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By TheophileEscargot (Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 03:09:53 AM EST) Reading, MLP (all tags)
Reading: "Thatcher Stole My Trousers". Links.


What I'm Reading
Finished Thatcher Stole My Trousers, the second volume of comedian Alexei Sayle's autobiography. First half is a bit weak, with languid comic descriptions of working a succession of crap jobs and studying in London in the Seventies. Lots of descriptions of how horrible consumer products and customer service. Despite his Marxism don't think he realises how appealing a world of cheap rents and full employment can seem, even in a world of surly B&B owners and horrible wallpaper.

Second half is a lot more interesting as he covers the start of Alternative Comedy in the UK. He was the MC of the Comedy Store also describes working on the Young Ones. Despite the flaws it was definitely a shakeup from the stale previous state of standup comedy.

Overall, fairly interesting, quite funny, not quite as good as the first.

Links
Socioeconomics. Why not worker-directors?

Articles. Defining the Archaelogical Normal. When did rarity start to equal greatness for beers?

Random. Monsters of the Internet. Amasunzu hairstyle.

Trump Politics. Hamilton’ Shames Running Mate of Man Who Believes the Same Things as Alexander Hamilton. Trump’s Plan to Eliminate NASA Climate Research Is Ill-Informed and Dangerous. Crap article by Lord Ashcroft with a good paragraph:

In just over a decade of research, I have made something of a study of how losing political movements react to defeat. Though circumstances differ, most have one thing in common: they claim, at least inwardly, a moral victory. This is particularly the case for parties that have been ejected from government. They comfort themselves with the notion that the electorate did not properly appreciate their achievements in office, failed to understand what was at stake, had been bamboozled by a partisan media, and did not realise the horrors that lay in store for them under the incoming administration. It follows that the voters will come flocking back just as soon as they recognise their terrible error of judgment – and that in the meantime, the party need only hold firm to its previous positions, though perhaps with a bit more presentational pizzazz.

Sci/Tech. New "human-centred" programming language, via.

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Darling fascist bully-boy, give me some more money you bastard | 16 comments (16 topical, 0 hidden)
Interesting potentia tension around beer rarity... by Metatone (4.00 / 2) #1 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 04:11:50 AM EST
I've been told by a craft brewer that a lot of production (including his) was on the edge of reliability. Any lower volume and he said batch variation gets much higher.

Maybe by ucblockhead (4.00 / 1) #7 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 03:16:42 PM EST
Lagunitas is exploding but so far their quality has kept up.
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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman
[ Parent ]
From the sound of it by wumpus (4.00 / 1) #12 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 10:28:20 PM EST
it would make sense to exploit that variation. There's a good chance that is a few rare beers are so loved. I suspect that the variation simply hit exactly what a few key reviewers absolutely loved, and thus a legend was born. There must be a ton of low-volume breweries out there (probably brew-pubs with a small bottling operation) and that long tail can dominate any sufficiently small percentage.

More likely, it was the "Coors effect" (oddly enough, I think I drank plenty of Coors on the East Coast in the 80s, although this might have been mostly due to relying on the senior in the dorm to buy the beer).

Wumpus

[ Parent ]
The thing is by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #13 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 11:35:24 PM EST
Beer production scales relatively well.

If the 2009 Bordeaux is great, there are only so many bottles to go round. If a 12 year old sherry-finished single malt is wonderful, you can start making lots of it, but it won't be available for another 12 years. Quickly scaling production is hard to impossible.

If everyone loves a great beer though, you can make more of it next time. It sounds like they're trying to imitate the markets for high priced wine or whisky without the actual justification for it.
--
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?

[ Parent ]
Beer by ana (4.00 / 2) #2 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 07:49:04 AM EST
When I was a kid in Colorado in the 1970s, Coors had this thing going on where they refused to ship beer to the eastern half (roughly) of the USA. So people would do road trips, come to Colorado, and go home with a cooler full of Coors.

Which bemused us greatly, because, at least in Colorado, even in the 1970s Coors was not exactly good beer. It was rarity that made it so.

Or get rabies. Also don't do that. --scrymarch

Smokey and the Bandit by jimgon (4.00 / 5) #10 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 06:12:14 PM EST
Smokey and the Bandit would not be the great film it is without that ban on Coors East of the Mississippi.   




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
[ Parent ]
Worker-Directors by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #3 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 08:24:40 AM EST
I'm amused that a self professed libertarian is disappointed that the Prime Minister has decided not to use the power of the state to force corporations to do something.  That and he wrote, "not so much because I'm a socialist but because I'm a libertarian."  As if there are not a range of political and economic positions between those two.  I really couldn't pay attention to the article after that.   




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
He usually describes himself as a Marxist by TheophileEscargot (4.00 / 1) #6 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 12:56:42 PM EST
Insofar as that means anything. Anarchists sometimes describe themselves as "libertarian socialists".
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
Anarchist by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #11 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 06:13:45 PM EST
Anarchist. That explains a lot then.   




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
[ Parent ]
That Hamilton v. Lin Manuel's Hamilton link ... by lm (4.00 / 4) #4 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 09:09:39 AM EST
First, it completely ignores the issue Brandon Victor Dixon called Mike Pence out on, inclusivity with regards to ways of life. To whit:

We, sir, we are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights, sir. But we truly hope this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and work on behalf of all of us. All of us. Again, we truly thank you truly for seeing this show, this wonderful American story told by a diverse group of men and women of different colors, creeds and orientations.

Then Holt goes on to argue Hamilton's position against Trump rather than differences with Mike Pence, who has remarkably different views than Trump, especially on the issues mentioned in the article like free trade and foreign interventionism. It's exceedingly odd that Pence's differences with Trump on these issues weren't brought up at all.

The article also completely ignores the historical context of Hamilton's economic views. Young America's economic well being did depend on high tariffs and protectionism. This is no longer the case. See Ha-Joon Chang's Bad Samaritans for the argument that when first developing nations need a protectionist trade policy but as their economy matures benefit from free trade.

Lastly, Holt does a fair amount of cherry picking. Anyone who has read Chernow's biography of Hamilton would come away unimpressed with Holt's handling of those Hamilton quotes.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
Hamilton by Scrymarch (4.00 / 3) #5 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 09:10:26 AM EST
I would have more sympathy for that argument if the so-called shaming wasn't 1/ asking the audience to stop booing 2/ thanking the VPE for coming 3/ saying I hope you govern for all Americans.

Policy wise there is a point somewhere in there, if you ignore this clause "as well against the intrigues of ambitious individuals who aspired to the tyranny" ...

Iambic Web Certified

Eve by dark nowhere (4.00 / 2) #8 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 03:36:04 PM EST
People have been trying this sort of thing since the invention of the programming language. I've never seen anyone do better than say SmallTalk.

My observation is that none of these approaches have removed the need for detailed understanding of the inner mechanics you are working with. But boy do they try to hide it. For real work, this is a disservice.

I have lost almost all faith in this tack. People like Alan Kay prioritize things better and understand better how to accomplish these ends. So there's a measure of hope there. But I'm starting to think that by the time anything comes of this line of attack, it will have been solved from a different angle—the one that involves you describing the program to your computer and getting on with your life.

See you, space cowboy.

Yeah by ucblockhead (4.00 / 2) #9 Sun Nov 27, 2016 at 05:43:01 PM EST
My first reaction was that the developers were either specifically avoiding the term "object oriented" or worse, didn't know that that's what they were doing.

I once tried the literate programming thing two decades ago and quickly came to the conclusion that the reason people don't document isn't because the tools are bad but rather because no one wants to type lots of words.

For a language "designed for humans", the syntax seems arcane.  
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[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman

[ Parent ]
Pet hate by Herring (4.00 / 2) #14 Thu Dec 01, 2016 at 03:02:15 PM EST
Languages which, when you do something boneheaded, rather than telling you so, they do something. Not always something predictable. Yes, I'm looking at you PHP.

One C++ error that stays with me was the creation of a particular "special" programmer and did the sort of same thing by surrounding a call with try { thing(); } catch(...) { }. It swallowed all errors and appeared to carry on regardless. Only much later in the process did the failure show because "thing()" hadn't run its course.

I hate Javascript too for encouraging people to write random snippets of code which appear to be in the middle of another function but don't actually execute until a callback from some external stimulus not under the programmer's control. Pointers to functions people.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]
Or there's this... by ana (4.00 / 2) #15 Thu Dec 01, 2016 at 03:49:34 PM EST
In Fortran, all arguments were passed by reference.

subroutine bump(s)
integer s
s=s+1
return

And then you call it:

print 2
call bump(2)
print 2

which produces the output
2
3

Or get rabies. Also don't do that. --scrymarch

[ Parent ]
The PHP thing is funny by dark nowhere (4.00 / 1) #16 Fri Dec 02, 2016 at 09:54:43 AM EST
Normally, if I should say why would you do that?—perhaps rather loudly—usually it is directed toward the author of the code. But PHP. When I say that it's nearly always directed at the language. Not even Perl's do-what-I-mean nonsense goes badly that often (the saving grace there is the string vs numerical operators—less DWIM than most dynamic languages.)

I'm not sure about the JS complaint. On the one hand, callbacks in JS are often a bad time. But in general I don't have a problem with them (or lambdas/closures or function pointers) as long as they're used well. They make sense for streaming parsers and so on, but they sure can take getting used to.

See you, space cowboy.

[ Parent ]
Darling fascist bully-boy, give me some more money you bastard | 16 comments (16 topical, 0 hidden)