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The spork, the pressure cooker, and the back burner …

February 16, 2016

…or  “what I have been doing while I might have been blogging…”


So, tiny little self smacking apology here… I expected to follow up Mindless scribblings on a schooldesk with a little something else…this time hopefully original, whitty, awe inspiring and in all other ways truly worthy of the care I typically put into these posts…

I am not sure where to go with all of this…  and sometimes, I think of perfect prose I have wrought with my pen, or keyboard…  and wonder … will this post match?  Probably not.  Because this posts is going to be a major link festival…but one I hope you will attend…

And there it is…
I think too often, I am inspired to find something to write about, to keep my thoughts “out there” (wherever there is..)  The pressure cooker starts sizzling, when I decide “ is the time to post… it’s been (X (months|years)) …” But thought doesn’t always happen that way for me (not in my professional/technical life, not in the ideas for other writing I’ve had, not in the way I decide what to do next week …. )

For me, my best thoughts come from a simmer.  A slow slimmer, on the virtual back burner on the metaphoric stove that is my brain.  I feed ideas into it, one at a time, carefully, or poured in like a firehose, until they are busy back there, not making too much trouble…not making too much noise.

Ideas don’t come from a vacuum, but profound thought can come from silence, and patience…

I have been mulling about various places this week, and feel like I want to share some of what I’ve been reading (with comment where appropriate), to get things stirring… follow if you will…

Let’s start with:

Stuff that came by perusing my “usual suspects”:

  1. A lot of this could be considered “Second order Doc Searls” (see below)
  2. Dave Winer stuff… the https (additional link), etc..  also,in addition to “the news” … some stuff on the choice between HRC and Bernie Sanders… feminism, etc…
  3. T.Rob on the voice message transcription stuff (you’ll laugh)....TRob has three blogs of which I know about: Ask An .. The Odd is Silent .. IOpt consulting .. T.Rob has a point to make about https too..
  4. Saw this David Weinberger post about amber plugin for WordPress.…wonder if it is a weak reference to Fringe
  5. Looked at Wil Wheaton’s page...saw something about twitter storms, and defense of bad behaviorabout why Bernie and not Hillary...etc…
  6. ESR is busy hacking, re-read The Cathedral and the Bazaar.  If you know why, you know why..if you don’t, well … read it.

Second order Doc Searls effect:

  1. Kind of meandered about Phil Windley’s site–check up on his technical things (was there because of the silos thing)… and found reactive programming...
  2. Reading through older posts, came across this thing about radio, and thought of an old friend… went to RadioSurvivor and started worrying about the death of internet radio as it may very well come to pass, and so I started thinking technical .. concept of an aggregate bittorrent like single listener client … maybe more on that somewhere someday.

Stuff that Doc Searls pointed to :

  1. danahboyd post that should scare the shit out of me, and does.  It kind of presents a more organized view of thoughts I’ve been afraid of for awhile
  2. Two part interview with Doc that started me thinking
  3. Phil Windley response to Doc’s Linux Journal piece on Silos..
  4. The various and many Giant Zero (and related) posts.  I think I want Doc to lay the ground for any book I try to publish…seriously .. he has me pre-ordering a book that hasn’t been written (or officially started) yet…
  5. Interesting Tim O’Reilly response to this Paul Graham piece.  I actually can’t say that I get precisley what they’re on about.  In some ways, I think I see where Paul was going, but he kind of lost me at the end.  Tim’s actually starts inlined, and then goes whole hog “I’d replace the whole last bit with this”-y.  I am wondering if they disagree enough, if I mis-read it, if I understand what I read (it was late..)
  6. Here’s a post with a nice list…if you’re bored..or avoiding work.
  7. See, Doc has three to four places (and somewhere new or two I haven’t jotted down) that he is sometimes hard to track….  The Doc Searls Weblog .. VRM .. The Linux Journal.

Stuff that came in by email (or messaging, or texting, or phone calls)…:

  1. Decided to email an old friend (Stephen Blackheath) in NZ.. mostly because it has been awhile, and friendships take regular care and feeding … partly because of Grapevine, hard would it be to split internet radio streams across an anonymized peer network, who, as it turns out, wrote a book that relates that reactive programming stuff that has me thinking…  Also gave me some things to think of regarding the radio stuff (anonymous p2p files+stream)..
  2. Got to message back and forth with an old friend about radio specifically internet, and the peril) .. {scattered, FB message-y, also, partially began while driving, until I pulled over promptly} ..  (figuring that he’s probably mostly got it right when he says that the problem with the internet radio thing .. is more legal than technical.  But I can’t help but think that if it was done right, and somehow got traction … either way, conversation is a big win in my book:  I got to utter a phrase that begins with “the internet routes around …”


Stuff that came by news sources, and links that came of that:

  1. Death of a supreme court justice == 8 men out?  (T0 replace with haste, or not to replace with haste, that is the question …)  Again, other than the fact that Republicans simply don’t want a replacement on the chance that they win the election and get to name “one of us”… and the fact that the Democrats like the fact that these appointments have cross-generational ripple effects…and can hold certain lines of progress….  I haven’t distilled much yet.  What is the best thing for the republic to do, in this case?  And has it always been this political, naming a Supreme?
  2. Twitter stuff…  Yeah, the safety council.. (USA Today link here) .. open and safe are sometimes antonyms.  See…there’s a discussion that isn’t happening…. There’s people complaining about cow-towing to PC  (or its next incarnation, and Social Justice stuff (Big S. J.  when I was little, social justice was, like, a lowercase thing ..) … but there is a Libertarian argument I am not hearing…  Weapons wielded to censor uncomfortable speech can censor you when you speak uncomfortably, such as truth to power, or revolution to tyranny.   Here are some writings (they read conservative, not libertarian, to me).  My endorsement is as much as that they showed up in google (with terms like “libertarian response twitter safety council”, and I read them:

Standing in the shower, thinking:

  1. Bonus points if you know the song (without clicking here)…
  2. Specifically during meandering on  Doc Searls’ site, the “adblock-war series” … interesting thing …’s a list of links (mostly chronologically ordered) about various info sources and articles Doc’s been involved with …)   How can I keep from clicking and backwards <- browsing back to the list? (navbar on steroids??)
  3. Spent alot of time thinking about the fact that as I procure information to feed the back burner, I often find two things that are simultaneously true:
    • There are many subjects where the information I find and search for have a “usual uspects” list ..and many of them don’t always know or remember that the other exists…
    • There many authors whom I choose to follow for their various self, that actually have partitioned their online and blogging life into multiple places…places that are difficult to  follow all at once … sometimes try to figure where they all are again..remember them .. etc..

       There may be some sort of feature idea in here for a client app, browser plug-in, wordpress thing or something (or all three, or neither), to turn a list of links into a collated binder of resources, more easily navigable… as well as one to merge various thoughts on subjects/etc into a stream.  Hey–some of it probably exists already…

  4. Thought about the differences of the word “effect” and “affect”, when used incorrectly or perhaps mistakenly-but-appropriately(serendipitously?) .. (there’s a longer blog in this somewhere…but I had the opportunity to take a class or two with an amazing thinker (Herbert Brün) .. )  We create effects.  But do we “effect” something?  The short answer is “you meant affect”..  but the longer answer, which dove-tailed a discussion about his book, “my words and where I want them”, and a piece I’d written for his class… he told me to choose words carefully, and to see hidden meaning in the ones I put there, even if they might initially seem to be a type-o.  ..
    From the bio: 
    He collaborated with Heinz von Foerster on several interdisciplinary courses in heuristics and cybernetics at the Biological Computer Laboratory (1968-74). Throughout the 1970s, 8Os, and mid 90s, while remaining on the University of Illinois faculty (Professor Emeritus 1987)

    Also ..he did stuff like this.

Thoughts while revamping my resume’:

See..over a year ago..I wrote this little piece, kind of swimming in a sea of confusion about where I wish to be .. not there yet, etc… I take away things like “thought leader”…and realize, if you’re gonna pitch the “thought leader” angle, you gotta kind do the “thought leader” thing..   So, while re-vamping my resume, I had a couple of new thoughts…

  1. Why is it actually so damned hard, even though I have worked my ass off for four years building something that wasn’t there before … (what a colleague calls “your career at <company> has been spent entirely in Green Field Cloud development”) ?
  2. I thought about a project, there is a sourceforge project, it has no real form or value…  “Living Resume” that I had created an abstract embryo of a concept for back about (maybe) 10 years ago…  See..if i were elevator pitching it as a startup concept, I think it might be dead in the water .. (There’s LinkedIn and Monster, Careerbuilder, etc… another employment site?!??!) … but … the idea was that if you coalesced the various disparate pieces of your employment history… samples (code, art, etc..for example) …. references, etc….)   and then were able to #tag them in some way….including #printedresume …. Allowing the user to use keywords that meant something to them to soft search your living history …and see if you might be  match…     LinkedIn still controls the **format** of your profile…what sections are there, what aren’t…etc… and it is too constrictive for the “livingresume” concept I’d considered back then..oh but if I had the time and energy…I might hack at that for a bit …

Thoughts while watching a Cusack film:

So..I was watching the John Cusack film “Better Off Dead”…  I remember it from when it appeared on HBO during my youth… Interesting point from this… I wonder if it anyone thought back then that all of the photos in the opening scene were:

  1. *creepy* and/or
  2. a real significant investment of time/money during the pre-digital-camera days (kids–these days existed.  You had to drop your film in an envelope, and some dude developed them OLD SCHOOL, and you picked up prints, and the negatives….)

And, then…

I would apologize in advance for the disjointed nature of this post, is pretty much done now.   These ideas have not finished simmering, and I welcome feedback…


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