Saturday

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 6-26-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Looking forward to a future where the subject of an Open Thread is simply a celebration of a few common experiences making life a little simpler. The book Everything You Need to Know You Learned in Kindergarten crossed my path in the early 90's when air travel was part of the regular business week and airport layovers provided ample time for reading. It is one book I have revisited when I begin taking life too seriously.

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 6-17-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

How to identify an expert with deep knowledge of a subject from someone with a superficial understanding who uses all the contemporary phrases of an "expert" is one of the skills to identify propaganda. When the inputs (questions) and outputs (answers) are controlled anyone can look like an expert.

Now, anyone whose academic background includes computer science or artificial intelligence is probably very familiar with the The Chinese Room thought experiment. My entry into high tech was a different route, focused solely on specific projects with defined objectives not theory. As with many subjects the learning process has not fit typical academic progression.

The Chinese Room (3.57 minutes)

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 6-11-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

History by algorithm. The automatic suggestions and prompts from the invisible guiding hand to increase awareness of the twisting path of civilization beginning in England. Yesterday the journey began with this suggestion.

(approx 10 min)

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 6-4-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

I have been fortunate to spend most of my life in an area with continuing infrastructure improvements over the past 120 years. Each new method of transportation and subsequent improvements brought burst of economic activity. Railroad arrived in 1911 with a station in Bend, Oregon. The train station gave an economic edge over the other communities and became a lifeline for economic prosperity to move goods.

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 5-28-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Today is an odd collection of bits of information crossing my path this week. May not completely agree with every viewpoint of the authors, but did create deeper understanding of the subjects.

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 5-21-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

There are questions which run through my mind without satisfactory answers. One is - what is the benefit for the leaders of Taiwan to initiate a conflict with China? Taiwan is an island and does not share any land borders to cross for people to escape a war zone. Taiwanese Expats living in most other countries would be able to avoid direct consequences, but relatives and friends on the island would be in physical danger. Economic consequences would be severe.

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 5-14-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Morning folks. Thought I would spend a little more time focusing on using ships to keep tensions high between nations. First a little background.

The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, (UNCLOS) (Wikipedia)

UNCLOS replaces the older 'freedom of the seas' concept, dating from the 17th century. According to this concept, national rights were limited to a specified belt of water extending from a nation's coastlines, usually 3 nautical miles (5.6 km; 3.5 mi) (three-mile limit), according to the 'cannon shot' rule developed by the Dutch jurist Cornelius van Bynkershoek.[4] All waters beyond national boundaries were considered international waters: free to all nations, but belonging to none of them (the mare liberum principle promulgated by Hugo Grotius).[5]

In the early 20th century, some nations expressed their desire to extend national claims: to include mineral resources, to protect fish stocks, and to provide the means to enforce pollution controls.

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 4-30-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Reading biographies is one of my methods for getting a feel of a culture or time period. It helps create a deeper understanding of historical events and common cultural assumptions. In 2002 in the Beijing hotel gift shop bought The Life of Mencius by Qu Chunli written in a historical novel format. The book changed the way I perceived China. Followed up later by reading the author's book The Life of Confucius.

The American idea of China's need to "save face" to avoid conflict and maintain honor had always been presented as a weakness. The two books presented the idea, by treating an opponent with honor and respect future cooperation is possible and conflicts might be resolved peacefully. Saving face was a diplomatic tool to avoid hardening a position leading to a violent conflict. It appears China may no longer be concerning itself with the honor of United States elite.

Wang Wenbin - spokesperson of Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2:18 min)

Transcript

Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 4-23-2022

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

The data centers run 24 hours a day, humming along with power from Bonneville Dam. The systems are kept cool using outdoor air on cold days and nights, when insufficient there is water.

People and communities need to communicate with each other. Large data centers assist in the broad goals of efficiency and monitoring.

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