[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Saturday, 2022-05-14

Claude Shannon

Filed under: Philosophy,Programming,Work — bblackmoor @ 23:53

“Shannon’s account of genius was a refreshingly unsentimental one. A genius is simply someone who is usefully irritated.”

One of the fathers of modern computing used this 6-step process to solve any problem

Friday, 2022-05-13

Story hook: the Post Office Saves The World

Filed under: History,Prose,Technology,The Internet,Writing — bblackmoor @ 10:06

Imagine a world where Amazon and Google and Microsoft and Apple had the combined wealth and power of Mailboxes, Etc. …

Proposal: some services must never be operated for profit. As in, if you want the license to operate, you operate as not-for-profit, with all of the oversight and regulation that entails. What kind of services?

  • Hospitals
  • Military
  • Police
  • Post Offices
  • Prisons
  • Roads
  • Schools
  • Trains

Story hook: a team of people from 2080 go back to the 1960s to attempt to prevent the end of Human civilization. How? By lobbying legislators to put civilian use of ARPANET under exclusive control of the US Post Office before Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf develop TCP/IP.

Update: In case this was unclear: if you put “Contracting Company” after any of these services, it should make NO DIFFERENCE. NONE. If you want the license to operate, you operate as not-for-profit, with all of the oversight and regulation that entails. We are at least a generation past the point where the “contractor” loophole should have been legislatively closed. Human beings are not “resources” to be squeezed dry and discarded.

Thursday, 2022-05-12

Scaled Agile Framework – SAFe

Filed under: Programming,Software,Work — bblackmoor @ 11:02

Taking my Scaled Agile Framework – SAFe certifications off of my resume. If I am never forced to drink that snake oil again, it will be too soon.

Thursday, 2022-04-07

Consider your priorities

Filed under: Philosophy — bblackmoor @ 10:44

Every second of your life is the most precious, irreplaceable resource you have. Spend it with people you love.

Wednesday, 2021-12-08

I have absolutely no idea what we’re doing here

Filed under: Humour,Movies,Philosophy — bblackmoor @ 08:51

“I have absolutely no idea what we’re doing here, or what I’m doing here, or what this place is about. But I am determined to enjoy myself.”

Friday, 2021-12-03

Clean your pet fountain

Filed under: Home — bblackmoor @ 11:26

If you have a cat fountain, please keep it clean. You must disassemble and clean the fountain, including the pump, every time you refill it with water. Every. Time. That means taking the little magnet impeller out and cleaning that (including the hollow center of it — use a pipe cleaner or a very thin brush), and the hole where the impeller goes in the pump. Clean EVERYTHING, EVERY TIME. If you don’t, slime and junk will build up, which is bad for the cat, but will also prevent the pump impeller from spinning. I really can’t stress this enough: disassemble and clean EVERYTHING, EVERY TIME you refill it.

I also fill the fountain with a diluted bleach solution and let that soak, every month or two, just to thoroughly disinfect the thing (and then rinse it a dozen times before setting back out for the cats). Some people use vinegar; I prefer to use bleach for that.

Wednesday, 2021-11-03

The Second Coming

Filed under: Philosophy,Poetry,Politics — bblackmoor @ 08:42

The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

The Second Coming“, W. B. Yeats, 1919

Fun fact! Yeats went on to embrace fascism and authoritarianism — the “passionate intensity” of “the worst“. “The Second Coming” is the most compelling proof I know of that an artist is not their art — and if we insist on conflating the two, or on depriving ourselves of great art by less-than-great people, that it is we who suffer for it.

Yeats, after all, is long dead, and quite beyond our reproachment.

What had me thinking about this was, of course, the results of the election yesterday, in which the “the worst” — angry, hateful, and completely detached from realitywon virtually every election.

I am glad that I don’t have children. The United States is a dumpster fire, and it won’t get better in my lifetime.

If it ever does.

Tuesday, 2021-09-07

I like Bic Metal razors

Filed under: Health — bblackmoor @ 16:35

Bic introduced the Bic Metal disposable razor in 1988. I still prefer it to any other disposable razor.

Wednesday, 2021-07-14

Indians, transvestites, and gypsies

Filed under: Philosophy,Society,Writing — bblackmoor @ 14:45

Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going.

— Rita Mae Brown

On the one hand, it’s my opinion that the specific word someone uses means very little compared to what they mean by that word.

On the other hand, yes, vocabulary changes over time. “Decimate” used to mean “kill one person in ten”; nowadays it means “destroy most of”, almost the opposite of its archaic meaning.

But context matters. Intent matters. Chasing the term-of-the-moment is a distraction from what actually helps or hurts people. This semiotic scavenger hunt is one of the ways in which well-meaning people are kept occupied by trivia, while the Republican death cult burns the United States to the ground.

That being said, if someone from Mexico tells me that they consider “Mexican” to be pejorative because someone, somewhere has used that word as an insult, I will make an effort not to use that word around them. (Note: this is a hypothetical example, but it very easily could be a real-life example tomorrow.)

Friday, 2021-05-07

Ungrateful musings

Filed under: Retirement,Travel — bblackmoor @ 10:50

I have been looking at other places in earnest since early 2016, but have fantasized about it since the early 2000s. Places that have come and gone on my list of potential destinations are Mexico, Ecuador, Panama, the US Virgin Islands, and the Czech Republic (which I suppose is called Czechia now). Nowadays my short list is Nova Scotia (Canada), Portugal, and most recently Estonia. We’ve never actually been to Portugal or Estonia — by the time we became aware of those, our near-future travel plans had already been made (we plan trips at least a year ahead), and then travel ceased to be possible due to the pandemic.

Between the pandemic and the fact that we are far too comfortable in our current jobs (neither of which we could keep if we expatriated), I suspect we may have waited too long to leave. Which is … not sad, exactly. We are well off, and the problems of the USA are at arm’s-length for us. So it seems ungrateful to complain. But I wish we could leave. I don’t want to be here.

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