Friday, October 13, 2017

California Burning


Santa Rosa is ninety minutes south of here by commercial airplane.  I've made that trip a few times.  The airport is named for Charles Shultz, author of the comic Peanuts.

Oregonians got a taste of wildfires this summer.  Californians are suffering far more devastating damage.

I'm patched in through Internet, watching reports, getting news through Facebook. 

I learned this morning that one of my friends lost his house, made it out alive.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Bladerunner 2049 (movie review)

Welcome home to a dystopia we know well.  Los Angeles is more a melting pot than ever, and there's an LAPD. However there's no real sign of national governments, only Sony, CocaCola, Peugeot and restricted air spaces. We're in the mind of Philip K. Dick, or some facsimile thereof.

Sony has been researching hologram technology for some time now, in addition to acquiring digital rights. Here we get Elvis as a ghost in a dead casino, and Sinatra under glass.  The protagonist's girlfriend is a hologram.  But then he's not all there either, a synthetic human.

When we're able to simulate reality and use it to manipulate emotions, we tend to get lost in our own creations. Hollywood knows a lot about that.  Are we real, or are we Memorex?

There's a problem with science fiction though, which is we're so used to screen magic that we're not able to tell if these holograms are any closer in everyday experience as commercial products.

Some viewers may suspect Sony is sitting on some ability to generate building sized hologram ballerinas.  Most won't.  We've given up waiting for holograms at Best Buy much as we've given up on jet packs, as a part of that ever retreating mirage called the future.  Flying cars, yeah right.

The replicants aren't sure what's a real memory and what got placed there by clever advertising. Did I really have that birthday, or did they just stick it in my brain TV?

The protagonist, bred to think clearly, to do detective work, as a better grasp on the unreality of it all than most.

Saturday, October 07, 2017

Wittgenstein Synopsis


Wittgenstein wrote in his introduction to Philosophical Investigations that it'd take a culture that "breathed a different air" to find his philosophy understandable.

Perhaps we're now in that culture, as understanding now spreads.

Brought to you by Operation DuckRabbit.

Monday, October 02, 2017

Busy Week

I'm super booked this week, having committed months ago to an east coast timed Python training. I just completed Session 2 of a west coast timed training about an hour ago.  I get to snooze a few hours, then dive in again, using a somewhat alien control panel.

Then it's off to Sellwood to launch a new Learning to Code program, the groundwork having been laid by parents, guardians, coworkers, school staff.  Then there's MIT Scratch and Codesters, the star e-toyz of our show.

Carol, in the meantime, is enmeshed with Friends on the UN Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty, which is up for signing. Thanks to many media still taking most cues from DC, a lot of our people don't even know the history.  They learn to switch media if wanting to follow developments.

Quakers and the USG have been on opposite sides of "abolition" before now, with some politicians able to think ahead.  Lots of medical science reminds us that nuclear war, even just preparing for one, is toxic and unhealthy.  We lose IQ.

Carol, a member of WILPF, is working closely with PSR as well.  This alphabet soup may not mean anything at the outset, but a quick search will get you in the loop, if that's where you want to be.  Some loops are intriguing, like Hyperloop One, whereas others are more noose-like, as useful as a dead albatross.

Also I'm on the warpath for C6XTY, an abbreviated way of saying my ethnic group has some strong biases in terms of what curriculum upgrades we need.  Getting those upgrades implemented may appear to be happening despite "over my dead body" style resistance, hence the warpath metaphor, suitable for "inward weapons" oriented Friends.