Cleaning out tabs. Ran across one [Link] entitled “Coding is not ‘fun’, it’s technically and ethically complex” and was a bit offput by it. I noticed the author is located in Italy so this may be an Italian/European thing.

The guy is railing against the fun/easy thing being propagandized by a lot of Geek Leaders. Notably Fruit Folk. The article states that

“Unfortunately, this rosy portrait bears no relation to reality. For starters, the profile of a programmer’s mind is pretty uncommon. As well as being highly analytical and creative, software developers need almost superhuman focus to manage the complexity of their tasks. Manic attention to detail is a must; slovenliness is verboten. Attaining this level of concentration requires a state of mind called being ‘in the flow’, a quasi-symbiotic relationship between human and machine that improves performance and motivation.”

which is largely Stercus Tauri. (To use an Italian language.)

Yes, programming is rather strictly grammatical. In fact it is the strictest in a grammar sense but there is still plenty of wiggle room to abuse the grammar. The reason for this is fairly simple. Compilers aren’t very smart. The strictness has to do with the conversion of conversation – code – into executable.

Second, the mind set isn’t that uncommon. When I was an undergrad, almost all STEMs learned how to code. (The notable exceptions were biologists and boundary people like anthropologists and psychologists.) So unless the author thinks STEM skills ate rare, coding mindset isn’t uncommon. Disciplined, maybe, but not uncommon.

Is it fun? It is for me. Yes, it is frustrating but when the code runs there is an adrenalin rush that is indistinguishable from fun. It’s also soothing and enveloping. A sort of womb thing.

Ethically challenging? Is this one of those science fiction “Is there a God?” things? If you’re a back-to-nature kill off the human rave to hunter-gatherer levels arealist than maybe, but not otherwise. At least based on the author’s arguments. Which are sparse and vapid.


Freedom and Stupidity

There has been a bit of a row this week about some professional athlete who declined to rise for the national anthem. It seems that he is not a furrin national but is protesting some inequity having to do with the flag?

The furor has been diverse. Some of the media applauds his support of some idea of equity, perhaps even tolerance. Another part of the media is intolerant of his behavior and apparently wants to punish him nastily. The populace is similarly divided with the added factor of being distraught at some or all of the media, quite ignoring that the media is always motivated by money.

This led me to the matter of freedom and thence to democracy. Democracy, of course, like all organizations, including governments, is opposed to freedom. And unlike other forms of government, at least in degree, democracy is self-consuming. The path of democracy is one of preventing the majority from destroying the minority. This obviously has great implications not only for this incident but for the Yankee republic in general as we pursue our death throes as a nation.

I see no reason to restrict freedom except when its practice injures someone else. That’s a nice statement that is almost impossible to implement above the personal conscience level. The problem is what constitutes injury. In this instance, we have to ask how remaining seated during a musical performance harms anyone else. 

Obviously, all those who protest the act consider themselves injured. So we come down to a matter of measurement. Which organizations are amazing incapable of. Almost all organizational measurement is the lowest of hanging fruit. Difficulty is only executed if survival is blatant. IOW, the teeth of the lion are enumerated only as the jaws close.

There is also the question of help and harm. The act was supposedly motivated to help the minority. So how do we measure the relative merits. How many lollipops distributed to poor children justify one execution?

And why is life imprisonment more acceptable than execution?

And I shan’t even touch the nonsense of celebrities. 

Humans deserve their self-created Hells.

Towers dropped from Ball

One Day. Back to gym. CBC’s “Best of Ideas” podcast. Episode about “Single Personality Disorder” and the DSM.

Almost immediate failure of credibility.

The talking head – a psychiatrist? – who built the program and interacted with the host, blew her credibility early on by using Galileo Galilei’s house arrest as an example. Not that it may not be such but she claimed the reason for the house arrest was Galileo espousing a “NEW” idea. 

Emphasis on the NEW part.

And it is generally accepted these days to be absolutely inaccurate. 

The story is also pretty involved. As any emergence of human society has to be. And historians fail knowing they will, perhaps the only discipline other than scientists who know so ab initio.

A reasonable starting point is Bruno. The guy who was excommunicated and then burned to death by the Church of Rome. In those days this was variously seen as right and proper or horribly cruel. In actuality it is how organizations naturally behave if there are no controls on them.

And the Church of Rome had few controls on it in those days. And not many in these.

And Bruno said things the church didn’t want said. And he alienated all the other organizations that could protect him – governments and religionist organizations alike.

So he got cooked for disobeying.

Similarly for Galileo. Except that by this time the church had gotten a bit more careful. Mainly because the other organizations had gotten a bit more powerful.

So they charged him with saying things he wasn’t authorized to say. 

Not that what he said was wrong, mind you, but that he didn’t have permission to say them. 

And they locked him up for that.

And we still have this today. Edward Snowden, e.g.

But his incarceration – Galileo’s – wasn’t for what he said but that he said without permission.

Surprise Motoring

I am repeatedly amazed at how many contemporary motor vehicle operators are unable to execute a right turn at an intersection unless both the lane they are turning into and the one adjacent it are vacant.

Apparently steering is no longer a qualification for an operator’s license.

Stupid is the new Black?

Six Day. Got to motor for the first time since Thursday. Have been dependent on FD SCP to get me to surgery and post-op. First cutting done and have only to endure the regime prescribed. 

Reading difficult. The visual mode has reversed from good short vision and poor long vision to the opposite. So have one eye long, other short. And all sorts of unexplained restrictions that often run counter to almost three-and-a-half score of habit formation.

Amidst all that I note a strange thing. [Link] Apparently bogs are unable to tell the difference between fact and fiction. This shouldn’t be surprising. After all, look at all the crime of the delusion and illusion varieties. I knew that bogs were less than fully sentient and intelligent – at least, often – but not to this degree. But since the Brexit and Trump deification this seems apparent. There is some sort of backlash against those who are sentient and intelligent. As if they are what is ruining rather than enabling the delusional lifestyles of the boggerate.

Gee, reminds me of that Kornbluth story. Except it’s scary. When do the “witch” burnings begin?

I was rather taken by some of the article:

“There has been a lot of discussion recently about “post-truth” politics, alongside concern about swathes of the public turning against experts. A lot of this relates to people talking about economics – or spuriously adopting the trappings of expertise. When people say they hate experts they don’t necessary mean natural scientists who – unless there has been a massive shift in public attitudes recently – remain popular and trusted”

I find it a bit of galgenhumor about the economists. They all talk like nerds but act like barely geeks. Spouting maths that they don;t really understand about models whose limitations they are blind to. Or pretend to be. 

One more step on the path to extinction.

Confederate Calumny

Went to Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill to have one of my eyes ripped open and a new lens installed. Novel experience. Film at Eleven when perspective stabilizes.

In the meantime I note all sorts of nonsense throughout the old Confederacy. For example, [Link] I see that a bunch of our “fine Southron” states are attempting to bar the Yankee government from enforcing its ruling opn who may use which latrine/entropy cellar. The argument is that our fair belles, of which we have none since the end of the War of Yankee Agression, but pretended ever since and hence a matter of the collective delusion of the wanna-be-privileged whack jobs class, the same folks who want to reinstitute slavery and reduce the womenfolk to chattel property status again, might be subjected to the sight of fake women in their facility.

This is the utmost of tripe and balderdash.

First of all, for those among the male populace of the old Confederacy who are ignorant, the ladies’ (another misnomer and piece of denialism – more later) room does not have urinals. All they have are stalls which have working doors – more so than the men’s – because of some strange affliction referred to as bashful bladder. Why women should ever have this is unfathomable, why men have it is obvious. Basic male insecurity over dimensions that are almost entirely meaningless except in terms of roineck bragging rights. Bottom Line: if a fake woman does use the women’s facility, who will know? Except maybe the denialists’ Powder Room Gestapo?

In addition, if the womenfolk are so prudish, why is it that for years they have been barging into the men’s latrine whenever the queue to the women’s gets too long? If they are not offended by this then why should they be offended by any pseudo-woman who invades their’s?

Could this really just have to do with male insecurity? Are the denialists really afraid of letting the womenfolk view their absence (perceived, of course) of length in the blue light of fluorescents?

Second, and horribly humorous. Rolling on the floor laughing humorous, that the faculty of the U of Texas have filed litigation to prevent students from bringing firearms to class.[Link]

What makes this humorous is that if there is a firearm delusional state, it is Texas. I have discussed the matter of firearms on campus previously and it remains. Personally I consider firearms, especially handguns, to be a bit ridiculous since while they do a good job of maiming and damaging, they do a poor job of killing. Their chief value is keeping the mentally immature and incapable of rational thought and of low intelligence from actually making weapons that are effective in killing. And when we admit these handicapped people to college – as we seem bent to do – they gain, at least potentially, access to that information. At least if we let them walk around with obvious ironmongery we can tell to steer them away from the courses with really dangerous information.

And on the use of the term “lady”. There are no ladies in the Yankee republic. Ladies are women of the aristocrat class, of hereditary preferrment and privilege. The primary source of tyranny. Amerika is, ostensibly, fictionally, a republic and hence has NO aristocracy. Using the term is an insult and a degredation to any woman, who should be armed so she can maim the boor for the insult.