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veen  ·  37 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Ars Technica’s ultimate board game gift guide, 2018 edition

I like Carcassonne. Easy to learn but centers around strategic decision making.

KapteinB  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·  

There's a variant of Carcassonne I like even better, named The Ark of the Covenant.

I like the temples of Ark more than the cloisters of Carcassonne, counting sheep and wolves more than counting towns, and I like that moving the ark gives you something to do when you can't (or don't want to) place a meeple.

illu45  ·  34 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Carcassonne is super fun! I like to play with the variant that everyone has a "hand" of 3 tiles and you draw one at the end of your turn. That way you have more options (for increased strategy) and you can think about your turn ahead of time.

veen  ·  32 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Ohh good one - only now that you mention it do I recall playing it like that years back. Thanks for the reminder!

veen  ·  50 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: It's been a fun 2,163 Days

Fare thee well, bfx.

veen  ·  77 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Disaffected Young Americans, Vote. Please. You have everything to lose if you don’t.

So if you vote, how many things do you need to vote on exactly? There's four dozen names on that sheet, do you have to vote for a similar amount of positions?

ThurberMingus  ·  77 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My ballot had 38 seats with more than one person running, and one school tax measure.

kleinbl00  ·  77 days ago  ·  link  ·  

If you were a resident of the City of Seattle, you would vote for about fifteen different things on that list. Federal, State, City(all cities have different measures), legislative district (which may or not match your city but probably doesn't), as well as school district and fire district.

It's routine that the ballot you're voting on does not match the ballot the next street over is voting on.

This was tricky in the days before the internet. How do I pick a municipal court judge? But now you just google both assholes and look for the one who wants to "make X great again" and vote against him SO HARD

psychoticmilkman  ·  77 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My ballot had about 8 or so elected positions, 3 propositions and another 10 or so retention positions. Additionally, on the ballot AND envelope AND information sheet that came with all stated in bold letters that I did not have to mark a vote in every category, and that refraining for marking a vote in a category did not invalidate my ballot whatsoever.

tacocat  ·  77 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I voted for like ten sundry elected positions and four ballot measures. It depends on your state and district

veen  ·  100 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 3, 2018

I've decided to give up on goals with my swimming.

It's more important to me that I exercise than how well I exercise. I swim, I enjoy it, and I don't care about progress (even though I do).

swedishbadgergirl  ·  98 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That is a very good point. I think why I set that goal was that I had in some ways stagnated in my swimming. I was swimming 1km every time and I didn't really think that was good enough exercise. And well, this year I am still mostly swimming 1km each time and then calling it a day. A better goal to have would perhaps be to "challenge myself more when swimming". That one is harder to procrastinate on as well.

veen  ·  107 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 3, 2018

My tip for swimming: use a foam pool buoy if you're working on freestyle swimming. They're less than ten bucks but they helped me massively in developing proper upper body technique. It will feel like you're falling forward, which is the point, as it helps your body be much flatter than you'd otherwise be.

And keep at it - swimming in my opinion is one of the few sports where there's a noticable, gradual improvement curve if you just put in the hours.

WanderingEng  ·  106 days ago  ·  link  ·  

What do you do with the bouy? Freestyle is what I'm working on. My form feels better already after only four swims, but it definitely needs work.

veen  ·  105 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You put it between your upper legs, as high as feels comfortable (i.e. in a position where you can hold onto it with keeping your legs together). It's usually asymmetrical in shape, the bigger half should be on your belly side. One can get similar results with a foam plank if you want to try it out, but those are much harder to keep between your upper legs.

WanderingEng  ·  101 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I swam last night and shared a lane. The other guy suggested keeping my head down. It felt weird but also felt like I had less resistance. I'll have to try the bouy, because I think I'm keeping my head and chest up.

When I get everything right, it feels really good. It might only be one or two strokes every other lap, but I can feel it.

veen  ·  100 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's fluid dynamics at work. Swimming is really about reducing resistance, and there's no better way to do that than to make yourself flatter and longer. Try to extend your arms higher up than you're used to - your lower back should feel like you're getting something from the top shelf.

Tight swimwear also helps; one trainer said something along the lines of "you wouldn't go running with a parachute, so why go swimming with baggy pants?". I also prefer to swim with a nose clamp too, but that's a personal preference.

veen  ·  116 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 297th Weekly "Share Some Music You've Been Into Lately" Thread

Found out that one of the albums I love has a wonderful book of artwork to accompany it.

edricarica  ·  116 days ago  ·  link  ·  

What a beautiful voice. I feel if I died in this man's arms I'd die contented.

veen  ·  136 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 294th Weekly "Share Some Music You've Been Into Lately" Thread

Bleeps and bloops for me this week, as I'm really digging this driving beat:

Merlin  ·  135 days ago  ·  link  ·  

love me some bleeps and bloops

veen  ·  137 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Random Quotes of the Week (Sep 2-9 2018

    Trump was on to something: in western politics, there isn’t one elite, but two. There’s the liberal “cultural elite” that he despises, and his own big-boated, rightwing moneyed elite.

    In a strangely overlooked recent paper, French economist Thomas Piketty — famous for his 2013 tome Capital in the Twenty-First Century — anatomises the rival elites in the US, UK and France. Piketty has merged post-electoral surveys from 1948 to 2017 with data on voters’ wealth, education, income and so on. The story for each country is similar. The cultural elite and the moneyed elite (“Brahmins” and “merchants”, as Piketty calls them) are both growing. Both have captured their chosen political parties. On left and right, politics is now an elite sport.

    The big change since 1948 is the educated elite’s shift left. “The trend is virtually identical in the three countries,” notes Piketty. In the US, for instance, from the 1940s to the 1960s the more educated people were, the more they voted Republican. By 2016, the situation had reversed: 70 per cent of voters with masters degrees backed Hillary Clinton. British graduates moved left more slowly, but now mostly vote Labour.

From paywalled FT. Piketty paper is here.

    “Polluted air can cause everyone to reduce their level of education by one year, which is huge,” said Xi Chen at Yale School of Public Health in the US, a member of the research team. “But we know the effect is worse for the elderly, especially those over 64, and for men, and for those with low education. If we calculate [the loss] for those, it may be a few years of education.” [...]

    The damage in intelligence was worst for those over 64 years old, with serious consequences, said Chen: “We usually make the most critical financial decisions in old age.” Rebecca Daniels, from the UK public health charity Medact, said: “This report’s findings are extremely worrying.”


kleinbl00  ·  137 days ago  ·  link  ·  

174 pages? That's probably why it was overlooked...

veen  ·  136 days ago  ·  link  ·  

...of which 106 are appended charts & figures. Leafing through my copy of Capital, I think this paper has more graphs than that entire book.

kleinbl00  ·  136 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Dayum. Well, I still have it open in a tab. I made it to pp.16 and saw zero pictures so apparently I just need to soldier on...

veen  ·  136 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I doubt they’re all that useful, at first glance they seem to be slightly varied graphs of each other. Maybe you get something out of it - fare thee well, trooper.

veen  ·  140 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Jean-Claude Juncker pledges to abolish Daylight Savings Time in EU


It'll probably suck for Poland and Spain, so I'm not too sure it will pass. But I really really want it to.

kleinbl00  ·  140 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Arizona abstains from DST just to remind the rest of the country that it's a backwards shithole.

veen  ·  142 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Engineers teach a drone to herd birds away from airports autonomously

They didn't have to call the distance between the drone and the bird "R_fear", a.k.a. The Fear Range, but I like it that they did.

veen  ·  145 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Random Quotes of the Week (Aug26-Sep 1 2018)

“If your solution is ‘try harder’ or ‘be more careful’ you can go fuck yourself.” Unknown source.

I personally believe that a strong set of taxes based on the polluter pays principle can have a tremendous effect on the actual use of energy.

Regarding transportation; electric vehicles are starting to grow exponentially over here:

BEV are battery-dependant electric vehicles, as opposed to plug in hybrids on the right. Those two massive peaks on the right graph were two tax breaks for plug-in hybrids that was largely a miserable waste of Dutch taxpayers' money. But it shows that you can get people to move towards alternatives. With rapidly improving battery and charging capacities as well as an expanding public charging network there's certainly a dent to be made in those transportation graphs. The models I help build put EV adoption at 10% by 2025.

WanderingEng  ·  148 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Is there data available on what effect those sales have had on emissions from personal cars or what the expected emissions are in out years?

The article mentions the flat demand in the electric industry. Flat demand makes it easy to replace higher cost, older power plants with newer ones (which by happy coincidence are lower emission). My assumption is the number of miles driven continues to climb, and the emissions saved by EVs will be offset by more usage from traditional cars.

veen  ·  151 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 292nd Weekly "Share Some Music You've Been Into Lately" Thread

This weekend the Giants of Royal De Luxe were in my home town! I've been listening to the live band that accompanied the marionettes, the Balayeurs Du Désert. Not on YT, but it's basically great French pop that's full of life and color.

While on holiday, a friend of mine who essentially has Miami Vice as his aesthetic played some Jan Hammer, so I've been listening to some of that:

I also found out it's not a bad idea to listen to Foo Fighters some more:

veen  ·  162 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: August 8, 2018

Bit late to the pub - was busy eating phenomenal swordfish and sitting on a Greek beach yesterday. The Greek know their food. Lovely holiday so far, almost entirely relaxing. Almost, because driving in Greek traffic took some getting used to — traffic laws and road markings are optional here. Gotta go with the flow.

Our apartment is fucking opulent, by my standards at least. Between the six of us we have three terraces, one on the rooftop with a pool, two bathrooms, a small jaccuzi and an elevator that enters into the apartment. And it was only thirty bucks per person per night.

veen  ·  172 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: New Research: Most Salaried Employees Only Do About 3 Hours of Real Work Each Day

My personal opinion is that many people fail to see how much time they are wasting, and that that should be the primary reason to work less, not to work more. I've been tracking my work time pretty diligently for the better part of the last eighteen months. Here's my work stats:

I don't get paid for the hours I make, nor for overtime, as an intentional policy to prevent a work-skewed balance like what's so common in the US. I also have the freedom to work less as long as I get the work done. So I've noticed that weeks where I go over 40 hrs/wk of actual work (excluding commute and days off, including working at home) are draining, and weeks where i work less than 32 I start to feel bad about not working enough, even though it is often for a reason.

The above are also real hours, not rounded-up-consultancy hours, which is 9% more as per my tracking. Of the above time, 31% is directly billable, 24% is R&D, 11% is value-adding-but-not-billable and the remaining 34% is informal (eg lunch) or wasted time. Cal Newport posits in Deep Work that people can't (and shouldn't) do more than about 3-4 hours of focused, value-creating work, and it's been my goal to hit that on as many days as I can while minimizing wasted time. So far I'd say it's going great.

    This is a discussion worth having but the Inc. article is spurious as hell.

Maybe this isn't the discussion you think is worth having here, but I felt like my n=1 is about as representative as the Inc. researches.

kleinbl00  ·  172 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Maybe this isn't the discussion you think is worth having here, but I felt like my n=1 is about as representative as the Inc. researches.

The fact that you didn't inadvertently link to Muppets puts you ahead in my book.