Six Things Everyone Should Know About Quantum Physics – Forbes

When I was in high school, I made the decision to take business courses in the last two years I was trapped there. As a result, I didn’t have to take any advanced mathematics or science classes. Most of the time, I don’t regret that choice. Every now and then I come across an article I wish I understood better. This is one of those articles. I’m not sure if it’s written for beginners and I don’t get it or the writer thinks it’s written for beginners and he’s overestimating the audience.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/chadorzel/2015/07/08/six-things-everyone-should-know-about-quantum-physics/

A few things I Find Funny

A few things I do I will always find funny (at least when it comes to entertaining myself):

1) Saying “and you’re boring” when my kids say “I’m bored”.

2) Saying “Aw man, I’m sorry to see someone wrote all over it” when someone shows me autographed memorabilia.

3) Saying “Wow, your camera takes great pictures” when my professional photographer friends show me something they shot.

Like I said, I find them funny.

photographer
photographer

The Supreme Court Finds Same Sex Marriage Legal – The Washington Post

I have never understood why people want to get in between two people who love each other. Unless you are a cockblocker who wants to fuck one of them. Then I understand completely. If you aren’t, shouldn’t you find better things to do with your time and energy?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/gay-marriage-and-other-major-rulings-at-the-supreme-court/2015/06/25/ef75a120-1b6d-11e5-bd7f-4611a60dd8e5_story.html

You Have Been Warned

Dear Friend of mine who likes to spoil things because you don’t think it’s a big deal,

I know you’re a huge Star Wars fan. You better go see it the very first second it comes out because I plan on seeing it as soon as I possibly can and I will send nothing but a series of spoilers designed to suck as much enjoyment out of the experience for you as I can. Why will I do that? So that you aren’t the only total asshole in our relationship. You have been warned.

image
Star Wars The Force Awakens

By the way, this is aimed at one particular person. They may have forgotten what I can be like but they have one year to mull it over.

My Prejudice

As far as I can remember, I have never refuse to be bothered with a person because of their ethnicity or gender. However, I am biased as well against those who I consider ‘dumb’ but I know that is mostly because I know my level of frustration acceptance. If I think I’m going to get frustrated with trying to explain something to you, then chances are great that I will prefer to avoid interacting with you altogether and since that’s not always possible, I just make it as unpleasant for you as possible. It’s a personal shortcoming, I know.

Outdated Recommendations

Podcast directories can be a good thing. Podcatcher programs can be a good thing. Working together, the combination of a podcatcher that connects to a podcast directory can be a great thing for the serious podcast listeners. You have the ability to find and listen to new podcasts immediately. When the podcatcher has a recommendation engine that takes a look at your current subscription list and finds similar podcasts that you aren’t subscribe to in the connected podcast directory, you have reached Podcast Nirvana.

Unfortunately, the weak point in the scenario is the podcast directory. Most directories want to be able to boast having the largest number of listings and therefore don’t do regular pruning. The only entity that I can recall going through a regularly scheduled pruning process was the late lamented Amigofish, which was more of a recommendation engine and not really a directory. (The last time I went to Amigofish, the website returned nothing but an error code and what seemed to be a dump of all of the Ruby on Rails settings.)

Recently, I was using my podcatcher of choice on my Kindle Fire to find new potential subscriptions. For some reason, I had never noticed the Recommended tab, but decided to give it a try. Three of the first ten were Book Review Noise (a show I stopped doing last year and doesn’t have a working feed), Noise Talk (a show which I haven’t updated since August 2010), and Mosai Noise (a show I put on hold in February 2011). Another one was Kryptographik, which I know for a fact had a dead feed and show hosts who have moves on to other realms of creative endeavor.

I can understand keeping old shows that still have working feeds because you never know when the show host will revive things, but keeping dead feeds is just a combination of laziness and padding your numbers. I hope that the recommendation engine will find a way to remove the dead links so that their recommendations actually mean something.

Acronyms aren’t always your friends

I am looking for a job again. One set of skills that I keep coming across is for ETL processes. I had no idea what that is, but whenever I see a job like that I would just disregard it and look at the next one in the list.

Today I decided to find out what ETL means. In my mind, I am thinking it is something along the lines of Six-Sigma for databases, but I have no real understanding of Six-Sigma either so that should have been the first clue that I needed to do some research.

According to Webopedia, ETL stands for Extract Transform Load. All it is means is you read a database, change the raw data into something usable, then you write the processed data into another database. “ETL is used to migrate data from one database to another, to form data marts and data warehouses and also to convert databases from one format or type to another.”

That’s it?

I do that same process every month to get the download numbers for the podcasts in the Deliberate Noise Network. I download text files with the information I need, I manually extract the numbers I need, upload them to an Access database, parse the data for each show into its own query, then export that query to an Excel spreadsheet for mailing to the show hosts. The details are different, but the process is pretty much what they are describing.

Hell, I used to do ETL for fun. My old laptop has a bunch of Access, MySQL, and Oracle databases on the hard drive because I would move the data from one format to another. At a couple of my more data intensive jobs, ETL was pretty much all I did.

Without a doubt, I have missed out on applying for a number of jobs (some I may have even gotten) because I didn’t take the time to understand the acronyms they used. Time to re-evaluate my resume and job searching routine.

Lying Unfunny Jackass Day Strikes Again!

Since it is Lying Unfunny Jackass Day, I decided to stay offline for most of the day. Out of habit, I fired up Facebook after lunch and see my oldest daughter saying that she just found out she’s going to be an aunt. After the initial shock wore off, I have decided that I need to develop new habits and will stay off the computer altogether next year.

BTW: I’m not saying my daughter is usually an Lying Unfunny Jackass, but today…

Extreme Phone Politeness Pays Off

When I was a teenager, I lived with my grandmother for a few years. One of the many things she stressed was good phone etiquette. To this day, my siblings and I have extraordinary good phone speaking voices. My mother and her siblings also have great phone manners, so this is something that goes back a long way.

When I call Patti at work, her coworkers always know it’s me simply because of how I talk when they answer the phone. For example, if they say “Hello, [company where she works], how can I help you?”, I will reply with “Hello, may I please speak to Patti?” and they say “Sure, Derek, hold on a second.”

On those occasions when they will give their name, I say “Hello [name of coworker], my name is Derek, may I please speak to Patti?”

It’s just something that has happened in the ten years she has been working there.

Today, the phone must have been busy because someone answered “Hello [company where she works], can you hold please?” I responded with “Yes, ma’am.” After the briefest of pauses, the young lady on the other end of the line said “You probably want to speak to Patti, don’t you?” I smiled and said “Yes, please.”

It pays to be polite and professional sounding on the phone.

Vintage Rotary Dial Phone
This is like the rotary phone my grandmother used to have. Only it was on an opposite wall.
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