While I do write about work-related things here -- because I love my job -- everything here is my personal opinion and does not represent the views of my employer. For that, see the FSF blogs.
In last week's NYT Sunday Review section (which I normally read only semi-closely), I caught this telling correction:
The Public Editor's column last Sunday misstated the nature of the killing of Trayvon Martin. It should have been referred to as a shooting, not a crime.
I also happened on this article by Laird Hunt, whom I "studied" with at Naropa University (attended lectures and readings by him). The paper version of this was much different (shorter) than the online version; it's an interesting story. Mainly I love the idea of anyone who taught at Naropa appearing in the pages of the New York Times. Anselm would be proud. I still have Indiana, Indiana sitting on my shelf waiting to be read.
johnsu01@myles:~$ mpc playlist|grep -i outro|wc -l
In light of the recent leaks about the NSA's illegal spying, I've decided to go back to using
M-x spook output in my email signatures.
cypherpunk anthrax John Kerry rail gun security plutonium Guantanamo wire transfer JPL number key military MD5 SRI FIPS140 Uzbekistan
...that Estelle Getty was actually one year younger than Bea Arthur.
The inventor of the lawnmower was named Edwin Beard Budding.
I like aptronyms; this seems like an anti-aptronym.
The Budding Wikipedia article also seems to have been vandalized -- I don't think the first section is supposed to be called "Johnny Depp" although maybe Edward Scissorhands is relevant here, speaking of aptronyms.
I thought it was a great show, although very mellow and obviously heavy on the Beatles. Ten Tune was the best number — spooky, hypnotic, featuring Grenadier's bow work, Ballard's blood-rushing-with-pounding-temple drumming, and emphasis on piano-bass unison phrases. Jazz Alley is one of my favorite spots; I've seen Mehldau play several times at other places, but this was the closest I've sat — close enough to see the reflection of his hands in the polish of the piano, and able to watch over his shoulder most of the time.
It's amazing how unfamous relatively famous jazz musicians are. Grenadier was just out walking in the parking lot before the show started and I don't think anyone else in the line recognized him. During the show, Mehldau told a story about how they'd had an extra day in Seattle because he'd forgotten his passport and so the group couldn't get into Canada to play their scheduled Vancouver gig. Remembering your own passport, that's like something I have to do. Don't they have people for that?
The drinks were terrible. I had a Seattle Sazerac, made with Fremont Mischief Rye and a whole bottle of Peychaud's, but apparently without the necessary sugar/simple. I learned later while tasting at the Fremont Mischief Distillery that I do like the rye, so that wasn't the issue. The distillery did have its own issue — just visiting the tasting room left an unbelievable stink on our clothes. My apologies to the saleswoman for thinking (to myself) that she had an odor problem; when we left the store, the smell stuck to us like B.B.O.
The second drink was a martini made with Bluewater's Halcyon Gin, which seemed to taste like herb butter. But I couldn't really tell, because the whole thing tasted like a glass of vermouth, which it was. I'll have to try the gin by itself sometime. (Does Bluewater know that the first hit for their name is for a septic services company?)
These were just two bad drinks, maybe an off night. Drinks at Jazz Alley have always been fine for me in the past, though they have also always been Manhattans made with Maker's. Anyway, go for the music. I wish the Regattabar would be more like Jazz Alley.
I wonder if this bold email promotion I received was sent only to people in the green states?
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Also, the recent events in Watertown did nothing to shorten the early evening line at the Deluxe Town Diner, as far as I could tell.
The first three are the ones I miss the most.
I'll be traveling to Amsterdam next week for a free software conference. Does anyone have recommendations for restaurants that are vegan-friendly? Natural food stores? I'll be staying very near the Central Station.
Random things I learned this week:
(Actually, it's things I learned from the week of October 18th, 2010. I've been going through my drafts folder, and found that I hadn't published this yet.)
Because Franzen believes you can't write serious fiction on a computer that's connected to the Internet, he not only removed the Dell's wireless card but also permanently blocked its Ethernet port. "What you have to do," he explains, "is you plug in an Ethernet cable with superglue, and then you saw off the little head of it."
Also interesting; Time inserted this text automatically when I copied and pasted the quote from the article: "Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/articl
I will be speaking at the Southern California Linux Expo (and yes, given the topics covered, it's missing a GNU). My talk, "Four Freedoms for Freedom," is on Sunday, February 24, 2013 from 16:30 to 17:30.
The most obvious people affected by all four of the freedoms that define free software are the programmers. They are the ones who will likely want to -- and are able to -- modify software running on their computers. But free software is a movement to advance and defend freedom for anyone and everyone using any computing device, not just programmers. In many countries now, given the ubiquity of tablets, phones, laptops and desktops, "anyone and everyone using any computing device" means nearly all citizens. But new technological innovations in these areas keep coming with new restrictions, frustrating and controlling users even while creating a perception of empowerment. The Free Software Foundation wants to gain the support and protect the interests of everyone, not just programmers. How do we reach people who have no intention of ever modifying a program, and how do we help them?
Other presentations on my list to check out (in chronological order, some conflicting):
If you will be there and want to meet up, drop me a line.
I'll be at FOSDEM again this year, arriving in Brussels on Thursday 31st and leaving on Tuesday 5th.
I'll be speaking on Sunday in the legal issues devroom at 10:00.
If you will be there and want to meet up, let me know.
I may be trying to watch the Super Bowl from there, a plan that didn't quite work out last year but seems more likely this year.
FSF licensing policy challenges in 2013
This talk will cover the main challenges facing the Free Software Foundation's Licensing and Compliance lab in 2013, and will invite discussion of the FSF's work and policies in this area. We'll explore:
I've heard a lot of variations of this advice, about how important it is to view mistakes as a positive thing during any creative process. This version is attributed to John Lasseter, a founder of Pixar: "Be wrong as fast as you can."
(Read in 'Be Wrong as Fast as You Can' in the New York Times Magazine, January 6, 2013.
George Saunders on the time spent in an MFA program:
"The chances of a person breaking through their own habits and sloth and limited mind to actually write something that gets out there and matters to people are slim." But it's a mistake, he added, to think of writing programs in terms that are "too narrowly careerist....Even for those thousands of young people who don't get something out there, the process is still a noble one -- the process of trying to say something, of working through craft issues and the worldview issues and the ego issues -- all of this is character building, and, God forbid, everything we do should have concrete career results. I've seen time and time again the way that the process of trying to say something dignifies and improves a person."
I didn't realize until reading his obituary that the same man, Michael Cronan, gave both TiVo and Kindle their names.