Exit 2018 1163

Asad day for all you aficinados of this blog. After some five years and about 1163 posts (you’ll see…; own, mostly with own pics), this is the last of the (work)daily update. Yes, I’ve managed. But will turn to more serious, somewhat-more long-form content so will stop the drivel. I will not post daily, but when I do … And I’ll intersperse with some margin notes posts. Per 1/1 these will have no picture, the long for ones will – just check the link-post’lets and you’ll see. In line with the season: Enjoy less frequent but more professional, beautiful fireworks.
Or be safe with your own fireworks. Else, stand candidate for the Darwin Awards, which is also OK with me especially if you’ve not appreciated my blog; excepting the few I care for ;-|

Now then …
[Some room available. Live and die to be worth it, or take a hike; Arlington]

‘corn down, times 10

After the many lists of wat went well this year, with AI, bitcoin, etc.etc., we wonder: How much of that is plugged fake news or ditto overblown ..?
When still, we have the likes of this: A list of some 10 unicorns that went down (or -soon) despite funding to dream of. When you look into it, we seem to be back in, 2001, and somewhat later, when the idea of drafting a two-pager business plan seemed to be enough to get VC / angel / whathavewe funding. OK, maybe this time around (and for the co’s mentioned) it’s more like a ten-pager requirement but hey, why wait to throw money into a wormhole, right ..?
To remind us that maybe, not all went so well in ’17.

And maybe despite all the hopes we have for 17++, we should again, still, reckon with downside risks a little bit more, please?
But you’re not gonna listen to me, are you?

Mewwy Cwistmas & happy new year anyway! Plus:
[Heck, this has nothing to do with festive fireworks or so but is pretty still; Valencia]

The Pursuit of Triviality

Today being the day of the real Sinterklaas (as here), we also learn (not!) to cherish the small gifts. As in this effect, but otherwise. [That sounds weird…]
But the effect is too, all the same. And so ubiquitous that we may even lose sensitivity towards, or against [here we go again] it. And that is a problem. Because darn, how can we even think to train AI in rational business decision making, when all learning examples, and/or actual practical deployment, will be tainted / rife with such irrational biases? We so commonly swipe, shuffle them softly, under the rug that here we have such an AI-applicability-wrecking issue that we hear so much about lately. [No you don’t, compared to what would be enough, hardly anything at all…]

Another example of knowing your classics, eh? Oh well. Plus:
[Noooo, not those classics again! Saltzb’]

Noble Black edition

When first, Santa (the real one !!!) his (hey, not ‘her’ – isn’t that wrong by not being utterly iconoclast, or is gross distortion of History by such destruction of artefacts a crime against humanity?) helpers shouldn’t be blackened chimney sweepers (as they have been known to be, not people of African descent, since at least 50 years) because even in their fine dress and with important President&CEO-plus-1 level jobs and maintainers of the kindred-laws certainly over parents too, they were by definition slaves or so. Oh? Weren’t they the ones with rods to enforce the rule of naughty or nice laws? Didn’t they have the nice jobs, with obvious jealousy-inciting quality of work and management culture, being all gay (sic) and joyous whereas most of the children they would have met, and their parents, would be (sometimes literally starving) poor and probably without steady jobs ..?
And now they are changed to Spanish noblemen (qua clothes, zero ladies around because they would be unfit to work ..?) of the 16th century. Because now they’re
(claimed to be… yes really, to fit the crime-against-humanity PC only handful of, almost exclusively, one little (yes) city (literally)
whereas even those of colour (any) don’t see any problem with the original)
completely unrelated to slavery. Of course. Would one be allowed to influence public-anything let alone childrens’ festivities when being so utterly stupid? Where does open democracy break down for terrorists? Here.
Moreover, as noblemen, the new helpers are white. But of course. Otherwise, one would again distort History. And then, what jobs are there now for those of African descent, in the fun occasion? None.

Whatever. Don’t get mad, get even …? Plus:
[White factory – paint should be the only distinction and not implicate anything; Rotterdam of course]


Als je een macrobiotischdynamische überkapitalistische-schaamlap neerzet en een bezoeker met een paraplu wordt, om de houten vloer te beschermen (what’s next? klompen ‘tegen’ dames op naaldhakken ..?), geacht deze in een plastic zak mee te dragen…

Armoe, stervens-armoe. Van geest. That’s what.

One nation

Just a side, very far side, note on the whole celeb news going round: Where did the masses not see the One Nation Under Wood reference in that last word ..? And wasn’t the character perfectly portrayed by an actor that kept secret what the character kept secret too ..?
[At least, the double layer became apparent now that the actor showed the IRL part of it. Maybe not showed his part. Maybe not too pub(l)icly. Etc.]

Oh well I’ll leave it at that. And:
[For the completely zero reason: Torún]

Mash-disappearance ..?

A shortie again: Whatever happened to the idea of ‘mash-ups’..? You know, the slam-together of bits and pieces of ‘other’ apps (-their functionality) to produce your own, with even better service delivery.
Just wanted to know; every now and then one tends to think back to the glorious days of (almost literally) yesteryear, when the newest of the newest trends would change the world and after a, despite the excitement over all the new things, good night’s sleep one tends to find that not much of the earth-moving improvements in human life have materialised. This being one of those things.

So, from all you Developers, I’d like to stand corrected …? And:
[Navigation (tool) at the edge of the known world; Ponta de Sagres]

Norm over substance of risk management

Overheard: A major company in a relevant industry re infosec – and well-known for their good and even so recently much improved infosec posture – doesn’t follow the mantra of “risk management first, policy/standards second” but first sets some quite rigid standards and then, when vendors can’t deliver (even when the standards are strict but quite reasonable and doable), do some form of risk analysis plus compensating controls / acceptance or what have we.
Because otherwise, everything gets so mushy (hey, normal (?) risk analysis is business driven, what do ‘they’ know ..!?) that the end result is a chaos of quasi-accepted risk all on one huge unmanageable infra heap of backdoors and byways (those in particular) which results in zero security. And because this way, standardisation is encouraged and security plus manageability hugely increased i.e. big bucks are saved.

So, it’s an interesting High Baseline Minus approach. Though I guess you may have some comments, so take it away …:

Oh, and already:

[Maybe green, but not fond of blaugrana ..? M’drid]

Unread Ully

Somehow, I heard about this idea that Ulysses would be high up in the ranks of books that are either considered unreadable or no-one ever finishes reading it. Why …?
Digging a bit, I found big U high up in various lists indeed, e.g.:

In 2014, University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Jordan Ellenberg invented the so-called “Hawking Index,” which uses Amazon e-book highlights data as a proxy for where people stop reading the books they’ve purchased. Some people use the highlight function on the devices and apps, and the unscientific-but-workable “Hawking Index” uses the assumption that if the most-highlighted passages are clustered at the beginning of the book, the book is more likely to have been abandoned. (The name refers to Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time, which is ranked up with Ulysses for the dubious title of “most unread book of all time.”) On the other side, books with popular passages marked all the way to the end mean lots of people made it through the entire story.
So on this Bloomsday where does Ulysses truly stack up? Here’s a list of famous books and their scores on the Hawking Index, ranked from most-likely abandoned to most likely-finished.

Book Author HI Score Comment [ed.]
Ulysses James Joyce 1.7% [There it is though I can’t see why]
Les Miserables Victor Hugo 1.8% [Yes, possibly here when Hugo’s characters are like Anne Hathaway]
Capital in the Twenty-First Century Thomas Piketty 2.4% [Come on now, this book’s not even hard!]
Hard Choices Hillary Clinton 4.2% [Understandable; proably no-one has taken the time to try to finish it]
A Brief History of Time Stephen Hawking 6.6% [This simply is not difficult]
Thinking Fast and Slow Daniel Kahneman 6.8% [And this one’s easy for sure!]
Lean In Sheryl Sandberg 12.3% [DR; but did read that other one – Option B thank you – and that one’s easy]
Infinite Jest David Foster Wallace 15.0% [Obscure]
Moby Dick Herman Melville 19.2% [Strange]
Art of the Deal Donald Trump 19.4% [Totally understandable on this list]
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald 28.3% [Huh? Surely you’re joking, mr. Feynman! This is a page-turner!]
Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man James Joyce 29.6% [Joyce again. But not Finnegan’s Wake that also is doable of sorts?]

So, as you can see, if you abandoned Ulysses, you’re hardly alone. Likewise, if you didn’t quite make it through A Brief History of Time, which you maybe thought was brief and readable since it is just over 250 pages, let that weight off your shoulders.

There. But why isn’t Finnegan’s Wake on the list – it may be popular to call that Difficult but hey, we call that merely a challenge, right? It’s doable I can tell you!
And, same, for The Man Without Qualities, where I must say I’m into the third volume but still don’t see why it would be such a difficult read or hard-to-finisher as many have it. Is it because people lack stamina ..!?

Oh well. What’s on your Unfinishable list ..? [Mine’s blank…; ed.] And:

[I have no clue why this particular pic is here; Porta Nigra Trier]