Weeknotes #6

in weeknotes

  • Robin Sloan’s post about creating a bespoke app for communicating with his family was the best thing I read this week. It’s not particularly long but the gist is about the potential for ‘situated software’. I loved this quote:

    People don’t only learn to cook so they can become chefs. Some do! But far more people learn to cook so they can eat better, or more affordably, or in a specific way. Or because they want to carry on a tradition. Sometimes they learn just because they’re bored! Or even because–get this–they love spending time with the person who’s teaching them.

  • Sloan consciously took the term ‘situated software’ from an essay by Clay Shirky. It’s no longer on Shirky’s website (for some reason) but a version is available on the Internet Archive.

  • Eri and I finished the Hulu Japan/HBO Asia co-production, Miss Sherlock. It took us a little while to get into it but, by the end, we were watching the final two episodes back to back at 3 in the morning.

  • If a vibrant reimagining of classic Victorian fiction isn’t what you’re looking for, I stumbled across a fascinating subculture of YouTube videos of people solving logic puzzles. Here’s an example of a solution to the Snake Egg puzzle.

  • I can’t actually remember what prompted this but I started wondering what the correct phrasing was for the ‘tangled web we weave’ caution about deception. It turns out it’s from Walter Scott’s 19th Century poem, Marmion. The quote itself is:

    Oh, what a tangled web we weave
    When first we practise to deceive!

    I’ve always said ‘Oh, what tangled webs we weave / when first we practise to deceive’. With all due respect to Scott, mine is clearly superior.

  • Emma turned 4 this week. In some ways it feels like she’s been in our lives for the metaphorical blink of an eye and yet four years? I hate to resort to banalities but time sure does fly.

  • Speaking of birthdays, Dad’s was this week, too. He’s 73.

  • My aunt swung by on her way back to Australia. She was able to come to Emma’s ‘party’ which was nice. We had planned to spend Saturday out doing something but I didn’t feel completely comfortable going out into crowds with the kids. The spread of COVID-19 (in Japan at least) hasn’t been as rapid as I was expecting last week but Emma has had nagging respiratory issues so why tempt fate?

  • Joe Hisaishi has a new album out called Dream Songs: The Essential Joe Hisaishi. It’s fine but it mostly reminded me of how incredible his score is to Spirited Away (Apple Music).

  • I began work on a web-based editor that could update Jekyll posts in a GitHub repo. It’s called Pondent.

Michael Camilleri inqk.net