved along, and did get something else in. That may well have bumped his plan a bit, or maybe just made it later. And that had already been postponed. Seems like he had his phone monitoring his schedule, so it might have been pretty close. But I got insight as to what happens to him, as this time, it was me.

Really? I don't know what they do for music here, but they have from _Purple Rain_, Prince's "Let's Go Crazy" Had a really sad experience. Republic Coffee is a couple blocks from Memphis' main library. To my mind, a library is a bastion of anarchistic freedom, a place where there is sharing, based on government money. I'm hoping to write an iPhone app that will facilitate sharing in personal libraries. But they also have a bookstore. That was the sad thing. So many books where they are better off selling than letting people share them. It's part of a culture that doesn't see sharing as pleasant. People prefer to collect and hoard into a personal pile than share. Consumerism, which is a necessary part of capitalism, which, while it does encourage diverse production, also ends up making garbage. And that's what was sad to me. Whole books. People slaved months and years to write these books. And now they are garbage. It's sad for me personally, because I had been thinking of writing a long form book that might go to paper. But it would be just more in an endless pile of garbage.

Of course, that's also exactly what a blog is, but blogs have a very small cost for materials. They do represent an investment of time for the writer. If it's on a website, which a blog is by definition, the cost of the site has to be paid. My site I pay for myself, as kind of my investment into having my own controllable web presence. Plenty of places give writers space for free, and I forget what they do. Maybe advertising, I don't know. I have heard that a writer is some one who cannot not write. So maybe I am a writer, and a blog is the best I can do. No money coming to me, but I make it freely available. So it comes down to a matter of vanity. A professional writer will write for an audience. I guess I don't care all that much about my readers. Meh.

  • January 27, 2013
Is capitalism a race to the bottom? Right now, that phrase occurs to me in think about capitalism. I don't remember what kinds of things "race to the bottom" has been used to describe, but it's an obvious concept. It's a negative feedback loop where some measured value (a variable lets say) is decreasing. A recent way I've been seeing is death spiral, which is a little bit different. In that case, the variable is needed for the health of some group. Like a project that keeps getting worse and worse and they so they add more people, which makes it worse. You can look back at projects that failed completely and say in retrospect that they were in a death spiral, and you want to use that to see if maybe one you are on is in the same thing. Because you might be able to pull out of a spiral. The original death spiral idea is from a plane that has gotten out of control and is spiraling down to the ground. Some writer acting like an economist said that some states were in death spirals. They have a too many people getting government services for their tax revenue, so they raise taxes, and then rich people leave, and it not only lowers the tax revenue, but it also decrease property values, which also reduces tax revenue. So a negative feedback loop. But it's a state. It's just not going to fail, though it will change in some way, like it always does. It might find a more nicer equlibrium that is more fair or whatever. My brother seems to be convinced that California is in a true death spiral. I find that such a poor, stubborn and really self-centered view that my opinion of him actually has decreased because of that. Part of the whole conservative propaganda about the evils of big government, which is just a tactic in their plan to increase their money and power.

communication is actions that communicate. People have speech, which gives an example of animals. Animals do communicate, but their communications have limited forms--limited to communicating feelings, directions (that is, they can point) and other simple things. And simple in the sense of not having so many combinations of parts. One of the big featur3s of languages is having a system of regularly putting together what are called meanings (I guess those are just the intensions of the speech acts) in a regular and understandable way we have rules in language called grammar and one of its function is to regular how the combinations of words is done when there are relationships between the different things we want to talk about. Because we will have combinations of things and feelings we have about them. Also in there, we have imagination where we might be thinking of things not immediately present, and we will want to communicate that, so just pointing to the world doesn't get it. I guess that is sometimes a matter of feelings. I mean, being hungrry or thirsty or wanting somethings are really pretty nearly feelings instead of what Searle's theory of meaning talks about-- a mind to world direction of fit, where there is a state of the world you imagine, and you have a speech act that is involved in making the world fit that vision.

One of my favorite things is a woman taking her panties off, which has in my experience been a act that communicates she is ready to have sex. Such a hopeful thing!

A finely honed machine.

My mom likes to throw things away. I like to save things, and now she's calling me a hoarder. That implies a problem, and I do not believe I have a problem other than not really having enough space to conveniently keep my stuff. I'm confining all my stuff to my room, which I nthought was my space. It turns out, that because my room is in my house, my mom believes completely that she shoul be able to go in to it whenever she wants, so she disturbs my stuff. She cleans. But she also snoops. And occasionally she will just take my stuff outright whenever she feels like it, which is rare, but it has happened enough to be very annoying. I think it's unacceptable, but I also feel like I need to learn a way of coping peaceably with it. It's a matter of control. Conflicts of control are a natural problem.

Eventually, people run out of new things to say. Which is boring. It is especially if you have a great need for novelty. And that's one of those real, innate needs. Or is it a want? I'm not positive about the difference.

When I sit down to write something, and right now I'm thinking of emals, but it's a general problem, I will usually have several specific points I want to include. Part of the act of writing, though is to have a kind of continuous stream of the words you are trying to get out, and I do like to let it go out naturally. So my write can be a little bit stream of consciousness, but any talking is like that, more or less. we can get organized, and have a list of things in mind and remember them. In writing, it's good to have notes about the main points. When learning to write essays in high school, I was made to get an outline first, which is generally just notes like that. It's a really good idea, but it's kind of work, and it's a tiny bit of writing in order to write, so maybe it ends up feeling like unnecessary double work. And the essay form that I was taught even has a little bit of that redundance built in. First, you state your topic, then you have the body where you argue for your topic, talking about examples and maybe explaining the subject, and then at the end, you basically restate the topic, though it should be a little nit more like a review than just a copy paste from the beginning. That's the basic essy form. Real essayists can handle varying from it. Seems like blog posts really should be little essays. And just a single paragraph is supposed to (from the writing I remember) have a comparable style where there is a topic sentence. I seldom really see that, though. There's even some comparable advice for giving a speech that I've heard (one time on a Simpson's commentary): say what you're going to say, say it, then say what you've said. Sounds a bit silly, but repetition is very much needed in talking.

The best communication is in narrative form. Stories with a moral. Preacher dude, that Quaker yesteray at one community center, was just telling stories, though he had a list of 5 points he was trying to put across, which were the morals to the stories. It made it a little bit harder to deal with. There was so much chaff in his talking, and it was so much of an entertainment. That's how preaching has evolved. You have to entertain in a sermon, and all preacher build up their body of stories and talking skill. It does kind of hide the main points to make them harder to argue, and it's really rough when everyone is indoctrinated with the stories from childhood so they are ingrained and unquestioned. Because I not only had questions, but I thought many of the points (the morals of the stories) were quite bad. I think I've written about narrative in communication before long ago. Something I picked up from Art Graesser at U of M.

I need a bluetooth keyboard for my Apple devices. I've gotten hung up and I haven't gotten one. Darn it, I used to have one, and it must be somewhere, but it isn't in my glove compartment, which was its designated location. Maybe I'm pouting. And it's probsbly in a box from cleaning out stuff. My stuff is so crowded in the space I use that finding thing is a fair bit of work, involving moving stuff and lifting boxes, instead of just scanning the right area, which you can do when you have spread stuff out when using the a sufficient amout of space.

I like being patient and waiting for things. And this can work because anticipation and wanting has an internal reward system. People are hooked up differently though, and not everyone will wait the same kind of time. You especially have the people who get diagnosed with ADD, who just don't hang on to thought at all. Focus. Eyes on the prize.

I won't snoop if you don't sneak. Something I heard a mom say.

And then there's attraction. I've written endlessless about love. Parts of love, things that get mixed into love. Part of the converstion really needs to be attraction, which is it's own thing. Completely separate, and like all things human, very rich and complex. So attraction. Well, one thing they say is that opposites attract. Well, i a sort of manner of speaking. We are made a little bit curious by things that are different from us. All other people are different from us in at least some ways, though the differences vary. The idea of opposites attracting, though, is more a consequence of our desire for novelty. We quite often look for something new, so when we seek them, it appears kind of like attraction. If we didn't seek novelty, we would use up the stuff nearby, and then we would starve. Hear, I need to use starve as a metaphor. It literally refers to needing and not having food, but I don't know of a general term that works for all needs in partcular. Because we have a lot of needs. Starving for affection. Turns out, affection has differnt parts, too.

One thing I knew, but have recently had it clearly pointed out. I have really been starving for just physical touch. A lot of people get some of those needs met from having pets. And even that breaks don't into need to touch others, and need for others to touch us, though the contact itself is the basic thing. It breaks into those different type in our minds because of how it is modulated with other wants and needs. Like thst insight I saw recently how there is a difference between needing to give love versus to receive love.

So attraction does have bits where it looks like we are seeking out something different. But it turns out that anything that is not done the way we do it is by definition, wrong. It is the nature of thinking that what we think seems right to us. Other thoughts or ideas seem wrong. Different people learn different coping mechanisms for foreign, and thus wrong ideas. One of those is tolerance. But that's just a matter of pushing aside bad feelings. The feelings are still bad. The more, I want to say sophisticated but maybe I should use the word I've heard Buddhist say, skillful thing to do is a more effortful and complicated procedure involving meditations of compassion, and really trying to see from the other persons perspective. This is not tolerance but a more real understanding. OK, may understanding is what to call it. You could use tolerance or understanding. Understanding takes even more work than tolerance though. With tolerance, you push the bad feelings away, which you can do kind of easily, but it does leave a little cognitive3 burden, and those burdens add up. There's also just ignoring the things that are a problem. That's a little bit deeper, as it gets stopped before we are aware. Being in love cognitively affects us to where we quite often don't even notice problems. They never even get to the point where we have to try to tolerate them. Unfortunately, while this is unconscious, it does the exact same kind of thing that rolerance does, it adds little emotional stresses that cam add up. And I talk about them adding up, because quite possibly, at somepoint, the negatives pile up too high, and while we were attracted to the person before, it gets to a threshold where the repulsion outweighs the attraction, so on sum, we are basically no longer attracted. And the whole thing is extremely dynamic, since it depends on what we are thinking about at the time. Focus is like that. There has to be a whole lot of similarity for there to be attraction, and there will need to be some difference to satisfy our need for novelty.

We can be bored. This happens. I've heard it's a problem with two INTPs, especially. I mention it specifically because it was a concern of mine with Holly. I love her really strongly. Kind of my ultimate women because of quite of a few things about her, that I like. Smart being the biggest thing, I guess. We're both INTPs, so we kind of react and think siilarly. And she kind of so completely underestand me, in a combination of our similarity, and personal knowledge experience that makes it feel inevitable that I would love her. But I know she would get bored with me eventually. Based on her relationshpi history, and adding in the experience from all the Myers-Briggs fans, one of which claimed that this combination is boring. I forget what book it was, but was saying there needs to be a bit of complementarity, so in a lasting relationship, I would do better with someone more outgoing and emotional.

One thing though, in my experience, there is a kind of opposite that I find completely incompatible. Ps and Js don't mix well, and I just know better than to try to get along with a J for very long. It has to do with organization. Js are very organized and actually quite sensitive to things not being under control. Ps like chaos. So we absolutely don't mix and will constantly be annoying. There will have to be tolerance. Js actually don't have that much tolerance-- the rigid conservstive types are an example. They'll just cut the thing off. Aimee did that before we got anywhere. Andrea did that absolutely at one point. There is always a sharp end with Js. And then done forever. Ps do patiently hang on, but we do sometimes drift away to other things, gradually, maybe leave, while being a bit open to coming back. I think Kim gets back with exes, sometimes.

There's a perspective problem with being nice. YOu can only being nice by doing something that you think is good for the other people. It will inevitably not be as good to the other person as it was to you. It's a matter of a difference in values. Also, you must be doing it from some need of your own. That can really cheapen the action, especially when you mistakenly think you are being "selfless" There was always a reason, and it was more or less contrived.

Sharing is different from giving in having an assumed reciprocity. In giving, the reciprocity is not supposed to be assumed, but there's no telling what kind of accounting we may be doing, so it had has hidden elements, and I finally have to conlcude that hidden pieces are bad.

Matt and Trey in South PArk made the point that tolerance is not accpetance.

All information is partial and incomplete in itself.

I'm at Melissa's Starbucks. I'm giving the Earl Grey tea a try. Respectable. Oh no! They fooled me this time! He didn't double cup it. Now I can't put the tea bags conveniently in the bottom cup. But he didn't charge me. So it's entirely fair. Just pitched them. I've always done that. I only just recently realized I could do something else, if I have double cups, and not I don't. Oh well. They don't cost much. Two huge tea bags. It is wasteful, but that's consumerism. And this is a temple.

Saturday I was here, and I sent Melissa a text that I was at her Starbucks, and for her to honk if she comes by. She replied that she was in East Memphis. She told me about it a month ago. I forgot. Story of my life. And thinking about that. That's pretty much stalking, though darn it, I come here so often for her that it seems like home, and I'm starting to come here for myself. Carlos had a story about finding your power spot. Keep trying places until you find the one that's right for you. It was Carlos, but it's so true.

I'd like to give at least one class on atheist spirituality. I'm wanting to write a book on it, so at least I could run a few seminars to get a feel for it. I kind of would like to do it at the one community center, and I look at their website, and I thought there was a way to contact her on there, but I sure don't see it. I think I'm too shy to ask in person, which I guess is a bad sign. OK, it looks like I found it. I have to just get an appointment with Heather directly, it seems. It looks like she rolls in around 4 on Wednesday. Two days from now? I should be organized for that, but honestly, I'm pretty scattered.

I've got lunch scheduled with Aimee on Wednesday. Yay!

It looks like it's getting on towards after hours. The place is filling up with working men.

Yes, sharing at Starbucks is not discouraged, precisely, but everything is made to be individual, so it would be unusual and take extra work to share. But tea is so much a Chinese thing, where they really do share. A pot for the group. Like food for the table. We don't do that eating out now, hardly ever. People get their own thing. Not shared. You can, but it's not the natural thing.

For lunch, Irish potato chili! I don't want to devolve into the Twitter mentality of thinking people care about the mundane details of my life, but I have things I might want to say about it later, when I have a little bit of time. [from FB, and my additional thoughts follow I had this blog open, but wrote it there first]

Andi Babian So, Irish potato chili. When I was getting sick in the fall, I had a big batch of it that I had brought back from the farm. Normally I'm good about eating leftovers. I get less happy about them when they get older. But I have a very deep-seated dislike of wasting food. I've even got somewhat more sensitive about telling when food is starting to get off, but I have a pretty good tolerance for it. It's a question of bacteria, and not only can we not get away from bacteria, we think of ourselves as being only the cells that have human DNA, but in fact, we are all colonies. Even the "human" cells have mitochondria which are symbionts from our unicellular past. Throughout the millions of years of out existence, we have always been colonies. We have a huge system of intestinal "friends". It goes so far that we have an organ, our appendix, which we have only recently found is there just to protect, and the word should not be "them", our bacterial parts. Because they _are_ us.

Anyway, when I was getting sick. I started being less able to eat. The first thing that went was my tolerance for food beginning to be off. Leftover pork started tasting disgusting. I still haven't been able to go back to pork. It spread to all food. I know now it was because I had an infection, and that was simply a reaction. Lot's of other very bad things complicated my condition. I had diarrhea, which got progressively worse, until I became so severly dehydrated that my kidneys went into crisis. And I was taking blood pressure lowering medicine, which decreased kidney function even more. By the time I saw my real doctor my blood pressure was abnormally low. I saw a doctor a week or two before that who did not even think I had diarrhea because of his views about proper bowel function. It might have indicated an infection. Which I had. And almost died from. Pancreatitis. Water over the dam.

Andi Babian But I had a big batch of Irish potato chili in the fridge, which I just didn't feel like I could eat. So I threw it away. Felt bad about it. And I would feel a lot worse after that.

So, perhaps the deep question is, what is communication? It contrasts with knowledge, which is another abstract idea we think exists. I get the feeling that a lot of people think of communication as a transfer of knowledge, which is simply incomplete, because while we do that sometimes, we also use communication to get other people to do things. And yet, we use the same word. Quite possibly, that is a bad conceptualization, yet there it stands. Different] things unnaturally glommed together, so it naturally is confusing. From this idea of communication we have all other kinds of satellite ideas, which if this might be a mistske, are now tainted. Meaning, for one. Way down the line from that, truth. That might just be a confusion we eventually get past.

I just noticed two left over christmas present that I didn't give to anyone. They are microwave egg cookers. I love the ones I had before seeing these. I have microwave a egg cooker, and a thing that is good for scrambled eggs. I think either when I got those, or maybe some time after that, I got other ones, and gave them as christmas presents. One went to my dad on the farm. He likes soft boiled eggs. I think another I gave to my germantown brother, I think the scrambled egg one. I know for a fact that My dad never used his, and never even learned how to. I'm almost positive my brother never used his. He saves things, generally, so he might have it, but then, he might have pitched it. His wife returns things. Maybe they took it back. Oh well. So he was not going to get one of these. My California brother eats lots of eggs, but frankly, they have hardly and space to carry things on a plane, and basically no room in there kitchen. Plus when he makes eggs, he'll make like four just for himself, and some more for his kids. Anywqy, I only found this out after they got to Memphis. They arrived on Christmas Eve, so I didn't know his egg eating habits til later. There were many days of Christmas later where I could have given it to him, but like I explained, it wouldn't have been a good gift. These new ones are for poached eggs and for egg muffin sandwiches. I tried the poached egg. I don't even know how to make them for real. I don't remember ever eating them, so I don't know how close it is. Mom tells me they are supposed to be soft. I didn't read the instructions, so I made two cooking mistakes. I didn't break the yolk--After half a minute, I realized that, opened it up and tried, but it was already partially cooked so it didn't do anything. After the time was up, I was supposed to let it sit for 30 seconds before opening the seal. Part of the deal is that you add water, so there will be steam. I opened it, so I left out the steam. And I'm generally no a fan of runny eggs, so I gave it the top end of the range for times. So they were overcooked. But I've had maby microwaved cooked eggs before. These were pretty good. It's just cooked eggs, so it's nothing special, but I thought they were good.

  • January 27, 2013
The reason the world has a hunger problem is that people don't share. And the key insight I have here is that giving is not the same as sharing. Giving just doesn't cut it.

At One Community Center, listening to a Quaker talk. The topic is "How can we be peaceful when there are so many reasons to fight". His name is Ronald McDonald. My notes:
1 the parable of the seed, small efforts may have great effect
2 inner spirit of god is everywhere.chikaina
3 So much to laugh at.
4 Death and suffering offer profound blessings
3 hours ago
I think he was an actual clown.

I went out on Friday and Saturday, so today, Sunday, I was kind of tired and decided not to go see Melissa. But I really miss her when I don't go see her. It occurs to me now that if I were to get as close as I want, it would just be a lot worse. I think,

  • January 26, 2013
At Republic Coffee. Have tea to share. Probably won't be an issue, though. No Earl Grey, only green. Planning my next move.

The relaced the keyboard on this netbook, donut. Some of keys kind of stick or something. Grr.

So I've gone out for an adventure. My first stop was the nothern tools store, which seemed so neat at Christmas. I wanted at least another of those little flashlights. and I wanted to look at the pneumatic log splitters. Dude that showed them to me said they had a deal where you could get them on credit, but lots of people take them out to try first. I don't know. Not really my thing. And looking at them, they are for splitting regular logs, which I can manage with an axe. They don't appear set up to manage the knotty monstrosities that I am looking for help with. Maybe they would be able to do it, but I don't know. So I don't think so. These ma just need to actually be sawed. I picked up some metal cutting wheels. Seemed handy. I lusted after some metal bending equipment. And I saw their supply of solar stuff. Generally jusdt trickle chargers for 12 V batteries, but that's the way to get started. Theyb have amorphous and crystalline. The crystalline is maybe half as large but twice as expensive. This display was much better than catalogs, as I got a real sense and comparison of the size. I want something that would fit in a car dash, but with that size, you can only get 7 watts, which is quite low. 20 watts seems like the sweet spot, whichbis about an amp and a half, Hundred bucks. Didn't quite tip over the edge to buying it right then. Maybe more research. But I learned something. And it's there waiting for me.

My next stop was guns and ammo. But just parking there, the lot was full so I parked on the side street. Right there, was a Delorean! I don't think I ever saw one on the street before. Looks like such a cheap freaking car. Anyway, I Guns and Ammo was full. I was really looking for a 45 Deringer. That had a few, but like $400+. more than I really expected. I was expecting something cheaper.

So I'm sitting here at Republic Coffee, but it encloses One Community Center, which I've been trying to find out about that had a big meeting. And I guess I didn't understnad when the sign said one commubity center. It was a co-op meeting. And I guess that wasn't enough, either for me. I talked to The little coordinater, the dyed-hair girl. It's white now. I forget her name. We were facebook friends for a while, but eventually, when it was months and we had never met in person, I purged her. I asked her what the meeting was. They are a community of healers and teachers. What kind of healing? And dude deflected. What kind do you need? I'm not quite sure still.

Switched to Starbucks. Good old Starbucks! That other place is a little too creepy for me. The guy at the counter recognized and asked me about the thing on my keychain. Now I've forgotten the name. He asked me if I knew how to use it, and I said I was more Chinese than Japanese, but I could. Kind of a Hippy wannabe place. Just not me.

So I just learned a bit more about tea. Republic did not have Earl Grey. And it's a little spotty, so I generally go with green. Starbucks has two green teas. Zen, and China Green tip. I want the plain one, which I think is the China green tip. But this being Starbucks, they have them in tins so you can buy them yourself. And on the tins is the information, from which I have lesrned. Yes, the Zen has lemongrass and peppermint. China green tip is plain. But it also gives brewing info. For both greens, they say, bring water to a boil and let cool. This is consistent with what I have heard before, green tea needs a little less than boiling. And I never quite got that. Because HH Douglas N Adams, RIP, in his essay on proper English tea was quite insistent that the water be boiling while it hits the water. So I just found the missing puzzle piece. In addition to the green, they have (at least) two proper English teas-- an English Breakfast ( a mix of blacks) and an Earl Grey. So they have an Earl Grey. I might have to switch to that. But from the tin, I now see the differnce. The English teas ask for boiling water, not slightly cooler. Also, the caffeine content on the green teas, they rate as two stars out of five. The English teas get four out of five. So they are strong teas. American brewing practice makes them weaker, of course. Green, in a traditional brew, is also a weak tea. Supposedly a significantly more healthful. But who's counting? Any drug use has risks and benefits that have to be weight. I imagine if you drink weaker tea, you at least aren't quite as addicted. Especially compared to coffee drinkers.

A big issue I'm having is coordinating schedules, since I am right now almost completely free of places I have to be at particular times. Seeing people requires some initial coordination and planning. A weakness, for me.

OK, so after going to Guns and Ammo, I walked past a classic service station thing with the in and out groceres. I picked up a powerade, some vienna sausages, and then next to them, I noticed the magazine rack. I say magazine rack. It was completely porn. Not just current porn. Kind of a collection of fairly recent porn magazines, because I saw two hustlers, and started checking dates 2011. I think I saw one from 2009. Trippy. And these came with DVDs inside. Double trippy. $7. I gave one a shot. And I seriously wanted to support a place like that.

  • January 25, 2013
Wanting and liking are separate things. Something from the book I'm reading. It went so far as to say dopamine is involved with wanting and endorphins (opioids) are involved with liking. Sounds intriguing to me. I need to integrate it into my perspective.

Man. Quite an angry mood lately. I've been frustrated trying to get working the mac mini I bought a few years ago to do iphone app development. At this point, I'm fairly stuck. Apparently it's old enough not to be compatible with the more recent mac os x operating system. I had no idea apple would do somthing as slimey as that. The most recent tools require the more recent OS, though I might be able to get older tools that will run, but it looks like even for those I will have to upgrade. I posted on FB that I might be taking an angry trip to Cupertino. That was close to being the last straw. I'm going to need to settle down before getting back into it. I've already had several hurdles I jumped.

I had been waiting to pay the two doctor bills I've gotten to see how many more would come in, so I could budget the money I have left. I finally sent them in. And as they went out, that day I got the second notice for one, and a completely new bill. It was larger than those other two combined. It really changed the character of my situation. I thought I really was doing alright, and had a safe amount of time to worry about getting back into it. Time enough to have a good chance at this app development. Now In don't feel so good about it..

So an angry mood. On Whitney Wood's FB wall, she posted something interesting, "fire inside, drinking gasoline" . I said, "sounds like a party". Then someone wrote something but made a typo, and a post correcting it, with a sigh. Wrote if instead of of or something. And, granted the tone was hostile, but asked if he thought we wouldn't understand it. We can read sentences with all the vowels deleted. Maybe the spelling and grammar Nazis have been getting him down. So Whitney said don't be an ass. I said, can't help it. And then she said "sometimes self-censorhip is appropriate". I onject to that statment on so many levels that it was clear were we people who's values are so different that we couldn't effectively communicate. I've been asking to come talk to her for a while. She's says she's a socialist, and I find it an intriguing position to hold these days. But censorhip in any form is just not something I kind go along with. Appropriateness? I find that as a measure of value to be disgusting. ?I even asked "is that like good?" Because by the time you get to talking about what is appropriate, a lot has broken down. Basically, you are in the wrong place. Actions are irrelevant at that point. So I unfriended her. I believe that deletes my posts off her wall, which seems to be something she wanted. I'm not sure though. Doesn't make that much difference. Time to forget about her. A pity, perhaps.

Part of the thing with wanting and liking being differnt is what I do with myself. Seems like most of what I get from hanging out with Melissa is just experiencing desire. It's nice, but thought about in contrast to real experience of liking, it's a shadow. It sure seems like In like it, and the thing is not that simple, but it feels like it changes my view of it.

Another thing happened. On the martial arts subreddit, a guy had a post where he a bar fight a friend of his got into. premed guy. talking to a girl. he asked if she had a boyfriend, and she said no. the a guy yelled at him "move", and he asked her again if she had a boyfriend, and she this time admitted it, I guess, and then the guy "attacked" him. Got beaned by an ashtray at some point, along with a friend. The guy whon studied martial arts only heard about it, though he wished he was there. So the question he had was what style would be good for that situation, in a crowd. Of course, I like Bagua for a crowd. Someone else posted that, and Inpitched in a bit, with the story about the founder weaving through a crowd while a waiter at the imperial palace. A lot of people said run, and I could go with that. But thinking about it, it seemed wrong. There should not have been this fight. Dude should have what's called "de-escalated" had some humility. He did talk to someone's girlfriend. Maybe she liked causing trouble. So I had one post blaming him. People didn't like that one, sure. Someone wrote a message to me that he was glad this kind of opinion gets downvoted. And, probably a sign like I've gotten many times before that this is the wrong place for me to hang out. But then later, it occurred to me the problem I really had. Dude was being oblivious. The first lesson i got from a self-defense class in college-- the most important thing, more than any techinique, is situational awareness. Paying attention to your surreoundings. Dude was completely oblivious. He asked the girl, but didn't look out to see if there was a guy hanging around her. The a guy asks hostile, and what does he do? He turns away and talks to the girl. That's very disrespectful to him, for one. Just making him madder, and asking about the boyfriend again. That's not going to make him madder. So no he describes it as being "attacked" it was a surprise to him becausse he wasn't paying sttention. A real defensive person would stay on a threat. Defuse it. There was no reason for a fight. This wasn't even a real fight. It was something called "monkeydancing" Just posturing as a matter of pride. So unnnecessary. Absolutely should have been avoided. If it gets to running or fighting, you've already messed up. But I don't think those guys there have read that self-defense book. So, probably not my crowd.

I'm really liking me new Chinese class. We merged with the more advanced class. Before it was a little easy. We used to have an older couple that was kind of staying at a very basic level, but they had health issues . Now I feel like it's a serious class.

  • January 24, 2013
More from FB, all three, hopefully soon I'll do a full transfer, and move back to posting here first, but for now, yada yada:
More frustration with Apple. I'm trying to get back into iphone development. I guess last time was maybe 5 years ago. Back then I bought a mac mini because the development kit required a macintosh. I'm not positive if it still does, though it seems to, from what I see available for download on the registered apple developer page. I think I downloaded the kit then, but maybe I didn't get it installed, I don't remember. I didn't see it in any obvious place on my minimac, which I am bringing back it life. I only got it back connected to the Internet yesterday (problems with my router). And I had a break and it was really easy to get VNC working--a couple of check boxes and adding a password. So I went to download the latest SDK. Turns out I am still on leopard OS X. It only works on mountain lion! Grr! I look for older versions. I went almost to the end, and it required snow leopard, and wouldn't work on regular leopard. I feel like going down and complaining. Really? It was so crappy I have to get constant upgrades, like a PC? Apple has really started to slide again.

Happiness. People talk about how everyone wants it, and I'll admit, it can be very rough if you are not happy very often. But how much happiness do you want? Turns out that there are plenty of situations where happiness just isn't the right thing, and it doesn't make sense to be too happy. But, then, what about the people who seem to be super happy all the time? I kind of really wonder about that. I guess I don't know enough people, so I don't have enough experience to speak to that. If anybody knows someone like that who has some free time, let me know.

Love has parts. That's the greatest insight I have on the subject. There's a lot involved in what those parts are, and how they work together, but first you have to see that it!s not just one big emotional blob. Then you can start to have a real understanding, and possibly learn how to deal with it better.

  • January 22, 2013
Argh! Frustrated! I went to Best Buy to pick up an external Blu-ray drive so I can play my Dr. Who. disc. Before going, I looked online, and they had several models, and I thought there was at least one with USB 2 instead of USB 3, which I believe I don't have. So, I went into the store. They had only one, and it was USB. I wasn't positive about the USB 3.0, so I looked up the model I believe I have, latitude e6500. Nope. Grr.

So I'm sitting at starbucks, It's almost full, but I did get a chair when I came in. I'm still not quite sure what my order is. I think the closest think for me to remember is a plain hot green tea. Apparently they have a couple types of green tea. I think the "Zin" is a lemony thing. Though maybe it's "zen". They say it "zin", though. This order let's my use a teacup without contaminating the original, so I would be able to share. But I have a headache, and as I went to dump the bags after a few minutes so it wouldn't keep soaking and become too bitter, I absentmindedly drank straight from the cup. So I'm having a frustrating morning. It's not a great brew. Water wasn't boiling. And now it seems a bit bitter, so i probably ended up waiting too long, anyway.

Some guys with ties on the couach. And someone else came by, too. One had, I think a tablet, and he was saying something about accessing the file manager on a server. Explaining it to the other tie. OO, technology!

So, I'm wearing my hat. With the brim, people can't see my face, and I don't have to look at them. Such a bonus! Of course, the scarf. Life is good.

So I need to focus a bit more on what I'm going to do. Again, I'm pretty sure I first will dabble in apps. But no way that will go anywhere-- I have no real business ability, so I wouldn't even be able to come up with something commercial valuable. I don't even really think in the right way for that. I watched the "lost interview" from Steve Jobs. Something from Bob Cringley. I saw the edited bits he had on his nerd show, but the whole thing. Man. and seeing it now. I get a better sense of what apple really has done. You can describe the ipod fairly simply as an mp3 player. But that doesn't even cover all the little details that came from how polished a design process they have. It really makes me feel unworthy. And it does make me understand the range of skills needed in design.

OK, so I talked to Doug and tried to convey the whole Stevie design system. And it's good to talk things out, because the main principle is expert collaboration. With people focusing on their greatest interests--inspired by love not money. As for collaboration, one of the main things is encouragement, so I'm starting to build up encouragers. Drago at Bardog is now part of my encouragement team. I say encouragement. A mixture of shaming when you don't do stuff , and encouragement to do stuff. Partners. Freddie is there. Maybe Doug will be a part of that, though I've always been a little wary about working with Doug. I nreally don't respect his coding skill, as he has always seemed a bit more like the classic hacker, who doesn't seem to have the more general computer and design background to see around the immediate problem. And sure, he can find stuff for the problem, but he hasn't been exposed to the whole range of things out there, so there are what seem to me, weird things that he misses and does not understand or appreciate.

OK, I went home and got my mini-mac connected to the internet. i was using an ethernet switch that had two back connectors, and I lost track of which ones were bad, so I messed it up. Took a few minutes to fix, after settling down an commiting to it. That was the first stpe I needed to move towards the app development. I think. One thing I noticed, though. I have the monitor for that computer set a little back. With my vision as it is, it's a little hard to read, so it doesn't quite seem like a suitable development platform to me. I kind of need to see if I can log in remotely to it. Surely that's possible. Doug was saying something about how it's basically Unix now.

  • January 21, 2013
I wrote this on Facebook, but I think it's worth putting here. And at some point, I will transfer my Facebook stuff over, I think:
I'm watching _Zeitgeist Moving Forward_ I haven't really kept up with the whole movement, but I remember seeing something a while back and at least it seemed interesting. If I have it right, it was into a lot more global organization and planning to avoid all the foolishness and waste. I think they have a series of movies, but I tried to watch one I think, and it went for like 5 minutes with no dialog at all, so I just gave up. This one doesn't seem to have much point, but it's going a bit into psychological development, and they've said a couple of intriguing things. They are talking about implicit learning from abuse in children before they start learning explicit episodic memories. One claim is that adopted kids,even though they don't remember being abandoned, usually have trust and abandonment issues. Maybe. But there was a pretty serious claim. There is a parenting strategy where you let the baby cry, and he will eventually go to sleep. Dude (and the guy saying this is Sapolsky) says what happens is that the baby just gives up on life an shuts down in basically depression. He said it just about as severely as that. Man. I don't know. That's sounds pretty harsh.

I think I got the guy's name wrong. Lots of talking heads. I get them mixed up. I only read one of theirs names.

OK, I'm closer to the end of it, and I see the same problem I had with it before. It all sounds like it was thought up by an engineer with not so much understanding of people. In particular, it defines demands as the needs of people. That's just not...See More

Resource based economy, I think that my be a reasonable keyword to try to find it unlike "zeitgeist" or whatever.

And sometimes it's the little things. I was starting to get a really negative feeling and shutting down. And then they incorrectly used the phrase "beg the question". Pet peeve. They had an interesting idea about self-sufficient cities, with hydroponic sky scrapers. Now it just seems totally stupid, and they are a bunch of idiots.

I was going to turn it off, but now they switched to something I'm interested in--robots! so we'll see.

OK, about the only thing they said about robots is that "dey derk ur jerbs". I'm about at the end and they've gone to a strange place. Earlier, they said it wasn't some secret cabal, but the whole system that is doing it. And now they're talking about wanting to replace it, but "they" will do everything to keep it from happening. I supposed they mean rich people, and in particular, the people who make money purely from the financial system, which these guys seem to really have a problem with. I don't know. seems to me a contradiction. Either the problem is the system itself, or it's the people who maintain the system. If the system is breaking down, those people will reasonably be the ones to fix it. I think they have just basically not made a convincing case. But instead, they've gone the crazy route of blaming them for buying into they're solution. Which appears to be roughly along the lines of, "hey, put me in charge! Look at my great ideas!". That's just foolish. Also, they are playing philosopher, and frankly, they suck at it.

Done. Just crappy. OK, so I looked at the wiki page for the zeitgeist movement, which is apparently what these guys are calling themselves. The problem pops right out at me. The are about social equality. That's a problem, because while some people think that people want that, it turns out that psychologically they don't want that at all. That kind of talk comes out of an real human trait--when people get way too out of hand, though really only if they kill people, people will gang up and bring them down. This simply does not translate into a desire for equality, though. So the whole thing is based on a psychological misunderstanding. I said it sounded like engineers with little understanding of people. The is the specific lack of understanding I mean. I only found about it myself recently, and I forget the reference. But it's real.

I finally got out of the house today. When I finally got to Starbucks, though, it was jammed full, so I went home. The first thing I did was to get a three piece chicken meal. I've been getting up so late that I never get any breakfast, so I've been having a kind of food deficit, as I pretty much have only been eating maybe two and a half meals a day. Kind of good, maybe, as my weight is staying around 197, but I surely was getting hungry. Unfortunstely, I've been eating less, but not exercising. Except yesterday the weather was so nice, I did go out back and do all my kung fu forms. So I got the chicken, and I wanted a place to eat it, so I went to a park where we've practiced kung fu before. There's a lake with ducks. So, nicely fed, I went out and did my taiji form. That was nice. I had my nice Dr. Who scarf and leather jacket and jeans. I wasn't really dressed to work out, but it was fine because it was so cold. The I did the fanziquan form which is pretty intense so I need a break. I walked over to the lake, and the ducks didn't all run away, they kind of came closer. So that reminded me that I still had the biscuit they always stick with those chicken things. Just not such a big fan of the biscuits. But I'm sure the ducks would like it. So I walked all the way back to the car. And when I came back, it seems like they knew the drill, because, again the ducks weren't shy. There were more than a dozen. They might have even walked right up to me, but I made a point to throw it out to them, and I tried to be as fair as I could, but frankly, there were alot more of them than one biscuits worth. Still, better them have it than me pitching it. After that, I did the bagua form, which involves walking around in a cirlce, and a lot of bending over moves. It is not compatible with wearing a scarf. But I guess that's good to know. Again, fairly intense. I'm still building my strengh back up again, I guess.

  • January 18, 2013
Well, I blame Facebook for keeping me away from my blog, being a more convenient outlet for writing. I also spend a lot more time just browsing on my ipad. I also have books on it, so it's nice for that. But I'm not set up at all to do writing with it. I really need to get a keyboard for it. That might make a difference. But I don't have emcas or a good editor on the ipad, so it would be harder. And just in general, I think I haven't been feeling so much like writing.

I got several books for Christmas. I'm now working on Howzrd Zinn's _People's history of the United States_. It's by far the most interesting. Before that, I read two books on math. I finished up a book on modern math that I've been working on for months.

And I got Lockhart's _Measurement_ in paper for Christmas. That one had proofs you were supposed to work on every few pages, and I didn't do those, but it might give me something to go back to. The end of it was kind of interesting. Close to the end, he said all of measurement could be treated as differential calculus, and he spent the rest of the book just about that. That was cute. One kind of sad thing about it, though. One of the themes was really the limits of math. There are many things that math can't handle. There are endless things, like shapes and numbers, that we can't even theoretically describe. In that spirit, he talked about how when you say something like, the square root of 2, that's actually more of admission that you can't really say what the number is. At best you can only say that you've got a process that describes the property of the number, but the actual number just kind of sits out there, and we can't really get to it. So it has a grim note.

  • January 17, 2013
Wow! It has taken me a month to roll over the journal for the new year. Pitiful. Too much Facebook, I guess.

So, hmm. still trying to see what I'm going to do. So I have another opportunity to take some time off, and see what I'm going to do. This time, I'm pretty committed to actually writing at least a sample iPhone app to run through the physical process of what's involved. Freddie wants to do something, though he's into boat stuff that doesn't seem so interesting to me. And he wants to do stuff with his kids. I'm might get in with him if, along with other stuff, I guess. I want to do a musical app. And seems like I've had some other ideas. We've also been talking about a robot controller. And I really should look at all the robot stuff going on now. And there's a guy, Drago, at Bardog who also wants to get into apps. So I've got people encouraging me with this this time.

I also want to look at Rich Hickey's Datomic database. It may be a little too obscure, and it has an unusual interface, not sql but a prolog like system called datalog. But it has some neat features, though it has particular design decisions that put it in a particular performance region that I still don't quite understand. The main thing about it is that it is not a write in place database, so it maintains complete data history. A very unusual idea, that a lot of people kind of bend over backwards to try to achieve, but it gets it automatically.

One thing that's a little bit sad. I was hoping I would make enough money to last me a couple of years, long enough to write that book. I didn't make that. So I have a little bit of time, but I pretty much have to devote it to getting ready and looking for work, instead of writing. But that's how it goes, I guess. It was kind of unexpected. Interrupted by sickness.