Thursday, November 23, 2017

TG 2017

Carol and I were grateful for an invitation from the Bartons to share their Thanksgiving. Tara used to babysit for their kids.  Patrick and I were co-workers with O'Reilly School.

Now I'm back in my personal workspace (PWS) plowing through some instruction videos.  I did about two hours researching wars in the former Yugoslavia first.  That came up during dinner, as the war crimes trials in The Hague are just coming to a conclusion around now.

I'm thinking my next Python course should look at Bitcoin more, as an example of (a) applied cryptography and (b) using a complex API.  If you've followed me on math-teach at all, I've been pushed for more crypto along a high school DM (digital math) track.

The Bartons have a new adult dog named Quinn.  I've been getting time with Quinn when Patrick brings him to Mt. Tabor, a popular walk for a lot of us.

Tomorrow I'm up early, for travel out of state.

I didn't know that bokeh in photography meant peripheral blur, i.e. there's a contrasting focus on "what's relevant".  That gets me thinking of the Synergetics "sphere of relevance" meme, a system attuned to a frequency that dismisses a bokeh of twilight zone data.

Systems, in Synergetics, have a visual representation as spherical objects.  If you read Peter Sloterdijk's stuff, you'll get a workout thinking with this metaphor.  That could help make Synergetics useful, as a tool.

Friday, November 17, 2017


Python Lab

I needn't have conclusions regarding UFOs in order to pay attention to reports. In this Python lab, I use a UFO reports database as a means of introducing the DB API i.e. "this is how we talk to a SQL engine". I'm not aiming to settle any disputes.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Old Feuds

Buried in some distant past already, the prehistoric origins of Scientology, in science fiction writings by the same author.  A shift of gear, a change in tenor (or tense), and a new religion pitched a big tent, its founder a legend in his own time.

As cultural historians have shown, the culture was hungry for healing, having been through some bruising battles, literally as well as metaphysically.  Civil Rights were hard won, as we feel more acutely when the clock starts running backward.

A core tenant of Scientology goes back to P.D. Ouspensky and others:  taking the negative charge off of memories takes Work.  Maurice Nicoll, a Jungian Scots following in O's footsteps, capitalized Work the same way.

Then est came along and reiterated various practices, though certainly not auditing and e-meters and without the business model of a religion.  Many in the Scientology camp felt compelled to think in terms of a turf battle.  That's one of the old feuds.

A hit piece against Erhard by mainstream media, somewhat baseless, showed that money and politics were hard at work, seeking to keep some trends in check.  Bucky was fighting alongside Erhard around then.  You might wanna dig into that story sometime, if curious.

Another feud is between the reverent and irreverent more generally.  As one who grew up reading MAD Magazine as an alternative to Meeting for Worship (I'd go both ways), the irreverence of the Church of the Subgenius was sure to resonate.

I'm glad the Kickstarter project, to get the documentary out there, got funded.  I pledged my $30.

As these blogs disclose, I did volunteer work for the Centers Network around the time I enrolled in est, in my Princeton through St. Dominic years.  My friend Ray Simon was a big fan of Hubbard and Erhard both.  I've told that story.

Not just the struggle for Civil Rights across "races" but across generations.  Did these adults who thought a certain way have the right to derail young lives by sending kids to fight in the jungles of Southeast Asia against their will?  What was the rationale?  To fight for freedom?

Muhammad Ali shows up, along with Malcolm X and Father Divine, as a bridge figure, taking us closer to MLK's dream of a post-apartheid America.

The Jungians have their own leading towards pacifist strategies.  Unlike Quakerism, the Jungian tradition is more a profession than a religion.  These two strands intertwine nonetheless.  When I'm tempted to feed into religion, I'm reminded of my existing outlets.  Praise Bob.

Monday, November 06, 2017

Another HP4E Story

Welcome to another episode of Hexapents for Everybody.  What's a hexapent?  Most simply, the Adidas soccer ball pattern, also found in Carbon-60, the buckminsterfullerene molecule.  FIFA appears to have moved on to a new pattern, but that's neither here nor there.

The topology at work is such that those twelve pentagons, evenly distributed on the classic soccer ball, might be more randomly distributed, even as the number of hexagons is allowed to proliferate ("higher frequency").  Nor are we limited to twelve pentagons if straying from a purely hexapent pattern. Why not allow squares too?

Adrian Rossiter of Antiprism fame has shared such a construction in the window below.

What's fortuitous for our HP4E campaign is we don't need the petitioned bureaucracy behind public road signage to cave, and show pentagons going forward.  We use the discrepancy, now enshrined, to suggest a productive thought process, a new thoroughfare.

Keep those signs exactly as they are, along with any number of similar exhibits suggesting unfamiliarity with basic principles of Synergetics, and leverage that circumstance to promote the missing ingredient.  The lack begets its antibody, the corresponding knowledge.

Thursday, November 02, 2017

Another Kirby

I'm not saying I don't see similarities, in that we're both pink and round, and I can be something of a demon in the kitchen, occasionally breaking things (Selma could tell you).

However, we should allow that's Kirby's strategy, above, of unifying opposites, is the time-tested remedy of alchemists. Maybe he stayed a little on the too hyper side, but then it's easy to second guess from the sidelines.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Catching Up

Brochure at Hop House

I claim to enjoy browsing a lot, since well before web browsers, but when do I get the time?  Well, today for example, I left my Stetson at Hop House and used that as an excuse to wander on to Common Ground, the coffee shop with the most magazines on upper Hawthorne.

I ordered a whole pot of coffee, to counteract the beers, and read up on Sleep Science, VP Pence, and former US president Hoover, not necessarily in that order.  This was all in the one issue of New Yorker, October 23, 2017.

At the Hop House, with Glenn, I picked up a pamphlet on Falun Dafa. I've been looking at this practice through a framework of comparisons with Hizmet.

Both religious movements were at first embraced by their respective governments, Turk and Chinese, then demonized.  Turkey holds US citizens hostage hoping to extradite Gulen in exchange.

I was unaware that Hoover had been a mining engineer.  His determination to feed Belgium at the height of the blockade jibed with Human Smoke and his Quaker values.  He seemed happiest and/or most fulfilled when serving as some kind of chief of logistics.

I'll need to cycle back through his bio again soon.

Mike Pence, per this New Yorker analysis, has always been interested in serving as a US president.  He's a heartbeat away at this moment, but at a time when said high office is waning in power?  The west coast has escaped Prohibition (the later chapter) and no longer supports the Drug Wars unless that means against McKesson etc.

I don't just browse print media however.  Last night I was half comatose letting Youtube keep picking the next one.  I'd surface from my somnolent state from time to time, curious what I'd been brainwashing myself with.  Louis Farrakhan?  Just his fans?  Back to dream land.

I have a big screen facing me, while I recline on the futon couch.

I'm also active on my Kindle these days reading a Hoover Institution fellow's book from the 1990s, Inside American Education by Thomas Sowell.

He seems respectful of Bayard Rustin, who had Freedom House connections.  Freedom House is quoted in that Falun Gong brochure, attesting to the reality of organ harvesting.  That calls to mind another Youtube.

I visited Indiana around the time Pence made himself more enemies in the alt-gender community.  I guess it's OK with him to do that.  He defines himself as rigidly parochial Christian, not a cosmopolitan.

Glenn and I watched Portland Timbers win the Cascadia Cup from Back Stage / Bagdad.

Dinner with mom at Thanh Thao.  Need sleep.

Timbers win Cascadia Cup

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Social Contracts

A lot of journalists are reporting that, given the Equifax data breach, banks are now off the hook if they mistake you for me, and open an account for the wrong person.  Who can really tell these days right?

I say "nice try" but the rules have changed, given now we know what they told us was secret no longer is.  So issue new credentials?  Think of new ways to establish trust?  The bitcoin people do this all the time, and yet only get flak for it from the supposedly security-minded banks.

Now that we all know an identity is easy to forge, that currency, trafficked in by Equifax, has been thoroughly debased.  Don't believe lawyers who say banks are protected from complicity in fraud if they do not exercise due diligence.

What due diligence meant then, and what it means now, given the balls that've been dropped, is a whole new ball game.  Many conventional / routine transactions may no longer have that flavor.  It's not just "the masses" who've realized the credit game has turned some corner.
Glenn and I watched the Timbers win the Cascadia Cup.

Timbers win Cascadia Cup

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Friday, October 13, 2017

October 13


In the year 2000 on this day, on one of many trips to nearby Bloemfontein, my parents, in their Kia SUV, encountered a pickup coming the other way in their lane.

I flew to South Africa.  Mom had survived.

We remember Jack on this day.  I arranged for his memorial service in Maseru and was graciously hosted and helped by many who knew him.

My sister came after about a month and took over, helping Carol get back to the Pacific coast, where she lives today.

Dad had a pacemaker and low blood pressure, so chances are he wouldn't have made it to today. Women outlive their men for the most part.

Here's a link to an on-line bio.