Monthly archives: November 2011

finding infinity

Your science makes my story uninteresting.

Me in conversation with myself while reading some articles

IMG_0971

Working at home may drive me batty, but on days where I can go out and get a fresh mango and chop it up in my own kitchen it is pretty cool.

And, since the city came out and fixed out water, I can now wash my hands while the dishwasher (or toilet) fills. Sadly, that was not true before. (First world problem I know, but it was my first world problem.)

I look at the occupy wall street protests and feel like they are a mirror rather than a movement. I see people pushing their own ideals and views upon them. Not that I think there is much to the protests, seems like the protest done by children brought up in a world where you honor the dead by stacking flowers in great gross piles, minimal effort and picturesque for a bit, but in the end just making a bunch of work and not really changing anything or requiring any commitment. But, is that my own thoughts on my generation (generations? the generations after me, and maybe one or two before mine) in general. But, maybe that is the point of the these protests to just spur on the conversation.

Maybe events, as opposed to revolutions, are like that. They exist and then rather the event being what everyone remembers, the changes it enacted is the the stuff of the revolutions. They are wholly of what ever people remember them as. {As a side note, I wrote this originally a few days after the whole Occupy movement started, before had walked through Occupy Wall Street and before things like the Oakland and NY crackdowns started, I think my assessment is still valid.}

How does this all tie into finding infinity?

Well, infinity is the idea of everything, something that goes on forever, something that is all encompassing. But, from math, there are different sizes of infinity, or not all infinities are the same. (My favorite example of this is this: the whole numbers are infinite, they go on forever. No matter how big the number is, you can always add one and have another. And, the real numbers between 0 and 1 {e.g. .1, .2, .3, .4} are infinite as well. But, there is not a single number in both sets, both go on forever, and yet, they share no values.

That is how I think about life. About what it means to be happy. No two people are going to have the same set of things that make them fulfilled (I avoid happy, since that word has a lot of baggage), and for one person it could be something huge, being president, changing the world. For another it could be something simple, a piece of work, a painting or a career. But, for each person, there is that thing, those things, that set of things that is everything for a person. Their infinity. And, those who are lucky or word really hard can figure out what their infinity is and work towards it.

The example I think about, is a grain of sand and all the sand on the beach. One person looks at the grain of sand and could spend a whole lifetime looking at the grain, figuring it out, tearing it apart, coming to understand that single grain. While, another person could do the same with all the sand on the beach, looking the differences, each grain, what else is on the beach. And yet, each person has found something that completes them and leaves them fulfilled.

They both have found their infinity, even though the scope and the nature of their infinities are almost completely different.

And, that is what I hope for, what I continue to do to search for, my infinity, some parts of my infinite set I have found, being a husband and father, but there is more that I want to do, need to complete, things I need change, make better, in myself and the world around me.

And the new twist I have been thinking about is that infinity might also describe the journey. That instead of something you find and poof you are content, happy, what will you, finding your infinity could mean simply finding you starting point. You have identified the direction you want to travel, not a destination but simply the path.

Don’t know if there is a complete thought in there. But, maybe there will be someday.

Some days I feel like I have a little girl who we might not be on the same planet, let alone related, those all pink, princess days, where she tells me she know who Justin Beiber is (thanks ballet class, arrrgh ballet class?).

Then other days, like when we put together a imported Japanese robot (direction all in Japanese) who stands himself up. And then order tickets to go see the Mythbusters live, well those days kick ass.

here is video of Stompy (what she named the robot) in action:

In an attempt to organize my comics, I am labeling each box not with a name or number, but a QR code. This, thanks to goo.gl, allows me to link each box to its own webpage and easily get there by scanning the code on the box. I have my own domain (technology-hates-you.com) with hosting provided byasmallorange.com which gives me an affordable solution with shell access and the ability to host my own websites and this wordpress install. PC version of Comic Collectorz lets me keep track of the comics and download the covers, etc. I export that data about each box (sadly the Mac does not export to html, yet. But, they appear to be working on it) and put it on a webpage.

So, an overview of sorting my comics as it stands today:

  1. Sort box and add comics to Collectorz
  2. Generate a new QR code and link for the box
  3. Export the details of the box
  4. Upload the exported data for the box
  5. Print out the QR code and tape it to the box

And, then eventually, I can find and sort and read my comics.

In the future I maybe even able to search the boxes remotely from a store or the con…

here is a link to the list of boxes I have done: Luke’s Comics

(though the page is a bit sparse and the layout/design of the actual comic pages is a bit garish, I will get to those eventually.)

Luke W. McCullough | lm3m @ msn.com | 11.17.2011 @ 04:38pm | the new house of chaos, arlington, ma

google has metro envy

Wow, not very often you see a company fully admit they are completely jealous of another, but with the conversion of every thing google (reader, gmail, the google header on all google pages, even the search page) to the google+ look (flat text driven with a good amount of white space) they are completely showing their hand. They have metro envy big time. Metro, which has been co-opted by Windows for their Windows 8 release describing the new UI and API. But, it predates that by a good amount of time, first in Zune and Xbox and Windows Phone 7 and the changes and ideas that came out of there. It is not a bad look look, flat and text driven. A bit more angular than the normal web 2.0 rounded corners look. But, sad to see google go the Linux route of playing follow the leader to Microsoft rather than making a stand, right or wrong, for something new like Apple. I always love Apple, not as a fan boy, but as a company that is willing to fail shooting for the moon. Biggest failure I see of the 90’s and the Oughts is Linux not becoming a dominate player in computers for everyone. Instead of taking the multi-user, X windows world and figuring out how to make it awesome for consumers, they spend the next 20 years trying to be Windows. This is a failure, because even if they succeeded, they fail. Trying to be Windows sacrifices everything that makes Linux/GNU/UNIX great. Google is going the same path. Instead of trying to go on their own facing towards consumers and changing the world, they are starting to lap at the corporate trough and like Linux the easy money of enterprises is opiate to innovation. They can only fail if they continue down this path. Sure, they can hold on like Microsoft does, but the will end up a footnote like IBM or HP.

So, again I am skipping NaNoWriMo (national novel writing month), again. I like the ideals behind it, but for me I have two problems. One, I have enough half completed pieces lying around and getting them done is more important to me than creating another 50k that I cannot use. The goal of NaNoWriMo is quantity not quality, and with my goal being publishing something or having something out for review to be published, I need the quality. So, for my personal projects, NaNoWriMo is not a help for me. That and I don’t have the ability to contribute the time. I have to be a father and the main bread-winner, for the time being. So, my writing has to be a secondary concern and 3k words is I would say 3-4 hours of work a day going for pure quantity. But, working full time and being the dad I want to be, I don’t have 3-4 extra hours. That is unless I am not going to sleep and have a meth or cocaine addiction to keep me going. Which, though Aaron Sorkin popularized, does seem like a less than good lifestyle decision. Maybe next year. 

Instead of NaNoWriMo I am working on LuMaGoWriHaMo or Luke Makes Good Writing Habits Month. Which my goal for the month is to carve out 1-2 hours a day to write. When I am home, I am doing this after lunch. I work at lunch and then take an hour after that and get pages done. Now, I think I need to explain my process a bit to explain what finishing pages means. I write rough, rough drafts, usually written by hand or in a minimal editor (like notepad or emacs or such), so no spellcheck, no grammar, no nothing. I shoot for sentences and maybe some spelling, but generally just getting ideas out my head onto the page. After that, I leave it for a bit, usually writing some more, and then come back. I edit, refine, rework, rewrite, spell check, grammar check, etc. Then I leave it again, and rinse, repeat. Until, it is done. No set number of drafts, just getting the pages done one at a time. Though my goals now are to get a chapter up and done, ready for proofreading and feedback (a.k.a.getting the draft to Jodi and Shiri, respectively). Goal is to get the first chapter of the project code names “The Four” to them. All of my projects have names I give them, not really titles but more like code names, just so I have a say of thinking about them while I work on them.

Off to NY for the end of this week and the weekend. Should be fun, get to see Amanda and Ian, and crashing up at Melissa’s. Were going to get a hotel, but the New York Marathon is this weekend. Getting home Sunday might suck.

New section here, words I am going to eliminate from my personal usage. First up, “dunno”. I have no problem with the word itself, and ‘”wanna” and “kinda” are still allowed for me. I just have found myself reaching for “dunno” too often and punctuating random thoughts with it. So, out it goes.

Thanks to my daughter I now know a Justin Beiber song, actually I knew it, I just did not know that I did. So, thank you Auntie Ali and dance class. Thanks a ton. Off to acquire good kids stuff for her. Thinking Muppets and They Might Be Giants.

Luke W. McCullough | lm3m @ msn.com | 11/02/2011 | looking a field on the accla some where between Boston and New York City