Print Story #67
Diary
By MillMan (Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:06:44 AM EST) materialism, silicon gadgetry, meditation (all tags)
LOOK AT THE TAGS, GENIUSES.


Materialism
New toy: PDA. The idea (I mean, beyond the toy aspect, which was the main idea to begin with) was to get a device to replace the internets functionality of my laptop when I'm running around town. The laptop, while only 5 lbs, really wears on ya when you're doing 5-6 miles of walking in an afternoon, which makes it a big brick when you're only using for an hour during your afternoon of running around.

So last Friday I did the normally geeky crap with it: used it as an IR remote for the TV and stereo (can't wait to cause trouble with that in public), connected to the internet with the built in 802.11b, and used it as a remote desktop with my media PC. On Saturday I found its coolest use, which I wasn't even aware of before I bought it: using my cell phone as a wireless gateway with bluetooth as a link. After a few google searches I figured out how this is done on Cingular's network. I already pay for unlimited internet with my cell phone as I have been using it to check my email at work as yahoo and google mail are blocked on the network, so everything was already in place. It works great. I used the whole setup today to conduct some non job related bidness in my car over lunch. With both items used together I've basically got a more configurable and open version of a blackberry.

So now that the configuration of my around-town-toys have changed, I will of course have to buy a new manpurse small messenger bag, probably one of those 12x12x2" dealies that all the cool kids carry these days.

silicon gadgetry
So while on the can this morning I noticed one of the usual trade mags sitting there, so I picked it up and found a BOM (Bill Of Material) for the ipod nano. Later I found their website which has breakdowns for other electronic devices like the xbox 360. As I've said before there is no magic in the nanopod, all the electronics in there are off the shelf components, with the exception of the processor probably being an ASIC (but with the majority of the chip likely coming from an existing purchasable product). All the "magic" is in the aesthetics and design, something that very few consumer electronics firms place enough emphasis on. Anyway if you have an EE background the webpage might be amusing.

meditation
I've been meaning to get into this for years, and finally last week I came across a link on mefi to a book on the subject and started reading. It's some flavor of Buddhism. I like their idea of finding truth through empirical observation / experience (to me that's the only way) and potential for cultural deprogramming, so I'm basically sold. After reading through the first exercise section, I spent 25 minutes trying to meditate. I sat on my bed with legs crossed and my back against the wall (my posture is terrible so I thought I'd start with that) and all told it went pretty well. I was able to control my breathing the whole time and made a reasonable first attempt at having my mind focused exclusively on the experience of the breathing. About 15 minutes in I got some nice "floaty" sensations, and after I was done I was very relaxed for the remainder of the evening. As I've been an unfocused ball of stress over the past two years, I think this is going to become a nightly activity.

Boy, if my mom reads this, she'll know for sure that I'm going to hell now.

< this 'hawk has GOT to go; ASK HUSI | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
#67 | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Join a Yoga class by cam (4.00 / 1) #1 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:21:42 AM EST
You feel good all round afterwards.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

Yoga by ucblockhead (4.00 / 1) #2 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:31:31 AM EST
Yoga originated as a way to train the body to be able to sit comfortably for long periods to facilitate meditation.
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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
Yeah by MillMan (2.00 / 0) #4 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:48:59 AM EST
Good for learning proper posture it seems.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
Skip the meditation by joh3n (4.00 / 3) #3 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:40:30 AM EST
And just eat the third donut.

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overeating leads to nirvana by MillMan (4.00 / 1) #5 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:49:56 AM EST
like everything worth doing, it isn't easy.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
Upon further meditation by georgeha (4.00 / 3) #6 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:51:00 AM EST
the third donut becomes one with you.


[ Parent ]
to be more specific by MillMan (4.00 / 2) #8 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:54:26 AM EST
it becomes one with your ass.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
How many calories by Rogerborg (2.00 / 0) #24 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:46:57 PM EST
In the concept of a third donut?

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Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
[ Parent ]
Satan, definitely satan (n/t) by Metatone (4.00 / 1) #7 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:51:29 AM EST


I learned TM years ago by calla (4.00 / 1) #9 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 11:21:48 AM EST
and it's probably kept me sane through difficult times.

TM is the only form of meditation that worked for me. They charge way to much to teach it to you though.

There's a book here that will teach you TM if you can wade through the author's philosophical stuff.


the meditation technique by calla (4.00 / 1) #11 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 11:46:27 AM EST
starts on page 63.


[ Parent ]
on meditation by 256 (4.00 / 1) #10 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 11:43:35 AM EST
i'm sure it is something that you can learn on your own, but I know I tried to teach myself from books on several occasions and didn't have any particular success until I started attending classes at the temple.

it is a powerful thing. meditation definitely sits apart from the vast majority of other vaguely mystical practices; it's brain effects are as real and observable (and opaque to our understanding) as the strongest drugs. but don't be surprised if you don't get out of it what you expect.

i also recommend looking into a more active form of meditation. i found that when i was first starting i had much greater success with half prostrate bowing meditation than with sitting meditation. and it doubles as a VERY complete workout.
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I don't think anyone's ever really died from smoking. --ni

I will probably attend classes by MillMan (2.00 / 0) #14 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:06:49 PM EST
somewhere down the line. I have few expectations - I was quite surprised to get the results I did last night, as it went beyond the basic calmness you can get by just sitting in place and not running around.

Do you still meditate? I seem to recall some stories you wrote about spending time as a student now that I think about it.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
i meditate rarely these days by 256 (4.00 / 1) #18 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:17:49 PM EST
the large scale mental optimization benefits from meditation that i valued could be so very easily negated by so many other things that i do in my daily life. and the more immediate transitory effects were of less interest to me as i was already a veritable messiah in the arts of stress avoidance and laidbackosity.

and you are probably thinking of this.
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I don't think anyone's ever really died from smoking. --ni

[ Parent ]
You quit? by Rogerborg (2.00 / 0) #25 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:48:48 PM EST
Some of us are on a schedule here, we don't need the context and self justification.

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Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
[ Parent ]
You said "prostrate bowing" by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #15 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:11:17 PM EST
I read "prostate bowling"
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Would you rather battle Klingons or trolls?
[ Parent ]
I feel intrigued. by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #17 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:15:35 PM EST
But wary.

Maybe it's because I had a nice big colonoscopy tube up my arse this morning.

[ Parent ]
Business or pleasure? by Rogerborg (2.00 / 0) #26 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 10:49:24 PM EST
It's going in your permanent record either way.

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Metus amatores matrum compescit, non clementia.
[ Parent ]
Well, by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #27 Tue Feb 28, 2006 at 02:13:10 AM EST
it involved opiates.

Still, you'll be pleased to know it was paid for by your taxes.

[ Parent ]
funny that by 256 (4.00 / 1) #20 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:18:50 PM EST
i actually type "prostate bowing" and caught it on an uncharacteristic reread-before-post
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I don't think anyone's ever really died from smoking. --ni
[ Parent ]
How often do you type 'prostate bowling'? by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #23 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 01:35:01 PM EST
I'm still intrigued by this amazing new-to-me sport that everyone else seems to take for granted.

Right, you missed the 'd' off typed. Never mind.

[ Parent ]
Which meditation book was it? by zarathus (4.00 / 1) #12 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:00:32 PM EST
Please post links, thank you very much.

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Blogger - n. Someone with nothing to say writing for someone with nothing to do.
meditation link by MillMan (2.00 / 0) #13 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:02:28 PM EST
forgot I had it here at work.

clicky

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
Can I read the teardown? by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #16 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:14:11 PM EST
Or do you have to have an EE background to get your permission (my background is that of a hardcore tinkerer.)?

I know what you mean about the addictiveness of the internet in your pocket. I certainly find myself surfing on the bog.

heh by MillMan (2.00 / 0) #19 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:18:25 PM EST
no elitism here, I just said EE as that's the general background knowledge typically required for understanding (although admittedly EE school is more math than practical application). What do you tinker with typically? I know maybe two people who do that, even though half the people I know have EE degrees.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
Maybe tinker's a bit much of a word for it. by ambrosen (4.00 / 1) #22 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 01:28:26 PM EST
I screw the odd thing up together (made laptops up from bits, replaced the screen on my phone (but managed to disconnect the camera at the same time), etc) with bits from ebay, and make plans for genuine projects in my mind, but rarely take it further.

My current daydreams are mainly about hacking together something from an NSLU2, so completely software based (except for desoldering the bit that halves the clock speed). They received a slight blow today, when I found out my USB Digital TV box doesn't seem to pick up any channels. I know not why.

[ Parent ]
mmm by LoppEar (4.00 / 1) #21 Mon Feb 27, 2006 at 12:39:36 PM EST
Good topics today, yes indeed.
  1. In a story I will try to relate here later tonight, I caused myself to need a new phone this weekend. Spent an enjoyable geekout time at the Cingular store, eventually persuading myself the W600i was the right choice (EDGE, BT, >VGA camera, I could care less about the MP3 player). Now that I've played with it I'm not sure my other phone (Nokia 6230) was working correctly for EDGE, as browsing on my 770 paired to this new phone feels much faster. As in, for browsing at a friend's apartment this weekend, it was easier and not frustrating to just pair over BT than to configure static IP for his non-DHCP wifi. Yay!
  2. Meditation, good for you, I agree with most of the other people so far: see if there is a temple nearby, or a yoga location that has separate sitting sessions; I've found walking meditation (kinhin) to be very effective, particularily in the middle of a longer sit; a good bell is amazing.



you need by LilFlightTest (2.00 / 0) #28 Tue Feb 28, 2006 at 05:55:57 PM EST
the CBBesque satchel. i have one, join the cool kids.
Send me to Austria!
#67 | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback