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weewooweewoo  ·  6 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: February 14, 2018

We were about to buy me plane tickets out of Montreal, when we realized we looked at my passport and realized I could actually stay here for 6 months, not 3. So I'm going to be helping them out till the end of the Candidates tournament broadcast, it's expected to be huge. End of March. I still don't know what I'm going to do once I leave.

I wake up every day in the fear that I have slept the better part of the the day away- my sleep schedule is trash, and getting progressively worse. Since I've been here I've been sleeping at 2am and now I'm all the way to 6am, comfortably. I usually wake up around 1pm. I start off the day with a cup of coffee from a fancy coffee maker, check my rounds on my computer, and it turns out that Aman and/or Eric have already been up for awhile and are going to get lunch- my breakfast.

There's a few regular restaurants I visit regularly for lunch- a bahn mi shop, an indian food place, a burrito place that just closed down, a place that specializes in chicken sandwiches. The quality of food in Montreal is amazing, with menus built around emphasizing the quality of a few ingredients.

There's also a 24 hour grocery store nearby with fresh baguettes in stock, so my sandwich game has been on point since I've been here. There are a multitude of deli meats on sale at all times, and a surprising amount of fresh produce. My favorite new ingredient so far is cream brie- it's all the goodness of brie cheese, in cream form. There are also premade (high quality) salads and soups available, so I eat ridiculously well.

I still haven't been able to shake the "play money" feel of the Canadian dollar- its plastic feel in the hands and how strong the US dollar converts into it.

I'm weird in that I have a lot of work to do at all times, I have freelance design work in addition to Chessbrah stuff. My work / life seperation aside, you get a lot of free time at the cave. There's a lot of exploring to do- there's a synthesizer shop that I like to dick around at, a pinball place I go to weekly, a gym that I need to go to more often. There's also a lot of interesting niche things- a cat cafe where you can pet cats and drink coffee, a gypsy musician bar with three bands every day, a board game bar where employees pick out board games to your tastes. It's almost as if Montreal is a magical place where if you can have fun doing it, you can make a modest living off of it someway or another.

There are more bars on this street than points in my ELO rating. I used to live on a similar street in Pittsburgh- and I thought that the startup that I worked at went out for drinks a lot. Not even close. There's something about the culture here. People are going ham on the streets on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday. Why Thursday? Apparently because people show up to work on Fridays still drunk. I love it here bunches.

elizabeth  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Happy you're enjoying the city! And to be honest, you haven't really experienced Montreal until you've been here in June/July. Everyone's in a depressive winter slump right now, and it's amazing how the city comes alive to enjoy the little bit of summer we have. There is no palace like Montreal in the summer... Come back and visit, the transformation is amazing. There is this electric energy in te air that just makes everyone happy :)

weewooweewoo  ·  15 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Hubski post redesign (with Tufte CSS)

Hnnnnnnnnnng

weewooweewoo  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 31, 2018

I have a bad habit of saying "I want to fuck this (food item)". Those tacos sound amazing

weewooweewoo  ·  26 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 24, 2018

I'm 26 now. It's not that I'm feeling old, it's more or less, I'm feeling irresponsible with what I'm doing with my life. Maybe that's not it. In reaction, I've been more... playful? The other day I was walking down a street of puddles because it's been a warm spike in Montreal. I decided to leap over the puddles instead of walking around them, splashing into them and getting my pants wet. More humming. More wordplay, unrestrained. Giving greater weight to what I feel like doing, over what is expected of me.

Kind of embarrassing, but I connected with someone after a few years of losing friends and being out of college. By connected, I meant I did the intimacy equivalent of 'hooking up'. More or less, I felt truly comfortable around someone, and by extension, I felt, physically attractive? I've hooked up a few times, but those never made me feel wanted, actually wanted. This made me realize that I had rich inner world inside my head- and that I shouldn't be ashamed of it.

It's been three dates, but I messed up last weekend and it's been a huge damper on my mood this week. I made the mistake of asking if she wanted to do the 36 questions game, the one to make people fall in love with each other, and that definitely came off as, 'uh, do you want to fall in love with each other'? It's awkward now. At the age of 26, I'm still learning why it's called a 'crush'.

weewooweewoo  ·  39 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Let's talk podcasts! What've you been listening to?

I'm the total opposite- what's the appeal of conversational podcasts? I hate hate hate them with a vengeance, they're longer, undirected, and feel lazy- a waste of the medium. They make me feel like I'm hanging out with two other people and they've locked me out of the conversation. The Hilarious World of Depression is my biggest offender of the medium, it feels like it's narrating over the discussion to insult my intelligence. This is probably just me.

veen  ·  37 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The appeal for conversational podcasts, aka "Two Dudes Talking" genre, is that it's people you like discussing things you find interesting. Good conversational podcasts are like good hubski discussions, except in audio form. I prefer the more topical podcasts wherein the hosts discuss articles or news that I have(n't) heard about.

What so many conversation-y podcasts don't understand, is that a conversation is generally awful to listen back to. I have at times recorded interviews I did, and usually more than half of the time is uninteresting to listen to despite it being a good conversation from the perspective of those having it. So I only listen to some well-edited conversational podcasts. No crosstalking, no breathing, no reverb because the host did not put more effort in than "let's buy a Yeti", and for the love of god let people finish their thoughts instead of continually interrupting. Accidental Tech Podcast and Hello Internet are particularly well-edited IMO.

weewooweewoo  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A letter about Google AMP

Here's the thing for me as a web designer- the heaviest things in 99% of websites are never in the code, they're always in the images. Those extra 2mbs when someone in marketing forgets to resize the images add up, super fast. Why are kbs so important to web devs?

francopoli  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Why are kbs so important to web devs?

Mobile.

FirebrandRoaring  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Why are kbs so important to web devs?

'cause usability and I care.

    Those extra 2mbs when someone in marketing forgets to resize the images add up, super fast.

It keeps surprising me how much further one can compress an image without visible loss of quality.

Still, I keep image content to a minimum. Most of my pages contain none. Icons and SVGs. There's rarely a need for an image.

Wish I could show you some to make it beyond empty boasting, but most of my stuff is in prototype stage or is made for fun and is never going to see the light of the day.

weewooweewoo  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 10, 2018

Notes from my first chess tournament (incomplete, but already a wall of text):

1. Chess games in tournaments are very long. Each player in a game is given 90 minutes, with 30 seconds added with each move. Most of my games were at least 3 hours long.

I was skeptical about being able to handle it, but it turns out that you spend all of that time thinking about the game. This is the type of time that just evaporates, leaving you wanting more.

2. I can tell that I'm hooked on something when I need to piss really badly but I still want to do the thing I'm doing. That day, I had a wonderful attacking position, my pieces preventing my opponent from mobilizing his own troops, the possibilities for a successful checkmate seeming endless.

I eventually rushed to the bathroom, but I was so lost in thought that I accidentally entered the women's restroom first.

3. The game of chess, in my mind (and at my level), is a three step war with yourself of figuring out when you're done calculating a line of moves, when you're done exploring new lines, and when you're done figuring out which move to ultimately make. This process is couched in your ultimate knowledge of the game, i.e. should I use the opening I'm more familiar with?, should I play for the tactics or for the position?, what is my plan right now?, etc.

The way I play chess mirrors the creative process I have when it comes to design- my first instinct is to do the cool stuff- sacrifices, tactics, ways to break the rules. I start by convincing myself out of these things until I get to moves that would be more reasonable for the position. But if I do find something that shows a glimmer of promise, I'll defend the hell out of it against my better judgement.

4. Because of how much time you're given, my strategy coming into the tournament was to come up with rules of thumb at the beginning of each game.

For my round 1, my rules were:

- Don't get distracted by the fact that you're playing against a 9 year old.

- Don't get distracted by the fact that you're playing in a tournament.

- Play so that you can learn something critical for round 2.

For round 2, my rules were:

- Take 10 seconds to breath before you confirm each move.

- Play the style of chess that you feel the most comfortable with.

- Don't get distracted by the fact that you're playing against a 9 year old girl.

5. Do not underestimate the aptitude of youth combined with scheduled practice. Children have an accellerated understanding of the language of chess- calculations, principles, tactical and positional ideas. You are simply a plaything in the maelstrom of their creative expression.

But don't forget- children are human. If they make funny faces at you, you are obligated to make funny faces back at them.

6. Sleep deprivation has a equalizing effect on my mind. Ideas, instincts, and doubts are all dampened so that they all feel similar. This has been helpful for me since high school for getting certain types of work done, especially creative efforts where I'm not sure where to start.

Being sleep deprived in a tournament game was a complete fiasco for me. Those instincts and doubts need to stay sharp in a long game, because I kept experiencing the dillenma where certain moves felt good even though I had already deduced that they were terrible. Make sure you get a good night's sleep.

7. I went 1.5 / 4, in an under 1800 rated bracket. I won my first game against a 1290, lost 3 games, and drew my last game after being offered a draw, against a 1190. There was only 1 game a day, I have no idea how people do 2 games a day, my mental stamina felt withered to the bone by day 5. I couldn't think straight by day 4, like I was in a cloud. The tournament was a lot of fun, and I did so much better than I thought I would do. I highly recommend entering a chess tournament if you get the chance.

Devac I'll show the games at request, I'm a little embarrassed/too lazy to put them in lichess after already going over the board with them

======

I have less than one month left in Montreal. I don't really have a plan for afterwards, but I secured a really comfy contract, so I can travel. I'm applying to an internship for my favorite podcast, (in the same spirit as applying for Chessbrah), but I can't put all my eggs into this basket. Thinking about going to Brooklyn anyways. Or maybe giving Portland a shot.

Devac  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

First of all: congrats! It's great that you are joining tournaments and enjoy it.

    I was skeptical about being able to handle it, but it turns out that you spend all of that time thinking about the game. This is the type of time that just evaporates, leaving you wanting more.

Absolutely true. It's one of the reasons for why I personally love playing long games and enjoy them far more than blitz. You are too preoccupied to even consider boredom as a possibility. It hasn't changed a bit since my first game.

    I start by convincing myself out of these things until I get to moves that would be more reasonable for the position. But if I do find something that shows a glimmer of promise, I'll defend the hell out of it against my better judgement.

That's good and bad. Why good? Because it shows the direction you will guide/evolve your own style of play. You will get very good at positioning, calculating exchanges and mobility. Hell, I'm willing to bet that after this tournament you'll see that the first 30 or so exercises from that book I recommended aren't much of a challenge.

Why bad, though? Predilection or tendency toward certain actions telegraphs a lot to your opponent. Whether they'll pick up on it or not is largely decided by their experience. Once you'll get close(r) to playing in the 1800+ bracket, it would be prudent to diversify by trying to play/practice against your style. It worked very well for me, should work as well for you.

    Age

Yup. Humbling, isn't it? ;)

Your approach is healthy and absolutely correct.

_____

Overall, I'm glad to see that you are enjoying yourself, growing as a player, and that's what matters the most. And while I would like to look at your games, there's no pressure. I'm pretty fucking busy myself and it doesn't look like it's about to change until graduation (i.e. June, most likely).

Please, shout out to me with further chess updates. I don't frequent Hubski as I used to and wouldn't want to miss out on the similar news. :D

weewooweewoo  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 10, 2018

Good luck on the interview- kill 'em dead!

tacocat  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Not optimistic but I have a direct phone number to the campaign manager and I'll call tomorrow and plead my case since I didn't interview with her

nowaypablo  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Interview update?

tacocat  ·  39 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have another less exciting interview tomorrow morning. I may or may not follow up with HRC depending on how it goes. I did email the hiring manager yesterday. I also tend not to follow-up immediately at any position

weewooweewoo  ·  61 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: December 20, 2017

I keep expecting something from meditation, which keeps me from doing it regularly. Can I ask if anything has changed for you after half a year?

rezzeJ  ·  61 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My first experience with meditation was around 3 years ago. At that time I was dealing with a lot of anxiety. During one session, after around 5 months, I had an 'epiphany' which did a lot to help me deal with those thoughts and feelings. That's the sort of thing you can point to and say: "meditation was a catalyst for a significant change in my life."

I hadn't practiced for a year or more before starting this goal. There's been no changes quite so radical this time around. I attribute this to me being a more adjusted person overall than last time. Having said that, there are a few things I've noticed over the last 6 months:

1 - I'm better at letting go of things and changing frames of mind quickly. For example, say I was doing focused work or getting worked up whilst playing game. If I then suddenly had to go out or change activity for whatever reason, I can now do that without much bother. Whereas before, mindsets and emotions would've often carried over. Like a flick of a switch, you could say.

2 - I can more easily handle distractions whilst working. It's easier to catch myself before I carried away from whatever I want to focus on.

3 - I'm much more content with act of meditating itself. I still have 'good' and 'bad' days, days where the mind is restless or where I just don't feel like doing it. But once I actually start, I can sit there contently without much resistance to the practice itself.

I didn't expect any of this though. I did the practice for its own sake, because I enjoy it and appreciate how I feel afterwards. Ideally, you shouldn't expect anything from mindfulness meditation. The goal is to sit there and observer your thoughts and feelings as they unfold, without judgement. There's nothing else to it than that. Having an expectation obstructs this process because you start reacting to the things you experience or the practice itself, rather than just sitting and observing. Mindfulness Meditation is intended to be for its own sake and any changes you experience are a natural result of that approach.

I'll quote a Headspace blog here:

    Any attempt to analyze the perceived progress of meditation is really the beginning of the end. All we are doing is turning up each day to watch the mind. All we can really say is that we are more attentive and more aware or less attentive and less aware. The only problem is that the mind doing the judging and analysis is the same mind which is being judged and analysed—which gets a bit tricky. We also have the problem that the mind analyzing the mind now, is a different mind than the one which analyzed the mind previously—in so much as our perception is always changing. These two factors alone make any analysis impossible.

    Instead, next time you sit, simply notice whether you feel different in any way at all when you finish your meditation than when you first sat down. I am not talking about lightening bolts of insight or anything like that, but perhaps just feeling a little less tense, perhaps a little calmer, slightly more aware of how you are feeling and a little softer around the edges. If you begin your meditation free from any expectation and with the motivation to quietly benefit others, then more often than not you will experience these benefits.

At the end of the day, If I compare my current self to myself 6 months in the past I wouldn't be like: "OMG you've got to meditate it's life changing!!". I don't think it's a necessary thing for everyone to do or a required activity to become a better person. There's no shame in not meditating if you don't enjoy it or derive anything from it. I have however enjoyed my practice over the past 6 months and have appreciated the smaller changes I listed above.

Having said that, I always recommend it to people who are experiencing anxiety or panic due to the significant positive changes it helped instigate for me on that account.

weewooweewoo  ·  62 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: December 20, 2017

10 notes from a month into my Chessbrah internship in Montreal:

1. An obsession for perfection is what separates the very best players from everyone else- it becomes a constant in one's life, whereas discipline and passion will naturally fluctuate.

2. There once was a Canadian chess player who got so drunk before a game that he fell asleep in the middle of it, woke up, and pissed onto the board thinking that he was in the bathroom.

3. It always seems really impressive to me whenever I hear a child speak in French, even though its probably the only language they know how to speak.

4. Most poker tournaments aren't there to prove who the best poker player is. Most poker tournaments are gambling events where you might get 1st place. The strong poker players avoid playing against each other to prey on the people who play in those tournaments for fun.

5. You can get a case of 12 watter bottles for $1.99 CAD. Why is water so cheap here?

6. The Elo rating system is a great way to assess any skill you can think of. I'm a 1200 at cooking, a 1400 at Melee, a 1800 at pinball, a 1900 at design, etc. People with average ratings think that the next level is always slightly within reach. The higher Elo rating you have, the more you understand how wide each gap really is.

7. There are only 4 authors in Canada who can live off their published work in bookstores.

8. If you're from the US traveling to Canada, don't tell immigration services that you're self-employed, especially if you're staying for longer than a month. It just looks like you're trying to become a Canadian citizen illegally.

9. There was a period where you couldn't access Twitch.tv through one of Canada's major internet providers. So, yeah, that's what not having net neutrality does.

10. A conversation I overheard while I was at Westcott Books on its last day before it closed:

Are you sure you don't want any booze? For the occasion.

Sure.

Beer or wine?

Wine perhaps.

Red or white?

I don't know, I like red I guess.

Good or bad?

Bad, so I don't drink so much that I wake up hungover next morning.

francopoli  ·  61 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    5. You can get a case of 12 watter bottles for $1.99 CAD. Why is water so cheap here?

It's tap water. No, seriously That water, plastic and packaging probably cost $.50 to produce.

weewooweewoo  ·  64 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Ask Hubski: What gaming console should I get for my 7 year old?

One thing I remember from my early childhood is that I had an uncle who had an NES system with Legend of Zelda 2 and Super Mario Bros 3. I was a pretty lucky kid who had a Super Nintendo and a Nintendo 64, but I loved going to my uncle's house to play on the older system.

Definitely get a Wii. The best part about is the backwards compatibility with Gamecube games. You have two generations worth of Nintendo games to play with.

For the Gamecube, I recommend Mario Kart Double Dash, Animal Crossing, and WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Party Game$!.

For the Wii, I recommend Super Mario Galaxy, WarioWare: Smooth Moves, and Punch-Out!!

rd95  ·  63 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Definitely get a Wii. The best part about is the backwards compatibility with Gamecube games.

FYI, thenewgreen, you'll have to get the older version of the Wii for it to be backwards compatible with The GameCube. Halfway into its life cycle, I think about three years before the WiiU came out, they made a version that's not backwards compatible.

weewooweewoo  ·  66 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What food could you eat the most of?

Out of curiosity, why did you choose oyster as your username?

oyster  ·  66 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I love food and I’m basically always thinking about it. Smoked mussels make a great snack, but that’s a weird username.

weewooweewoo  ·  66 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What food could you eat the most of?

I've gone quite a few days (individually) on just crunchy peanut butter. I eat it out of the jar with a spoon.

weewooweewoo  ·  72 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Robot rampage game

Ok, that was really cute. I think I got all of the timelines figured out, I really liked the secret one.

elizabeth  ·  71 days ago  ·  link  ·  

There'a a secret one!? Damn, I need to play a couple more times then.

weewooweewoo  ·  75 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: December 6, 2017

I have my own Twitch emote now, lol:

Meeting one of my favorite authors tomorrow, (Arjun Basu)[https://twitter.com/arjunbasu], most famous for his 140 character stories on Twitter.

FirebrandRoaring  ·  75 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yo, misplaced the curve and square parentheses with each other in the link.