Pat Gunn (dachte) wrote,
Pat Gunn

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Inner Monologues

I think I said 6 words today (vocally, not written/typed/etc), namely to specify the kind of tea I wanted at the coffeeshop. Fairly typical, as I don't usually run into anyone I know who's up for chatting, but the fact of it got me thinking about thought and words again. I usually don't think in words - normally there's a flow of impressions that form a sentence-analogue, but there are some elements to that that are almost always words - more abstract nouns or states of being in particular - thinking how difficult it would be to be illiterate: realised - "illiterate" member of that class of concepts that's almost always "spelled out" as a word (would be irony, but it's actually just an example). Trying to get the "impression" of illiteracy is doable but difficult - it doesn't naturally "take shape" as much as simpler words like "cat" or "hungry" or even "Perl" or "C". Perhaps instead of abstraction, it's just infrequency of use? I don't often have occasion to use the word illiterate, while over the years many of these other words have left plenty of impressions on me. Something to reflect on...

Also: thinking about word order in sentence-analogues. Seems to be quite inconsistent when present - English, German, Japanese-style orderings all seem to occasionally be present, although there are plenty of times my "sentence-analogues" don't have order (or temporal narrative), particularly when on topics more distant from planning something or imagining a story. Thoughts on philosophy, maths, and abstract reasoning: particularly likely to lack an order. Dim memory of transformations into and out of Hilbert spaces: possibly analogous or possibly just a spurious glue to a dim memory. I sometimes feel guilty over how much maths I've forgotten over the years. I'm not even that old.

Frequent failures to get people interested in a trip to India Garden, Abay, etc: disappointing, both in terms of loneliness and that I usually don't like to eat out alone. Oh well.

Most of the way through "Major Trends in Formative Judaism" - quite an interesting book. As the title suggests, it attempts to see how interpretations of Torah and other related works shifted during early Rabbinical Judaism (the author makes use of "Judaisms" often, stressing that the community was diverse in perspective and formulation) and how closely those can be said to relate to pre-rabbinical Judaism. It is a scholarly work, but only lightly so in that it does not cite original sources quite enough, and also that its phrasing suggests a concern with what people should believe today (or perhaps I focus too much into the author's phrasing). I would be interested to find scholarly sources on pre-rabbinical Judaism as well, although as I understand we don't have a lot of information of the specifics of that.

I am having trouble scripting using the screen utility, and am frustrated.What I want to do is to, during X login (launched from my .xsession), start a screen session, open a bunch of windows in it, and run commands in each, so I can reconnect later and see if any of them spat any diagnostics or complaints at me. All this should happen in a way that doesn't require me to type anything manually when I login and doesn't leave any messy windows around. Seems straightforward, no?

  • First hurdle - screen doesn't seem to accept commands until somebody's connected to the session at least once. Irritating, but easy enough to work around.
  • Second hurdle - screen can't accept commands at above a certain rate - it unreliably and silently drops some commands unless I stick in sleeps between issuing commands. I have not yet found a way around this, and it is very irritating.
Right now I have the following in something launched from my .xsession:
  • sleep 5
  • xterm -e screen &
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X screen
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X exec ... xmodmap .xmodmaprc
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X screen
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X exec ... gnome-power-manager
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X screen
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X exec ... gnome-panel
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X screen
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X exec ... phonehome
  • sleep 1
  • screen -X detach
This almost works. If I change the "sleep 1" to "sleep 2", it works reliably, but that's very painful. I have a suspicion that the answer to this might be "don't use screen", but I don't like that answer, as I don't know of anything else really suitable for the task. The other (less managable) option would be to start a bunch of xterms with these things running in them, all iconified.

On the upside, I think I've figured out how to use DIVs instead of tables for my blog software - here's a snapshot sans tables. To my readers who read my blog in its original form (that is, not the Livejournal mirror), does the div form look better or worse? Does it render correctly? As you probably have noticed, while my computer knowledge is broad and deep in some places, I am not very good with making pretty interfaces :P

I recently had an awesome idea for a very geeky party, but I suspect I don't really know enough people who would come to pull it off. Another Ceilidh would be kind of interesting too, or even regularly holding dinner (once a week?), .. I dunno. I'm not good at organising these things though, especially now, and it would just kill me to organise a gathering and have almost nobody show up.
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