Nate Dickson Thinks...

Small Thoughts for a Quiet World.

There's an old saying, “The cloud is just someone else's computer “, which is technically accurate but misses the point. “Someone else's computer” evokes an image of custom-built hardware run by a company that is specifically offering cloud services. They built their machines to specifically provide the services you need.

But we all know that's not true. As far back as 2016 ZDNet reminded us all that “the cloud” isn't someone's server, it's just rented space in a data center.

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Keybow Three Row I've been playing around with the Pimoroni Keybow again. It's a nice little device that is delightfully simple to tinker with for far too long at any given time. Each key can be programmed to have specific lights and do hideously complex things, should you so desire. Macros are fun!

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I've been thinking about the ways in which I relate to time, as a concept.

One view of time divides it up into goals and deadlines. It's like a race. Our goal is to cross each finish line, to complete our tasks, and reach a theoretical perfect state through this series of steps. We are at state X, we want to be at state X++, which will be “better”. An example of this is how we relate to work weeks: We work through the week, to Friday, where we get happy because we have a weekend! But then the weekend ends, because time doesn't stop. This is true of just about anything. There was a book I saw once, called After the Ecstasy, the Laundry that makes this point in it's title. I never actually got around to reading the book...

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One of my favorite Latin poems is known “offically” as Catullus 85, but is more frequently called Odi et Amo.

It's a short little poem:

Odi et amo. Quare id faciam fortasse requiris. Nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.

or in English (according to Wikipedia):

I hate and I love. Why I do this, perhaps you ask. I know not, but I feel it happening and I am tortured.

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Yes, it's one of their “kids” albums. But have you ever heard a “kids” album like this before? The songs are as complex and rich as any of their regular “grown up” fare, but with toned-down themes to be more palatable to younger groups of listeners.

I'm talking, of course, about They Might Be Giants ' first “kids” album, No!

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We have been being very good about not going out, but we needed some sunlight. So we chose a place that should have been a nice, easy hike, and we hiked up there.

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For years I've been looking for a way to keep an organic, self-organizing system of notes, something that ties all my thoughts together so that I can get at the ones I want based on what I'm doing.

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The band Dinosaur Jr was active and well known during the years when I was in high school; more than that, they are right up my alley, musically. I've heard the name of the band more than once, but I never really knew anything about them. They've just been there.

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There's a neurotic need (in me at any rate) to keep my mind occupied, even in those moments when I don't have a whole lot to do. Not that “constant distraction” is particularly healthy, of course. And when you're just looking for a time filler it's easy to surf the same few short (anti-)social media sites, or short-article sites over and over, perfecting the art of Doomscrolling .

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This is a time where we're all under attack, and I've been doing some house cleaning and inventory.

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