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October 2006 - Posts


A post I made a few weeks ago was actually inspired by a comment that someone left on my blog.  Nothing in the comment had anything to do with what I said; I just happened to be in a certain frame of mind when I read it and it caused me to think of what I eventually wrote about.

It's interesting the kinds of connections we all share.  How something you do or say can have a profound affect on someone else and you would be none the wiser; heck, whatever you do or say can be completely unrelated to the actions it induces in the other person.  Could it be the Butterfly Effect?  Perhaps, I can't really deny it, nor confirm it, but it is interesting to ponder over.

One of my beliefs -- that I still have a hard time fully accepting -- is that we're all one.  I know it may sound crazy, but it's something I accepted once the idea was presented to me.  Like all faith-based beliefs I have no facts to prove it, there's just something about the concept that rings true to me -- and in learning over the years the sound of my intuitive voice I'm coming to learn when things are true.  The concept would be somewhat like, say, this "one" figure being a computer monitor, and every individual thing would be a pixel of the monitor.  Each pixel is unique.  The pixels themselves may be seen in various ways, e.g. the multitude of images that can be produced, but there are still pixels comprising the images, and everything's viewed on the monitor.

A question I once asked myself long ago is what is it that separates me from the ground.  When I touch it we connect where my feet touch the ground.  Yet, what is it that defines the boundary between me and it when we're connected?  It's a thought exercise, but an intriguing one.

I recently ran across a really fascinating site that combined elements of philosophy, metaphysics, and quantum physics to set forth a different model of reality.  Instead of reality being composed of particles, i.e. atoms -- or computer monitor pixels per my example -- reality is instead a continuous wave medium akin to water.  The concept of empty space has no meaning in the model as there is no emptiness, in fact there's just the medium.  Individual things that we perceive, i.e. matter, are not individual things at all.  Rather, matter is the perception of viewing the center point of vibrating waves.  Imagine a sphere that vibrates, pulses in and out.  The area around which the sphere pulsates, its center, is matter.  That area is real, of course, but it is no different from the medium it's a part of, it's just a particularly dense area of the medium.  An area where the medium has coalesced.

It took me a while to wrap my head around the theory, but, that same ring of truth I'm used to hearing I heard again.  It's like when I write a computer program and I stumble upon a way of doing something that seems so perfect in its design it can be done no better way: everything fits into a harmony.  It's like an "ah-ha" moment, the light bulb goes off in your head.  I had that moment because it fit into other things I had previously decided to accept as true; on faith.  Especially my explanation involving density of the medium, for which I'll term energy.

If it were true, the theory, then it might help to explain how we as humans can affect and be affected by others even when it seems we're separate.  Because, we're not.

My feelings on Tab Mix Plus

I've just released LastTab 2.0.5 and it fixes a problem on Mac OS that finally allows LastTab's tab list to function properly on it, well coupled with Firefox 2.0.  I was actually somewhat reluctant to even release the fix though after reading this thread over at the Tab Mix Plus (TMP) forums,  In order to fully comprehend everything you have to realize that the control-tab functionality, including the tab list, that TMP has comes directly from LastTab, my extension.  So on that thread a TMP user is asking about the tab list not working on the Mac.  And what does one of the TMP authors suggest to him?  See if it works in LastTab and if so let him know because then he'll copy its code and incorporate it into TMP.

God that burns me.  I think what pisses me off the most about this is that the co-author is basically using me as an indirect developer of TMP yet I get no credit for this.  Yes, he did mention me by name -- and I really appreciate that -- but the fact is TMP would be nothing without the extensions that it's incorporated to provide its functionality.  And all of the wonderful accolades heaped upon TMP would be nonexistent.  Even though only two people currently maintain TMP we individual extension authors have directly contributed to TMP and we deserve to be recognized for this.  And not just in some forum thread but I mean in all the places where the TMP authors are mentioned.  Hell, even TMP locale translators get more credit than we do, yet we provided the core functionality that TMP is using.

If I sound a little bitter and pissed, well, it's because I am.  To spend your time figuring out some problem and then have some guy come over and just take your work sucks ass.  Feel like I'm in high school or something and the valedictorian is peering over my shoulder trying to look at my test.

In the world of open source about the only thing you have going for you is satisfaction in your work and recognition of it, people who release their code freely usually aren't getting monetary compensation.  Many times the projects are labors of love.  Seriously, why else would you spend days/months/years working on something for basically no gain?  So yeah, I'm extremely peeved at TMP and their assimilation of other extensions and not giving the extension developers their proper due.

I wasn't going to write about this because I really feel the TMP co-author in question basically agrees with my grievances so there would be no point for this post, but I'm just so pissed I have to get this off my chest.  I want recognition for the contributions I've made to TMP, and not just for me but for all the extension authors whose extensions have been included in TMP.


And just in case the forum thread over there mysteriously vanishes, I'm posting an image of the relevant part that got to me.

Revelation, of sorts, you know, kinda sorta
 Joey Negro - Don't Hold Back (Medusa Mix) 

I was taking a walk last week, barefooted of course!  It's October, it's fall, but it's still kind of warm out, it was when I was walking.  It feels so nice to take a walk barefooted.  My feet connect to the ground and I feel secure, I can feel the ground.

But, on my walk, I was thinking about my life now, my supposed new path I feel I'm embarking on.  I was thinking about making mistakes and then I had thoughts about me and computers.

I've never really been afraid of computers.  Some people are, they're afraid to press a button unless they know what it does, not me.  I head straight for the system files and muck things up just to see what'll happen.  Early on I got into programming, assembly language no less.  If you really want to frak a computer up nice and good program in that language.  Every time I was staring at the boot sequence on my monitor as my computer restarted I learned something.  Mostly what not to do next time, but more importantly I slowly began to understand why.  The more reboots the better, the more I learned.  After a while I had made so many mistakes it was almost impossible to make any more; and that's when I became knowledgeable.  I eventually hit upon a point where I not only knew what would happen if I did something but I even understood why it would.  I became good with computers.

On my walk, I drew a parallel between my success with computers and my perceived failure with my life in general.  Mistakes, and the willingness to make them.  That's what I noticed.  Even though I make tons of mistakes with computers I have no fear of making them so the net result is that I know far more than when I started.  But in my life in general I am afraid to make mistakes, and the net result is that I only know a little more than when I started.

In my life up till now I've been coming to this realization.  I've been getting used to making mistakes.  If you read my blog through the past months you'll undoubtedly notice a sad streak throughout it.  But...everything has its purpose I suppose.  Those sad moments, as frequent as they are, have brought me here, to this point.  I said in another post here that once you fall enough times you start to get used to the ground.  Another way of saying getting comfortable with making mistakes.  I've fallen a lot.  I've kissed the ground a lot.  Now, it seems, I'm starting not to curse the ground so much.  I realize hitting it isn't the end of the world.  The more mistakes I make the more I'll learn, and the better I'll get.

Posted: Thu, Oct 12 2006 10:40 PM by Humpty | with 2 comment(s)
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