Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   without the whole NuJavascript ecosystem
Saturday, July 14 2018
Saturday mornings are always nice, what with the coffee and the toast or whatever. This morning we had Trader Joes crumpets, though half of them had gone moldy. They're supposed to be shelf-stable, but perhaps the packaging had been punctured. It was good weather for sitting drinking our coffee out on the east deck. While there, I clearly heard what might've been the first dog-day cicada of the season (though I might've actually heard one yesterday).
The day passed in a manner similar to the way the others have passed of late. I'd feel restless and anxious about my job hunt, find and apply for jobs, and then eventually feel overwhelmed and demoralized and go lie in bed and watch nostalgic tech stuff on YouTube. I'd also go down to the screened-in porch project and do a little painting or caulking. The detail-work of making things look nice theoretically could go on forever.
This evening, Gretchen drove up to Albany to participate in a reading of environmentalist poetry, and of course this meant sitting through a meal at a bad Chinese restaurant as the only the vegan there. It's always a tragedy to be eating a meal at a bad restaurant in a city where one knows there are great places to eat.
Meanwhile, I went through the motions of cleaning the floorboards of the screened-in porch in preparation for painting. I wouldn't've bothered (especially on a floor that will not be exposed to the weather), but the paint expert at Herzog's had stressed how important such cleaning was. And once an expert puts an idea in Gretchen's head, she insists on following the recipe exactly, even when it makes no sense. (An example of things making no sense comes up when we're determining anti-flea medication doses and it's clear that there's a linear relationship between dosage and weight, and yet Gretchen insists on applying the medication in the precise discrete dosage increments for whatever the various weight ranges each cat falls in.) The recipe in this case called for a quart of bleach, three quarts of hot water, and four ounces of phosphate-free (?) trisodium phosphate. I used a paint roller to apply this to the decking. Then I waited a half hour and came back with a hose blasting hot water directly from the boiler room to rinse it all away. The actual recipe called for using a pressure-washing rig, but I don't have one of those. Just as I was finishing up, it began to rain for the first time in weeks, and it would continue raining all night. The garden had been doing okay due to watering, but the drought had been going on so long that much of the grass in the yard had turned yellow.
I decided to reward myself with some booze for all that deck-washing trouble, and it's amazing how much better one feels after drinking some booze when one is dealing with background situational (and perhaps other) depression. I took the opportunity to delve further into React.js, which appears to be a valuable skill to have in today's web developer market. The problem with learning React.js is that it's not just one thing; one also apparently has to know Node.js, the npm package installer, something called webpack (which is concerned with the Javascript modules) and babel.js (which makes fairly trivial compilation changes from one version of Javascript to another). What made the web fun was tinkering with things, hitting reload, and seeing the effects. With all this tech, one is forced to do things at the command line between every change of code. Maybe I could get used to it, but it just doesn't seem very fun. And the learning curve seems unnecessarily steep. Why can't React.js be a thing like Angular that one can just install as front-end tech on a web server? Why does it have to run in its own (non-Apache) web server? Perhaps it makes sense to do things that way, but it's no way for someone like me to get started with it. Fortunately, I eventually found someone describing how to use React.js without the whole NuJavascript ecosystem (here I use the "Nu" prefix in the manner of "NuMetal").

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