Weeknotes #38

in weeknotes

  • This was the week in which Donald Trump contracted COVID-19. (As of the time of writing, his actual condition is unclear.) The magnitude of the event drew me back into U.S. politics Twitter. After three or so solid days of rigorously reading my list, I think it’s time to step back again.

  • While I’m on the topic of COVID-19, Zeynep Tufekci’s latest piece at The Atlantic about the role of dispersal in the spread of COVID-19 is the best thing I read this week. In particular, its delineation between prospective contact tracing and retrospective contact tracing was especially illuminating. All the caveats about how much we don’t yet know apply but the theory that SARS-CoV-2 is an overdispersed pathogen that primarily spreads via ‘super spreading’ individuals feels like it explains a lot of what we’ve actually seen in the past 10 months or so.

  • I got the development server into Ecstatic and so it is, in a sense, ‘done’. I want to use it to produce an actual site before I’m confident it’s useful for other people.

  • What kind of site might that be? Well, the original impetus for making Ecstatic was a website I’ve thought about making for a long time: a repository of e-mails I write to other people but that, for whatever reason, I want to be public. An example would be an e-mail I write to the hosts of a podcast in response to something said on the programme. So I could always do that. I just need to write the HTML and CSS.

  • Eri and I struggled to come up with a plan for Hallowe’en. If COVID-19 hadn’t happened, I was all set to try to organise some kind of trick-or-treat event. However, given the current state of things, that doesn’t seem like such a crash-hot idea. The simplest solution is to not do anything of course but both Emma and John are so into the concept of Hallowe’en and are old enough to really get excited by dressing up that it seems like a real shame not to do anything. Maybe we’ll just have them dress up, walk around the block and trick-or-treat our house.

  • Of course I’m the type of person who writes ‘Hallowe’en’.

  • I started watching Devs again. I’m not sure why I stopped after the first episode. It wasn’t bad and Nick Offerman is riveting but—for whatever reason—I didn’t feel the compulsion to keep watching. I’m up to episode 4 now so it’s still very slow going.

  • Perhaps Devs was the unfortunate victim of being burnt out on dystopian futures after Westworld? You know what I’m not burnt out on, though? The Westworld theme (Apple Music). Still incredible.

  • Oof. My apologies for that segue.

Michael Camilleri @pyrmont