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Checking in: Still here. My city remains mostly-not-on-fire for the time being. Anxiety is spiking; this is an unprecedented fire season on top of an abundance of other sources of distress in 2020. But I'm still breathing.

I saw a form that had a "select one" prompt where one of the options was "Gender Fluid."

It brought this image to mind.

boringcactus assembled a fine sequence of words describing the arc of the free and open source software movements over the past few decades:

Kittens Game exploits hacks in my brain that make for a really unhealthful dynamic, so I have to cut myself off after only a day of becoming re-acquainted with it and its recent update.

But not before making sure that stylesheet I wrote in 2017 works again.

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uspol, Portland 

yep nothin' like a little midnight-thirty loudspeaker message from the police to let the whole block know we have to move away from the precinct or they might tear gas us.

dudes, I am sitting in my apartment, and the precinct is a mile away. but I guess now you get to say we've been warned?

(the police vehicle seems to have moved on; I do not believe I am under imminent threat)

There's a loudspeaker outside somewhere. reciting the full “It was a dark and stormy night” sentence.

It's quiet for a bit before it repeats.

Why??? Is it a warning? A lure? A really weird hold message that someone put on speakerphone while they wait?

uspol, Portland 

Nobody wants to burn that building down.

Yes, that was a simplification. This situation has drawn a lot of attention and I am sure there are some people attracted to the chaos who like to see things burn. It is true that during a protest three days after George Floyd's death, some people smashed their way in to the Multnomah County Justice Center and burned some stuff.¹

But you may note that is not the building inside this fence you're seeing all this footage of, and I don't think anyone has forced their way inside the county's building to light fires during the months of continuous protester presence since then.

Thousands of people have gathered to demand justice for George Floyd's death, for the abolition of the abuse of power that led to his death and the death and destruction of so many others, and for the resignation of this city's Mayor who oversees the police bureau.

They are not there to destroy entire city blocks in the center of their own town.

The building with the fence in the national news is the Mark O. Hatfield United States Courthouse, across the street from the county's building. It's sixteen stories tall, placing it among the tallest buildings in Portland at the time of its design. It was built as a U.S. Courthouse from the foundation up with all the security features that requires.

Its lower levels are limestone and granite decorated with quotes like "The boisterous sea of liberty is never without a wave."²

It's not going to burn down with a book of matches and some oily rags.

If someone does have some kind of fire-breathing Godzilla that could take down a 16 story building, I doubt it would be troubled by a chain-link fence. And Portland City Hall (a block away, on the other side of the plaza) would likely go with it, along with half of downtown. Including the office of the city commissioner who oversees the Bureau of Transportation.

Complying with Commissioner Eudaly's cease-and-desist doesn't even require taking down the fence! It only requires moving it out of the public right-of-way.


1. The night of May 29th:
2. Street view of the Hatfield Courthouse from 2019 (without fences)

blockygameplatform Teresology broke a 14-month dry spell with a new release recently, inspiring me to give it another spin. So I find myself writing some Java recently.

I came up with some unit-test code I'd love to have suggestions on.

The app uses JavaFX for the UI, so there are some observable beans, and I'm using ListenableFutures (from Guava) because that's the concurrency abstraction I'm most familiar with, and javafx also has an event system. Some other variants on `Future` jumbled in there too.

This code is at a point where I think it works and is reasonably readable:

but the mishmash of different concurrency abstractions makes me want to know from more fluent java-testers if there's a more idiomatic way to write it.

Talking about version control conventions today, and I realized that if your audience is secondary-school-aged, the Linux kernel has been using git since the time they were born.

And git has been the most popular version control system for at least half their life.

Y'all, I posted that question in 2008, when I was working with an earlier generation of web startup, about to be laid off in a different recession.

Ages ago in software-years, and yet only *slightly* before Python 3.0 was released. :blobcatdizzy:

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Yesterday Saaj <‌> posted this excellently documented answer about tracking down memory leaks in a Python process:

The StackOverflow comment box says it is not to be used to say "Thanks!", so I don't know how to award extra kudos any more directly than shouting into the void here.

Also good to know pyrasite still works, as does Dozer:

but, hmm, since a lot of fedi-culture is ephemeral, which is also true of snapchat and its descendants, a community server could moderate its storage costs by having videos self-destruct.

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The last few weeks have had me recording and sharing a lot more video clips, which is a phenomenon in itself.

But on fedi, I'm more aware of how many more bytes video is than text, and someone has to pay for those hard drives 'cuz they're not made out of venture capital pixie dust. It gives me pause.

Learning things! The winglike things there are from an aftermarket drill press attachment. That whole thing can be unthreaded from the drill shaft without any set screws or anything.

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Dear Lazyweb, how do I take the drill chuck off my Black and Decker 7144?

Video is just a little clip trying to show what it looks like.

covid-19 filk, birdsite has provided lyrics to Coronavirus Rhapsody:

re: social distancing, Gilbert & Sullivan 

Go take a walk, or ride a bike, or dig into an unread book;
Avoid the bars and restaurants and carry out, or learn to cook.
There's lots of stuff to watch online while keeping safe from sinus ills
(In this case, it's far better to enjoy your Netflix MINUS chills)!
Adopt a pet, compose a ballad, write some earnest doggerel,
And help demolish Trump before our next event inaugural.
Pandemics are alarming, but they aren't insurmountable
If everybody pitches in to hold ourselves accountable.
In short, please do your part to practice prudent co-existence-ing,
And be the very model of effective social distancing!

— Eliza Rubenstein


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social distancing, Gilbert & Sullivan 

I am the very model of effective social distancing!
I listen to the experts on the topic of resistance-ing;
I know that brunch and yoga class aren't nearly as imperative
As doing what I can to change the nation's viral narrative.
I'm very well acquainted, too, with living solitarily
And confident that everyone can do it temporarily:

[…continued, 1/2]

— Eliza Rubenstein

train of thought:

• I need to get up from the computer.
• What's a program that will kick me off the computer?
• Oh, `workrave` is still maintained, but the website is derelict? Do they need any help to get the new one ready?
• Here's a different program in a language I like better. But some of these dependencies seem superfluous. Could I reimplement those functions to streamline it?
• This API says it's been deprecated in favor of something about a "Seat." What's a Seat?
• I'm still hungry.
• I need to get up from the computer.

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