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  1. #61
    Senior Member harbl_the_cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by awndray View Post
    I suppose the end goal is what matters when if comes to those platforms. As you said, you have to have something to offer of a value great enough that people would want to pay for it. If you're style or goal is simply conversational, then those platforms are probably useless. I'm the same way. I've been told in the past (and even recently) that I should start writing freelance. I know I'm half decent when I put my mind to it (I used to write short stories), and I like to research and share information, but I don't really have an interest in committing or even sacrificing my previous time just to deliver 5-minute read for the sake of a few dollars.
    That's tremendously insightful and describes my situation to as T... From our past history together, I know you're also a very good writer and highly intelligent, which is why I enjoy posting (and reading your responses).

    I spend so much time with my daughters (who are smart as kids) and my wife (who is smart as my wife), but almost no intelligent men to talk to. (I hope I didn't commit the egregious sin of assuming your gender and mis-gendering you)

    Maybe we should collab

    Nah, that's beyond the scope of the work I do. I don't have that kind of motivation anymore. Where I am in my life now, I don't have enough mental energy to start thinking outside the box.
    Well the offer stands. Maybe you're demotivation stems from being in a situation where you don't have enough intellectual equals to challenge you.

    (I sure felt that way in the past, especially when I was working at places that blocked GOC).

    I think that's the biggest reason I decided to post on here, because I know there are lots of smart people on this forum, and even though I love conversing with my wife and kids, it's nice to talk to intelligent people who aren't your family from time to time.

    Nah, man. If there's something I don't like, I just stay away from it. If I'm in here conversing, it's because I have an interest or something to share.

    You do you.
    Thanks, Awndray, I really appreciate that!
    Things are never going back to normal... but that's not a bad thing.

  2. #62
    Senior Member harbl_the_cat's Avatar
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    This seemed relevant to this post, especially the diagram.

    Building robots for a living, I attest that diagram perfectly illustrates how systems fail catastrophically.

    I've seen it happen a few times in my 16 year career, and been able to identify why they happened in the first place.

    In hindsight there were always "signs" that were blindingly obvious after the fact.

    After coming back into the corporate work force after 2 years freelancing, I see those "signs" EVERYWHERE.

    Before these happened very infrequently, owing to the fact that competent (and accountable) leadership would learn the painful lessons and make corrections to avoid repeating those same (or similar) catastrophic collapses.

    Now it seems those people are fired immediately for telling hard truths no one wants to hear, but that the organizations NEED to hear to ensure their long term survival.

    It astonishes me that what before COVID, would have been considered essential margins of error to account for the possibility of systemic collapse now seem "nice to have."

    I still have a sense that many of these catastrophic failures are looming large in the near future.

    The sorts of things that cost companies enormous amounts of money or cause enormous amounts of damage.

    Things like the Hawaii Nuclear Missile false alarm, the 2009 Global Financial Crisis, the 2003 East Coast power grid failure, the Tarnak Farm incident, or 9/11.

    Small failures in a complex system leading to a catastrophic failure.

    When one of those things happened in the past, it was big news.

    Now imagine those sorts of things happening on a daily - monthly basis.

    http://charleshughsmith.blogspot.com...ce-and-pr.html

    When Everything Is Artifice and PR, Collapse Beckons

    The notion that consequence can be as easily managed as PR is the ultimate artifice and the ultimate delusion.

    The consequences of the drip-drip-drip of moral decay is difficult to discern in day-to-day life. It's easy to dismiss the ubiquity of artifice, PR, spin, corruption, racketeering, fraud, collusion and narrative manipulation (a.k.a. propaganda) as nothing more than human nature, but this dismissal of moral decay is nothing more than rationalizing the rot to protect insiders from the sobering reality that the entire system is unraveling and heading for its final reckoning: collapse.

    We've become so accustomed to the excesses of marketing that we've lost the ability to recognize the difference between "science" that's been carefully designed to reach a pre-planned conclusion and science that accepts the outcome, even if it harms well-funded interests.

    The vast expanses of ignorance greatly aid this artifice. Even though high school physics, chemistry and biology are sufficient to tease apart the vast majority of rigged experiments, trials and studies, few Americans have the interest or fortitude to read Phase III trial results, etc. critically, and so the corporate media can trumpet bogus results without fear of exposure: all the statistical tricks and gimmicks are passed off as "science" to the distracted and gullible.

    And if someone dares to examine the results critically, then those benefiting from the ignorance make the results "secret" until the year 2929. And that's the entire game in a nutshell: maximizing private gain from artifice, PR, spin, corruption, racketeering, fraud, collusion and narrative manipulation, all masked by an putrid spew of virtue-signaling and PR.

    Every institution that was once trustworthy has been debauched to maximize private gain: higher education, science, medicine, national defense--the list includes virtually every sector and industry in America. Nothing can be trusted because somebody behind the scenes is spinning the story and data to mask their self-interest, their immense gains and the carefully contrived structure of diverting investigation and eliminating transparency, competition and accountability.

    Our technocratic obsession denies the existence of the moral universe, reducing the world to techno-gimmicks (electric air taxis for everyone!), techno-fantasies (fusion reactors on every corner!) and techno-distractions (which billionaire will be the first on Mars?), as if a nation and society hurtling toward moral, social, civic and economic collapse can be saved by some "innovation" that beneath the surface is nothing more than another profiteering monopoly or cartel.

    Many people fear collapse, but quality, service and reliability have already collapsed. The washing machine that two generations ago was designed and built to last 25 years now breaks down after a few years--so sorry, the motherboard failed. That will cost you almost as much as new washer, and so the manufacturer, bank and retailer win because the weary, clueless consumer will do the easy thing and buy a new, expensive appliance on credit. The "old" appliance (brand-new by previous standards) is hauled off to the landfill, the ultimate destination of everything in our Landfill Economy of poorly made junk.

    Service would be hauled to the landfill as well if it was tangible. Alas, it is simply maddening, as nothing works and Kafkaesque bureaucracies have so much power that they are immune to transparency, competition and accountability. their websites don't work, they botch the most basic transactions and they perpetuate incorrect information, but too bad--there is no recourse.

    Big Tech is equally impervious to transparency, competition and accountability. Your "crime" is never explained, and there is no recourse, for the Machine has no judiciary or human contact: you query the Machine knowing full well that you will never extract anything remotely fair or just from its algorithmic monstrosity.

    Technology doesn't extinguish moral decay or eliminate the stench of self-serving artifice, PR, spin, corruption, racketeering, fraud, collusion and narrative manipulation. Technology only enhances the potential for profiteering under the tissue-thin guise of "innovation," "technological advance" and the threadbare delusions of a populace that has watched too many contrived narratives in which technology saves the day.

    The moral buffers have already thinned; there is nothing left to tap. There is nothing left in what actually matters: social cohesion, moral legitimacy, civic virtue--all stripped, depleted, gone.

    Drones and robots won't save us from collapse. Neither will fusion reactors, electric air taxis, billionaires in space, missions to Mars, algae-based meat or any of the other thousand "innovations" those profiting from moral rot promote in the hopes that the banquet of consequences being served can be swept away by more gimmicks, more artifice, more delusions, more fantasies, more PR, more spin and more narrative control.

    Collapse can't be gimmicked away. The notion that consequence can be as easily managed as PR is the ultimate artifice and the ultimate delusion.

    systems-collapse5-20.jpg

    Thank you, everyone who dropped a hard-earned coin in my begging bowl this weekend--you bolster my hope and refuel my spirits.

    Last edited by harbl_the_cat; 11-22-2021 at 03:20 PM.
    Things are never going back to normal... but that's not a bad thing.

  3. #63
    Senior Member harbl_the_cat's Avatar
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    As sobering as that may sound, this always cheers me up... and very cleverly encodes the answer to this problem:

    Speak the truth, no matter what systems are in place to stop you.

    ...this is such as sick song from the 2010's.

    Things are never going back to normal... but that's not a bad thing.

  4. #64
    Senior Member harbl_the_cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harbl_the_cat View Post
    The "Buffer" was in person interactions between people.

    The biggest draw down to the buffer was stay at home orders.

    A bigger draw down is attrition.

    Margins of safety in systems was maintained by the ability for one person to literally walk up to and talk to someone responsible for maintaining that buffer and talking to them.

    Best example are automated control systems.

    All automated control systems at some point rely on some manual input from a controller.

    Sometimes those systems are so complex, there's only one controller who actually knows how to operate it.

    Think of reloading.

    Everyone knows how to reload on their particular setup, but each setup has little quirks to it that take time to learn to get it to work optimally (Lee Progressives are an excellent example of this. It's a highly automated process that requires a lot of operator specific knowledge to run properly).

    A lot of those controllers are now gone...

    And a lot of automated control systems are rapidly falling into disrepair.

    The worst part is a lot of senior leadership doesn't understand the complexity of these systems.

    They demand simple explanations, not realizing that the organizations they lead are like a car careening down a steep hill towards a cliff, but the brakes aren't working because the one guy who know how to fix the on board control system for the brakes was laid off 6 months ago.
    Things are never going back to normal... but that's not a bad thing.

  5. #65
    Senior Member harbl_the_cat's Avatar
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    We live in a world where everything you see appears much more simple than it actually is, without exception.

    We've concealed layers of complexity from people to the point that most people take for granted things that are extremely complex and assume, by virtue of their simple appearance, they are simple to maintain.

    The reality is almost everything you see today is a product of a system of near infinite complexity.

    No one knows how any of those systems actually work, they just know their simplistic interactions with them.

    There's an old saying in tech: "No one person can build a mouse."

    The biggest danger to this is if most of the parts of such a system are black boxes to the people who use it, eventually it comes to the point where those same parts become black boxes to the people maintaining it.

    At that point is the risk that the system becomes un-maintainable.

    Consider Google.

    You go to Google.ca and see about 10 items on screen.

    Those 10 items in some way interact with quintillions (or more) pieces of unique data.

    No single person knows how those 10 items will interact with every piece of unique data...

    And the risk there are not zero that at least one combination therein can have catastrophic real world implications.
    Things are never going back to normal... but that's not a bad thing.

  6. #66
    Senior Member Battle Beaver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harbl_the_cat View Post
    That's so weird, I was about to post about how going from using IntelliJ to code in Java to using Visual Studio to code in C# has been really frustrating.

    In large part because Microsoft seems to lock everything down, especially in their community support.

    If you're doing development in Java (in Eclipse or IntelliJ), you can Google search the answer to any problem in 20 minutes.

    With Visual Studio it seems community support is non-existent and a lot of the problems answered by MS certified experts are cryptic half answers that you need to come up with a kludge to work around.
    Again, you seem to not know what you're talking about.

    I've been using VS since the first release in 1997.

    How does MS "lock everything down"?

    What do you mean by "community support"?

    Any questions you have about VS and any of the languages you're using it for (C#, F#, VB.NET, HTML, CSS, Javascript, etc etc) do not require Microsoft support, there are literally DOZENS of non-microsoft sites you can find with a very simple google search of your problem, whether that be with VS interface itself, or any of the languages it supports. The community outside Microsoft is huge, and better than Microsoft's.
    http://www.youtube.com/battlebeaver
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