inquiry

whatever comes to mind

> Hey Inquiry. Good to see ya on The Midnight.

Likewise!

> Kind of a precursor to what it will be like when W.a > has comments, haha. Looking forward to them getting that > developed.

I've mostly reconciled to this place being without comments. In a way I prefer it, perhaps keeping the focus more on writing than chit-chatty exchange (not that there's anything wrong with that). There are obviously plenty of other places to do the latter.

> What machine(s) do you use these days, Inquiry? I see most > everyone on here posting their “1337 WFH setup”, or > their desktop enviro, or listicles of their favorite apps, > etc. (I, too, am guilty of talking about home setups) > – but I don't see what gear, machines, apps you are > using. Fill us in, what software/hardware do ya use for > the WWW?

For this activity I'm exclusively on an Acer Chromebook, so of course Chrome is the browser. But it has very usable “Terminal” application that opens up underlying Linux, which is where I spend most of my time on the machine. In fact, I do almost all the reading of read.write.as in the text-mode “elinks” browser within said Terminal app – unless I feel I'm missing out on an important image (e.g. from one of the cartoonists here), in which case I'll copy the URL to a Chrome tab.

As for composing, I do all of that in the Terminal app except for the final posting step, because I'm pretty sure the write.as page itself won't function without the ability of a browser to run Javascript – or that's how I'm remembering it when I first tried. There might be an API way to post (can't remember), but I'd imagine it available only to Pro users.

> Also, I discovered that my mom still has DSL at > her house (!!!). No broadband! It is because she is > “grandfathered” in to anh AT&T U-Verse package that she > gets a good deal on, but that isn't worth it. Chances are > she can get a BETTER deal with a NEWER AT&T package and > get broadband to boot. So, we (me and my sister “C”) > are going to see what we can do about convincing her > to upgrade.

Any guess on the odds of our someday living in a world where a company itself notifies a customer when there's a better deal for them, ending with “Would you like is to make that switch right now?”

(HINT: it's an oval)

Reminds me, though, that I've a bin of old phones, modems, and routers. Never got rid of them for fearing there being PII in/on them... it's like I need a vat of sulfuric acid....

> One of the things that annoys me most about edtech > companies is the way they pitch their products as “more > engaging” or “more fun” or “more” anything. I > get it, that's marketing.

You can solve that annoyance by accepting that 'marketing' and 'lying' are synonyms....

> R.w.a is moving slow (not many updates)

Hey, I'm doin' my part! ;–)

Day one of this work week is progressing nicely: the usual Monday morning all staff Zoom meeting, managerial interaction, preparing a run that changes stuff in a particular system via its API (due to how arduous doing the same in its GUI is), a little lightweight file/directory straightening.

No idea why, but mind suddenly went to being referred to as a “boomer” for just barely making the year-born cutoff, which tends to be stated as 1964.

I think I've whined about this before, but while I don't deny being somewhat privileged due to some economic niceties present at the time and along the way, it's been far more a “running from the crumbling edge of the world” kind of thing relative to what I want to call true boomers.

For example, my wife's oldest sister and her husband? Both are mega-millionaires. And I'd be mega-surprised if, combined, we ever even make it to, oh, say $800,000 in total assets... and I also wouldn't be surprised if I pass well before that might happen.

So I must have told y'all the time I unloaded on them in the outdoor section of a restaurant, after the male looked up to me and said, “Split the bill?”, when those two had spent nearly twice what we did on our orders. I was a bit “lit”, which of course greased the pontification skids fairly significantly.

I want to say I began my sermon with something like, “Listen, boomer...”, which led them to look at us puzzled, reminding us we're technically (i.e. by age) boomers as well... but that only inflamed my insides more, leading me to a lengthy comparison of areas wherein they had things significantly better than us.

> ...a million cookies away

Whoever named them “cookies” had shit for brains, as they're much more like those small, spherical, prickly seeds in the fall that stick to clothing so tenaciously.

> The cache, that is. I basically just deleted my Google > history “For All Time”, and idk if that technically > clears out the cache or not, but I am calling it a > win. lol!

Online “tech” companies look more like casinos by the minute, what with their carefully calculating how to make what seems like wins to us be bigger wins for them in the long haul.

> The biggest change in my life in the past 10 years, > though, was ridding myself of my dog in 2013. I couldn't > care for him anymore. Couldn't afford the vet bills + I > was stressed to the gills with debt, etc etc. But, after > giving him up, I felt SUCH relief and FREEDOM again! I > mean, it took a good two years to decompress from four > years of dog ownership (which I was never cut out for in > the first place), and, damn it was liberating. Still IS > liberating. In every way.

Ah, yes... the modern religion of pet ownership, which to me seems an extension of the cult of selfhood, 'cuz don't you know the other animals are afflicted with notions of self too! That, and it having become evidence of Wokeness as well.

<in a Yakov Smirnoff accent> Whadda species....

> It's “not very minimalist” of me to be eye-balling > accessories to go with a new laptop, when the laptop > is perfectly capable of being everything in one, nice, > neat, little package (keyboard, trackpad, screen), but, > I am going to spring for a Roost Stand and Microsoft Arc > mouse, anyway, because I am just excessive, I guess.

Well... some minimalist you turned out to be!

(KIDDING!)

> It is Sunday and we are getting ready to go to the 'rents > to have vegetarian chili and hang Xmas lights

Heh... chili here tonight too.. though not vegetarian. Just mostly. :–)

> Awesome 🍂

Indeed.

> This won't be my first Raspberry Pi. Many rears ago I > had one of the earliest models and had great fun working > with it.

Gotta get me my first one of these rears.... ;–)

> It was/is a fabulous, windy, cool, sunny Fall day today, > and I am in quite a good mood!

Power went out momentarily thrice. And as not-to-bad as the word 'momentarily' makes it seem, it was harrowing given I needed to use an “air painter” on one of the bathrooms, and it would really have sucked for the power to go out for hours during that.

But it didn't.

> i never really knew how to convey the thoughts in my > head well. I think i want this to be an outlet for all my > ramblings and niche learnings (i have a habit of going down > online rabbit holes). I always tried journaling, but that > doesnt help much when i fill the pages to no ones eyes but > my own. I have so many things I want to write and type but > all of them too disorganized for a first post. Where do > i even start? Do i even want to talk about the past? We > all do it enough already, don't we?

Lookin' good so far!

> Unfortunately that is not available to all.

It is – the whining of lazy asses notwithstanding.

That's not to say some people begin in seemingly insurmountable circumstances. But I swear most whiners about it don't come from anywhere near said circumstances. They're often just fucking lazy-assed pieces of shit imagining their merely being alive somehow deserves a more or less free ride.

And, as I'm pretty sure Evolution itself once said: “fuck that”....

Fun read, though – despite your having made me work arguably not-worth-it harder to grok it for your not being decent – aka civil – enough to couch your text per the seeming rocket science called “paragraphs”.

> Anyway, the heat is on now. Gonna be up late, even though > it is kind of a blah, nothing kind of a night. I feel > OK, though.

I could be wrong, but sounds to me like what you need is an online pub whose theme is especially relevant as the calendar date changes?

I mean, amirite, or what?

> 8:20 here, it's gonna be a chilly, overcast day today, > and that's fine. Gonna be a COOL day, that is for sure.

Wind blowin' like a motherfuck, rain on and off, here. No idea the temperature. Too afraid to find out. All I know is the wind/rain tag team rather derailed my leaf relocation plans.

> Anyhow, the Traveler looks kinda sleek, but it is something > I could buy at JCPenny in 1989 for $40 from the kids > catalog. It looks like a toy. A $599 toy. An iPad costs > that much! Or a Mac Mini!

What? Shysters hoping to separate money from the numerous suckers born every minute? In this hallowed species!

NO EFFING WAY!!!

:–)

In related news, I can't tell you how tired I am of the election. Of people pontificating on the basis of ridiculously hyper overly general categories of behavior, e.g. “Sweden (as though an individual that could act with singular will) just did something or another!!!”

How is it that morons tend to get the most attention?

Oh, right... I forgot... it's what happens when a species is majority moron....

> Because why entertain the idiot?

Because stories <backwards R> us?

> Do therapy sessions over-emphasize or distort my garbage > feelings?

Thought + faith therein = very convincing, yet still simply seeming reality

> It got me thinking (again) that I think a handy little > palatable guide to a few steps you can take to hamper > their influence on you and your daily digital life would > be very useful and I planned on writing one anyway.

Here's Inquiry's guide:

  1. Turn the fucking device(s) off, and become immersed in your im-mediate (i.e. requiring no additional device mediation) here/now surroundings.

<hands knocking dust off each other>

> Make back-ups, train your employees, properly secure the > network, and keep the rats in the gutter where they belong.

  1. Turn the fucking device(s) off, and become immersed in your im-mediate (i.e. requiring no additional device mediation) here/now surroundings.

<hands knocking dust off each other>

:–)

> I'd say 10 MILLION folks leaving in two weeks > qualifies as more than a “mini-stampede”. I'd say it > looks more like a mass migration. I'd say it's a big deal.

Yep.

My wife told me about “Gab”, and I took a quick look. But while I easily slip into political rant (as though I enjoy it), it vies for least favorite textural neighborhood status. I'd honestly rather read/write bad poetry, for example. But my first glance gave me the impression it was mostly a place for people to politically pontificate. And although I probably agree with a lot of it, I vastly prefer tmo style posts – i.e. shorter and sweeter ongoing glimpses into daily thoughts and happenings.

> I, of course, am not a celebrity of any kind, and have > zero “fans”.

I can say with complete confidence it's not zero. ;–)

> I don't care at all about what XYZ celebrity, group, > person of fame does/says about this or that. Just how it > is at this point in my life.

My only weakness along such lines was Mister Lennon. And most of the time he sounded bewildering to me. But his gems were “we're going to need some security guards” grade.

I'll never forget the details of my night the evening he died. But I'm glad I eventually realized the man packed more into his 40 years than I could in hundreds.

> In a broad scope, the “hammering through” of social > correspondence through a terribly small medium (be it a > single social network, or two, or even three (nowhere NEAR > enough platforms to choose from)) is flawed in the BIGGEST > way through lack of moderation. And trust me, no AI or > onboarding of human moderators will fix what is wrong at > the social giants. If Twitter/Facebook and the like figure > out how to get 2B+ people to submit and “act nice”, > they will have solved “The General's Dilemma” that > governments have been trying to wrap their head around > since... the dawn of civilization. > > No, the actual “fix” to the trepidation and > toxicity of correspondence on the Internet is to divide > everything into smaller groups. A decentralized network of > networks. Without one being bigger than the other. Also, > a fairly low (yet, possibly arbitrary) cap on the AMOUNT > of people that can belong to one group.

Great post.

But... (I can't help but wonder what/how others think..) who keeps moderation from becoming censorship when the moderation is the last/final word?

Said another way, how does the swamp self-correct when swamp seems just fine and dandy to it?

> For one, I am switching back to the TMO moniker, handle, > whatever. So people know who this is (for those who DO > know who I am).

It is a damned good one!

> If we truly want our own “party of the working class,” > our immediate task is to restore our shattered mass base > politically. Do the next 4 years not serve as a good > opportunity? Without Trump—the perfect villain who only > galvanized the Democrats—Biden could no longer depend on > anyone in the White House to count on as his foil. Instead, > with his own Party of the Wall Street having a long history > with tech businesses and elite corporations, Biden's rosy > promise of representing “all Americans” is doomed > to fall apart... We must be ready to organize, hold him > accountable, and prepare to take him down once he fails us.

Here's a radical thought: how about follow the inherent wisdom of what led to our arising by not being too chickenshit to let the fittest survive? Then the fittest can multiply sans having to dick with – aka be dragged down by – the endless problems created by the fuckwittest....?

Or do you have a problem with said inherent wisdom of said evolutionary creator?

Indoor renovations coming along nicely. Just taking a little lunch break, here.

Back to the bathroom cabinet I'm assembling!

> Time moves by quicker, sometimes. It moves quite slow > other times. And sometimes, just the right speed. That's > how it goes.

I suspect the experiential length of time is proportional to amount of focus on the notion of oneself, which seems to be in accord with a statement like “time flies when you're having fun” – as opposed to, say, “when you're having lots of thoughts about yourself”.

(Stones lyrics modified along those lines: “what a time drag it is getting attention from oneself”.)

Very pleasant morning in progress, here. We exchanged sleep dream details, enjoyed breakfast to our favorite pundit-ish guy, did a little homeowner anti-entropy.

We'll soon be back to bathroom remodeling, which can be fun when all goes well. But all it takes is a frozen nut, evidence of mold, etc., to derail the fun – never mind suck far more bio-energy from one's system than one anticipated, leaving a lot less gas in the tank for other planned activities.

Just sitting here awaiting my marching orders, as it were. :–)