Thought Overflow…Golda’s BlogIf memes are like genes, then having a conversation in which you share ideas and come up with new ones is like…?

I am not the snapchat type. I prefer books, code, and UIs that let me drive, think about what I’m doing, and build things over time. But with two of my kids off to college and Snapchat their preferred method of communication, I’m snapchatting.

What strikes me about the app, is the emotional bang for the buck it provides. Low overhead – down in the tenth-of-a-second range – as well as nothing to organize later, nothing to store, and no definite expectation of response makes the ‘cost’ of using the app in terms of time, effort and responsibility almost zero. The gratification of getting a snap unexpectedly (usually they seem not to be part of an ongoing conversation) or of seeing that one of your friends or family has viewed or saved your snap is fairly high, especially when its a photo of a distant family member.

Spontaneity is another plus. Silliness is encouraged both by the app itself (filters, face swaps, etc) and by the sense of impermanence. One might hesitate to post a dog-whiskered, clown-nosed version of oneself to a online photo album, but the sense that this is like a voice conversation that will disappear, encourages fun and a sense of intimacy. Its a bit like being with the person, but only for a brief moment.

So I can appreciate these features, and I like snapchat for what it is. It leaves me wanting, though, because I want to build a deeper and more complex structure than this sort of moment allows. I want conversation, work, memories, feedback, and the sense of creating something together.

Perhaps if Snapchat can capture the feeling of a fun, shallow conversation, another app can better enable the fun of working creatively together. I would love to be able to save things to long term threads that I am working on with distant friends and family, to work on projects and pick up on them at any moment exactly where I left them off, and have my context snap back into place, and find the feedback that others may have left on ideas or bits of work I left waiting for them. And I’d love to be surprised with a response to a thread I left dangling a month ago, that moves a loved but dustbin’d project forward a step.

I can wish, can’t i?

I love this quote – this is one of my core values and love hearing Hilary say it. She may be personally ambitious – so shoot her – but I believe that she works hard and cares about stuff, including women and kids. She meets with a lot of people in scary situations personally, and I bet that really does affect her.

http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/6/21/1541020/-Trump-s-total-policy-vacuousness-gives-Hillary-space-to-connect-with-average-Americans

A friend introduced me yesterday to the Alexander technique, which after reading about on various websites, I still know very little about. Here is why I consider that a failing in principle.

I am not merely a demanding, impatient, spoiled American, though I am those things too. But the technique, or the description of it I was able to gather in my very brief reading, seems to me to contain powerful principles that reach beyond use of one’s body.

The Alexander technique, in my limited understanding, involves not only release of tension but minimalist motion and effort, a conscious avoiding of unnecessary muscle action.

This principle of minimalist, focused effort is both general and powerful: Omit Needless Words. Treat every problem as if its solution were extremely simple (Extreme programming). Write.

So here is a challenge to you folks who do understand the Alexander technique, who are teachers and who have dedicated years to its understanding: Can you write a page or two of imperatives that distill your deep wisdom to the fewest possible words?

In the meantime, I’ll keep reading:

http://www.alexandertechnique.com/
http://alexandertechnique.com/resources/joshuaselfstudy/

..to a good life is having a framework in which you can spend the bits of time doing good things, things in line with your long term deep goals. That’s it. And that’s the software I really want to write, the thing that ties together the long-term threads and deeper goals with the daily feed and workflow. But in the meantime use the tools there are, which maybe could already be used that way…

kinda obvious but most things that make sense are obvious, no?

I’ve written several bits for the Tucson Citizen, but they’re no longer around even as archives. I’ll get the originals and post them here. Meantime, I’m writing on DailyKos as ‘wordmonkey’ : http://dailykos.com/blog/wordmonkey

Maybe one, maybe a handful of them, but I don’t think I’ve ever followed all of them. Even posting this here seems to break the key idea that readers are the most important part of writing, because if it were posted somewhere else maybe it would have more chance of finding readers. But I’m stubborn and like to post on my own blog.
25 Commandments for Journalists

0 area51

Golda to RandomWrites, TechStuff  

I’ve been using StackOverflow for years as a programmer, and never before scrolled to the bottom to see the whole community of sites. Not only is there stackoverflow for plumbers and scifi/fantasy buffs, but http://area51.stackexchange.com/ lets you join or start a community of experts for a new stackoverflow site.

Its interesting that its not just platform software anyone can use, but that the community/reputation/expert factor is an intrinsic part of the thing. Its not just the software, apparently.

I really like these quotes from his debate with Douglass: “This they said and this they meant (the equality of those certain unalienable rights). They did not mean to assert the obvious untruth, that all were then actually enjoying that equality, nor yet, that they were about to confer it immediately upon them. In fact they had no power to confer such a boon. They meant simply to declare the right, so that the enforcement of it might follow as fast as circumstances should permit. They meant to set up a standard maxim for free society, which should be familiar to all, and revered by all; constantly looked to, constantly labored for, and even though never perfectly attained, constantly approximated….the assertion that “all men are created equal” was of no practical use in effecting our separation from Great Britain; and it was placed in the Declaration not for that, but for future use.” — quoted in Stephen Prothero’s The American Bible p.80

I think this is a key point, that declaring what is right or just describing an idea has power even though the writer doesn’t have the ability to enforce or implement it, and may not in their lifetime.

Just found P2PU – Peer to Peer University – on a list at reddit of online learning resources

This looks really cool. The ones I’m most excited about so far are

BOINC for citizen scientists

tools for content curation

0 My Friend Radio

Golda to RandomWrites, TechStuff  

‘listen to what joe is listening to/last listened to’

ah – this does exist, I didn’t know if it did; on last.fm you can listen to any other user’s library radio. Too bad most of my friends don’t use last.fm.

Actually, it doesn’t work that well – it seems to try to load the entire library before it starts playing any one song.