[ Content | Sidebar ]

Archives for General

fingers on scales

A couple of months ago, I ran across the paper “The Moral Character of Cryptographic Work”, by Phillip Rogaway. It’s a very good paper; I encourage you all to read it, instead of this blog post! But, for those of you who are still here: the question there of the political implications of nominally apolitical […]

the gokhale course

As I mentioned before, my back problems started coming back earlier this year; since I’d thought the Gokhale book made sense, I decided to give their course a try. And, fortunately, it’s been working! Or, rather (correlation isn’t causation): I was taking 12 ibuprofen tablets a day in the summer, I’m taking 6 a day […]

bluetooth car audio

When I got my first iPhone, it was easy to hook it up to car audio: there were a bunch of options for 30-pin-to-aux connectors. (Which would also charge your phone, useful both in itself and because most audio and map software has an option to not shut off the screen as long as the […]

refocusing my guitar learning

The Rocksmith team recently released a (free!) update to Rocksmith 2014 that was substantial enough to deserve a new name: Rocksmith Remastered. It’s the same game, just better: they’ve looked at how people have used it over the last three years, where the rough edges are, how they could modify it to help your learning […]

what comes next?

When I blogged about Trump before the election, I thought he was unlikely to win, though a 1-in-6 chance still scared me. And, well, I’m scared now. So, what new bad event has a 1-in-6 chance of happening now that we add in the fact that Trump is elected? Maybe I’ve been reading too much […]

sources of energy

I’ve started paying more attention recently to what gives me more energy: evaluating experiences, places, even objects on that criterion instead of other criteria. Not necessarily physical energy—I’m as capable of falling asleep in post-lunch meetings as ever—but mental energy, a feeling that I’m building up my reserves for thinking instead of chipping away at […]

after the election

As of two weeks before election day, it is looking like we won’t have a fascist as our next president. It’s less of a sure thing than I would like—if you trust FiveThirtyEight’s model, then the odds of a Trump presidency are about the same as the odds of rolling a 6 on a die, […]

castro 2

Castro has been my favorite podcast app for years. Podcast apps generally have the same basic functionality, and Castro didn’t do anything particularly special in that regard; instead, it presented an environment where I wanted to spend time. When I’m using the podcast app, I am, of course, spending most of my time listening to […]

summer 2016 status

Or: nagging annoyances from the start of the summer that I hadn’t gotten around to blogging about. Probably everything here deserves its own post, but I’ll just get this summary out now to unblock myself. Because I would like to get writing again a little more regularly. And part of the reason why I hadn’t […]

deus ex go

I basically enjoyed Deus Ex Go in the same way that I enjoyed Lara Croft Go: well-done puzzles, putting together a few elements in ways that are straightforwardly entertaining at the start but surprisingly difficult at the end, even though the levels are deterministic and only have a few dozen spaces. This game is a […]

our glorious health care system

I’ve been getting tired of my allergies recently (or, rather, getting tired of being made tired by my allergies), so after talking to my doctor, I made an appointment with an allergy specialist. That specialist gave me suggestions for different drugs to try, and also thought that allergy shots might make sense; but if I’m […]

tai chi, attention, and pain

I started taking Tai Chi lessons this fall, from Master Tony Wong, and it’s been a very interesting experience indeed. I’ve been getting more curious recently about small decisions, and about paying attention to my fundamental reactions to experiences; Tai Chi gives a lot of material to think about on both fronts. Over the three […]

read my linkblog!

A periodic reminder: this isn’t my only blog: I also have a linkblog, http://links.malvasiabianca.org. I cap posts there at four a day (unless I mess up), and most days there aren’t that many posts. Heck, probably most days I don’t post anything there, though I certainly post there more often than here! And then there’s […]

more on small business models

Some items feeding into each other that I ran across last Friday:   StartUp episode #16: The Secret Formula In the first season of StartUp, one of the possible routes that they considered taking is the traditional VC strategy of getting a large audience by making lots of stuff, trying to build a large and […]

attention, joy, connection, and life

I reread The Nature of Order this summer and fall, and I’ve already talked about how the second volume, The Process of Creating Life, has a lot to teach me about to teach me about writing software. The final volume, The Luminous Ground, is more fundamental, more basic, in a mystical way. It’s explicit about […]

unpleasant web sites

I’ve come slowly to the whole ad-blocker debate: all things being equal, I’m not an active fan of ads, but I accept them as a possible way for writers to get paid, and most of the time they’re not that bad. Sometimes, they do cross the line for me—I really don’t like the “around the […]

games, prices, value, and uncertainty

Earlier this summer, I talked about the Shenmue 3 Kickstarter; I wanted to expand on my approach to questions like that. In general, the price of a game (or of any product!) will be somewhere between how much it costs to develop, produce, and sell the product, and how much value people get from the […]

office chairs and grounding

One thing writing about Pamplemousse made me wonder about: I feel better sitting there than at work, but the chair isn’t the sort of chair that I would normally actively think of as a comfortable chair. (Don’t get me wrong, it’s a perfectly nice chair, it’s just nice in a quiet, unassuming, and not super-padded […]


About once a week, on my way into work, I stop at Pamplemousse to have their “French Breakfast”. That’s a picture of it above: it’s just a sliced, warmed-up baguette, with butter and jam. And it’s my favorite part of my weekly commute routine. There are lots of little things I like about it. The […]

the shenmue 3 kickstarter

I’ve been surprised at how much negative reaction to the Shenmue 3 Kickstarter has appeared in my twitter feed. Maybe not so much in the quantity of the reaction as the tone: it seems like the Kickstarter is a flashpoint in a culture war, while I don’t really understand why there has to be a […]