Ideas

Climate Change and Malthusianism

"Malthusianism is a school of ideas derived from the political/economic thought of the Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus . . . which describes how unchecked population growth is exponential while the growth of the food supply was expected to be arithmetical. Malthus believed there were two types of "checks" that could then reduce the population, returning it to a more sustainable level.

Make mosh print the message of the day on Ubuntu 14.04

I'm running mosh 1.2.4 on my Ubuntu server, and it's always annoyed me that it doesn't print the message of the day (MOTD) on startup. ssh prints helpful information when you log in, like if you need to reboot or update packages, that I miss when logging in via mosh.

So you can imagine my surprise when I found out that this issue was fixed in version 1.2 of mosh, 4 versions ago!

Copy ssh key in one command

This is absolutely brilliant

cat .ssh/id_rsa.pub | ssh remoteserver.example.com 'cat >> .ssh/authorized_keys'

All credit to Matt Might

HSTS and git

I've been in China for two months now, and I enjoy programming so I've checked probably 5-6 projects out of github at this point.

During this time, I've had troubles accessing https://gist.github.com. This always struck me as weird, but I didn't think too much of it.

In praise of the spreadsheet

Spreadsheets are amazing. They are arguably a Turing-complete programming language (only stretching the definition slightly). There are definitely as many spreadsheets as people in the world, and I'd even guess there are over a trillion actively used spreadsheets out there somewhere.

Interdependence in a capitalist model?

I have a thought, but I'm not well equipped to model the economics of it. I want to investigate it further.

When your cell phone can't be trusted - maybe the NSA has put on a virus, or another app - then you're in trouble. How can you be sure your data is not being modified? One way that Google and Apple accomplish this is through cloud sync. If your data is synced to the cloud, it can be modified, but it goes via Google or Apple, with logging included.

Do you believe in your own values?

I'm an environmentalist, so I like the idea of reducing consumption. It's almost an axiom of economics by now that eduction leads women to have less children, thus reducing a nation's consumption.

But at some point, all nations will be developed. China's citizens are now "getting their car", and soon there will be millions more from Africa "getting their car".

The lies we tell in social work

I feel like I tell lies as a part of my job in social work. With more frequency than I'd like.

This is more pronounced at the summer camp I work with, since we work with children. I'll talk about that, but I experience a similar feeling of "I'm being patronizing right now" when working with adults at my workplace.

At camp, we lie to campers for many reasons.

Leadership Camps

When I was in grade 12, my entire class went to a leadership camp day. We did team building and group exercises. I'm not sure what kind of leadership I did. The student council stayed behind for 2 or 3 more days to do more leadership training.

Now that I'm a camp director, I'm responsible for staffing a leadership camp of my own. For two weeks a summer, 16 teenagers learn to be leaders. They do team building, a canoe trip, and learn a lot about the style of leadership Jesus used.

Ubuntu's lack of new features is exciting!

I've used Ubuntu on a daily basis since version 8.04 in 2008. I used to follow the new releases religiously, reading up on the new features and getting excited. I used to install beta versions, then moved to installing the version on the day it came out, then to waiting a month after release. Nowadays I use LTS releases only and I wait the extra month.

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