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The most important thing is stop look around, take in your surroundings, what's right in front of you maybe priceless. Unmediated reality is where it's at.

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Tom Sparks

in·trac·ta·ble

1 min read

in·trac·ta·ble

Dictionary result for intractable

/ˌinˈtraktəb(ə)l/adjective

  1. hard to control or deal with."intractable economic problems"
    synonyms: unmanageableuncontrollableungovernable, out of control, out of hand, impossible to cope with; More
       
    • (of a person) difficult or stubborn.
      synonyms: stubbornobstinateobdurateinflexible, unadaptable, unmalleable, unbendingunyieldinguncompromisingunaccommodatinguncooperativedifficultawkwardperversecontrarydisobedientindomitablerefractoryrecalcitrantpigheaded, bull-headed, willfulMore

Tom Sparks

trac·ta·ble

1 min read

trac·ta·ble

Dictionary result for tractable

/ˈtraktəb(ə)l/adjective

  1. (of a person) easy to control or influence."tractable dogs that have had some obedience training"
    synonyms: controllablemanageablemalleable, governable, yieldingamenablecomplaisantcompliantMore
       
    • (of a situation or problem) easy to deal with."trying to make the mathematics tractable"

Tom Sparks

RSS Toms Brain

2 min read

RSS Lives

RSS is a type of web feed which allows users and applications to access updates to online content in a standardized, computer-readable format. These feeds can, for example, allow a user to keep track of many different websites in a single news aggregator. - wikipedia 

 

RSS was created around 1999, at that time I was in the Network Technologies program at North Seattle Community College. I didn't start using RSS myself  till later. I used a variety of rss readers, the one that stuck with me the longest was Fever 1.39 . To use Fever you need a web server and a version of SQL I have access to both those things so in 2010 I started using Fever to aggregate all the sites I wanted to follow. Over the years this list has changed as sites disappear and as I became interested in other things. Fever was created by  Shaun Inman he stopped supporting it in 2016 . 

 

Another web service I started using around 2010 was Pinboard   It is a service that lets you store links (url) to web pages you want to remember and return to. Pinboard has many good features one of which is generating an RSS feed from your list of links.  Here is a feed of my links  keep in mind you need to open this link in an RSS reader, its format is designed for a machine to read not a human. My account is public at Pinboard you can review all the link I have save, I am sure a physiatrist could make hay out of the list. 

 

 

 

Tom Sparks

Reading List for the Traveler

1 min read

The traveler would be me.

  1. The Book of Disquite  - Pessoa
  2. The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis by José Saramago
  3. The Walk by Robert Walser
  4. The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

One: I have started reading this book numerous times. Sometimes I open it at random and start the content is in small components like a assemblage of notes.  

Two: Ricardo Reis was one of the 70+ heteronyms used by Fernando Pessoa, Saramago places both Reis and Pessoa in his novel as main characters. This choice is research into two of Lisbon's greatest authors and into life in Portugal in the 1930's.

Three: The Walk extols the virtues of walking without  clear purpose, in the manner of a Flaneur. I m interested in this practice and this ook is considered research.

Four: Zuboff's new book is a dense treatise on modern "Stack" capitalism and the surveillance systems currently built into the commercial internet. Zuboff has her detractors but the threat she discuses is very real.

____________#literature

Tom Sparks

Shenzhen and the Future of Chinese Tech

1 min read

Shenzhen has been an important experiment for the Chinese since 1980 when it was designated a  "Special Economic Zone". It was created to be an experimental place for the practice of market capitalism within a community guided by the ideals of "socialism with Chinese characteristics

Shenzhen is the gateway between mainland China and Hongkong. The Chinese government  hoped Shenzhen would become the "silicon valley" of China, it has and it seems to have surpassed the American silicon valley. 

Here is a Bloomberg video that highlights some of the more dystopian aspects of Shenzhens development.  I must say it looks shiny and clean.

Video dated Jan 24, 2019 

____________

 

Tom Sparks

Pessoa Infinite Solar System

1 min read

"Fernando Pessoa is an infinte solar system, made up of clusters of plaanets near and far, many of them still unexplored, or unknown. His life was a continuous self-dividing into new worlds, which he experiences as a frustrating inability to complete his works. In an autobiographical text written in English he confessed:

"My writings were none of them finished; new thoughts intruded ever, extrordinary, inexcludeable associations of ideas bearing infinity for term. I cannot prevent my thought's hatred of finishing."

via: Ines Pedros - os Lugares de Pessoa

 

Tom Sparks

Martin Jay reviews ‘All too Human’ by George Stephanopoulos and ‘No One Left to Lie to’ by Christopher Hitchens · LRB 29 July 1999 https://www.lrb.co.uk/v21/n15/martin-jay/mendacious-flowers

Tom Sparks

Bolthole: a hole or burrow by which a rabbit or other wild animal can escape.

Tom Sparks

Geist

1 min read

Geist (German pronunciation: [ˈɡaɪst]) is a German noun with a degree of importance in German philosophy. Its semantic field corresponds to English ghost, spirit, mind, intellect. Some English translators resort to using "spirit/mind" or "spirit (mind)" to help convey the meaning of the term.

Geist is also a central concept in Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel's 1807 The Phenomenology of Spirit (Phänomenologie des Geistes). Notable compounds, all associated with Hegel's view of world history of the late 18th century, include Weltgeist "world-spirit", Volksgeist "national spirit" and Zeitgeist "spirit of the age".

 

 

 

Tom Sparks

Niles Rodgers Crate Dive

1 min read

Chic

Chic  1977

C'est Chic  1978

Risqué  1979 

Le Freak  1979

=====

We Are Family, Sister Sledge 1979

diana, Diana Ross 1980

Let's Dance, David Bowie  1983

Original Sin, INXS  1984

Cosmic Thing, The B-52's 1989

Dellali, Cheb Mami 2001

Random Access Memories, Daft Punk 2013

Tom Sparks

干杯

1 min read

Gānbēi. = Cheers

Tom Sparks

Mid Winter Northwest

1 min read

Room With A Veiw

When we are lucky the gods of weather grant us a few beautiful days in mid winter. If the wind dies down the temperature will be in the 60's. This is the view from my couch today.  I need to get out doors and do some work.

 

Tom Sparks