October 11, 2008

Saturday night

Posted in blogging, Reference, writing at 22:47 0 by gillsmoke

I do believe lame two point Oh was a perfect description of the events. Although there were several taboo topics of discussion, having Sling Blade summon security on me for my private cellphone call for fear of my sanity is probably the height of irony.

3.    Explain it
Why should anybody care about whatever you’re interested in? What is it that drives your interest. Wouldn’t it be cool if everybody knew about it? Now it’s your turn. He also suggests “skip to the fifth post” the first ones are the obligatory this is why I’m writing what I am. Start at the meat, go straight for the juicy bit. Turning back to me my blog is established but not constant. That might change but I doubt that. What do I blog about. Whatever strikes my fancy at the moment. My byline in the side column suggests I want to write. So here’s the why of it. I’ve read a couple of books and felt the WTF feeling rise up in me. Somebody got paid to write that? I could write a better story than that. But of course I can’t. I have no idea how to structure stuff, and when I verbally tell stories my wife’s eye visably glazes over in bordom.  Show not tell is not a strength of mine. Leaving hints is and I have been trying it out a little, didja notice (shut up, don’t tell, don’t tell, don’t tell)? I can ramble on about D&D for hours and sometimes do (My current bitch, Wizards of the Coast has not sent new membership cards. I got an email Friday saying the should arrive in 10 to 12 days). But I’ve got an EN World account that comes with a free blog for that. I’m not giving that the attention it requires. I may I may not. My other obsessions, if you stick around long enough you may get to find them.

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October 10, 2008

late night coffee

Posted in blogging, Random, Reference at 18:24 0 by gillsmoke

So what in the hell are you doing until 2am if you’re not at a bar? Playing Lux of course. Lux Delux is a Risk like game with lots of user support since I don’t have a lot of dispossabe income I have to be picky about where I plunk 20 dollars. I keep thinking I want to buy this game. The demo cripples you after 30 games but those 30 games are wonderful. Would you give up you lunch money for it? I think Im going to, jsut not today.

Merlin’s second point
2.    Daily
and he goes on to say that he doesn’t mean post every day he means work on you blog everyday. Obsessive reseach, working on posts, editing, comment managment, forum managment whatever. Kick it up a level. Make it a daily habit like checking email, do you remember a time when you didn’t do that? Today make your blog a part of your day. I have this month but I still need to go further. November is novel writing time and I’m undecided whether I will be posting it or not, I just might post word counts to make CRSE bitter.

October 9, 2008

From Merlin Mann’s blog talk

Posted in blogging, Reference at 21:15 0 by gillsmoke

He’s the one that got me started with a Hipster. I’ve got to tell you I use mine a little differently. He’s got a little stack that he processes daily. I’ve got a big stack that I use like a planner, with a scribbled note page on top that I process all the time. Ubiquitous capture is what I’m shooting for.

Back to his blog talk. It was at a blog confrence, these were people looking to make money by blogging. I’m not in that camp but what he had to say applies to me. How do you write a good blog? His answer is:

Find your obsession.
Every day, explain it to
one person you respect.
Edit everything, skip shortcuts,
and try not to be a dick.
Get Better.

He repeated the points several times breaking it down to:
1.    Obsession
2.    Daily
3.    Explain it
4.    One person
5.    Respect
6.    Edit it
7.    No Cheese
8.    No Dick
9.    Better

The first thing I did was make a Hipster card and add it to my stack. Covering his first point I’m obsessive about just about everything I come into contact with I have been at least daily adding cards to the Infinite Dvorak Deck for most of the year. I’ve never mentioned it here but it’s a interesting thought experiment. I am playing Living Forgotten Realms and I’m keeping track of three forums to stay on top of developments. I’ve started using Maptools to expand my play opportunities. I think I’ve convinced CRSE to do NaNoWriMo this year. her efforts last year have led to this current NaBloWriMo effort. I have become enamored to the Escape artists podcasts. So what do I focus my energy on?  Hmmm? Should I start 8 more blogs, one for every interest? I think not, I need Arthurian readers. Readers who can love me as a whole loaf instead of just slices. (name the movie in the comments and I’ll slap you with a trout) I’m an obsessive kind of guy. A coworker once quipped that I knew things that only 5 people knew in the Renaissance. If I do it’s because I’m curious and want to know more than I do. I owe a lot to Wikipedia giving me obscure information that has very little conversational value.
P.S. There’s also my girlfriend in Canada whispering secrets in my ear.

April 23, 2008

I dare you

Posted in Random, Reference at 10:05 0 by gillsmoke

If there is a mathematician in the readership I dare you you to translate the following into plain English:

“Any ring can be seen as a preadditive category with a single object. It is therefore natural to consider arbitrary preadditive categories to be generalizations of rings. And indeed, many definitions and theorems originally given for rings can be translated to this more general context. Additive functors between preadditive categories generalize the concept of ring homomorphism, and ideals in additive categories can be defined as sets of morphisms closed under addition and under composition with arbitrary morphisms.”

No those are not shiny rings they are Math rings, they are sets with certain properties that make them useful for mathematicians to study for long periods of time and make sweeping generalizations, like the preceding, that make me wonder if I learned anything in that class at all. Nope, I sure didn’t.

The reason I mention anything is because I truly feel that although Wikipedia has its faults, it is the fount of all information. If the snippet isn’t factual and or scholarly, then tell me where the error is and we’ll fix it together ok? and that is what make3s it perfect.

December 7, 2007

Gitmo Detainee rights

Posted in Reference tagged at 12:43 0 by gillsmoke

Open Comment to the Supreme Court.

although unlikely that “the High Court” would stoop to reading blogs let alone one that hasn’t been updated in a month, I feel compelled to address this to you. The constitution should guide all activities Americans pursue in the name of our country. If we are holding someone anywhere in the world Habeas Corpus should apply. I’ll ignore the shadowy area of guests of the US in another countries jail. Yes it is a tough burden on intelligence gathering. However it puts the US on a higher moral authority. Consider the opposite direction. What if China or Russia rounded up independent CIA contractors around the world and just held them out of the light of day, and branded them “Espionage Agents working against the state”. We would work night and day to fight for their release. Right now my government is doing things we only think of happening “over there” in dictatorships and. This is one of those cases. The US follows it’s own laws. Unless of course you happen to be suspected of being a terrorist, then anything goes.
I beg of you to do the right thing. Habeas Corpus applies for the US authorities in all cases, evenly applied. If they have been arrested for being a terrorist try them as such. If they have been arrested as a material witness let them go.
This president has done more to reduce the moral standing and decay personal freedoms than any before. Our preemptive strike has weakened our position around the world. You can start the pendulum moving in the other direction.

June 27, 2007

Slayer

Posted in Random, Reference at 19:16 0 by gillsmoke

So Slayer is today’s featured article on Wikipedia.

Yes that Slayer. The one you don’t let your kids listen to. I love them and now legions of new people people might start listening.

Many of my coworkers doubt the veracity, or quality of information. Their fears are founded on the mistaken belief that if everyone can make changes then quality of the data must be flawed. I try to point out the peer review aspect of medical literature and that most encyclopedias are formed in a similar manner. Submit, edit, review, publish, just now you can control over your article. It’s magic. It’s humanity at it’s best. Don’t believe me look up Christ, or Star Trek, or Microsoft. Then try it in a regular encyclopedia. Wikipedia wins.

October 28, 2006

The Snowflake trail

Posted in NaNoWriMo, Reference, writing at 22:38 0 by gillsmoke

So How is that novel coming along? Not as far as I need. I think I should have completed step 7 of “The Snowflake Method” (insert dramatic riff here) by now. Now I could complain about the support I have been given to be creative , but CRSE’s and the kids have been great. Or I can mention that I am the principle worker bee (not having ADD and all) at our house, but I have not done anything, in fact the entropy is begining to overwhelm me. So what is it, where have I been? I have been nonproductively cruising the NaNo boards. I leave the ocasional comment on the @$% Malkavian Mind game thread. Read and reread the Novel dares and the SciFi dares again and again. I am looking for something and like I panicked on OCT second, there is no way for me to read it all. Must stop reading, must do “The Snowflake Method” (insert dramatic riff here) now.