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Danijel Turina
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Trakošćan castle under snow.
I removed the previous post and reposted because I messed up the color processing.
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The simple and obvious explanation is that this crash was an artifact of computerized trading en masse, combined with very triggerhappy selloff algorithm. Someone set things very sensitively, converting a small dip into a huge crash. The real questions are, first, why was the algorithm set so sensitively, basically expecting things to go south and wanting to bail out on the first sign of trouble, and second, how much of the stock market rise that took place since Trump was elected, can be attributed to similar games, only in reverse? Buying stock with monopoly dollars in order to raise the market valuation and therefore GDP and therefore to have coverage for printing more dollars? This entire thing is so fucking rigged it nauseates me.
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I read something interesting in a computer magazine, I don't know exactly when, late 1980s, early 1990s perhaps, that the concept of a "home computer" is going to become obsolete, not because there won't be any home computers, but because there will be too many for the term to make any sense - like, which one, the one in the microwave, in the TV, in the HVAC thermostat, in the networking router... and it actually went farther, so now we have not only the computerized appliances, but also computers in many shapes and user-interface paradigms; voice-controlled watches, phones, tablets, tablet-laptop hybrids, laptops, all-in-one desktops and conventional desktops, gaming consoles, and also the super-desktops, also known as either workstations or gaming PCs.

The super-desktop is an interesting category, because it's usually called just the "PC", the same as an ordinary unit found in businesses, the word/excel machine, but it's a wholly different beast, of the kind that was known in the past as either a supercomputer, or a desktop minicomputer, also called graphical workstation. You see, when something can drive several TV-sized 4K displays, run multiple virtual machines at once with no lag, render movies, or process terabytes of other kinds of data, it's no longer in the same category of things as a machine that is of nominally the same shape, running the same OS, but is weaker than one of its virtual machines.
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I noticed one thing with computers, which might explain Apple's "just works" phenomenon. You see, when you have a computer that's at least one order of magnitude overkill for the task you're performing, you have a feeling that it performs "normally"; for instance, when you have a graphics card that can render at least as many frames as the monitor can display in a second, at the native resolution and maximum settings, you perceive the result as normal. However, the actual hardware rendering the "normal" can be a fire-breathing beast, but you don't perceive it as "fast", you perceive it as "just working" - it's just smooth and effortless, as in, watching the Valley benchmark at 60Hz vsync at ultra at native resolution. Nothing in particular is going on, other than you watching the "movie". When something's messed up, though, you perceive that. The difference between a Mac and a PC can be that in a Mac, you might be "forced" to get the top-tier hardware; their laptops, for instance, have the fastest NVMe SSD, the best IPS LCD and the CPU and RAM are adequate for all normal tasks, which is perceived as very fluid and effortless operation. In a PC, you might pay closer attention to the individual components, if you're buying them individually, and therefore might go for the "bang for the buck", such as getting a SATA SSD for much less money, but this all adds up in the end.

When I think of it, I perceive this phenomenon elsewhere - when someone's really good at something, it looks effortless; you are not aware of the skill involved, because he just does it with a wave of the hand. A fast car doesn't feel "fast", it feels normal, smooth and effortless, and a lesser car might feel fast because it's on the verge of falling apart.
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Nature still looks freshly defrosted, which is to say muddy and dead, but the winter was extraordinarily mild here and there are unseasonably many flowers to be seen.
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I don't understand all the whining about the latest Star Wars movie, like, it has huge plot holes, annoying ethnically diverse characters, women are in charge and oh-so-cool, and white men are either stupid and clumsy or they are Nazis.

Have you actually seen the original trilogy? Hello? The rebels are all "diverse", people in charge are either women or a guy called Akbar, a black guy is portrayed as a cool responsible city mayor and, later, general of the rebellion, the female lead is a bossy bitch, there's a faux-Japanese martial arts guru who speaks Miyagi-san English and makes macrobiotic brews (only he's green and not yellow so it's fine), and the bad guys are all Nazi-looking white men. And oh yeah, there are stupid annoying comic relief characters (droids, ewoks...) all over the place, and stupid plot holes like Luke's training taking exactly as long as it takes Han's team to get in and out of an asteroid field and reach Bespin.

Essentially, those were always extremely silly movies with childish plots, annoying characters introduced only to sell toys to children, political bullshit, leftist agendas and plot holes the size of a death star. The saving grace was the mysticism of the Force, and the vague hints about the past times which made it possible for the audience to interpolate their own imagined backstory which was probably much cooler than the one Lucas had in mind.

So yes, the new movie was completely along the lines of the previous ones: mostly trashy bullshit, with some awesome parts, like Yoda stating that mistakes are excellent teachers and that one should not fear them, or the sexual tension between Rey and Ben. Exactly like the old movies.
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