Weeknotes #215

in weeknotes

  • Emma turned eight. We had another small ‘party’ at home where we had some cake and she opened her presents. I was about to write that I felt bad about her not having a proper party after Eugenia sent me some photos showing the preparation for her daughter’s birthday (which is a couple of days after Emma’s) before checking and confirming, yes, I did indeed write basically the same thing last year. Look forward to similar feelings of guilt and shame in another 12 months! (Admittedly, not strong enough feelings to have me try to organise a party.)

  • I lost my Wordle streak again. I was close to 100 when the streak ended but still a long way off my maximum streak of 294. How on Earth did I manage that?

  • Friday was the Emperor’s Birthday and although the weather was pretty awful, I took Rowan out in the afternoon to briefly catch a train from the Tobu Ikebukuro Line. He’s still very much obsessed with trains and every Saturday when we travel through Ikebukuro on the way to Yoyogi Chapters he asks about the Tobu station that you can see from the Yamanote Line platform.

  • Speaking of Yoyogi Chapters, I don’t know if we’ll make it a regular thing but after the class this week, we cut across Shinjuku Gyoen and went the Mos Burger that’s on the ninth floor of the Yotsuya Kumin Center. I don’t think many people realise it’s there which makes it a rare restaurant in the area that’s not packed on a Saturday at lunchtime. And yet with a terrific view down on Shinjuku Gyoen (Tabelog, Foursquare), it’s quite a nice place to have lunch.

  • I’ve forgotten in the details but in the late 2000s, I remember commenting to a colleague at work that YouTube could do a better job moderating content but that doing so would greatly reduce their profits (perhaps to the point where they barely operated at cost). I was reminded of this when reading Dan Luu’s recent post about ‘diseconomies’ of scale:

    I’m not saying that Meta or Google should do this, just that whenever someone at big tech company says something like “these systems have to be fully automated because no one could afford to operate manual systems at our scale”, what’s really being said is more along the lines of “we would not be able to generate as many billions a year in profit if we hired enough competent people to manually review cases our system should flag as ambiguous, so we settle for what we can get without compromising profits”. One can defend that choice, but it is a choice.

  • I mentioned last week that I’d been mostly successful at maintaining my goal of studying at least 45 minutes of Japanese a day. However, I realised looking back over this year’s weeknotes that I’d never properly introduced that goal. In so many words, I’m trying to see what kind of improvement regularly studying Japanese for 45 minutes a day makes. There’s no goal beyond that (at least not at this stage) and there’s no set form. As noted last week, a lot of my time has merely been reviewing existing my flashcards in Kanshudo but I’m hoping that as I more deeply learn those (and so need less time to complete regular review), I’ll move on to newer material.

  • I’m a little ashamed how frequently we watch movies from the Cars franchise in this house. After watching Cars 3 for the umpteenth time, I added ‘Ride’ by ZZ Ward to my library (Apple Music).

Michael Camilleri inqk.net