Thursday, September 30, 2010

Better UI for math

It's much too easy to miss the difference between the numbers 1000000 and 10000000000, so it's hard for me to blame people too much when adding 3 easy-to-miss numbers creates a number 1000 times larger (or perhaps 10000. :)

Scientific notation is also shitty at making the most important number prominent;  for example, in the number 6 x 10^32, the 32 is by far the most important part of the number but is typically written in very small type, and the 10 should be written in small type or even just implied.

Poem with unknown name, for an unknown man

Goodbye stranger
I say goodbye

On the road to nowhere
To the final country where everyone is welcomed in
Where nothing needn't know your origin

Farewell sir
Without papers, without identity
What were you looking for?
How much did you lose along the way?
Who stares through the empty window
Nameless men wait
While I speak and entrust my empty words to this empty room
I am too late
You, I never knew
Who heard the voice calling out for you
To come on home'n
To your final haven

--from a funeral for an unknown man in Amsterdam
Audio from the BBC documentary The Lonely Funeral, poem begins at 11:39

Monday, September 20, 2010

Utopia incoming

In 20 years, we should see the average IQ go up a fat chunk.  I think it will be harder to be ignorant about a given subject because there will be many chances to be exposed to high quality ideas due to the sheer number of links a person will have clicked on by the time they're an adult.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

I inherited body parts I did not ask for, like a tooth that aches enough to wake me from sleep.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Yesterday I was walking outside really late, around midnight, and I see a homeless man coming down a bridge over the freeway towards me.  When he saw me I could tell I scared him a little (me with a shaved head, walking fast and maybe aggressively toward him).  He tried not to show it, but his pace hesitated several times, but he kept walking forward.  At that moment, he reminded me of me about 20 years ago, when I was just a small kid that hadn't hit puberty yet and had glasses, and there were kids at my new school that were going to hit me, only because I was small and scared of them (seriously, how fucked is that?)  

When I got closer to him I gave him a little nod and a look that tried let him know I wasn't going to do anything to him. (He looks like Zach Galifianakis with an even crazier beard.) I've seen him sitting on that bridge looking over the 405 once before at sunset, I'm gonna try and talk to him next time (well, next time it's not midnight).

The Problem of Evil

Yesterday when I paid for gas on the credit card terminal outside, it asked me if I wanted a carwash; the icky part was that it only displayed a Yes option.  Only after several seconds did it add a No option. 

What do ya say, can we all make an effort to not be subhuman?  Are you with me?

Friday, September 10, 2010

To Apple

The only thing you need to add to the iPod is wireless sync, it doesn't need to get any tinier.