3BL and The Ultimate Law of the Universe

atlantis
I just got back from touring the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral – if you get a chance to do the tour and get a glimpse you should totally take it, the spaceships are enormous and amazing.  Also, I’ve been watching the new show Cosmos.  Both of these things made me think of space and new life and also about that fact that we can’t really even govern ourselves, how do we expect to handle other species of sentient life?  We know that technology is advancing very rapidly, and that in a few years we may or may not set out to explore the stars and possibly make contact with other beings.

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Refactoring the Code of Laws

code: is system of rules to convert information—such as a letterword, sound, image, or gesture—into another, sometimes shortened or secret, form or representation for communication through a channel or storage in a medium.

law: a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior.

hammurabi

The Code of Hammurabi was a set of laws, written down for the ancient civilization of Babylon.  It included rules, most notably an “eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”, which governed how we could agree to live together in community and expect predefined punishments if we broke any of the agreed upon rules.

Modern programming code has taught us a few valuable lessons about codes, standards, and how to build systems that pass the test of time.  One important aspect of coding best practices is refactoring, or breaking down and organizing your written code into small chunks that can be simplified and reused. Interestingly, it seems that no one has used these “best practices” yet to apply to the laws that govern our societies.

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Some were taken, some left, some were never there to begin with

stroke12A friend once told me, cherish the ones you have.
Feel blessed that you have a (parent / brother / sister / person) to (yell at, nag, bother, worry about, demand, pressure, guilt trip) you.
Not everyone has that person in their life.
They do these things because they love you, that’s the most important thing.  That someone out there loves you, and they could die at any minute.

Some were taken, some left, some were never there to begin with.

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Elohim Mishpat – and all kinds of crazy

Woken early, tires on the car need changed and today is the last day Black-Raven-wallpaperto do so before accruing possible ticket for having studded tires in April.
Knowing my affinity to attract police attention like a tuna in a shark tank, we decide to change the tires, today.  As I drag my half-asleep self out of bed and into the car, I notice that my shadow dances across 3 jet black ravens, who eye me menacingly.  No bad omen could prepare me for this day…

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Input, Output, Communication Speeds

Input speeds for common languages and interfaces

When typing, we use approximately 50 keys.
On my keyboard at home, I’ve got the following set:

  • Content Keys (48) x2 = 96 ~=100
    • 26 English letters,
    • 12 purely punctuation keys (space, +-~[];’,./\),
    • 10 numbers,
  • 6 mode modifiers (shift, ctrl, alt, caps lock, insert, numlock)
  • 12 navigational keys (tab, enter, home, end, pageup, pagedown, escape, win/mac, up, down, left, right)
  • 2 content modifiers (delete, backspace)
  • 12 F-keys
  • 17 number pad (duplicates)

Each of the Content Keys has a secondary punctuation or Capital letter when the shift or capslock is pressed.

How fast are you?

Most speeds below have to do with the English language,
but I’d be interested in hearing from readers about other language speeds!

Typing (keyboard or typewriter):
English average speed – (41)-80 WPM – 217 WPM
My speed – 80WPM
Dvorak – (50-100WPM)?  – 170WPM
Colemak – 70-100WPM? – 136WPM

Speaking:
English spoken average -120 WPM – 180 WPM – 650! WPM
auctioneers can speak at about 250 wpm

Other communication methods:
Morse Code (CW) – 20 – 60 (Fast) – 75.6 wpm
Books on tape – 150-160 WPM
ASL translator requirement – 110-130 WPM
ASL signed – 200 WPM?
Stenography (used by captioners) – 240WPM
Steganography (used by crpytologists) – <10WPP (word per picture)

Texting: (challenges: one-hand? not dropping your phone)
Palm Graffiti – 10-20 WPM?
Palm Fitaly –  30-40WPM  up to 64.9 WPM
MessagEase – 10 – 50(fast) – 80.7 WPM
MS Word Flow – ~ 81 WPM
Flexy – 105 WPM
8pen
250WPM (practiced world record)??

Handwriting:
Longhand 22-31 WPM
Personal Shorthand: (used by Journalists)
Gregg – 100-175, 200 WPM

Related links:

Half-QWERTY One-handed texting

Escape Keyboard – Microsoft Research (one handed typing)

Here’s a relevant and helpful infographic that I found: (click for larger version)

average-typing-speed

Another Wasted Day

quote-a-day-without-laughter-is-a-day-wasted-charlie-chaplin-34903When I was small, mother said, “I always knew, someday you’ll do great things”.
Now I am older.  I have knowledge, training, experience.  I know how to troubleshoot an engine, deconstruct poetry, debug a computer.  I speak the languages of other countries, I read people’s faces and emotions and guess their next moves.  I read financial reports, strategize business plans, nothing surprises me.  And yet, nearing my 30th trip around the sun, I have done nothing of worth.

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Belief

MosaicI’ve been struggling with, and praying “help me in my unbelief” for a long time now. I guess I just haven’t got my shooting stars, or “red rose on the road” magical answer yet from above. For a long while, I acted first – “doing” in order to “know” God.  I served in a church, spent a lot of time reading and praying. During those moments, I felt close to God. But afterwards, or in between, I often felt that I was “faking” it, especially when the exhaustion and disappointments of life crowded around the edges of the worship stage, and waited for me in the wings.

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Zen Flow Music

2.7.1.33_nine_consciousnessI was chatting recently with my father, who has done a lot of reading both on the subjects of Zen Buddhism, and on the subject of creative flow. He, a writer and artist himself, mentioned several good books from a Russian scientist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi who has studied brain activities of individuals who were experiencing creative “flow”. Flow is described as the sort of the holy grail in the art, music, and creative writing scenes that allows a person a very heightened creative ability, heightened cognitive functions, and the ability to lose track of all time while working. The phenomenon is highly regarded both as a means of betterment (to create better works of art, better music, better writing, etc…) but also because it seems to release endorphins and be extremely enjoyable. Thus the person gets something accomplished at a higher than average quality level, doesn’t care how much time has passed, and feels extremely good afterwards.  What could be better?

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A perspective from the inside, looking out.