Latest entry

A Commentary on a Video May 14, 2018
Childish Gambino’s “This Is America” is both heart-wrenching and necessary viewing.

This article can speak for itself (it is short, you should just go read it), as can the video it details. My take-away: heart-wrenching and yet I can’t stop watching it. To be frank, white people shouldn’t stop watching it.

The truth is that this video, and what it suggests about its artist, is very difficult. A lot of black people hate it. Glover forces us to relive public traumas and barely gives us a second to breathe before he forces us to dance.”

-Doreen St. Félix, The Carnage and Chaos of Childish Gambino’s This Is America”, The New Yorker

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An Article On Smartphone Addiction May 9, 2018
We all have our thing that can be too much of a distraction from the things that really matter, which we should probably all define as other human beings.

I read this article today over on Quartz: At first life without a smartphone was terrifying. Then it was beautiful. I have kept my reading habits in a running list here if you are interested. I really just want a way to keep a log of the things I am reading, but this one caught my attention and I wanted to comment.

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Relief April 13, 2018
Post length (among other things) used to be a thing that held me back from publishing; I’m trying to break that habit.

I wasn’t happy with yesterday’s post, but I published anyway. I’m trying to be better about hitting the button because historically I have not done a good job of doing so. In fact, rather often, in the pursuit of the perfect post, I would edit myself right out of posting anything at all.

When I was writing that post about social media, my first thought was not about frequency of posts; I didn’t really think about whether that post would kickstart my writing habit again, but when I pressed the button that day, I felt relief. That sense of relief (at saying goodbye to big social”) and accomplishment (as if publishing caused the last piece of a puzzle to fall into place) was enough to remind me how important (cathartic, perhaps) sharing ones thoughts can be.

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Because April 12, 2018
If I don’t learn anything from an experience, I often think of it as a waste of my time.

I’m not a programmer”; it is a common refrain when I try to explain what I do in my technology-based day job. I find it harder and harder to justify the sentiment as over time however due to how much time I spend looking at, changing, and creating code while at work.

Yesterday, I was tinkering with my Github Pages site, which for all intents and purposes works the way I intended it to. But I was bored, so I blew it up, started from scratch. After an hour of playing with new themes and changes I was interested in, I reverted back to the working version with the commit message because”. In my mind, I was thinking because this is easier, because this is working, because this is comfortable”, but in the long run I learn nothing from because”.

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Let’s Build Something April 11, 2018
I should preface this with the fact that I enjoy puzzles, both the cardboard cutout kind and the solve a problem kind.

Most people build things out of a desire to fix a problem they see in the world. I’ll give you a for instance: I manually add books I’m reading and have read within a given year to this page. I don’t read enough books each year for this to be an issue, but recently I realized that the page was an incomplete representation of my reading habits. I read articles all the time and given my move away from social media, there is no easy way to share what I’ve recently read. So, I created this page, which auto-populates recently read articles (with the help of IFTTT and Instapaper), along with the date and time I finished reading them. This isn’t a perfect solution, but it gets the job done. My point is that I worked to build that solution because of a missing feature” of normal life. Others could technically copy or learn from my example in solutions they conceive.

However, I often hamstring myself into thinking solutions are all about being groundbreaking or revolutionary. On the contrary, solutions just need to solve a problem; and those problems don’t even need to be universal.1 I have spent a lot of time creating scripts and automations on iOS that I never use. Some of them were good experience, some of them even solved a problem that is no longer a problem in the constant forward progress of technology. In any case, I shouldn’t stop myself from attempting to create a solution just because it only benefits me or a small subset of other people.

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That post about social media April 10, 2018
Yep, *that* post about social media.

I haven’t been writing here, but the truth is I haven’t been writing anywhere. After the public launch of micro.blog, I had basically moved to that service for all my online social needs, but in the end I didn’t need a better social network, I needed no social network. I enjoyed the just-like-early-Twitter” banter that took place on micro.blog, but I didn’t need it and the more we study social media, the more it becomes apparent that we shouldn’t need it nor should we force ourselves to be a part of a conversation about which we care little.

That’s unfair. I cared about the conversations, but like any addictive substance, I learned the best way for me to kick the habit was to get rid of my access to it altogether.

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Microblog Context: Where Does The Money Come From February 21, 2018
  • Where does the money come from to buy firearms for these teachers?
  • Where does the money come from to buy ammunition for these teachers?
  • Where does the money come from to train these teachers?
  • Given most taxpayers won’t give money to cover basic school supplies, what makes you think they’ll be willing to give money for firearms?
  • As the husband of a teacher, I can assure you that teaching is one of the most stressful, thankless, and unfairly compensated jobs in the world. How do we prevent a teacher from losing their cool one day and using their firearm, unprovoked?

-Casey Liss, A Series of Questions… Liss is More

Microblog Context: Sleep is Awesome February 15, 2018

I started waking up earlier because I wanted to spend time in the evenings with my wife, had a job during the rest of the day, and a 45 minute (each way) commute — rising early was the only way to seamlessly add time to my day. And it’s true what people say — it’s eerily quiet in the early morning. Perhaps, though I am guessing, because most of the population realizes that sleep is kind of awesome.

-Benjamin Brooks, Rising Early, The Brooks Review

Microblog Context: Orwellian February 13, 2018

Consider the following excerpts when approaching 1984 and its recent resurgence:

The enemy of the moment always represented absolute evil, and it followed that any past or future agreement with him was impossible.

Who controls the past,” ran the Party slogan, controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.”

If he were allowed contact with foreigners he would discover that they are creatures similar to himself and that most of what he has been told about them is lies. The sealed world in which he lives would be broken, and the fear, hatred, and self-righteousness on which his morale depends might evaporate.

All rulers in all ages have tried to impose a false view of the world upon their followers, but they could not afford to encourage any illusion that tended to impair military efficiency.

The aims of these three groups are entirely irreconcilable. The aim of the High is to remain where they are. The aim of the Middle is to change places with the High. The aim of the Low, when they have an aim—for it is an abiding characteristic of the Low that they are too much crushed by drudgery to be more than intermittently conscious of anything outside their daily lives—is to abolish all distinctions and create a society in which all men shall be equal.

My review is on my 2018 reading page here, as follows:

Shortly after the 45th President was elected, 1984 became a hot commodity, required reading for all concerned citizens. While I agree that there are Orwellian tactics within 45’s repertoire, I am unsure (and will pray daily) that we will ever find ourselves in the distopia that Orwell so deftly crafts. Consider the following phrase when venturing into this book: as depressing as real life.


Pinned entries

The Math of Media Consumption January 5, 2018
Yesterday, I wrote that I only have about three hours a day to consume media; today, I attempt to explain the logic behind that estimate.

More Like Social Media and Us January 4, 2018
Benjamin Brooks and I almost always agree, I shouldn’t be surprised that he is going through the same motions with regard to social media.


Latest Microblog Post

My weekly catharsis for minimalism is putting out the recycling. March 17, 2018

I love when random comments turn into awesome ideas; even better when I can actually do something with those ideas! February 26, 2018

My daughter now uses the phrase, "You, too!" as a catch-all for all the things we say each time we part; it may be our thing. February 23, 2018

I'm sure "barbarism" is a word that is often a victim of barbarism. February 22, 2018

Also, I know what most project managers make in industry and they would crap themselves trying to take on a classroom full of students, regardless of age group. February 21, 2018

This post from Casey Liss has been making the rounds. My subtle addition to his questions: where does the money come from to pay to arm teachers when we don't pay teachers what they are worth as it is? February 21, 2018 See context...

Anyone who thinks my family is too loud has never tried to have a conversation with a kitchen vent fan on and children screaming in the background. February 20, 2018

Every so often you find an application that remakes your expectations for a platform; in my case, Atom.io made my Mac incredibly more useful. February 20, 2018

The gift that keeps on giving: when your kid dumps most of a bowl of cereal. February 19, 2018

It's been a long road to have the technology available to enable us to play solitaire in black and white in a web browser on the most powerful mobile phone ever made. February 19, 2018

Every orator must know their audience, as each listener will assign a different meaning to the oration. February 18, 2018

Replacing a furnace is likely something that no one truly prepares for. February 16, 2018

The boy will be showing is heritage pride! February 16, 2018

To be clear, what I am doing is probably silly—setting up a micro.blog compatible Github Pages site that is separate from my main site, all so that I can post from here. Nevertheless, it has been… educational. February 15, 2018

There isn't any single quote that encapsulated how great this post from Ben Brooks is, so go read the whole post about sleep. February 15, 2018 See context...

Every now and then I finish a book, which reminds me I'm in the middle of three others, and I decide to start a new one. February 14, 2018

I have to commend Brent Simmons because: wow, Evergreen is a great app! February 14, 2018

I finished reading 1984 yesterday. I assume everyone had to read something similar (I read Brave New World in high school), but this has been on my list for obvious reasons. February 13, 2018 See context...

Today's collection from NextDraft is called "Trust Nobody", but no matter what I still really want to trust Dave Pell. February 12, 2018

For me, screen size does have a corollary relationship to the work my brain thinks I can accomplish, e.g. programming on the iPhone, while technically possible, requires a drastic shift in expectations. February 11, 2018

Parenthood feels like a long string of difficult decisions where the outcome is basically never fully understood. February 10, 2018

Spent some time today working through a problem I thought I had already solved, so a Friday. February 9, 2018

Reading through old articles about Steve Jobs shortly after his passing is nostalgia at its finest, the epitome of someone who left us too soon. February 8, 2018

Catharsis takes many forms; this time it has to do with clearing my Instapaper queue, IFTTT applets, and iOS automation workflows. February 7, 2018

Pleasantly surprised by Altered Carbon on Netflix. About halfway through the season, I'm hooked. February 7, 2018

More on the Microblog


Random entry

Full list in the Archive


Recent entries

Relief April 13, 2018
Post length (among other things) used to be a thing that held me back from publishing; I’m trying to break that habit.

Because April 12, 2018
If I don’t learn anything from an experience, I often think of it as a waste of my time.

Let’s Build Something April 11, 2018
I should preface this with the fact that I enjoy puzzles, both the cardboard cutout kind and the solve a problem kind.

That post about social media April 10, 2018
Yep, *that* post about social media.

Microblog : Minimalistic Catharsis For Parents March 17, 2018
My weekly catharsis for minimalism is putting out the recycling.

Microblog : The Comment to Idea to Execution Workflow February 26, 2018
I love when random comments turn into awesome ideas; even better when I can actually do something with those ideas!

Microblog : You, too! February 23, 2018
My daughter now uses the phrase, "You, too!" as a catch-all for all the things we say each time we part; it may be our thing.

Microblog : Barbarism February 22, 2018
I'm sure "barbarism" is a word that is often a victim of barbarism.

Microblog : And Another Thing… (About Teachers) February 21, 2018
Also, I know what most project managers make in industry and they would crap themselves trying to take on a classroom full of students, regardless of age group.

Microblog (with Context) : Where Does The Money Come From February 21, 2018
This post from Casey Liss has been making the rounds. My subtle addition to his questions: where does the money come from to pay to arm teachers when we don't pay teachers what they are worth as it is?

Microblog : Louder Than The Kitchen Fan February 20, 2018
Anyone who thinks my family is too loud has never tried to have a conversation with a kitchen vent fan on and children screaming in the background.

Microblog : Rethinking Platform Use Cases February 20, 2018
Every so often you find an application that remakes your expectations for a platform; in my case, Atom.io made my Mac incredibly more useful.

Microblog : It’s Everywhere! February 19, 2018
The gift that keeps on giving: when your kid dumps most of a bowl of cereal.

Microblog : A Long Circular Road February 19, 2018
It's been a long road to have the technology available to enable us to play solitaire in black and white in a web browser on the most powerful mobile phone ever made.

Microblog : Catholic Priests in Practice February 18, 2018
Every orator must know their audience, as each listener will assign a different meaning to the oration.

Microblog : Surprise! New Furnace February 16, 2018
Replacing a furnace is likely something that no one truly prepares for.

Microblog : Heritage Pride February 16, 2018
The boy will be showing is heritage pride!

Microblog : Educational February 15, 2018
To be clear, what I am doing is probably silly—setting up a micro.blog compatible Github Pages site that is separate from my main site, all so that I can post from here. Nevertheless, it has been… educational.

Microblog (with Context) : Sleep is Awesome February 15, 2018
There isn't any single quote that encapsulated how great this post from Ben Brooks is, so go read the whole post about sleep.

Microblog : The Reading List February 14, 2018
Every now and then I finish a book, which reminds me I'm in the middle of three others, and I decide to start a new one.

Microblog : Evergreen by Ranchero Software February 14, 2018
I have to commend Brent Simmons because: wow, Evergreen is a great app!

Microblog (with Context) : Orwellian February 13, 2018
I finished reading 1984 yesterday. I assume everyone had to read something similar (I read Brave New World in high school), but this has been on my list for obvious reasons.

Microblog : Trust Dave Pell February 12, 2018
Today's collection from NextDraft is called "Trust Nobody", but no matter what I still really want to trust Dave Pell.

Microblog : (Screen) Size Does Matter February 11, 2018
For me, screen size does have a corollary relationship to the work my brain thinks I can accomplish, e.g. programming on the iPhone, while technically possible, requires a drastic shift in expectations.

Microblog : Like Ear Piercings February 10, 2018
Parenthood feels like a long string of difficult decisions where the outcome is basically never fully understood.

Microblog : Case of the Fridays February 9, 2018
Spent some time today working through a problem I thought I had already solved, so a Friday.

Microblog : Too Soon February 8, 2018
Reading through old articles about Steve Jobs shortly after his passing is nostalgia at its finest, the epitome of someone who left us too soon.

Microblog : The Purge February 7, 2018
Catharsis takes many forms; this time it has to do with clearing my Instapaper queue, IFTTT applets, and iOS automation workflows.

Microblog : Altered Carbon February 7, 2018
Pleasantly surprised by Altered Carbon on Netflix. About halfway through the season, I'm hooked.