Saturday, December 31, 2016

Analog Yesteryear: Fire control computers

This is about the acme of analog computers. They had one killer app (as far as I know), which was shipboard gunnery control. A lot of the stuff going on with machine learning and deep learning today has this as antecedent.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Big data aint got no place to go

What's going on behind that Facebook quiz? Cambridge Analytica gets a look at personality scores and, thanks to Facebook, gains access to their profiles and real names. The firm sells analytics, data, profiles. It's what they call big data psychographics.

The big data world that I work in has a sort of a hangover going on right now – some dizzy blur after a long period of heady growth. Something happened in the way of a Godsmack, on the road to Antioch, in the shape of Brexit and Donald Trump’s surprising rise. For many a wonks, it is no surprise. READ MORE....

When most every day was some kind of art action

Gordon Thomas and me in the 1970s. Picture by David Hoffstetter. What did we do? Gosh, a monograph of Dylanology, a calendar with potato ink print, a hanging Groucho duck that said 'say the secret word,' a march with a giant paper mache squid down Hanover St., District 65 Union Posters .... most every day was some kind of art action.

News, 2016 - Oakland Ghost Ship Disaster

Oakland Ghost Ship Disaster-
Ballet with scent of robbery/
strangers and artists in the house/
broke down crash pad palace of many rooms combustible/
party radio of r&b and r&b and trance/
Then the dream is on fire.
And a change is in plans for limbo babies.
                                                                    - Jack Vaughan

The story goes in my family that my mother had a date to go to the Coconut Grove. But her mother wouldn't let her go - and she acquiesced. My brother elicited the suitor's name, and found it in the followup newspaper death list covering the Nov 28, 1942 fire when 495 were killed. Most of us can find one of these moments where, by chance or grace, they may have not ever happened. I have a couple more. The dream was without fire. That was attached on the news.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Detour Inspired Honky Tonk Assemblage

The Stones (Country Tonk) and the Beatles (Act Naturally) promoted country when their music ruled my mind. When I worked on a book on the blues, country music was part of the research. I came to like it a lot. When Paul DeMark told me about his new band, the Honky Tonk Detours I wanted to share some of my favorites of a certain style of country - oh, truth be told, I just wanted to be told I was hip, man - so I made a YouTube collection. Added a few to it today.

News of the Whirl Dec 17 2016

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Random notes - Crony Culture, More

Crony culture is a former sarah palin plank

in they day candidate palin was on the hustings, ragging on crony culture.
i got to thinking what was crony cuture? How different than the commonweal?

crony culture is my job at the machine shop paul demark got me.
crony custure is i wish i went to harvard then everytying would have been better
crony culture is my old j.o. teacher Jim saying to call MacLaughlin, Editor of New Directions, his old Harvard friend

crony culutre is my gramdpa's job for the city
my neighbors job at the college
my uncle getting my father a commission

crony culture is my summer job at johnsons
crony culture is no more bad or good than people
And what I see in Trump picks : parade of crony vulture culture on mad spring break holiday


On history

The reason history repeats itself is not because people forget.

People leave. Vacate the planet. And there are some things the next generation has to learn from first principles.

This is a bitter view. It says that culture is fleeting.The knowledge of the tribe will ebb. And that there is no such thing as Progress.

From the Vaults 2009. Take a call from Mahalia Jackson

I was always impressed by Mahalia’s “Move on up A Little Higher” – the words are amazing, I’ve heard a couple of versions. But the enchantment is mostly about her singing of this song.
But, like, say, the Staples’ “Last Month of the Year,” it got into my blood.

“I’m going to move on up a little higher. Feast with the Prophet Daniel. I’m going to move on up a little higher. Meet my loving mother.”

“I’m going to move on up a little higher. Feast of the Rose of Sharon. I’m going to move on up a little higher. And it will be always ‘howdy-howdy’ .. and never good by.”

The description by the poet is of a leaving. Dying. But seen not in the sense of internment. But seen instead in terms of advancement. This is one essence of Black American vision that resonates most especially for me: There has got to be a better world anywhere..... Go back in time [2009] and read the rest.

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Oppy at Harvard

“The Great golem we have made against our enemies is our culture, our bomb culture-its logic, its faith, its vision.” -- E.I.  Doctorow  ...