Hi all, I may possibly be back. Posting about April Fools loosened the pipes - my blogging infrastructure still seems operational, amazingly* - and I do have quite a backlog of interesting crap to post about.
* yea, it is all about 15 years old now, hand-coded Korn shell... heh
It's been nearly a year since I was posting regularly - wow :( - and that realization, coupled with the pipe loosening, may drive me to restart. Time will tell. In the meantime, it is *still* all happening...
Among the things lurking in my archives, waiting to post, are many amazing pictures, like this one... I can't remember and didn't log where it came from, probably some science photo contest, but ... wow. Take a bow, you guys. (Please click to enbiggen)
I could probably [re]post various posts from Scott ("Dilbert") Adams for days - and I might - he's been on fire in the past year, from his early predictions that Donald Trump would be our next President to his thoughts on Megyn Kelly's hair (!) to how to make things Impossible to Ignore to the way reality turned inside out about Hillary Clinton and to Trump the Closer. It's all good reading and good thinking, and he may become even better known for it than for Dilbert, which would be stunning.
More recently he has taken on the prevailing wisdom about Climate Change (note capitals, dum dum dum), posting about the Illusion of Knowledge and wondering whether a Climate Science "expert" could change your opinion. You may know, I am a climate change skeptic; there may be something to it, but it has been blown way out of proportion by those with a vested interest in manufacturing a crisis.
Anyway in a recently post he tells us how to leak like a master persuader. As you ponder the daily reports about Russians somehow having influenced the US Presidential elections, this is good to keep in mind.
News you can use: Thunderbolting your video card, from Jeff Atwood. For all that I'm an early adopter, I've never had a hot gaming rig, probably because I'm not a gamer. But this seems compelling, just think of the interesting time you could waste on this :)
You may know, the Dutch recently had an election, and you may know, I am Dutch, so naturally I took an interest. My admittedly uninformed opinion is much along the lines of Phil Greenspun, as he quotes a Dutch voter's opinion of the Dutch election: "Typical NY Times. The statements in itself or all not too factually wrong, but the picture is way off. Wilders won even if he didn't win. The anti-Islam agenda won big in Holland." With all the attention on Sweden, the Netherlands too is a canary in the coal mine of European immigrant relations.
Which prompts me to link: This politician makes the most sense on illegal immigration, from Powerline. The V;DW* is it's Obama, saying what anyone with sense would say, before he was elected President.
* V;DW = Video; Didn't Watch, by analogy to TL;DR = Too Long; Didn't Read
RealClear Future considers The Supersonic Age. "Ultimately, we would like the ability to go anywhere in the world in five hours." Yeah, we miss our flying cars, but where are the faster planes?
Nick Szabo is an old and amazing blogger, who posts occasionally but with impact: Money, Blockchains, and Social Scalability. Yes, it defies synopsis, and yes, you must read it. Nick is considered by some (me included) as a prime suspect to be the real Satoshi Nakamoto.
Speaking of old and amazing bloggers, Kim Du Toit is back! A worthy subscription, with gems like French Friday, in which he considers the virtues of Juliette Binoche, the Alpine Berlinette, and the movie A Good Year (all favorites of mine as well). He doesn't mention French wine, cheese, or bread, but at least mentions that he didn't.
Meanwhile: The Case for Eating Cheese is Stronger than Ever. I'm not taking any chances, and eating as much as possible.
Longtime readers know of my interest in Unnatural Selection, and the book I've not yet written about it (!); but my interest continues, and I read about the Next Social Science Firestorm noted by Powerline with interest. I suspect the correlations for wage disparities and productivity are actually to intelligence, but you will not find that discussed or indeed discussable anywhere. As with climate science or any challenge to the PC norms, the conclusions from research are criticized rather than the research itself.
By the way, that link is a month old, and despite the headline this was *not* the next social science firestorm; the mass media quickly lost interest when they discovered it didn't fit the narrative.
Speaking of the PC narrative, what do Beauty and the Beast's updates say about us? I did enjoy the recent "live action" version, but I can't say it was better than the original, and the PC nods to today's norms won't last as long as the story. Not quite a Tale as Old as Time...
Well that's enough for today; I'll keep combing through the last year's detritus and weaving it into today's stuff :) please stay tuned! ...
...As a chaser, I'll leave you with this amazing photo, taken in 2006; you might think "wow, a classic B-17 alongside a modern B-52", but then realize the B-52 is 70 years old... (click through for a larger view)