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Archive: February 27, 2009

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ecosystem (New Yorker - 03/02/09)

Friday,  02/27/09  04:18 PM


The New Yorker does it again, a great cover by Ivan Brunetti
(click to enlarge)


Friday,  02/27/09  04:30 PM

I'm sort of over my funk, thanks for asking.  Sort of.  Today was a better day, didn't have to fight an unplanned IT fire, and was able to bear down and get some stuff done ahead of deadline (that always feels good).  And had two different calls with customers planning large multisite systems, really interesting (and that always feels good).

Oh, and we're about to leave for dinner with our friends from Ottawa at the Venice pier, and that should be fun; looking forward to it...  and I have to hurry...

So, an update on my weird disaster (wherein my Kestrel road bike was nearly destroyed by a coat hanger)...  RoadRunner Velo have completed the repair (!) and claim it all went swimmingly, and have mailed it back to Westlake Cyclery, where it is being reassembled.  I should have it in rideable condition tomorrow!  Now that's a reason to feel happy, right?  I will be very interested to see 1) how well the repair turned out, and 2) whether I still like my old Kestrel, after having ridden various other brand new cool spiffy bikes in the meantime.

It has now been six weeks since the disaster, wow.  What will I blog about now?

Canon N1240U scannerIn the past few days I've posted a few cartoons and magazine covers and such, and it reminds me I've been meaning to sing the praises of my five-year old little Canon N1240U scanner, which "just works".  And when I say that, I mean it works and works and works; I probably scan five things every day.  My colleagues and friends know I legendarily "hate paper", and have everything in electronic form, and this little scanner is the reason.  It has a Photoshop plugin so I just scan right into Photoshop, edit a little, and poof I'm there. It's fast, the quality is excellent, and it just works.

Ever since I began linking my blog posts into Facebook I've been spending more time there, and although it isn't the time-sink for me that it [apparently] is for others, I do enjoy it.  In a few cases I've reconnected with old friends, and that's cool, and in others have become closer to friends I was connected with, and that's cool.  Some friends post a lot of pictures, especially old ones, and that's really cool.  But one badness is that everyone seems to have more friends than I do!  Maybe I have a lot of friends which aren't on Facebook (well that's definitely true) and maybe I don't connect with everyone I've ever known (that's also definitely true).  But still, I do feel a little sad, like I'm missing out somehow :)

This was exacerbated recently when a friend who shall remain nameless noted he'd exceeded the Dunbar number; that is, he now has over 150 friends.  And with just 45 I'm sitting here thinking wow, I have a lot of slots left!

QTVR: compact muon solenoid at CERNA beautiful QTVR panorama of the Compact Muon Solenoid at CERN.  Big Science might be expensive and arcane, but it sure is impressive.  (If this is the "compact" solenoid, I wonder what the full-size on looks like :)  [ via Boing Boing ]

Jeff Atwood discusses paying down your technical debt.  The general idea is that as you build software, you accumulate inefficiencies due to design trade-offs and have to go back and fix them later.  It is an interesting concept; for me the idea is to have a sufficiently good design that you never accumulate too much debt.  Going back to rewrite stuff due to architecture is usually a bad sign (doing it because of changing customer needs is different, or put another way, better understanding of customer needs).  I find most of the time people have to go back and fix stuff is because of performance, and a lot of the time that's because they used the wrong tools in an effort to deliver functionality faster.

ZooBorn: baby tamarinZooBorns of the day: A barrel of Tamarins.  They look like trouble :)


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About Me

Greatest Hits
Correlation vs. Causality
The Tyranny of Email
Unnatural Selection
On Blame
Try, or Try Not
Books and Wine
Emergent Properties
God and Beauty
Moving Mount Fuji
The Nest
Rock 'n Roll
IQ and Populations
Are You a Bright?
Adding Value
The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
Toy Story
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
solving bongard problems
visiting Titan
unintelligent design
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
second gear
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
universal healthcare
triple double
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Holiday Inn
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
vote smart
exact nonsense
introducing eyesFinder
to space
where are the desktop apps?
still the first bird
electoral fail
progress ratches
2020 explained