“Taking less risk than is optimal is not safer; it just locks in a worse outcome. In competitive fields, doing less than the best often means failing completely. Taking more risk than is optimal also results in a worse outcome, and often leads to complete disaster.”
—Aaron Brown, “Red-Blooded Risk”
Friends, I'm a terribly incompetent social medialyte—I don't see many toots since I follow almost no one, don't check local or federated timelines, don't get follow/fave/boost notifications—just at some point I lost the taste for being plugged in.
But! I'm more than happy to read, learn, discuss, answer, and mentor:
or whatever 🤗!
(I'll pin this toot, so don't link to it!)
Ideas I frequently invoke:
- Philip Guo on silent technical privilege http://pgbovine.net/tech-privilege.htm
- Bryn Hammond on silenced history https://amgalant.com/
- Duncan Watts on cumulative advantage, or, MusicLab, in the top ten scientific experiments ever https://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/15/magazine/15wwlnidealab.t.html
- AnimeFeminist for their critiques and season guides https://www.animefeminist.com/
(Don't link to this toot, it'll be edited+deleted, but it'll be pinned to my profile on Octodon.social.)
‘sets out to describe how “quarrels, disputes, lamentations and grief, together with avarice, pride, arrogance and slander” arise. It offers nothing more than an empirical analysis of human conflict. The Buddha notes that conflicts arise from what is held dear, that holding things dear arises from longing (chanda), that longing arises from “what is pleasant and unpleasant in the world,” which arise from contact, which in turn arises from nāmarūpa, that is, being-in-the-world.’
“a pain clinic in London that offered her two choices: a series of steroid injections or an eight-week course in mindfulness meditation. Jane opted for the mindfulness and, having completed the course, found that it worked. …
“Perhaps the penetration of mindfulness into health care is like that of a Buddhist Trojan horse. For once mindfulness has been implanted into the mind/brain of a sympathetic host, dharmic memes are able to spread virally, rapidly, and unpredictably.”
Another. On recent macOS/iOS, you can get international characters like the ł in Cegłowski and Janelle Monáe by holding down the simpler key and seeing all the options.
(There are some differences. iOS will let me select degree symbol when I hold down 0 but macOS won't.)
(Alas, no Ðð or Þþ this way, need Icelandic keyboard.)
(No Greek either…)
(So that means when I write 'whaaaaa', I'm actually tapping the key repeatedly, not just holding it down—please appreciate the impact of that 'aaaa'.)
Above from #StephenBatchelor, “Secular Buddhism” (2017).
Personally I'm not interested in mysticism (though I find others' interest in and practice of it totally fascinating), but as I read this list, it dawned on me how neither progress *nor* decline in liberalism, ecological stability, democracy, pacifism, etc. would alter the relevance of #Buddhism to the people living under those conditions. Scandinavians want to extinguish unease and anxiety as much as the Chinese—and the Trumpies.
‘It is frequently assumed in the West that Buddhists are mystically inclined, liberal, ecologically sensitive, democratic, pacifist, tolerant, life-affirming, compassionate, and spiritual. … such are not the qualities one would readily ascribe to Ñāṇavīra Thera. … What validity then does the stereotype have? Could it be that it is no more than a romantic reinvention of #Buddhism, which presents a model of “spirituality” that embodies those values the “materialistic” West feels it has lost?’ —SB
Is it annoying when I interleave 3+ threads?
If I was confident it'd make me happy, I'd be more organized (with labels, accounts, blog).
It does seem weird that, when I think of something to add to a recent thread and go looking for its tail to append to, I find I've tooted about like three unrelated things in the interval.
@22 I recently heard that Google is selling the notion that data is like the sun: non-excludable and benefits everyone. I think we will continue to see many data metaphors in years to come.
You're not here to do a job.
You don't exist to listen to beats.
Your purpose isn't to love your family.
Those all are things best seen as occupying time. Doing them, and equally as much, avoiding the things you don't like (adulting, fascists, sweaty feet), isn't anything more significant than a robot or amoeba following its programming.
Getting/avoiding something/someone, even if it's a big deal, won't change how you feel inside on a day-to-day decade-to-decade basis.
Because finding something you love for itself (& not just because it's popular) isn't what makes people happy.
Nor is finding something everyone loves and loving it too.
All these things just fill time in your days.
If anything, being happy (being at peace, ataraxia—this has many names) comes from knowing nothing in & of itself will make you happy
It’s definitely ok to do things because everyone else is doing it too, since even if it’s not that fun, gelling with everyone else who’s doing it makes it super-fun. Examples from the mid-2010s that come to mind—Pokémon Go and Taylor Swift.
And if you think this is where I say “but you have to find what makes you truly happy”—surprise!—people who eke out happiness following the herd are no less happy than the ruthlessly idiosyncratic robots who get satisfaction of loving what they love.
Online too. Just accepted a merge request from someone who didn't bat an eye at me using 🥑-emoji as markers linking code to prose. They actually found an unreferenced emoji and removed it.
Have I entered a warp in the space-time continuum where people have elevated tolerance for things they haven't seen before—or where I am no longer odd?
I live in a relatively boring corner of the tech scene: I make websites for people who have bigger problems than websites. I find it very interesting & satisfying, but it's obviously only one niche in the huge tech ecosystem.
I lived in the machine learning niche for a while—it was also interesting and fulfilling work but again, just another specialization (if hard to access without post-grad math).
The blitz of data science articles peeves me. I should probably let people have their fun fad…
I saw a headline, "Data isn't the new gold, it's the new uranium". Nuclear power & weapons of course changed the world but the vast majority of people, of technical people, of physicists/engineers, were content to not get involved & let the specialists do their thing.
Same with the aero industry. Planes changed the world but it'd be a little ridiculous to imagine the orange site/code blogs devoting so much space enticing everyone to become an airline mechanic or a nuclear physicist.
All three of those elements—predicting what, predicting how, and what data—are tedious, thankless tasks with uncertain payoff. To specialists (people into math/Hadoop/marketing) these are worthy tasks, but no more interesting to most people (or most devs) than any other niche in the enterprise like devops or pentesting.