“It’s easy to get enough rest if no one else wakes up early and the village goes dead during afternoon naptime. It helps that the cheapest, most accessible foods are also the most healthful — and that your ancestors have spent centuries developing ways to make them taste good. It’s hard to get through the day in Ikaria without walking up 20 hills. You’re not likely to ever feel the existential pain of not belonging or even the simple stress of arriving late. Your community makes sure you’ll always have something to eat, but peer pressure will get you to contribute something too. You’re going to grow a garden, because that’s what your parents did, and that’s what your neighbors are doing. You’re less likely to be a victim of crime because everyone at once is a busybody and feels as if he’s being watched. At day’s end, you’ll share a cup of the seasonal herbal tea with your neighbor because that’s what he’s serving. Several glasses of wine may follow the tea, but you’ll drink them in the company of good friends. On Sunday, you’ll attend church, and you’ll fast before Orthodox feast days. Even if you’re antisocial, you’ll never be entirely alone. Your neighbors will cajole you out of your house for the village festival to eat your portion of goat meat.”
براسي في حب وثورة وتفجيرات
بس يمكن في دبابات
أديه بدا الروسية لتخلص هالرصاصات؟
an excerpt from this awesome post.
“A few years ago, I read some interesting stuff on periodical cicadas. We generally don’t see a lot of these little guys as they spend the vast majority of their lives quietly tunneling away underground and munching on tree roots.
However, depending on the species, every 7, 13, or 17 years these periodical cicadas simultaneously emerge en masse, transform into noisy, flying creatures, find a mate, and die not long after.
While this is a rather rock’n’roll ending for our nerdy cicada, it raises an obvious question: Is it just by chance that they adopted 7, 11, or 13-year life cycles, or are those numbers somehow special?
As it turns out, these numbers have something in common. They’re all prime numbers—numbers that can only be divided by themselves and 1 (that is,
1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, 13, 17, 19, 23, and so on).
But why does that matter?
Research has shown that the population of creatures that eat cicadas — typically birds, spiders, wasps, fish and snakes — often have shorter 2 – 6 year cycles of boom and bust.
So, if our cicadas were to emerge, say, every 12 years, any predator that works in either 2, 3, 4 or 6 year cycles would be able to synchronize their boom years with this regular cicada feast. In fact, they’d probably name a public holiday after it called Cicada Day.
That’s not much fun if you’re a cicada.
On the other hand, if a brood of 17-year cicadas was unlucky enough to emerge during a bumper 3-year wasp season, it will be 51 years before that event occurs again. In the intervening years, our cicadas can happily emerge in their tens of thousands, completely overwhelm the local predator population, and be mostly left in peace.
Resourceful little guys, eh?”
Play Poker, Not Chess
“Not chess, Mr. Spock. Poker. Do you know the game?”
In one of my all-time favorite Star Trek episodes, Kirk and his crew face down an unknown vessel from a group calling themselves the “First Federation.” Threats from the vessel escalate until it seems that the destruction of the Enterprise is imminent. Kirk asks Spock for options, who replies that the Enterprise has been playing a game of chess, and now there are no winning moves left. Kirk counters that they shouldn’t play chess – they should play poker. He then bluffs the ship by telling them that the Enterprise has a substance in its hull called “corbomite” which will reflect the energy of any weapon back against an attacker. This begins a series of actions that enables the Enterprise crew to establish peaceful relations with the First Federation.
I love chess as much as the next geek, but chess is often taken too seriously as a metaphor for leadership strategy. For all of its intricacies, chess is a game of defined rules that can be mathematically determined. It’s ultimately a game of boxes and limitations. A far better analogy to strategy is poker, not chess. Life is a game of probabilities, not defined rules. And often understanding your opponents is a much greater advantage than the cards you have in your hand. It was knowledge of his opponent that allowed Kirk to defeat Khan in Star Trek II by exploiting Khan’s two-dimensional thinking. Bluffs, tells, and bets are all a big part of real-life strategy. Playing that strategy with an eye to the psychology of our competitors, not just the rules and circumstances of the game can often lead to better outcomes than following the rigid lines of chess.
December 21, 2011 at 4:58pm
“… But most types of work have aspects one doesn’t like, because most types of work consist of doing things for other people, and it’s very unlikely that the tasks imposed by their needs will happen to align exactly with what you want to do.”
it’s been over a year now, we’re just getting started.
thanks for all the fish
November 26, 2011 at 10:51pm
Blues and jazz musicians have long been enabled by a kind of “open source” culture, in which pre-existing melodic fragments and larger musical frameworks are freely reworked.
We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed. Frankly I have never yet engaged in a direct action movement that was “well timed,” according to the timetable of those who have not suffered unduly from the disease of segregation. For years now I have heard the word “Wait!” It rings in the ear of every Negro with a piercing familiarity. This “wait” has almost always meant “never.” We must come to see with the distinguished jurist of yesterday that “justice too long delayed is justice denied”.
— Martin Luther King (via seleucid)
Our industry, the global programming community, is fashion-driven to a degree that would embarrass haute couture designers from New York to Paris. We’re slaves to fashion. Fashion dictates the programming languages people study in school, the languages employers hire for, the languages that get to be in books on shelves. A naive outsider might wonder if the quality of a language matters a little, just a teeny bit at least, but in the real world fashion trumps all.