Monday, June 29, 2009

The Pleasures of Rereading | Newsweek Books |

The Pleasures of Rereading | Newsweek Books | "Most of the 'joys of rereading' pieces you come across tuck in an obligatory apology for indulging in the 'childish' pleasure—this is a bad thing?—of 'obsessive' repetition. You often hear a distinction made between strictly literary rereading, the kind of close study scholars and writers undertake, and the 'comfort' reading relegated to the beach, the bathroom, and the bedroom."

I'll tell you now, that I like rereading. Many people will listen to their music over and over again, and movies will be re-watched time and again.
Some people need the new, and can't stand to go back to something they've done before, fine, enjoy it. That is not me.

We read very quickly and you know what there are not a lot of works out there that are engaging for us. We like going back to the Lord of the Rings, The Belgariad, Harry Potter and the like because they are actually long enough to be satisfying. Short one-off stories are fine but they are like an appetizer good enough for starters but not a meal on its own.

For some people the problem may be their reading speed, The Harry Potter audiobooks run around 24 hours long. Most people can read about twice as fast as a person can talk so that still takes up a huge amount of time for them.

You go back to a restaurant that you like, re-reading is much the same.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Seth's Blog: Direct and useful project feedback

Seth's Blog: Direct and useful project feedback: "In my experience, there are three different ways to structure the project. Each leads to a very different feedback loop.

1. The goal of the team is to please you.

2. The goal of the team is to make a product that they love and are proud of building.

3. The goal of the team is to build a great product."

Actually I think Pixar is in #3. Their films are so often filled to the brim with amazing detail that you are sure that the whole team is adding and tweaking and doing their darndest to make the best film possible.

Monday, June 08, 2009

The Long Tail - Wired Blogs

The Long Tail - Wired Blogs: "The pricing of Nyhedsavisen was simple: it was free. And, as something entirely new: it was going to be delivered to the homes of all Danes – at no cost. Not only the newspaper itself was free, delivery was free as well. It was in effect “double-free”."

This looks sane on the surface, it is essentially the exact same business model as the yellow pages. But newspapers have been dying for some time not just the last year so why this was considered a good idea, I don't know. People still read a lot for news but mostly it is online now and it is so much faster it is practically real-time. They lost so much money it would have been cheaper to give away one of the early ebook readers and sell ad space on that.

Practically killing an industry because you are too proud to see you are wrong is stupid beyond reason.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Feng Shui On Steroids: Design Your Space to Achieve Your Goals | Zen Habits

Feng Shui On Steroids: Design Your Space to Achieve Your Goals | Zen Habits: "Our inner world — emotional, mental space — helps determine our outer world, right? But the space we spend the majority of our time in also plays a huge role in our lives. It can influence our actions, our mood, and it can determine whether we remain stuck or achieve our dreams."

I just redid my desk, since it is just a corner of the bedroom I am not going to call it an office and I worked at making it more ergonomic. And that part works great. There are some holes in the design. The bookshelf is a little too far way but then I wouldn't be able to move the screen as much. There are always tradeoffs.

I think I am going to change the desktop theme to help too.

Friday, June 05, 2009

The Simple Dollar Building Your Career, One Brick at a Time

The Simple Dollar Building Your Career, One Brick at a Time: "A career is like a brick wall. If it’s built well, from a collection of bricks that fit well together and are thoughtfully put in place, it can be a very strong foundation for whatever dreams you may want to reach for. A great collection of bricks, well assembled, will build a platform for you that allows you to stand tall in your profession."

It isn't enough to build up a pile of bricks they need to be set together in proper order.
I am expanding my wall with a more classical education. I am big on American history now to make up for my public schooling. I am also learning iPhone programming. I learned quite a bit about programming in school and did a lot of embedded programming at work but iPhone programming is a lot different and more fun.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Fantasy master David Eddings dies aged 77 |

Fantasy master David Eddings dies aged 77: "Eddings was always delighted, he said, to hear that he'd turned non-readers into readers. 'I look upon this as perhaps my purpose in life,' he said in 1997. 'I am here to teach a generation or two how to read. After they've finished with me and I don't challenge them any more, they can move on to somebody important like Homer or Milton.'"

Oh no, another great author has died. I really enjoyed the Belgariad and the Mellorean they were the great for heavy readers wanting something on the light side. My wife and I can read very quickly ~2000 wpm on good days and it there are not a whole lot of books or series out there that can match that.
We'd be closing the back cover and be revved up for something longer. A 5 book series was long enough to really develop the characters and background to the point it would really come alive.

Making Ripples: post-corporate adventures in Floyd County Virginia: Million Dollar Ideas...

Making Ripples: post-corporate adventures in Floyd County Virginia: Million Dollar Ideas...: "Million dollar ideas are a dime a dozen. For immediate results, focus on ideas that can be developed on a shoestring or a credit card. Ideas you can finance yourself and test on a small scale are more likely to bring you income and job satisfaction"


Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Wal-Mart's Weight Effect -

Wal-Mart's Weight Effect - "Our data suggest that we buy healthier food when our purchasing power increases. There is a small increase in consumption of fruit and vegetables in places where Wal-Mart does a lot of business and a decrease--or smaller increase--in fatty food consumption relative to places where Wal-Mart doesn't do business. That is, people might consume more fatty foods, but consumption of those unhealthy goods increases more slowly than it does for the rest of the population."

This goes against prevailing "wisdom" and this is why doing science the right way is so important. Sure, there are lots of studies that confirm the obvious, and we laugh at the scientists. But when the counter-intuitive happens then you have something really important.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Coding Horror: I Stopped Reading Your Blog Years Ago

Coding Horror: I Stopped Reading Your Blog Years Ago: "there was a strange punishment the parents doled out to their children when they seriously misbehaved. For a period of a week, or longer -- depending on the severity of the misbehavior -- nobody in the family would talk to, acknowledge, or address in any way, that particular boy. It was called 'The Silent Treatment'. This didn't seem like much of a punishment to me. In fact, as an introverted kid who loved solitary activities like computers and reading more than anything, it seemed kind of like a .. reward"

And that is the biggest difference between an extrovert and an introvert. For extroverts that more they are around people the more energized they get. They live on the outside of their skin flitting from topic to topic and group to group fast and easily.
An introvert on the other hand does need social interaction but on a completely different level. They need to go deep on something. I would much rather spend an afternoon talking, discussing, and arguing some major idea. Small talk will drive an introvert insane fairly quickly. We live inside our heads slightly to one side and we like it.
We are more like Spock while extroverts are more like McCoy.