Print Story Cyclical Ritual
Diary
By Kellnerin (Tue Jan 01, 2013 at 07:53:57 PM EST) (all tags)
I have this idea that I write calendar-flipping diaries each year, but looking back at my posting history it turns out I haven't done it for the past few years.

Oh well.



I UPDATED MY LinkedIn profile the other day. There's an illustrator I once commissioned cover art from long ago, back during my origami-folding gig, who recently got in touch (via my AE address, of all places) and wanted to friend me on LinkedIn. I ignored the invite.

It's made me realize how distant I feel from those dead-tree publishing days. I don't think editor will ever not be part of my self-identity, but these days it tends to be in a different context, outside of that machine. I'm used to a different set of mechanisms now and have become a differently shaped (mutable, extensible) cog.

I tend to think of 2012 as full of change -- "the year I had 4 employers," not to mention the election and the non-ending of the world, and so on. But on the zoomed-out scale, I think it'll just be a slight squiggle in my overall trajectory. Where I am today doesn't feel like a radical shift from where I was last year, though on the whole I think the changes, the self-transplantation from one environment into another, has been a good thing.

It's easy to be distracted by seemingly big changes, but every so often I'm struck by the constant evolution of things, of lives, of selves. Cells that die while others are born. New memories formed while others fade or morph into a new version of truth. The imperceptible shifting of habits.

I am slowly iterating.


WORK STORY: Colleague Harry and I were talking the other day about Mesopotamia, and the associations with the region that came to mind.

"Well, I think immediately of Hittites," he said.

"Hittites? Not Sumerians? Hittites weren't even in Mesopotamia -- they're from Anatolia."

(Wikipedia, of course, notes that they did at some point inhabit "Upper Mesopotamia" even though I maintain it doesn't really count.)

Anyway, this led to an ongoing debate about which tribe was better, the Hittites or the Sumerians. Harry maintained that his Hittites would beat up the nerdy Sumerians "carving on their little clay tablets" without breaking a sweat. I countered that he was making a rather large assumption that the arena of competition was a military one.

"Well, it's obvious, isn't it? What else would it be? You're just too intellectual about it all. I come from a tradition of warriors who would paint themselves blue and go conquer neighboring tribes."

"Whereas my culture values things like, I don't know, the contributions that a people have made to civilization."

"I get that," he nodded. "And I feel for you, I really do."

Anyway, this caricature of Hittites and Sumerians (and disregard for the fact that their civilizations flourished during entirely different periods of history) has turned into a handy shorthand, especially in the wake of acquisition, where the merging of our product group with other groups previously existing in $ParentCompany is not unlike the clash of two proud civilizations. Occasionally, as Harry expresses an opinion on something, I'll tell him, "That's very Hittite of you."


IT SEEMS LIKE a long time ago, but on reviewing my Twitter history (!) it was only February (the beginning of the brief Red Fish era) when I created a playlist as a soundtrack for achieving escape velocity. New personal soundtracks have cycled through my CD players and playlists since then. I revisited it over the holidays, when I went through a period of re-loving all the things I've ever loved and forgotten were awesome.

One of the more obscure tracks on the list was by a band I discovered through D. (Is there a German word for pointing someone to a song via a YouTube video of a live performance on Second Life? Or is that just "einundzwanzigsten Jahrhundert"?)

I have a fondness for "un-" words to begin with, but I think what I love most about the line, "I can't earn your love; it's unconditional" is the pronouns and how they are flipped from the way they are deployed in 90% of love songs. ("Unconditional" is also one of those words that tends to go with only a few other words: "love" and "surrender"; like the way "profusely" only ever seems to modify "bleed" and "apologize.")


SPEAKING OF UN-words ... wait, let me back up.

The new year is traditionally a time for reflection and aspiration, though I've never been one for resolutions. So I decided to create a GitHub project instead.

The reasons are many and frivolous. I don't even know how to use git, and there is as of yet no actual repository, but opening up a new sandbox seemed like the thing to do. Like most open projects,* it is likely to fizzle in a pre-alpha state, but there it is.

Unreliable. Won't you join and help me feel less silly about the whole endeavor?


* Like most new year's resolutions, too.

< home networking | New building, new phone, new roof, new NYE tradition, >
Cyclical Ritual | 24 comments (24 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
git... by ana (2.00 / 0) #1 Tue Jan 01, 2013 at 08:21:15 PM EST
I've heard the hype from the true believers. But the idea of creating fiction in commit messages is intriguing. And I don't know git at all, except by reputation. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

the idea feels by garlic (4.00 / 1) #6 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:41:22 AM EST
like it'd be good. Like Ian Banks messages between 2 culture ships. Or a captains log sort of report.


[ Parent ]
There's an episode... by ana (2.00 / 0) #7 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:52:13 AM EST
of ST:TNG in which they keep reliving the same day again and again with minor variations, due to a catastrophe at the end of the day. One could imagine commit messages after each editing of reality. Not the actual captain's log, but maybe scriptwriters' asides. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
were you ... by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #10 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:35:17 PM EST
the one who told me about Hg? D uses that for some projects now. I don't particularly want to get into that holy war ... 2012 was also "the year I used three source control systems" (note: not repositories, actually different systems. One of them was CVS!) I feel the need to collect more, apparently.

Anyway, you should sign up if intrigued. We will surely need cheerleaders and hangers-on in addition to actual committers, so actual interaction with git may not be required.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician

[ Parent ]
Probably. by ana (2.00 / 0) #15 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:57:40 PM EST
The other two guys in my group, who together have managed a large software project, settled on mercurial after trying CVS and a bunch of others.

I'll have another look at it later, to see if I can figure out how to sign up. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
I find it strange by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #18 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:03:33 PM EST
that a project would consider both CVS and mercurial for source control. The very existence of the latter suggests a time period where CVS was already dying (Netcraft confirmed, etc.) It well and truly boggled my mind to use it in 2012.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician
[ Parent ]
Moving... by ana (4.00 / 1) #19 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:16:25 PM EST
from one system to the other has been majorly painful, requiring reworking all the automagical testing stuff, apparently. So they've been slowly working through things as they needed porting or fixing or whatever. I can imagine legacy code might be deemed not worth the trouble of changing over. 

I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
That spotify worked on my phone by Scrymarch (2.00 / 0) #2 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 04:12:27 AM EST
I consider this a good omen.

Iambic Web Certified

made sure to click by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #11 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:37:13 PM EST
the "enable for Scrymarch" option.

Glad you signed up. You were kind of obligated to ...

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician

[ Parent ]
Hittites by jimgon (2.00 / 0) #3 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 06:40:38 AM EST
Weren't they one of the tribes conquered by the Israelites in the conquest of the lands of Canaan in the Bible?




---------------
Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
IIRC by Herring (4.00 / 1) #4 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 06:43:28 AM EST
the original husband of Bathsheba was Uriah the Hittite - one of David's allies and soldiers. This may not be 100% factually accurate though.

christ, we're all old now - StackyMcRacky
[ Parent ]
Don't question the Bible by jimgon (2.00 / 0) #16 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:23:43 PM EST
Lest ye be known to be a heathen.




---------------
Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
[ Parent ]
they were actual people by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #12 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:39:55 PM EST
who didn't call themselves Hittites. Sez Wikipedia, "Natively, they referred to their land as Hatti, and to their language as Nesili (the language of Nesa). The conventional name "Hittites" is due to their initial identification with the Biblical Hittites in 19th century archaeology."

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician
[ Parent ]
bleeding unconditionally ... by BlueOregon (2.00 / 0) #5 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:56:22 AM EST
... loving profusely?

I like mixing down the words. It appears I've fallen on the wagon.

Apropos GitHub ... I may have to join. Also, should we stick a fork in 'Kaavya'? Metaforkily speaking. If so ... what next? If not ... carry off.

Aside: the Sumerian vs. Hittite thing has me thinking of a boiary I've been meaning to write for a while.

surrender profusely! by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #13 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:44:09 PM EST
You (may), indeed, have to join. It is only a wiki edit away.

It might be time to fork Kaavya, so to speak.

Consider me subscribed to your Mesopotamian newsletter.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician

[ Parent ]
Also by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #8 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:59:03 AM EST
Slowly iterating sounds like a diary title.

Also: Mesopotamians.

Iambic Web Certified

"Slowly iterating [...]" - Question by BlueOregon (4.00 / 1) #9 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:36:46 AM EST
Was that more:
- "Time flies like an arrow"
or
- "Fruit flies like bananas."
?

I like parsing it both ways.

[ Parent ]
Slowly iterating sounds like a viscous circle. by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #17 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:38:18 PM EST


Iambic Web Certified

[ Parent ]
"Slowly Iterating" by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #14 Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 02:45:37 PM EST
... could also be a title for a work of commit-message fiction.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician
[ Parent ]
Origami gig? by Tonatiuh (2.00 / 0) #20 Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 12:44:46 PM EST
ORIGAMI GIG?

Now I am curious.

I used to work by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #21 Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 08:35:06 PM EST
at an "Asian interest" publisher that did a lot of origami books. (Also: martial arts, Eastern spirituality that occasionally shaded into new age garbage, cookbooks, some fiction and random things that didn't really fit into the supposed mission of the imprint). One of the funnest things I've ever been paid to do is to try out the origami instructions (and illustrations) from our authors to make sure they were clear enough to follow. I think there's a version of my professional bio that has a line like, "She has been a writer, editor, copyeditor, proofreader, and origami test folder."

If you want a really cool origami gig, you should be Michael LaFosse. Not only does he have his own origami studio where he makes hardcore sculptures out of his own paper, but his editor would come to production meetings and say "Michael isn't available this week. He's folding stuff for NASA." Where "stuff" was most likely superthin metal around a joint of some device to be shot into space.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician

[ Parent ]
That could be a solar sail by georgeha (4.00 / 2) #22 Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 10:08:43 AM EST
at least some of Michael LaFosse's work.

For my senior project in college we did a solar sail, folding up a square of mylar into a small package that unrolled made for a nice proof of concept.


[ Parent ]
zwei Leben zeigen by 256 (2.00 / 0) #23 Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 04:41:10 PM EST
it's almost epidematic how much I keep wishing second life was a real thing.
---
I don't think anyone's ever really died from smoking. --ni
Wouldn't that be "zweite Leben"? by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #24 Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 10:38:37 PM EST
How real do you want it to be? Virtual reality, holodeck, or the full-on consciousness-uploading, reality-manipulating experience?

Tomorrow's AE story actually reminds me of SL a little, at least in the ability to try on other identities. I guess everyone has a different second life fantasy. Myself, I have trouble keeping track of my first life.

--
"Plans aren't check lists, they are loose frameworks for what's going to go wrong." -- technician

[ Parent ]
Cyclical Ritual | 24 comments (24 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback