June 19th, 2007

Semiformalishmaybe

Paused Life

Last night when I went to sleep, I was working on configuration of one of our compute cluster systems at work - sleep came suddenly so I just set down my tea, closed my laptop, hopped in bed, and fell asleep. When I woke up, I hopped up, used the restroom, went back to the couch, drank some (now cold) tea, and hopped right back where I was (text editor still open in a configfile) - it was almost as if the hours between hadn't passed. There's something weird about that -- I guess computers allow for that style of work (maybe the same kind of thing is possible for authors as well)..

After an insanely busy beginning of the day at work, I went to the Phipps conservatory for lunch and to see the Chihuly exhibit (unfortunately, I forgot my camera). To my surprise, much more of Phipps was open than ever before (including some parts that I would guess to be new construction) - not only was the exhibit fantastic, they also had an exhibit (read: large room) on Thai vegetation and culture, all in a large room with a motif of waterfalls and caves. I think actually living barefoot in an area with waterfalls and caves (and laptops with nice internet connections so work and intellectual things could happen too) would be wonderful. ... I guess cities arn't bad because they're very efficient ways to organise society, but living out in the middle of nowhere has it's appeal too.. ... waterfalls and caves... hmm. After finishing the main part of Phipps, I had lunch there - I was initially bothered a bit by how expensive it is, but their food is fantastic - the mushroom sandwich I had was exquisite, and even the cornchips (which fit a category of foods in my mind where excellence or poorness is difficult) were wonderful. Wow. Having forgotten my camera, I missed out on chances for good photos, but if any of the cellphone-pictures turn out well I'll toss them up later.

tired

Einigkeit, Einheit, und Abteilung

I just got back from the presentation/discussion between the branches of Judaism held at the JCC. It was really interesting, and fairly well done (and packed - they got far more people than they expected)Collapse )dismissive criticism is fairly common, and while some people and groups pointedly abstain from it (or try to), to actually see its deconstruction in a public fashion is like a breath of fresh air.

There's actually a lot more to think about from that meeting that I might comment on later, but I need time to sort it all out...

For a long time, I've had some "little birds" inside (or otherwise close to) Google feeding me bits of information, and this, combined with watching the industry for long enough and an inquisitive mind, make me think that not only will Google ride the convergence in the evolution of cell-phones (and the cellphone network towards constant-on IP addressability), but that with Google Office (really, the whole google suite - calling something like Google Maps/Earth part of an "Office" package feels odd), they actually have a good shot of taking most of the pie. I know this is nothing new, and I probably have talked about it more, but it seems ever more likely that the winds are favourable for exactly what I think they're going for. Hooray for little birds.

The 61c café, while they can make white teas decently, are hit-and-miss when it comes to dark teas. Their Golden Nepal generally tastes burnt - I suspect that to brew it properly requires water closer to white tea temperatures than black tea. Although the 61c is much better than the Coffee Tree in most respects, I'm again reminded how much better yet the Beehive is (especially with regards to food and drink) - it's almost better enough that, combined with all the other good stuff down there, I'd like to live in the Southside. Not quite though - closeness to woods is too nice to give up for that. As Flexcar is in Pittsburgh now, I'm tossing around the idea of joining - it'd work out to be much cheaper than owning and would let me get down there on the occasion I want to.. My research group is thinking about getting a corporate/university account with them as well, for the purpose of letting us bring subjects to the scanner without using the (often-hard-to-schedule-around) shuttle.

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