interi standing alone in complexity Fri, 27 Jan 2017 23:27:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 BuddyPress looking for release leads Wed, 25 Jan 2017 20:47:18 +0000 ]]> The BuddyPress project is making a public call for volunteers to become the release leads for 2.9 and 3.0.

Release Leads: Call for Volunteers

The role blends aspects of being a product manager, project manager, engineering manager, release manager, and community manager. Release leads do not need to be developers, but having experience contributing to open source projects is required.

I encourage non-developers to go for the position if they can, because it will make the project stronger while also providing a great opportunity to manage an interesting project. I have high hopes for the next couple of versions of BuddyPress, combined with other parts of WordPress moving around; we might have a decent social-network-in-a-box, actually out-of-the-box.

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Neighborhood identity Wed, 25 Jan 2017 19:13:26 +0000 ]]> How Urban Geometry Creates Neighborhood Identity reminded me of a thought I often have about where I live.

We have an apartment on the third floor in Adams Point. We have spoken to the folks on either side of us, and our building manager lives on our floor; e is the only one we really talk to in our building. We see others in the lobby or on the elevator, but I wouldn’t say we are acquaintances, and definitely not friends.

On the other hand, we know the names of people in other parts of our neighborhood, in part because they live in street-level homes, and have fruit trees or porches, natural spaces to notice and comment to one another.

I am not aware of population density in Oakland, but I imagine that my neighborhood has a fairly dense section, because we are surrounded by 3+ floored buildings, taking up entire blocks. Our building has 24 units, on a block that has three other apartments and six single family homes.

I personally don’t mind where I live, because we have immediate access to areas where people walk around and hang out. Most of my neighbors and nearby folks we meet are on parts of Grand Lake or Lakeshore Avenue, or just somewhere around Lake Merritt. It isn’t exactly about identity, but I consider if I am isolated from the people around me, and it somewhat feels like that. But as we have the aforementioned social valves, I enjoy the privacy and quiet our apartment affords us.

We didn’t plan to move here, we were forced to move in desperation, and just got very lucky that there was a vacancy when we were in need. We’ve been here almost three years, and with rising rents in this area we couldn’t stay in it if we moved. But that is for a different post. ^_^

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Pope Francis should speak up Mon, 23 Jan 2017 22:58:52 +0000 ]]> I had a random thought the other day, made me giggle but then it really got me interested in how it would play out.

Pope Francis should condone abortion and encourage birth control.

That is one person on the planet that could improve the quality of life for millions of people from now and ever after. Imagine the world if we didn’t have to deal with the infrastructure of the Roman Catholic org when it came to hospitals and schools against family planning and women’s health?

Any utopia fiction I write will have that premise in its history!

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Supporting journalism Mon, 23 Jan 2017 22:44:34 +0000 ]]> Reports of the death of journalism have been greatly exaggerated, but it has certainly been disrupted by change.

Listen, “fake news” and “alternate facts”. What is going on? I don’t know how the relationship with media companies and the new press secretary is going to develop, but I would like to know where support can be made.

I don’t currently support any journalism org, I mostly gather information in aggregate. But there seems like a lot of opportunity for investigative coverage.

So my question is: where is investigative journalism happening? Who are you supporting? What journalism orgs should I be following?

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dj patil’s advice Sun, 22 Jan 2017 22:55:41 +0000 Continue reading dj patil’s advice]]> I stumbled upon handwritten notes detailing advice from dj patil, and thought they were interesting enough to type up so they could be indexed.

They were posted by Prad Patel, so I am not sure who actually wrote them down on some snazzy letterhead. ^_^

The shorter one is a mantra I can get behind:

Handwritten note

A technology is neither revolutionary nor radical unless it benefits everyone!


The other note is an interesting list of things to keep in mind while building:

Handwritten lists

  • Dream in years
  • Plan in months
  • Evaluate in weeks
  • Ship daily

  • Prototype for 1x
  • Build for 10x
  • Engineer for 100x

  • What’s required to cut the timeline in ½
  • What needs to be done to double the impact
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Women’s March in Oakland Sun, 22 Jan 2017 22:15:34 +0000 ]]> Clover, Susan and I joined the Women’s March in Oakland yesterday. It was really amazing and bolstered our spirits to know that we are not alone, that there are so many people striving for progress.

The Women's March passing the Cathedral on Grand Ave.
We joined the Women’s March on Grand Ave. near the Cathedral.

And not just in Oakland! Whatever the trolls bellow, this demonstration clearly showed that the majority is active and moving, ready to fight for our humanity.

Women's March down Broadway in Oakland
Our view from the Sear’s Building, going down Broadway in Oakland.

On a familial level, it was encouraging to see so many other families. Even as we were walking down the street we saw caregivers rocking pussyhats and pushing strollers and/or carrying babies down the street. Susan posted shots of Clover joining the march and finding a prime vantage point.

The Women's March entering Frank Ogawa Plaza.
We were among the first to arrive at City Hall. Notice the police officers on the roof recording the march.

If anything can be said of Oakland it is that there is a proud tradition of protesting injustice, a heritage I endeavor to support. In the past we’ve been hesitant to participate with Clover, because bad actors come out to act like fools, and the police act even worse in response. It will still be touch and go, but Clover is always aware of the police helicopters flying overhead, and the unjust causes the people down the street are marching for.

Crowd of Women's March marchers at Frank Ogawa Plaza.
Frank Ogawa Plaza and the surrounding area filled up and stayed pack in the following hours.

It was a tremendous educational opportunity for our family as well, since Clover had a lot of questions about the chants. We were able to discuss equal human rights, and how women are treated and oppressed by harmful laws. It is always a little tough trying to explain horrible ideas to a five year old, but we also don’t want to hide the reality what is happening from a person that will ultimately inherit whichever system we have in place.

Did you march? Share your experience and pictures! ^_^

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How do you keep focused in troubled times? Sun, 22 Jan 2017 04:41:05 +0000 Continue reading How do you keep focused in troubled times?]]> Let me tell ya, I am all over the place. I get maybe an hour of focus each day, and that is if I start drinking tea early in the morning, and I get this lunchtime clarity.

My thoughts go all over the place, and I tire easily. I really enjoy having an actionable task in front of me, but the nature of my work is 75% thinking and researching, and that just isn’t working these days.

And I know why.

I feel like I need to keep up with what is happening in the federal government, but there is just so damn much. And I am not the type that is okay not being completely up on current issues.

Normally that means that maybe 5% of my time is spent paying attention to Congress, depending on what they are discussing that week. But these confirmation hearings have just scaled up the trouble the new administration has brought to power. I mean, I’ve mentioned that the cabinet picks are like a who’s who of Disney villains, but when we get more into their backgrounds and experience, but mostly apparent motivations, it is frightnening!

And all along I know that no matter how much I know about what is at stake, it is ultimately an impotent gesture. Knowing all this doesn’t actually enact change, and I can only call my representatives so many times in one day/week/month before it is noted that, yeah, I am not on board.

I even have a difficult time enjoying the things I am normally way into: WordPress, video games, weird new tech, and all the amazing stuff happening in astronomy. The only thing that pulls me out of my head is Clover and Susan, but they aren’t around all the time, and about 1.5 of that duo is also worried.

So that is me. How are you doing? How do you keep focused? What brain hacks do you employ to get stuff done while the trolls gather at the gates?

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Why do we spend so much on the military? Sat, 21 Jan 2017 04:04:13 +0000 ]]> Specifically, why is the discussion around a “defense sequester” and not the mind-boggling $600 billion a year that we spend on the military?

I simply have no context for this. I’ve heard that the military spending is in part going to contractors in multiple districts, and therefore at best provides jobs and at worse provides campaign funds. But surely that isn’t the whole story.

And if your party is basically riding a fear-fueled cultural backlash, I can see how you would spin it in your favor. Immigrants? ISIS?! Yeah, okay, that’s your narrative. But why are Democrats going along with that? And what about those freedom-loving libertarian Republicans, always trying to reign in government spending?

Why isn’t there a concerted effort to cut military spending? Any percent of that could cover, like, all the insurance subsidies!

What am I missing?

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Love is Resistance Fri, 20 Jan 2017 21:35:29 +0000 Continue reading Love is Resistance]]> I’ve spent most of the last few months processing the new, weird reality of governance in these United States. To keep myself grounded I’ve made a mantra of an observation from Cornel West.

Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.

So much more needs to be said, discussed, refined and planned. For this moment I just want all of you to know that I love you. We must resist the toxic ideas and harmful policies. And we must do it with love, because love is resistance.

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Fairphone + Ubuntu, sitting in a tree Wed, 18 Jan 2017 20:57:13 +0000 ]]> The other day I mentioned:

There is apparently no plan to make new Ubuntu phones at the moment.[…] I still can’t order a Fairphone.

As if to rub it in my face, a Fairphone 2 Running Ubuntu Will Be On Show at MWC17.

Okay, that is kinda neat. Bummer for me, but I am not sure I am even going to move forward with a smartphone at all. But it is nice to see two interesting alternatives coming together like that. Mobile computing is always the lowest common denominator between hardware and software.

What’s more, I hadn’t heard of the Ubports. Turns out, one of the devices they’ve ported Ubuntu Touch to is the Nexus 5… which happens to be my current mobile. So while the case may be coming apart and the SIM is only read half the time, maybe it would make a decent test device. Or I could pick up a used one for ~$100.

Fortunately, not having the telephony portion of my mobile hasn’t adversely affected me yet. If someone made it easy for me to get a Fairphone I would definitely go for it, but as it is I am just waiting to see how hard it is to get a Nokia 150. The humorous observation here is that Americans are stuck in consumer/destruction land… and I’d rather not play this game.

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