Sep 30

Badges of failure

This might not be the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of, but it’ll sure do till I remember what that stupidest thing actually was.

Being proud of breaking a chair is pure farcical lunacy.

What’s next, being proud of your having your foot depoditated (I just made that word up) when you are 50 due to diabetes?

Don’t laugh. It’s almost guaranteed to happen. When a movement goes fucking barking at the moon Olanzapine-snarfing crazy, it usually goes all the way.

Sep 30

It all repeats. Unfortunately.

Twitter Plans to Go Beyond Its 140-Character Limit.

Congratulations, you’ve re-invented blogging.

Which itself is just a re-invention of the BBS. Which I was using in 1986.

Since tech is mostly run and built by the (clueless) young, much is forgotten. Instead of building on what came before, all is torn down, all lessons forgotten, and ever-more-rickety structures put in place that function more poorly but are “completely new!”


Sep 30

Mate prefs

It’s hardly worth writing about because it won’t amount to anything without a huge genetic-level change in human nature, but it’s hard to believe how many FA types and parts of the feminist (?) movement are telling people it’s wrong to have sexual and mate preferences.

Yeah, that’s never, ever, ever ever gonna work. Ever.

Sep 29


I’m always surprised about how unperturbed some people are when their data is spewed all over creation — like what is happening with Windows 10. Do they not understand the risks? The danger? Or are they just plain morons? (I vote the latter.)

I thought this comment said it best about it all, from here.

I think this speaks to the heart of the issue– The desktop environment is the oldest and most capable computing environment there has ever been for the user. It can do more and therefore is more important than all other OS environments. It has existed without the need for modern telemetric intrusion for decades, and there is really no reason why it cannot continue to offer users, at the very least, a choice in the matter.

The comparison to phones as a justification for this spying is also ridiculous, as phones are built (and evolved) as communication/notification hubs. Without mass telemetry, phones are literally useless. The desktop can be used for this, but is also capable of producing work and personal content storage that is critically important. When telemetry gathering becomes unavoidable on desktops, there will be no computer environment left available that is private and completely personal.

Lots of folks do not want or need their desktop environment to behave like a phone. There should at least be some option for users that is not crippling or needlessly complicated.

I can’t make sense of why people are willing to give away so much for so little gain, and then go on to tell others that they are wrong and bad when they also do not want to do the same thing.

I do truly think that most people actually find authoritarianism and oppression comforting. When Sartre observed that one is “condemned to freedom,” he knew exactly what he was on about.

Sep 28

Give me refuge

The European refugees are just desperate people trying to survive.

However, that the conservative side pretends — or perhaps actually believes — that they are all evil terrorists is as false as the liberal belief that there are unlimited resources to allow hundreds of thousands of people to suddenly show up.

That works right up until you displace or inconvenience* a liberal to allow a refugee to live. Then they tend to look a bit more conservative. Funny how that works.

Anyway, there is no good solution to the refugee crisis.

What people want to believe because of their tribal affiliation doesn’t change this.

*That many (most?) of the refugees hold drastically different and intensely anti-woman cultural values should concern more people than it does.

Sep 27

Key spray

Keeping your keys between your knuckles as a self-defense tactic for women is worthless.

At the most, you’ll damage your opponent slightly and make him angry. More likely that you’ll break your finger(s) and be too injured yourself to do anything else.

Better is to buy two bottles of pepper spray. Practice what it feels like to use one and how to aim it. Keep the other one with you.

Warning: Not everyone will be stopped by pepper spray. But it’s far, far better than the keys between the fingers thing.

Sep 27


Don’t be happy that John Boehner is stepping down and leaving Congress. I’ve seen many uninformed liberals expressing glee at this.

Who replaces him is going to be far worse. That’s why he’s stepping down. The Tea Party theocrats demanded it, and they got it.

Sep 26

The 15 biggest myths

The 15 biggest myths of our time:

1) That everything can be priced, and has a monetary value, and that it should have a monetary value.

2) That evolution did not occur to humans, and that if it did (for liberals) it definitely did not occur above the neck and is definitely, definitely not still occurring.

3) That there are absolutely no genetic differences in any way between human races except for skin color.

4) That destroying the humanities will lead to a resurgence of the economy and relatedly that STEM has all the answers to life.

5) That space exploration is completely useless and harms the economy or takes away money and resources from elsewhere (zero sum fallacy).

6) That humans do not have certain fairly hard-coded behaviors, many related to partner selection and mate preferences.

7) That equality of opportunity is possible, or even desirable.

8) Related to number 1, that everything can be measured and that if it cannot be measured, it doesn’t exist, and even if does exist, if it can’t be measured then it doesn’t matter.

9) That IQ measures absolutely nothing and is not real because a single locus (genetic or physical) cannot be located.

10) That IQ is the only thing that determines someone’s value, intelligent, adaptability or suitability for a good life.

11) That there is no human nature; that humans are not bounded animals, just like any other animal. This is related to point 6.

12) That Big Data is going to answer every important question, and that there is a mathematical solution to every problem.

13) That everything important has already been discovered or invented, or alternatively, that there will be a singularity, and soon.

14) That humans are unconnected from nature, and that if we essentially destroy the existing ecology of the earth and make the entire world look like the UK, that this will not have absolutely deadly and drastic consequences for everyone. (This belief is extremely common in liberals — particularly among humanities types, and on the other side of the political and C.P. Snowian cultural divide, among engineers.)

15) That anti-depressants, psychotherapy, massage therapy and most other such things demonstrate results from anything but the care effect. (Note: they do demonstrate results. The important question is why.)

Notice that I skewer both sides; both have their myths that they live by to make sense of the world and to signal tribal affiliation. I want no part of any tribe, not even the tribe that would have me as a member.

The more you read, the more you need to read.

Sep 26


It’s taking every ounce of self control I have not to bid on this car.

What a lovely piece of machinery.

So strange to think about how astounded my 1990 self would be at the fact that my 2015 self could seriously contemplate buying something like that — and paying for it in straight-up cash.

I don’t need a Maserati. In a deeper sense, I don’t really want one. But if Anna Kendrick wanted to buy me one as proof of her eternal love, I’d sure as hell take it.

Anna? Your move?