Thur. Aug. 29, 2019 – driving today

Cooler and humid? Dunno. Writing this the night before. [72F, 99%RH at 6am]

I’m doing a pickup in Austin, on the north side, with TxDOT today. I’ve got to be home to pickup the kids later so I’m on a mission today. I may not even stop at the Surplus Store, or the Goodwill outlet…

I will be stopping at the Praesk’s Smokehouse on the way there and at Hruska’s on the way back. They are conveniently located for me coming from I-10 and the south. Given that traffic and construction are a mess on the south side, maybe I should look at coming in on 290 from the north? We’ll see I guess. But I’ll probably just come up 71 to MoPac.

The rain yesterday afternoon was 1.92 inches by my gauge and lowered temps significantly. I guess Fall is coming.

The world continues on its march to war. Iran and Israel are flirting with disaster. Brexit is coming up, the Italians are still messing up their banking, China is still playing brinksmanship games with the US, and NOK is back to messing around with missiles. Jeez people, give it a rest will you?

Well, talk amongst yourselves for a bit. I’ll check in when I can.

n

30 thoughts on “Thur. Aug. 29, 2019 – driving today”

  1. It was 62f and chilly when I began my commute this AM. A very nice change. I am so tired of HOT & HUMID Mississippi summers. This will be my last. Summers in Oklahoma are hot but not miserably humid and we can sit on the porch, in the shade, and enjoy summer evenings there.

  2. I’m doing a pickup in Austin, on the north side, with TxDOT today. I’ve got to be home to pickup the kids later so I’m on a mission today. I may not even stop at the Surplus Store, or the Goodwill outlet…

    Be careful around the Surplus Store. If you haven’t been in a while, TxDOT has turned it into a mess building the toll lanes down 183.

    Unfortunately, I’m buried today since I told management I am off grid starting tomorrow morning and running until Monday night. Wave as you pass the MetCenter off 183.


  3. Summers in Oklahoma are hot

    In the winter the only thing stopping the wind from the north pole is one chain link fence. You ain’t sitting on a front porch in the winter unless you are already a corpse.

  4. From yesterday, @Greg said:

    ““Rust is the future of systems programming, C is the new Assembly”: Intel principal engineer, Josh Triplett”

    Have the interns finish the Linux port before putting them to work on Rust.

    I have the O’Reilly book somewhere around, but it got pushed down the vacation pile. We haven’t had enough vacations this year, and I’ll be occupied this weekend in San Antonio.

    Whenever I play with Rust, the binaries seem extremely large. Like Mozilla, start with one of your less critical components and see how it goes. I’ve seen articles about building DLLs in Rust which interface to other pieces written in C/C++.

    Quite a few people replied to me on comp.lang.c.
    https://groups.google.com/forum/?nomobile=true#!topic/comp.lang.c/e2pGMlc4Ksg

    One of them is interested in comparing compilers and could not even get Rust to run:
    https://github.com/sal55/qx/blob/master/compilertest.txt

    We use C++ multiple inheritance in our Windows user interface. Comes from the bad decision to use Microsoft Foundation Classes and the decision to write our own data driven dialogs which is a clash. But, it works.

  5. From yesterday, @Greg said:

    We discourage our children from working in IT and medicine. “Kids, don’t make our mistakes.”

    Unlike many other fields, Medicine and IT are filled with managers who have never done the hands-on work in their career and couldn’t muster the IQ points to learn if their lives depended on it.

    Ah, good old reverse psychology.

    And Engineering has the same problem. The Accountants take over as soon as the business gets to be a certain size. See Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy.

  6. I have the O’Reilly book somewhere around, … .

    Ditto, but after my brief, abortive flirtation with Go, I have no desire to experiment with the supposedly new and improved generation of systems programming languages. I’ve decided that, like Algol, C is an improvement upon all its successors.

  7. We use C++ multiple inheritance in our Windows user interface. Comes from the bad decision to use Microsoft Foundation Classes and the decision to write our own data driven dialogs which is a clash. But, it works.

    The languages targeting the LLVM back end such as Swift, Rust, and Go seem like evolutionary dead ends to me.

    I think Apple had the right idea moving forward with the semi-interpreted Objective C/C++, but that meant Objective C++ would allow easy porting of business logic between Windows, Mac, and Linux. Steve Jobs successors apparently want none of that so they came up with Swift.

    I’ve had local Apple inside people tell me that Swift is all about limiting porting capability, especially to Windows, but of course none would ever go on the record and say that.

  8. The languages targeting the LLVM back end such as Swift, Rust, and Go seem like evolutionary dead ends to me.

    Yup.

    The biggest single problem that C++ has to me is the lack of a generic user interface toolkit. Platforms could choose on how much of the UITK to implement (none, some, most, all) for easy portability. But the C++ maintainers don’t even want to talk about it and think that it is a waste of time.

  9. The biggest single problem that C++ has to me is the lack of a generic user interface toolkit. Platforms could choose on how much of the UITK to implement (none, some, most, all) for easy portability. But the C++ maintainers don’t even want to talk about it.

    The Tk part of Tcl/Tk is the closest to a generic GUI as anyone has come. Python embeds Tk.

    A lot of internal apps on Unix got written in Motif. I still see a *lot* of that around. The obstacle to wider adoption there is I think the copyright is still held by someone, and Lesstif was abandoned as soon as Motif went semi-open source — free as in beer but not as in speech.

    No one trusts Larry Ellison with regard to monetizing Java. Nobody I worked with at IBM (our primary customer at Death Star Telephone) would go on the record, but, 10 years ago, I was told clearly that Java on applications IBM used internally was verboten by verbal agreement.

    Unfortunately, I think the trend is towards Electron as a generic GUI. God help us all. “Hello world.” in a nice, tidy 100 MB.

  10. Our former host said, your job will be in the things that could not be made in China, and I humble add, software? even in my country with cheap than India costs, same hour as the states and educated people, dont study IT. period

  11. Unfortunately, I think the trend is towards Electron as a generic GUI. God help us all. “Hello world.” in a nice, tidy 100 MB.

    Yup, there are several open source UITKs (user interface toolkits). GTK, wxWidgets, etc, etc, etc. I would like to see the C++ committee stamp of approval on just one of them (like the STL) but, that will never happen.

  12. Made it home, to heavy downpours and street flooding. Dry as a bone in Austin, with lots of evidence of grass fires beside the road. Wet as a fat guy’s thighs in July here.

    Street traffic is nuts.

    glad I put dinner in the crock pot before I left.

    n

  13. I want my girls to understand how programming works, how the internet and the stuff they interact with works, but I don’t want them doing it for a living. There is a massive outsourcing movement, coupled with trying to get every kid in the ghetto or suburbs to “learn to code”, both of which will increase supply and drive down wages.

    There’s not much future in anything that can be done remotely or by (relatively) low wage workers overseas.

    I’m not sure where the future of work is, but I’m pretty sure it isn’t in coding.

    n

  14. Holy crap, when did they upgrade Dorian?

    ” With Hurricane Dorian barreling toward Florida, expected to make landfall as a powerful Category 4 hurricane, with 130 mph winds, this weekend.”

    CAT4???

    n

  15. Dorian is taking aim at my Beautiful Niece #1, but she already had plans to be in New York City this weekend. (And how fouled up is your life that going to NYC is the safe option?) Once it crosses the peninsula it will probably gather strength, and goes who knows where. We haven’t been blasted for 323 days – bring it on!!


  16. Wet as a fat guy’s thighs in July here.

    How do you know enough about a fat guy’s thighs to make the comparison? Asking for a friend.

  17. There is a massive outsourcing movement, coupled with trying to get every kid in the ghetto or suburbs to “learn to code”, both of which will increase supply and drive down wages.

    Not to mention ramping up the quantity of bloated, inefficient code. The supply of cycles ‘n’ bytes is large but not infinite.

    Where’s the incentive for a really intelligent person to study computer science? Will computer programming be a free-for-all as it is now until some cyber-disaster occurs that results in licensing similar to that of professional engineers?

  18. “Afternoon Hurricane Dorian update—uncertainty abounds for Florida”
    https://spacecityweather.com/afternoon-hurricane-dorian-update-uncertainty-abounds-for-florida/

    “In looking at this afternoon’s weather model data, what is particular striking to me is the high degree of uncertainty about where Dorian is going to go by Sunday or Monday. There is, in fact, no guarantee it will even hit Florida. There is a non-zero chance it goes south of Miami, or turns north before reaching the Florida peninsula. A little while ago, I wrote a story for Ars Technica about this uncertainty, which is highlighted in this afternoon’s ensemble output from the European forecast model:”

  19. Will computer programming be a free-for-all as it is now until some cyber-disaster occurs that results in licensing similar to that of professional engineers?

    Licensing of programmers will never happen. The Boeing 737 Max disasters are the results of bad management outsourcing programming without engineering a good solution first.

  20. “In looking at this afternoon’s weather model data, what is particular striking to me is the high degree of uncertainty about where Dorian is going to go by Sunday or Monday. There is, in fact, no guarantee it will even hit Florida. There is a non-zero chance it goes south of Miami, or turns north before reaching the Florida peninsula. A little while ago, I wrote a story for Ars Technica about this uncertainty, which is highlighted in this afternoon’s ensemble output from the European forecast model:”

    The State of Florida had to make decisions on what the models said last night. Better to take heat for being overprepared than underprepared.

    The Navy is still saying Fort Pierce. Fortunately, that area is not well developed or heavily populated.

  21. @ray, self examination brother, self examination…..

    Cat4 is a pretty big change.

    n

  22. they will apply AI, deep neural nets, machine learning, etc to most code- you heard it here first!

    There will be places for smart humans, there are always places for ‘rock stars’ but current culture doesn’t acknowledge that some people are simply better/smarter/more creative. Makes it hard for the cream to rise if they’re afraid of being skimmed off.

    n

  23. Licensing of programmers will never happen. The Boeing 737 Max disasters are the results of bad management outsourcing programming.

    Part of it is outsourcing, but I’ve seen CS cirriculums watered down just in the last eight years.

    We had a guy in yesterday from that famous tech school in Massachusetts. Nice guy. Ex-NASA. CS Masters from another big school. But he spent the online coding test portion of our interview trying to figure out how std::pair and unordered _map worked. Ruh-roh.

    I passed along my opinion, but I think it was a foregone conclusion. Those three letters from his undergrad institution open a lot of doors.

  24. As a data point…

    Idahoan instant mashed potatoes in pouches way past their best date….

    Buttery flavor, expired 2014, but stored in the cool, dry, dark — very slight discoloration, powder was powder, mixed up to good consistency. very edible, not quite as good as when new but def edible, esp with gravy and butter.

    Baby Reds flavor, expired 2015, stored in the heat– very discolored, almost orange, powder was clumpy. Didn’t get fluffy, stayed orange, tasted “old”. Edible, especially if hungry or drowned in gravy, but not something you’d ask for thirds.

    Can of sauerkraut, can failed, contents black. Thrown out. Didn’t check the date but probably 4 or more years. No outward signs of the failure (except marks from fluid on label.) No “phffut” on opening either.

    And FFIW, neither I nor the family care for sour red sauce on our crock pot pork roast.

    n

  25. @greg, I stayed south and west on this trip, never got to the Surplus Store.

    I did hit the ‘bins’ at the Goodwill Outlet. I know, I was shocked the first time, and I still talk sh!t about the place, but – – –

    Every time I go there I find vintage british audio gear or pro-sumer level gear. This time I grabbed a modern Bowers and Wilkins subwoofer, iirc this one – https://www.ebay.com/itm/Bowers-and-Wilkins-Subwoofer-ASW608-8/293176127077 selling used for between 150 and 200USD. I also grabbed a 70’s vintage pioneer turntable that was treated very badly but that I’ll part out, and some pro audio install gear, 2 infinity in wall speakers and a multiroom audio amp.

    Am I getting lucky or is there vintage audiophile gear there EVERY DAY? That possibility kinda blows my mind.

    The other part that blows my mind is that all those people there passed it by in favor of used shoes and t-shirts.

    I got a bunch of other good stuff and I hope some of it starts selling soon.

    The drive wasn’t bad, and the roads around Austin were pretty wide open. I did almost rear end someone who just stopped in the lane on the 360 loop… idiots. And I saw plenty of people with their eyes down at their hands, reading on phones despite laws to the contrary. It’s almost as if you can’t legislate behaviour…

    n

  26. The other part that blows my mind is that all those people there passed it by in favor of used shoes and t-shirts.

    It depends on the item. Retro video game hardware gets snapped up quickly, and Goodwill has (had?) a separate computer store out on 183.

    Vintage audio gear is more niche, and you have to know what you’re looking at. Most people are happy with 128 kbps MP3s these days.

    I believe Austin’s HPE campus used to be a Compaq research facility. Between that and the old Motorola campus locations, this area had serious tech employment 30 years ago so it doesn’t surprise me that the estates haul a bunch of nice electronics to Goodwill.

    The drive wasn’t bad, and the roads around Austin were pretty wide open. I did almost rear end someone who just stopped in the lane on the 360 loop… idiots. And I saw plenty of people with their eyes down at their hands, reading on phones despite laws to the contrary. It’s almost as if you can’t legislate behaviour…

    As I noted last week, the tech hubs have a high A**hat Quotient. I saw it in Seattle and Portland. Now Austin. The arrogance and sense of entitlement are off the charts, and most of the “tech” workers drive spreadsheets or edit web pages.

    A recession should have cleared out the AQ in these cities long ago, like the popping of the tech bubble. Now, when it comes, it will be much uglier.

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