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Peter Whittaker
Father, husband, consultant, musician, musicologist, actor, writer, diver, iconoclast.
Father, husband, consultant, musician, musicologist, actor, writer, diver, iconoclast.


Dear Google,

Whilst I applaud your decision to extend inclusiveness to mentally handicapped rodents, I do wish you would employ them in roles other than UI design.

Please keep them away from Calendar. If you lose Classic, you lose me. I know you may not care, but it needs to be said.

The new look is horrid. Crowded with insufficient white space (but too much space between related items, like "my calendars", violating principles of perception understood since the first days of serious, academic gestalt), date numbers too big, font selections bizarre.... It's rare that someone does something so bad I can find nothing good to say about it, at all.

Ironically, the one thing that needed a change, ToDos, has remained the same. I will switch away from Google calendar if you take away Classic. I don't know what to, current fashion is away from clean and functional to flat and bloated. I am very disappointed with your joining this trend.

Dear Google,

It's ironic that you consider yourself a less-secure application. Huh.

(I recently created a new domain; to simplify my life, I wanted to be able to send as me@thatdomain from - but when I attempt to set this up under accounts and import, the detailed error message tells me that I would have to allow access to less secure apps, meaning you consider gmail to be less secure. Nicely done.)

(And why have you disabled app passwords? That was handy. I don't feel like allowing access to less secure apps, but considering you are locking out gmail and Outlook, well, TF? Thanks for nothing. Kisses.)

Dear Google,

Seriously, TF? You broke news. Yesterday, I could scan through many articles and subjects, quickly and easily. Now I have cards and have to navigate. You slowed me down.

Over to reddit it is.

"Clean UI"? Nope. Borked UX.

Thanks for nothing.

Ottawa Flag Flap has me in a spin.

Ya see, I'm basically pro "keep your damn nose outta my business". (Like PET said, the state has no interest in the bedrooms of the nation.)

But to be pro-KYDNOMB, you pretty much have to be pro-free-speech - because as soon as you're not, you're sticking your damn nose into someone's business - and like Voltaire never said, I may disagree with what you say but will defend to the death your right to say it. I may think you're a trash eating, no good, shitcock douche from hell, but even TENGSDsFH (notice the pluralization, I believe that to be canonical) have freedom of expression, freedom of thought, freedom of conscience, freedom of association, etc.

Those are vital freedoms. Everyone gets them.

Or no one does. You cannot, absolutely CANNOT, have it both ways.

Did the flag piss off a lot of people? Yeah, a vocal majority. Just like the rainbow flag pissed off a sometimes quiet, sometimes vocal minority.

As a society, we have to pick our battles carefully, because sometimes we do have to stick our nose into other people's business, because their business happens to be harming others. You know, rapists, pedophiles, kidnappers, murderers, those folks. Occasionally we even decide that some speech is inappropriate, be it hate speech or yelling "SUDDEN UNEXPECTED COMBUSTION!!!" in a crowded facility devoted to expositions of the phi effect.

But we make - or should make - those decisions after careful, considered, deliberate judgement. To deny that essential freedom, just like to deny essential liberty, should always be a last choice, when there are no other, better choices.

We harm others when we remove those freedoms. We have to be sure that our inflicting harm is the right to do.

Was anyone harmed by the <insert name of cause here> flag?


Then I'm OK with. Even if I think many "pro-life" are in fact TENGSDsFH.

If you aren't harming me, or anyone else, then, yeah, whatev. Thank you for letting me know where you stand, though. I appreciate knowing what sort of person you are.

I like to know where the TENGSDsFH - so I can avoid 'em.

But I will seek 'em out and defend them, if they are being harmed.

And so should we all.

Dear Google, seriously? I tried to send an email from my main gmail account using another account, and you block the send request, based on attempted access by a less secure account, and my only option is to enable all less secure accounts?

You really should let your engineers talk to each other.


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SECURITY WARNING: If you use Windows and either the Symantec or Norton anti-virus products, you may wish to:

1) Update your AV product (not just the definitions/signature, the software itself);

2) Use another product to scan your computer, just to be on the safe side;

3) Kill it with fire and start over, if you are truly paranoid.

Why? 17 Symantec products and 8 products from Norton had critical security flaws that could allow attackers to completely subvert your AV and potentially take control of your machine.

Sadly, this is not a joke. It is pretty much a nightmare scenario for computer users, computer administrators, and the AV companies.

Switching from actor-mode to worker-mode by making sense of a radical view of perception and reality. Brain engaged.

With a good read and a little work, one finds that one's experience of the "world" (whatever that is; fortunately, we don't need to know; cf below) can be summarized as:

Xi = ΣPjiIj
Ai = Di(Xi)
Iij = ΣPijAi

Your experience (Xi) is the probability-weighted sum of the impacts (Ij) of all actions, yours and others, aka, "the world", which we model as a space of actions; this includes your digestion, my writing this, your reading this, the temperature in your surroundings, what happened to each of us yesterday, etc.

Your actions, Ai, result from a decision function (Di) that takes your experience-space as its only input; the decision function is arbitrarily complex, but has order likely less than O(n**c), since you make decisions in real time (dithering is still a decision, in this sense; you are choosing to continue to attempt to choose to act)... ...unless we are a tightly coupled simulation in NP space and achieve momentary "consciousness" (whatever that means) whenever the simulation reaches "consensus" (but that's overly complicated, so let's use Occam's Razor and stick with the simpler model... least until it fails).

In this case, the limit on "c" would be set by your wetware: Evolutionarily, we are optimized for decisions with order less than O(n**c). Any other decisions get us eaten by tigers (because we took too long). The better our wetware, the more complex and thorough can be Di and still produce result(s) in time to keep us alive.

This means our basic decision-making apparatus is short-term optimized, suggesting that many of our decisions for long-term effects will be "bad", i.e., sub-optimal, because we decide for survival and fitness, not optimal - or even good - long-term consequences.

Your impact on anything, including yourself (i) and everything else (Σj), Iij, is the probability-weighted sum of your actions.

This is an even simpler view than the article expresses: He suggests it when discussing that positing the existence of a world, W, is unnecessary, but then digresses to a theory of conscious agents... ...which is also unnecessary, but which may be illuminating.

In the above formulation, a world, W, is replaced with probability-weighted mappings of actions (of one's self and of others) as impacts (on one's self and on others). These probability-mappings may be arbitrarily complex; determining their order is a real poser.... I shall mull on that as I eat. At the very least, any Ij that takes more than time T to "reach" you does not impact your current Xi (though it may impact future Xi).

Interesting. The probability mapping would have a time-based (light cone?) component.

Traditional: Measure, measure, cut.

My basement reno: Measure, measure, measure, ponder, measure, reconsider, measure, ponder, Facebook, ponder, Instagram, ponder, measure, Keurig, ponder, cut, measure, trim, shim, ponder, smack, Boneshaker.

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Before everyone gets too excited: Yes, this is real, the underlying science is not really new, Füzfa's contribution - which is significant - is solving the equations that tell us how much gravitation is generated by the proposed setup, and describing a practical experiment for confirming the expected gravitational deflection.

The idea of doing this has been around a long time, but no one had ever been able to figure the math before. Füzfa figured it out.

How does this work? The equivalence principle, better known as E=mc**2: Extremely powerful magnets are used to concentrate significant energy in very small spaces; by the equivalence principle, this energy has an effective mass, which will affect space-time. This effect should produced measurable deflections in neutral, non-magnetic particles passing through the area, e.g., photons.

But this is not practical in the everyday sense: Gravitation is much weaker than the electromagnetic force and the magnetic fields proposed herein are MASSIVE, mind-bogglingly powerful. A) If you had magnetic fields that powerful, you wouldn't need anti-gravity, and B) magnetic fields that powerful will fuck you up, ripping you apart.

Still pretty darn cool, though.

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