All posts by Rolf

Computer systems

Long story short, I’m less than enchanted with MSFT these days, as a company, its operating systems, or it’s other products. There is a reason it is called by many “the Borg.”

In any case, I had an old laptop; very old – bought as a WOOT deal by a neighbor years ago, and given to me for free because the kids didn’t want it). It’s only got 2 GB of memory, and a 32GB HD, and the latest “update” to Win10 broke it, and with nothing on it but the OS it didn’t have enough room to update. So I bit the bullet, pulled out an old Linux Mint USB drive I picked up a while back, and tried it out. It worked faster running Mint off the USB drive than Windows did on the HDD. So I paved the windows disk and installed just Linux Mint, no residual Windoze10 at all. It found my network drivers, could surf the net, and do everything you need a small, cheap, expendable laptop to do. And it had ~20GB of disk space to spare for programs, data, whatever. Totally cool. Ran a few largely automated updates, and it all worked flawlessly. interface was windows-like and easy. Libre Office installed fine, so I can write or do normal modest “productivity” things.

If you have an older machine, and don’t like the MegaCorp Monopolies, support the alternatives, so that they can work on better, more moral AI warships :-).

Update – it works fine with an Ethernet cable plugged in, but doesn’t want to see the WiFi . Claims the drivers are installed, doesn’t see any WiFi anywhere, even though it used it two days ago after the initial install just fine.

Ed Thought III

PJW is right. you have to build your own platforms. The left is marginalizing everyone they can with every tool they can, deplatforming, unpersoning, disemploying, and harassing. It’s a psy-op. While I don’t know all the details, the world around you is not how presents itself. I expect an interesting few months ahead. In the mean time, carry on while building your own platforms, whatever and wherever you can.

Cover art

Working on getting cover art for the next book, “Komenagen: Slog” done. Initial sketches look good, and have been accepted. Moving forward on it. The art will include enough “generic” background on the left that it will make for good wrap-around art for the paper-printed book, giving the spine and back a distinctive appearance, too. Should be done and published before the end of October. Once final copy is done, I’ll post an example here.

Educational Thought II

As a teacher, there are few questions I despise as much as “is this going to be on the test?” It means the student has no interest or concern for the implications or applications, no curiosity, no reason to think about it for more than a microsecond beyond regurgitation on a mandated exam in order to get the gold star, the shiny class participation trophy.

And yet when I asked my daughter’s history teacher what the goal was in using Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States” was in an AP US History class, his answer amounted to “it’s on the AP test.”

Continue reading Educational Thought II

A post at Vox’s about some changes

https://voxday.blogspot.com/2019/08/a-change-to-caligan-campaign.html

Long story short (no pun intended), CH is a rapidly growing but still smallish company with limited resources in a very rapidly changing set of overlapping markets, and they can’t do everything – they don’t have the resources. So they have to prioritize. As one of the more minor people they are involved with in terms of sales, it’s hard to justify allocating the resources to edit and publish my work when the same resources could go toward something with 10x (or in the case of vid, maybe 100x) the sales and revenue.  Bummed, but I understand. I’d have liked to see my story turned into a graphic novel. (Rights for that now negotiable, to anyone interested in doing so!) Continue reading A post at Vox’s about some changes

Gell-Mann equivalent for politics?

To quote the originator of the term, Michael Crichton, The Gell-Mann Effect is:

“Media carries with it a credibility that is totally undeserved. You have all experienced this, in what I call the Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect. (I refer to it by this name because I once discussed it with Murray Gell-Mann, and by dropping a famous name I imply greater importance to myself, and to the effect, than it would otherwise have.)

Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect works as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward–reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them.

In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story–and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read with renewed interest as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about far-off Palestine than it was about the story you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.

That is the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect. I’d point out it does not operate in other arenas of life. In ordinary life, if somebody consistently exaggerates or lies to you, you soon discount everything they say. In court, there is the legal doctrine of falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus, which means untruthful in one part, untruthful in all.

But when it comes to the media, we believe against evidence that it is probably worth our time to read other parts of the paper. When, in fact, it almost certainly isn’t. The only possible explanation for our behavior is amnesia.”

End quote. Is there an equivalent for politics? We are quite willing to believe the most horrible and devious behavior of THAT party, but while our own party may have a few flawed individuals, it’s not in any way systemic… all the evidence is simply individualized, atomized, anecdotal, and anomalous, not generalized. Even when the evidence is that the leadership of both sides is utterly corrupt and controlled is overwhelming.