I am happy that the Exponent podcast is back now. Fortunately for me, its hiatus was short and not a permanent one.
After Her Brexit Deal Is Crushed in Parliament, Theresa May Faces a No-Confidence Vote
The bad Brexit news continues. The whole situation is baffling, like so much else that has happened since 2016. I knew the moment that Brexit passed that Donald Trump would be the next U.S. president, and the pace of insanity in world events has only accelerated.
I spent half the morning researching how to evaluate the results of attribute sample testing—once again. It’s hard to remember the parts of statistics that I don’t use very often.
I’m happy that Dialog is out of beta today. It’s great to have a real, out-of-beta Android app for Micro.blog. I don’t know when I’m going to fire up my Essential Phone again to try it out, though. It has been in a drawer for over a month.
I helped my daughter with her homework, in which she had to draw a bunch of random things. I tried to demonstrate for her how to draw some things. 😂 (I’m glad I’m not in grade school anymore.)
My 2013 MacBook Pro, which I mostly use in clamshell mode connected to a big display, keeps dying rather than waking up via the keyboard or mouse. I am this close to ditching it for a Mac mini or an iMac, just to resolve this issue—but that would be incredibly foolish, financially speaking.
I have been playing “Breath of the Wild” way too much lately, but mostly late at night when my brain is too tired to do anything more productive.
After many years of avoiding it, my wife and I are seeing “Stomp” tonight. Ot was part of a theatre subscription we signed up for. It is good? I hope so.
My new version of SwiftoDo Desktop is shaping up nicely so far.
🎵 I am a sucker for reverb on a well-produced track. Case in point: “Rill Rill” by Sleigh Bells.
The New York Times identified today a “trend” that I first was a part of 15 years ago, when I got my first work-issued laptop with a VPN connection to the office: The Death of the Sick Day.
I am unreasonably excited to be receiving New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe tomorrow.
Every January 2nd, I spend some time archiving the prior year’s emails and files on my computer. I’m finding things I worked on back in March that I barely remember, which is a little sad, but is also the main reason for moving older stuff aside.
I need to get back into the blogging game. I have been coding in all the “free time” I have had since I decided to rewrite my Mac App. Happy new year, everyone!
I just traded in my 15-year old car, bought a new one, and drive it home. Of course, it is so dark out now that no one can get a good luck at it. I am happy the trade-in and purchase are complete.
I just finished packing the car for our Christmas trip. Now…to find my children! 😀
Tonight’s cookie bake was sugar cookies. My daughter helped roll out and cut them. She chose the heart shape, which makes for oversized cookies. (I forgot to photograph Wednesday night’s brown sugar cookie bake.)
Coding again, after a couple days of uncertainty
I spent the past few nights on hold with my Todo.txt app rewrite because I thought the changes I coded to the filter system were wrong. Well, after thinking and not thinking about it for a couple days, I came back to discover everything is working as intended. Phew! I will revisit the logic once I code the rest of the app.
I am not optimistic about Elon Musk's latest boring publicity stunt
If Elon Musk’s Boring Company can somehow bring down the costs of digging tunnels, that would be fantastic. However, I am skeptical (emphasis is mine):
On Tuesday, Musk put the total price tag for the finished segment at about $10 million, including the cost of excavation, internal infrastructure, lighting, ventilation, safety systems, communications and a track.
By comparison, he said, digging a mile of tunnel by “traditional” engineering methods costs up to $1 billion and takes three to six months to complete. Musk boasted of several cost-cutting innovations, including higher-power boring machines, digging narrower tunnels, speeding up dirt removal, and simultaneous excavation and reinforcement.
However, the process he describes is how modern tunnel boring machines work. And he rented his Canadian-built boring machine from a Wisconsin tunneling company. He’s using the Wisconsin company, Super Excavators, as consultants.
Is Musk just selling a wish and a dream here? I really hope not. I share his dream of solving traffic problems with underground mass-transit and personal-transit systems. We need more tunnels to route traffic away from (or at least beneath) city centers, and to open additional arteries into cities like New York City that are largely surrounded by, or bordered by, water.
I lived through all the cost overruns in The Big Dig in Boston. There were major deficiencies in planning, lots of cutting corners in terms of materials, design, and engineering that came back to bite them, and simple graft and stupidity at play. I am not sure that The Boring Company can really put a huge dent into all those things. A lot of them are not technical problems that engineers can solve.
The Big Dig was a huge mess that was on our minds in Boston for years. The end result of that mess of a project, though, was a much nicer and more cohesive downtown Boston. This came about mostly by reclaiming land that had been used for highway overpasses, not because traffic and commute times were substantially reduced.
I think that if Elon Musk and his Boring Company could somehow decrease the costs fo building tunnels, it would be far more important than building a new, sci-fi method of transportation. I just don’t think that he is actually doing it, even though he is telling everyone he is.
I got a new toy this week: a large, Marshall Bluetooth speaker. I’m evaluating as best I can, between my kids’ naps and bedtimes. It can play much, much louder than I could ever turn it up to.
I do not understand why the repair brush in Apple Photos is available only on the Mac and not on the iPad Pro. It is infuriating sometimes. My iPad Pro is faster and more capable than my old MacBook Pro, and even has an even-more-precise pointing device in the Apple Pencil.
My kids seem not to notice that Mozart is playing in the house. I consider that a win.
I really enjoyed this profile of Donald Knuth, a towering figure in computer science whose name was in, or on the cover, of almost all my programming books in high school and college.
I am already baking cookies for Christmas. Tonight: chocolate chip.