Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #749 - recent SLASHDOT news - Oregon bike Tax, SpaceX cancels, Windows 10 fails

Image result for Oregon Passes First Statewide Bicycle Tax In Nation

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #749 - recent SLASHDOT news  - Oregon bike Tax, SpaceX cancels, Windows 10 fails, student loans charge off

Hi Mom,

Going into sharing mode.

Original content my be few and far between for a few weeks.

Today, the news via SLASHDOT, my new favorite news site.

And, so, the news ..............................


Oregon Passes First Statewide Bicycle Tax In Nation (washingtontimes.com)

turkeydance writes:In Oregon, a state known for its avid bicycling culture, the state legislature's approval of the first bike tax in the nation has fallen flat with riders. Democratic Gov. Kate Brown is expected to sign the sweeping $5.3 billion transportation package, which includes a $15 excise tax on the sale of bicycles costing more than $200 with a wheel diameter of at least 26 inches. Even though the funding has been earmarked for improvements that will benefit cyclists, the tax has managed to irk both anti-tax Republicans and environmentally conscious bikers. The bike tax is aimed at raising $1.2 million per year in order to improve and expand paths and trails for bicyclists and pedestrians. Supporters point out that Oregon has no sales tax, which means buyers won't be dinged twice for their new wheels.


'Windows 10 Is Failing Us' (betanews.com)

Reader BrianFagioli writes:While Windows 10 is arguably successful from a market share perspective, it is still failing in one big way -- the user experience. Windows 8.x was an absolute disaster, and Microsoft's latest is certainly better than that, but it is still not an enjoyable experience. Before the company tries to add new features (and misses deadlines) like Timeline and Cloud Clipboard, it should focus more on improving the existing user experience. Right now it is failing us and things are not getting better. Even the third-party solutions that aim to turn this spying off aren't 100-percent successful. Unless you unplug from the internet entirely, you can't stop Windows from phoning home to Microsoft. This is a shame, as some consumers are being made to feel violated when using their own computer. Another issue that I can't believe hasn't been resolved is having two locations for system settings. Seriously, Microsoft? We still have "Settings" and "Control Panel" Live Tiles are still worthless, and it is time for Microsoft to kill them. Nobody opens an app launcher and stares at the icons for information. It is distracting and pointless. If I want the weather, I'll open a weather app and see it -- not stare at the icon for the information. It sort of made sense in the Windows 8.x era since you were presented with a full screen of app icons more often, but with a more traditional start-button design in Windows 10, it is time to retire it. Another example: Microsoft doesn't force you to use Edge and Bing entirely, but it still does force you. Cortana is a hot mess, but if you opt to use her, she will only open things in Edge. Searches are Bing-only. In other words, the virtual assistant ignores your default browser settings. Why? Not for the user's benefit. Sadly, the Windows Store is a garbage dump -- many of the "legit" apps are total trash.


$12 Billion In Private Student Loan Debt May Be Wiped Away By Missing Paperwork (nytimes.com)

New submitter cdreimer shares a report from The New York Times (Warning: source may be paywalled; alternate source):Tens of thousands of people who took out private loans to pay for college but have not been able to keep up payments may get their debts wiped away because critical paperwork is missing. The troubled loans, which total at least $5 billion, are at the center of a protracted legal dispute between the student borrowers and a group of creditors who have aggressively pursued them in court after they fell behind on payments. Judges have already dismissed dozens of lawsuits against former students, essentially wiping out their debt, because documents proving who owns the loans are missing. A review of court records by The New York Times shows that many other collection cases are deeply flawed, with incomplete ownership records and mass-produced documentation. Some of the problems playing out now in the $108 billion private student loan market are reminiscent of those that arose from the subprime mortgage crisis a decade ago, when billions of dollars in subprime mortgage loans were ruled uncollectable by courts because of missing or fake documentation. And like those troubled mortgages, private student loans -- which come with higher interest rates and fewer consumer protections than federal loans -- are often targeted at the most vulnerable borrowers, like those attending for-profit schools. 

At the center of the storm is one of the nation's largest owners of private student loans, the National Collegiate Student Loan Trusts. It is struggling to prove in court that it has the legal paperwork showing ownership of its loans, which were originally made by banks and then sold to investors. National Collegiate is an umbrella name for 15 trusts that hold 800,000 private student loans, totaling $12 billion. More than $5 billion of that debt is in default, according to court filings.


Windows 10 Will Cut Off Devices With Older CPUs (pcworld.com)

Reader Baron_Yam shares a PCWorld report:No Windows 10 Creators Update for you, Microsoft says -- at least, not if you happen to be the unlucky owner of certain older Atom-based Windows devices, and other aging models in the future. After stories arose of failed attempts to upgrade such hardware to the Creators Update, Microsoft confirmed late Wednesday that any hardware device that falls out of the manufacturer's support cycle may be ineligible for future Windows 10 updates. In the case of the four "Clover Trail" processors (part of the Cloverview platform) that have fallen into Intel's End of Interactive Support phase, they will be ineligible for the Windows 10 Creators Update, Microsoft confirmed. Instead, they'll simply be offered the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, plus security updates through January, 2023, the end of the original Windows 8.1 support period. The problem, however, is that Microsoft's language opens up the possibility that any unsupported hardware device could be excluded from future Windows 10 updates. "Recognizing that a combination of hardware, driver and firmware support is required to have a good Windows 10 experience, we updated our support lifecycle policy to align with the hardware support period for a given device," Microsoft said in a statement. "If a hardware partner stops supporting a given device or one of its key components and stops providing driver updates, firmware updates, or fixes, it may mean that device will not be able to properly run a future Windows 10 feature update."The reader adds, it's not a case of "feature updates are not recommended and may not work", it's a case of "we will block feature updates to your device".


SpaceX Pulls the Plug On Its Red Dragon Plans (arstechnica.com)

SpaceX has largely confirmed the rumors that the company is no longer planning to send an uncrewed version of its Dragon spacecraft to Mars in 2020, or later. Ars Technica reports:The company had planned to use the propulsive landing capabilities on the Dragon 2 spacecraft -- originally developed for the commercial crew variant to land on Earth -- for Mars landings in 2018 or 2020. Previously, it had signed an agreement with NASA to use some of its expertise for such a mission and access its deep-space communications network. On Tuesday, however, during a House science subcommittee hearing concerning future NASA planetary science missions, Florida Representative Bill Posey asked what the agency was doing to support privately developed planetary science programs. Jim Green, who directs NASA's planetary science division, mentioned several plans about the Moon and asteroids, but he conspicuously did not mention Red Dragon. After this hearing, SpaceX spokesman John Taylor didn't return a response to questions from Ars about the future of Red Dragon. Then, during a speech Wednesday at the International Space Station Research and Development Conference, Musk confirmed that the company is no longer working to land Dragon propulsively for commercial crew. 

"Yeah, that was a tough decision," Musk acknowledged Wednesday with a sigh. "The reason we decided not to pursue that heavily is that it would have taken a tremendous amount of effort to qualify that for safety for crew transport," Musk explained Wednesday. "There was a time when I thought the Dragon approach to landing on Mars, where you've got a base heat shield and side mounted thrusters, would be the right way to land on Mars. But now I'm pretty confident that is not the right way." Musk added that his company has come up with a "far better" approach to landing on Mars that will be incorporated into the next iteration of the company's proposed Mars transportation hardware


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 751 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.25

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #748 - Fight! Fight! Musical Monday for 1707.24

from Transporter 2 - fight with what's at hand nearby
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #748 - Fight! Fight! Musical Monday for 1707.24

Hi Mom,

I keep thinking that I have to announce that I am either putting the blog on hiatus or in a remote control, re-post share mode. I think that's coming. The blog will probably go into a remote control mode as packing because more of a lodestone and then once I hit the road. I plan to pre-publish all the blog entries for the week we are traveling. I may make these something brief about our destinations and then update if I have time or I may just set up ten shares in a row. I don't know.

For now, I am trying to keep on keeping on but put less time into the blog and not kill myself if I can't meet the goals I set.

For instance, last week, I was working on the résumé entry all week as my planned original content for the week. On Sunday, when I wanted to clear more time to pack and do the smallest amount of work necessary to keep my jobs, I just cut out all the unfinished parts of the entry. I re-formatted with what I had. I added some filler text to give it a better sense of purpose, and I published it. The thing is that the blog was more than long enough and informative enough in the form I had it. I didn't need to do more.

So, this concept of doing enough and not too much is part of my operating principle. Still, expect to see less original content or at least shorter original content and plenty of shares from now until September. There's just so much to do. I shouldn't whine about it. Plenty of people move and plenty move across the country. It's not that uncommon. I hope you know, Mom, that I am just managing my anxiety. I am trying to cope. It's not always an easy thing.

Still, I did smart things last week, like the handling of yesterday's blog post. I had my car checked out and will not need too many repairs and the big thing is preventive only. I bought a book on the PYTHON programming language. We took the next step in selling our house.

Things are going along swimmingly.

So, today's mix.

I am leaving it very rough. No YOU TUBE playlist. No text list of songs. No thematic unity. Just a random collection of stuff that hit my radar recently.

The idea for this mix started with this next video, a clip from the film Transporter 2 and how the hero manages to deliver a beat down with rubber hose and whatever else he can grab in a construction site.

Then I just dumped embedded players and videos as they came to my attention over the last few weeks, and this is the result.

There's good stuff here, but it's hardly unified be the idea of a "fight."

There's a fight going on in our nation right now, and I wish it had as quick and decisive an end as the fight in this video.

Someone needs to deliver a final beat down and end the book on this hateful moron that somehow got himself elected to the presidency of our country.

And as Warren Ellis shared in yesterday's newsletter:

BUT: take care of yourself, do something this week that's just for you, protect your head and hold on tight.  I need you here, and so do other people.


Stream the new Porter Ricks album in full

June 2017

The German dub techno duo are releasing their first album in seventeen years

In the world of techno Thomas Köner and Andy Mellwig, also known as Porter Ricks, are probably best known for their connection with Chain Reaction, a sub label of Moritz Von Oswald and Mark Ernestus's Basic Channel imprint. The producers, along with others such as Monolake and Vainqueur, were part of a new dub techno sound bolstered by these labels and the Hardwax shop in Kreuzberg, Berlin. Anguilla Electrica, meaning electric eel, appears more than twenty years after their first CD was released on Chain Reaction, and will be available on 23 June via Tresor.
You can read Kodwo Eshun's cover interview with Porter Ricks in issue 169 of The Wire, and read Ken Hollings's review of Anguilla Electrica in issue 401. Subscribers can access these via the online archive.


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 750 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.24 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #747 - Five Important Things About Résumé and Cover Letter Writing

funny visual but the sign should read résumé not resume.
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #745 - Five Important Things About Résumé and Cover Letter Writing

Hi Mom,

So, Mom, first, a disclaimer. I have written this blog entry for my students at Park University in the business communications course I teach. However, I am likely to recommend it to students in other classes as all of them, at some point, will look for a job.

This entry is also a means for me to do research, bot to update what I research for teaching this subject, but also for my own job search, which is about to go into over drive.

I researched this subject extensively in the late 1980s to write an instructive software program. But a lot has changed since the '80s.


Another caveat/disclaimer: when we (any of us in the world) write about résumés and cover letters, we have to be aware that there's no universal truth here. There are no consistent "rules" for creating one's résumé or drafting a strong cover letter. The government, specifically the military, wants to to see the antiquated and quite dysfunctional chronological style résumé. I just had some students tell me that they have always sorted résumés with color into the "no" pile when reviewing applicants. Likewise, I have just had professionals in the industry tell me that my own résumé is too 1980s and that I should use the best techniques available if I am going to apply for work in the computer science field. If I am going to claim I know how to work the tools, then I need to show that I can work the tools. Walk the walk, you know?

I had some students just tell me that not only do they not write cover letters in jobs for which they apply, but that when they get to select candidates they also sort out those with cover letters. They feel only the résumé is necessary. Furthermore, many people feel that a résumé must be one page and one page only, despite the overwhelming school of thought among professionals that two pages is both standard and necessary, and after an illustrious career of even ten years, probably, two pages is too short for a complete résumé with nice design so it does not feel cramped and too full. Obviously, this logic about pages does not apply CVs for which there are fewer rules and more tolerance for length.


One of the most important documents you will ever write is your résumé.

Your résumé is a lot of work.

If done right, a résumé is a constantly evolving process, a series of documents, and a huge time investment to study, refine, and create multiple versions. If only I had world enough and time for everything I want to do with my résumé......
[ref: link: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44688/to-his-coy-mistress]

And yet, the résumé is one of the documents that people often slap together in a few minutes, often when sitting with a recruiter in a job placement office. More people spend minimal time on résumés than people who spend the recommended oodles of hours.

And let's be clear: résumé.

See those accent marks?

Not resume. The word "resume" means to begin again. The word résumé represents your job application document. Unless you're in a profession that expects a CV (curriculum vitae), and then aren't you just the Fancy Pants?


Take that in. I am not even punctuating around it.

Just save the word in a text document and copy it as needed. That's what I do. I can never remember how to make those super script marks.

**These only work if you have a keyboard with the number pad.**
Hold down alt key and type number on number keypad on right of key board. It does not work with numbers at top of keyboard!

Here’s some nifty codes.

á = Alt + 0225

é = Alt + 0233

But who remembers that?

Partly, this post serves my own purposes to get a new career in coding, so there's links like this one - http://www.infoworld.com/article/2919150/it-careers/6-examples-of-effective-it-resumes.html.

But both in teaching the subject of résumés and cover letters.

The IT Makeover article for résumés pretty much sums up what I was trying to teach, and the samples to be found on OVERLEAF  – some CVs, some letters, and some résumés – shows the rest.

Here's a quick list of ratings:

Cover Letters = okay. (some say required)
Color in résumé = very okay.
résumé Design = VERY OKAY.
White space in résumé = essential.

I strongly urge you to explore OVERLEAF


And how to use LaTex to make résumés and other documents.

3. What is LaTex?

LaTeX – A document preparation system

LaTeX is a high-quality typesetting system; it includes features designed for the production of technical and scientific documentation. LaTeX is the de facto standard for the communication and publication of scientific documents. LaTeX is available as free software.


LaTeX online services like PapeeriaOverleafShareLaTeX, and Datazar offer the ability to edit, view and download LaTeX files and resulting PDFs.
LaTeX, which is pronounced «Lah-tech» or «Lay-tech» (to rhyme with «blech» or «Bertolt Brecht»), is a document preparation system for high-quality typesetting. It is most often used for medium-to-large technical or scientific documents but it can be used for almost any form of publishing.

LaTeX is not a word processor! Instead, LaTeX encourages authors not to worry too much about the appearance of their documents but to concentrate on getting the right content

This is what a résumé looks like with LaTex (forgive the double entry between image #1 and #2. I wouldn't get a perfect match.)

I found this sample on OVERLEAF. Technically, it could be considered a CV.


For years, I have taught the DAMN GOOD method for résumés and cover letters. But I was recently told it's too 1980s. Still, many of the lessons can be extracted and updated for more modern looking résumés. More of this in the next entry I devote to this subject. But first the most important thing of all: THE SCAN FACTOR.

There is a wide variety of advice out there and much of it conflicts.

Some people have told me not to use ALL CAPS for emphasis and others (as seen below) have told me to use it. I always recommended bold, underlining, and italics for emphasis, but according to the image below (from Résumés For Dummies), bold and other font effects muddled OCR. But machine scanning will not be an issue for everyone.

4. Résumé  - SCAN FACTOR

Okay, so, first of all, there appears to be a company called SCAN FACTOR who is working to streamline career fair experiences with an app that allows people to scan a badge to collect or share résumés and business cards rather than dealing with so much paper. The system works with LINKED IN, too, which is a nice integration.

So, the Google search for "résumé scan factor" turns up that company first.

Though there are many differing opinions on how to construct a résumé in terms of style, organization, and design much of which varies by industry or by personal preference of those who think they know best, one truth is universal: a résumé must scan and scan quickly. Hence, my term SCAN FACTOR.

Give your résumé a SCAN FACTOR.

The bottom line of résumé writing is that IF an actual person looks at your résumé, you have 4-10 seconds to make an impression and get sorted into the "yes" pile (or a "maybe" pile if that person uses a "maybe" pile for résumés that deserve a second look). The articles I found in my first search estimated either six or ten seconds for a look and a decision.

What you will find if you follow this same thread of research is that there are wildly varying opinions on résumé design, organization, and content. But regardless of what approach you choose to take with your résumé, a universal concept is that when a human looks at it, it's not going to be read: it's going to be scanned. So if you have fewer then ten seconds to make an impression, your résumé must scan easily, efficiently, and provocatively.

A warning about reading on the Internet: though this concept may be obvious, just because one finds something in an article on the web does not make it legitimate, valid, or even true. Come on, it's the Internet. I may at some point source all these articles, but for now, I simply remind myself that I don't know most of these source or writers.

The first link recommends the Harvard format, which I will explore in a future post, but the post does emphasize use of sections well differentiated, which aids scanability.

The article on the MUSE, which is a well known resource, makes many good recommendations to help humans scan the page from selective use of bold to a separate skills section and smart use of white space. Career one stop repeats much of this same advice: white space, selective use of bold, bullets, headings - easy to scan. The ladders recommends the summary of skills that I promtoe as well, though I prefer the HIGHLIGHTS OF QUALIFICATIONS section at the top as a master summary.

The hloom. com site has a nice write up with advice and some decent templates, though not as rich, innovative, and well-designed as those on OVERLEAF.

Spherion shares the idea of "WOW factors," which I like. But Brad Remillard's article from impacthiringsolutions.com dismisses "functional" résumés -- he doesn't read them -- but then he can't spell résumé and writes resume throughout his article, so we can dismiss him as a moron.

Lastly, insights.dice.com does a "heat" analysis of hot zones for the eyes when a human scans a page. This is a good idea to ponder when making the résumé scanably friendly.

However, you interpret all this advice, however you decide to organize, there's going to be people who do not like your résumé simply because of arbitrary and stupid biases. But if you put yourself in the reader's shoes and think about a reader skimming over your résumé, make it give the impression you want it to give, make it so your key attributes stand out in some way, make it easy to digest so that it saves the reader's time, because time is money and saving time always builds goodwill.











The first sentence of your cover letter is critical to whether the rest of it gets read or even skimmed.

If you start with the standard "I am applying to the job #### from your posting on Monster..." if a human tries to read that, it's likely that the human will not be impressed.

All the choices you make when applying for jobs are gambles. It's impossible to predict biases. In some industries, you may not even need a letter. In others, the opening is not going to matter. But if you need an attention-getting opener, the "I am applying for" type starter is not going to work and is not going to be your best foot forward.

So, I found this article - https://www.themuse.com/advice/31-attentiongrabbing-cover-letter-examples.

It shares exactly what I was trying to tell my students about cover letters.

The opening is the most important part of the letter.

It's your chance to get that job. It's the first impression, your introduction.

Often hiring managers skim the résumé, and then start to read the letter.

This article steers applicants away from the cookie cutter openings.

Try these ideas!! (There's more examples in the article if you click the link.)

Start With a Passion

If truly loving data is wrong, I don’t want to be right. It seems like the rest of the team at Chartbeat feels the same way—and that’s just one of the reasons why I think I’d be the perfect next hire for your sales team.

Start With Your Love for the Company

It was Rudy, my Golden Retriever, who first found the operations assistant opening (he’s really excited about the prospect of coming to work with me every day). But as I learned more about Zoosk and what it is doing to transform the mobile dating space, I couldn’t help but get excited to be part of the team, too.

Start With an Attribute or Accomplishment

Over the last 10 years, I’ve built my career on one simple principle: Work smarter. I’m the person who looks for inefficient procedures, finds ways to streamline them, and consistently strives to boost the productivity of everyone around me. It’s what’s earned me three promotions in the supply chain department at my current company, and it’s what I know I can do as the new operations analyst for SevOne.

Start With Humor or Creativity

Have you ever had your mom call five times a day asking for a status update on how your job search is going, and then sounding incredulous that not more progress has been made since the last phone call? That’s my life right now. But I’m hoping that soon my life will revolve around being your full-time social media manager. The good news is, I bring more to the table than just an overbearing mom. Let me tell you more.


If I could get students to internalize these two main ideas then I would count my work in teaching
résumés and cover letters as a success: create a well designed résumé with a scan factor and start your letter with an attention-grabbing, value-driven, smart opener that wins you the job in that first sentence or three.

When I started writing this entry, I had five other things to say about résumés and cover letters and then this post evolved. I stashed away some of the other remarks in another post to continue this discussion later.

For now, here's my emphasis:

- résumé with a scan factor

- attention grabbing letter opener

Thanks for reading.


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 749 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.23 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #746 - VICE: Body Architects - Monica Byrne

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #746 - VICE: Body Architects - Monica Byrne

Hi Mom,

Honestly, I haven't watched this video yet.

It's by Monica Byrne, whom I support on Patreon.

So, this is really just here for me to watch, but you may like it, too.

Isn't the title "body architects" intriguing?

Though Dad prefers architecture to be only applied to the work of actual architects of structures, but even writing that statement opens us to the definition of a "structure" and thus an architect.

Something to watch for Saturday...

From: https://www.unlimited.world/



Tomorrow arrives in many different forms every day. In this UNLIMITED film, powered by UBS, we meet the humans who are turning themselves into the future by taking the human body and augmenting it with cutting edge technology.

First, our host Monica Byrne meets Tim Cannon, the founding member and leader of a DIY bio-hacking collective known as Grindhouse Wetware. Based in the faded “Steel City” of Pittsburgh, Cannon has granted himself a “sixth sense” with the fossils of his hometown’s industrial past. The magnets embedded beneath the skin of his hands allow him to physically pick up objects and detect nearby electromagnetic fields, while he uses other implants to communicate with digital software and monitor his body temperature. The end game Cannon dreams of is one in which the human body is untethered from the constraints of time, and resistant to irksome phenomena such as ageing and death.
Natasha Vita-More’s quest for tomorrow is fuelled by tragedy; a failed pregnancy that made her question whether the vulnerabilities of the human body had to be regarded as inevitable. It’s a train of thought that has led to her creation of the Primo Post-human – an award-winning design for a “whole body prosthetic”, a kind of ultra-durable, human-shaped robot-shell that most readily brings to mind the Replicants of Blade Runner.
After that, we pay a visit to Dr Mike McLoughlin at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, who shows us a robot equipped with the world’s most advanced prosthetic arm. Controlled by the user’s brain, the arm is more powerful than the average person’s but also dextrous and subtle enough that its movements suggest an eerie capability for human tenderness.
“I think the future that we envision is one in which anybody can be anything they want and their biology doesn’t govern them,” Cannon says of the egalitarian, utopian motivations behind his work. “I can’t figure out how to function in the world without this desire to see what the next start over looks like. And I won’t be able to unless I actually outlive this bullshit monkey that I’ve been packaged into. I’m looking for freedom.”
All three share a common goal: to push humanity into the future by using tech to eliminate our biological limitations, in ways that could redefine our relationship with time – and its diverse symptoms, such as reproduction, sickness and death – forever.
– Kev Kharas


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 748 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.22 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #745 - Valerian - all three trailers

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #745 - Valerian - all three trailers

Hi Mom,

I have been so excited for this movie, which I must make time to see and soon.

It premiered today.

Visually, this looks to be one of the most amazing science fiction films of all time (space opera, okay, but still...).

I even missed the comic books when they originally came out, as they were French; I hope to read re-released version soon.

I already wrote about this movie in an anticipation, here:


As for ORIGINAL CONTENT, I know, I know. I promised original content today, but the entry on résumés and cover letters is not done yet. Maybe for Sunday. I am busting my rump on work (grading and running classes), packing, selling a house, buying a house, preparing to learn more programming to make a career change, oh yeah, and daily chores like laundry and feeding the dogs.

This blog may go into cruise control for a while. I am trying to decide what I want to do.

For now, enjoy the Valerian previews.

These are amazing!


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 747 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.21 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #744 - Lori's Birthday 1971 - Throwback Thursday - conversations #14

Lori Marie birthday 1971 - two years old
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #744 - Lori's Birthday 1971 - Throwback Thursday - conversations #14

Hi Mom,

I am having lunch with Lori again today, and so I am featuring her in today's Throwback photo, which I am pretty sure I did not share as the main photo in a Throwback Thursdays yet in my 744 posts. But as I was selecting a photo, I realized that my record keeping process is not great. I need to overhaul how I track the photos that I have featured, and I do not want to invest that time right now.

Things are happening, Mom. Lots of things with the house, the sale of the house, the new house, the move, packing, and more.

I reminded of a line from Radiohead's "The Tourist" off OK Computer: "Hey man, slow down..."

This is a short one because it's a day late, and I don't want to stop my routine of Throwbacks.

I had considered a different post, a share, just because I am pressed for time.

But the original idea for the blog is that I would keep the posts short, you know?

And doesn't the picture speak for itself?

See the cake made in the shape of and decorated like a school bus? Lori was obsessed with school buses at that age. Mom you look really tired and caught off-guard. I like pictures in which you are not aware the picture is being taken. I am wearing a shirt decorated with a picture of David Cassidy.

I like seeing all the things you did for decorating, Mom. Raggedy Ann table settings. Very nice. Brings back good memories. There's Lori's tea party table and chair behind me.

There's some things here that make me wonder if this is really 1971, but I am pretty sure that's the date on the photo.

The curtains you made are still up and not yet replaced. And this photo is before the addition that added the entry and replaced that front door. Also, above your head and the light fixture, I believe that's the bottom corner of the art print hanging in my kitchen.

Thanks, Mom.

More soon.


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 746 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.20 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #743 - Mastering Git and Git Hub

20 tips for mastering Git and GitHub

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #743 - Mastering Git and Git Hub

Hi Mom,

This is what I am doing tomorrow. I am setting up my own Git Hub to show off the code I have written to future employers.

Short post today. Lots going on. Original content the next two days, though. Conversations tomorrow and then, I hope, my résumés post on Friday. I have been making steady progress on résumés each day. I should be ready.

But tomorrow I set up a Git Hub account and load student code for prospective employers to see.

I could dress this up with more pictures, but, oh well... that's a lot of work.

Mom, I know it's not too exciting for you (or many of my readers), but expect more and more computer-related posts. Remember, this is not my teaching but my study.

FROM - http://www.infoworld.com/article/3205884/application-development/20-tips-for-mastering-git-and-github.html

20 tips for mastering Git and GitHub

The programming world's favorite distributed version control system also lets you find, share, and improve code. Here's how to make Git and GitHub work better for you

While there are dozens of get-started guides for Git, and GitHub offers a number of guides of its own, it’s still not easy to find a collection of useful tips for developers who want to work smarter with Git and GitHub. Let’s fix that.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Git or GitHub, the next few paragraphs will give you enough background to understand the tips. We’ll list about a dozen useful resources at the end of this article.

Git is a distributed version control system, originally written by Linus Torvalds in 2005 for and with help from the Linux kernel community. I’m not here to sell you on Git, so I’ll spare you the spiel about how fast and small and flexible and popular it is, but you should know that when you clone a Git repository (“repo,” for short), you get the entire version history on your own computer, not just a snapshot from one branch at one time.
Git started as a command-line tool, befitting its origin in the Linux kernel community. You can still use the Git command line, if you like, but you don’t have to. In particular, if you use GitHub as your host, you can use the free GitHub client on Windows or Mac. On the other hand, the Git command line will work for any host, and it comes pre-installed on most Mac and Linux systems.

Only you can decide whether you are most comfortable using the command line or a native client with a graphical user interface. If you like a GUI, in addition to the GitHub client (Windows and Mac), you might want to consider SourceTree (Windows and Mac, free), TortoiseGit(Windows only, free), and Gitbox (Mac only, $14.99). Or you can use an editor or IDE that supports Git internally (see tip No. 11).

Git/GitHub tip No. 1: Clone almost anything

There are many interesting projects available from GitHub and other public Git repositories that you can clone freely to your own computer. Why would you want to do that? One reason is to learn something about coding style, practice, and tools in a language of interest, including commit log commenting style (see tip No. 4). A second reason is to learn how a given project accomplishes its goals. A third reason, should the licensing both permit you to do so and make sense for your purposes, would be to incorporate the project into your own endeavor or product. Double-check the license, by the way, so that you don’t run into compliance issues later on.
The definition of git clone from the manual page:
Clones a repository into a newly created directory, creates remote-tracking branches for each branch in the cloned repository (visible using git branch -r), and creates and checks out an initial branch that is forked from the cloned repository’s currently active branch.
After the clone, a plain git fetch without arguments will update all the remote-tracking branches, and a git pull without arguments will in addition merge the remote master branch into the current master branch, if any.

Git/GitHub tip No. 2: Pull frequently

One of the easiest ways to make a mess for yourself with Git (and indeed, with any version control system) is to allow files to get out of sync. If you git pull frequently, you will keep your copy of the repo up to date, and you will have the opportunity to merge your changed code with others’ changes while the merging is easy to understand and accomplish—ideally, when it’s so easy that it can be done automatically. A corollary of this tip is to watch your project status. Many Git clients will automatically show you when you need to update to stay current.

Git/GitHub tip No. 3: Commit early and often

A commit is a granular update to a project, which includes one or more changes to one or more files. Think of it as a record of a unit of work completed, which can be applied to or removed from the project as a logical whole. Do commit every logical change you complete, even before testing it. Commits only apply to your local repository. See tips No. 4 and 5 for corollaries to this tip.
The definition of git commit from the manual page:
Stores the current contents of the index in a new commit along with a log message from the user describing the changes.

Git/GitHub tip No. 4: Comment your commits as you would have others comment theirs

There are 10 kinds of coders: Those who comment their commits, and those who don’t. (Old joke. Hint: What base am I using?)
I freely admit to being a stickler for good commit log messages. I set up my repositories to require messages for every commit, and I’ve been known to send out annoyed late-night messages when commits land with logs on the order of “xx.” If you’re the kind of developer who thinks (1) the code should speak for itself and (2) the in-line comments are way more important than the change logs, try cloning a repository you’ve never seen before and identifying the recent commit that may have caused the latest issue posted without reading all the code. As you can see, accurate commit logs are double-plus good.

Git/GitHub tip No. 5: Push when your changes are tested

The worst Git-related bug I’ve ever had the misfortune to know about happened when an outsourcing company switched from Subversion but didn’t train its developers on the difference between distributed source control and centralized source control. About a month later, the project developed weird bugs that nobody could seem to track down. At the daily stand-up meetings, the developers responsible for the area of the application that was misbehaving would protest, “I fixed that two weeks ago!” or accuse another developer of not bothering to pull the changes they had so carefully checked in.
Eventually, someone identified the problem and taught all the developers how and when to push their commits: In short, whenever the commits test successfully in a local build. Then the company did a two-day-long merge fest before being able to build and deploy the updated, integrated product.

Git/GitHub tip No. 6: Branch freely

One of the biggest advantages Git has over some other version-control systems is that merging usually works well, at least partly because Git automatically chooses the best common ancestor to use for a merge. Most software developers need to start creating branches in their projects more often. It should be a routine daily occurrence, not the subject of an anguished all-hands strategy meeting. The likelihood is that, when the branch project is complete, accepted, and ready to move into the main project, the merge will not present any insurmountable problems.
I know that takes some adjustment, especially if you’ve been stuck in a company that does source code control with CVS. But try it. It’s a whole lot better than having customers accidentally see your unfinished experimental code when the trunk project has to be published because of a breaking bug. (This article explains basic branching and merging well.)

Git/GitHub tip No. 7: Merge carefully

While merges with Git usually work well, if you do them without thinking, you can occasionally encounter difficulty. Step one is to make sure you have no uncommitted changes. From the git merge manual page:
Before applying outside changes, you should get your own work in good shape and committed locally, so it will not be clobbered if there are conflicts. See also git-stash.
Also see tip No. 8.
Even if it all goes south during a git merge, you aren’t hosed:
If you tried a merge which resulted in complex conflicts and want to start over, you can recover with git merge —abort.
The follow-on command to git merge is usually git mergetool, assuming you like to use a GUI for merging. If you’d prefer the old-school method, you can edit the files in conflict with your favorite programming editor, fully remove the <<<<<<<=======, and >>>>>>> lines, save the revised files, and git add each file you fixed.

Git/GitHub tip No. 8: Stash before switching branches

A software developer’s workflow is rarely linear. Users have the gall to report bugs, managers have the audacity to prioritize tickets other than the one you picked to work on, and you yourself might change your mind about what you want to do.
There you are, with three files committed for a release, and a fourth file in a changed but non-working state. (The git status command will tell you all of this if you don’t happen to remember where you were.) All of a sudden you need to work on a bug fix in a production version. You need to switch branches pronto, but you can’t. Your working directory is dirty and you have two hours of work you don’t want to lose.
Enter git stash. Voilà! Now you have all of your changes stored in a WIP (work in progress) branch, and you can switch to the production branch from your clean directory. When you’re done with that, switch back to where you were with git stash apply.

Git/GitHub tip No. 9: Use gists to share snippets and pastes

GitHub “gists”—shared code snippets—are not a Git feature, but they use Git. All gists are Git repositories, and GitHub Gist makes it easy to share them. You can search Gist for public gists by topic, programming language, forked status, and starred status. You can also create secret gists and share them by URL.

Git/GitHub tip No. 10: Explore GitHub

Many interesting open source projects have repositories on GitHub. Explore GitHub provides a browsing interface to find some of them, but mostly it’s easier to type a few letters of the project’s name in the search box to find its repos. For example, type jq or back or ang to find three of the major open source JavaScript frameworks.

Git/GitHub tip No. 11: Contribute to open source projects

As long as you’re browsing open source projects, why not contribute to them? It isn’t as hard as you might think, and you’ll learn a lot. For example, you could clone the jquery/jquery (jQuery Core) project, and browse through README.MD. Near the top you’ll see:
In the spirit of open source software development, jQuery always encourages community code contribution. To help you get started and before you jump into writing code, be sure to read these important contribution guidelines thoroughly...
That’s followed by three links. The first of the three will get you started fairly quickly. Not every open source project lays out the plan so clearly, but they all try.
Understand the difference between being a contributor and a committer. A contributor has signed the required agreements and made a contribution available to the project. A committer is empowered to actually commit the proffered contribution to the project repository. Because there will be a delay while a committer tests your contribution and you won’t want to tie up your master branch, you should make your changes in another branch (see tip No. 6) before sending out a pull request (see tip No. 16).

Git/GitHub tip No. 12: Use editors and IDEs that “git it”

If you’re barreling along on an edit only to discover, when you go to check it in, that someone else has been working on the same code as you have, you’re likely to become frustrated. You can avoid or at least minimize that frustration by using an editor or IDE that integrates Git and actually tells you that the code you’re viewing has new commits that you should pull, and what the new commits are supposed to accomplish.

Git/GitHub tip No. 13: Fork a repo

Forking a repository means creating your own writable server copy of a repo—that is, creating a fork in the road. Recall that we clone a repo (see tip No. 1) to make our own client copy of it. If it’s a public repo for which we do not have commit privileges (see tip No. 11), then the easiest way to contribute our changes is to first commit them to our own fork of the repo on the server via the fork button on the original GitHub project. Then we can issue a pull request (see tip No. 16) to the owners of the forked repo so that they can test and possibly use our contribution. It’s confusing at first, but it gets easier. See, for instance, this book section on contributing to a small public project.

Git/GitHub tip No. 14: Watch projects

When you fork a project, you’ll most likely want to know what’s happening in the upstream project. If so, watch the repo. If the update chatter annoys you, unwatch it. If you notice changes that affect you, fetch and merge the upstream commits.


Git/GitHub tip No. 15: Follow friends

GitHub suggests that you follow GitHub employees “in a non-creepy way.” You should also follow people from projects that interest you, and that might lead you to other projects that interest you. I followed dmethvin on GitHub—but that’s not creepy since we’ve worked together on and off since he was at PC Tech Journal, and now he’s president of the jQuery Foundation.

Git/GitHub tip No. 16: Send pull requests

In tip No. 13, we talked about forking a GitHub repository. The way to get the upstream repository (the one you forked from to make yours) to incorporate some or all of your changes is to send them a pull request, following this guide.

Git/GitHub tip No. 17: Create and resolve issues

All software has bugs. Many software projects use a separate bug-tracking system, but some use the Issues feature in GitHub. You can be useful to a project by reporting an issue, and even more useful by solving one.

Git/GitHub tip No. 18: Write informative README pages

In tip No. 11, I sent you to the README page of jquery/jquery to find out about the project. Write good README pages for your projects, and you won’t regret it.
README has been an established convention in software development since at least the 1960s, when I saw my first one printed out IN ALL CAPS on the green-and-white paper that was wrapping a stack of Hollerith cards intended to be run on an IBM 1640. I saw many more in the 1970s, on every conceivable media and operating system, when I worked on DEC minicomputers and large IBM mainframes. See also REAMDE.

Git/GitHub tip No. 19: Use Markdown

Early README files IN ALL CAPS were more than a little basic. The current standard for formatting README files is Markdown, specifically GitHub Flavored Markdown. I used to see README files in HTML, but the practice seems to be fading.

Git/GitHub tip No. 20: Convert your older repos to Git

Of all the tips I’ve listed, this one might be the hardest to implement, both technically and politically. Politically it’s hard because programmers are by nature conservative about their tools. That needs to be addressed with training (see tip No. 5).
It’s technically hard to convert big, old repositories with millions of lines of code, tens of thousands of commits, and thousands of tags because the processes for this use a metric ton of memory. I have had decade-old CVS repositories that would only convert on large or extralarge Amazon EC2 instances, and they still took days for the conversion to complete. If you’re converting from Subversion, try using svn2git. If you’re converting from CVS, consider git -cvsimport and cvs2git.


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 745 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1707.19 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.