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veen's profile

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hubskier for: 2994 days

Infrastructure & Planning student in the Netherlands.

Sometimes make things like this:

And I write here:


recent comments, posts, and shares:
veen  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: November 24, 2021


veen  ·  10 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Vaporware car is best car

My pet theory is that there’s a very large share of (retail) investors who value sustainability of companies in their portfolio, but a dearth of stocks that actually fit that bill. Over here a Dutch supercharger-network-building company also seems vastly overpriced because of that dynamic.

veen  ·  18 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The billionaires are angry

You really don’t think there is exploitation at play after amassing a certain amount of wealth? Or an immoral shirking of responsibility?

What I’d do is to tax the ever loving shit out of anyone holding onto more than 10 million, and make it incredibly easy to avoid those taxes by investing it into strictly regulated funds aimed at innovation/science/the arts/nature.

veen  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: November 10, 2021

I hope you’ll allow me to reopen this discussion… there may be a way to resolve it after all.

I was wondering why I could sympathize/agree with both of your arguments, and I think the difference is that it really matters what kind of work we’re talking about.

KB is talking about mission-critical work, whereas you are (I assume) talking about a kind of modern knowledge work. Imagine going to the dentist, making an appointment and having it be a maybe until the evening before. Nobody would like that, or ever come back to the dentist again. Their work needs to be done by a particular person at a particular time and place, so it matters that promises are kept and claims on time are honored.

Now imagine meeting up to write a PR strategy with some colleagues. The ground truth with a lot of knowledge work these days is that each individual contribution isn’t always critical to the outcome. Almost all of the meetings I am in do not need to happen that day or that specific place. They should probably happen that week, but if they’re postponed by a day or two the consequences are usually zero or manageable.

Now that doesn’t mean each attendee’s contribution to that hypothetical PR strategy meeting is worthless; it usually just means the conclusions reached have a blind spot, or are less good than they otherwise would be. Usually, that results in one or two questions being raised during the meeting that person X who’s not there should know, so someone jots it down to ask them later, or a decision is postponed until that person has clarified a thing. Again: there are consequences, but they are low.

What I’m trying to say is that any specific person’ s absence in knowledge work is largely inconsequential, which means that an uncertainty in anyone’s presence is much, much less of a problem for everyone involved.

Then there’s also a difference in what happens when someone reappears. “I took PTO but I changed my mind so today I can work” sucks balls in healthcare, because there aren’t specific demands on specific persons just ready to go.

On the other hand, I had this Monday blocked entirely because of a conference that I ended up not attending. Because a lot of knowledge work is divided in a small, important, focused set of work that Needs Done Now and a much larger, nearly endless list of less important / less urgent work that Needs Done, Well, Whenever, But Not Never, I could just pick stuff from those two lists and work on that instead. For the first list it means you get to improve the expectations you set earlier. “Hey, I thought I’d send you this on Monday, but I found some time to do it today so here you go!” For the second list it usually only matters that I do it, but not when or where.

In other words, because the consequences of pushing knowledge work around are so much lower than that of anything KB’s used to (healthcare, engineering, …), and because it is so much less time/person/resource specific work, it really does make a difference in how much less of an annoyance it is to have someone who retracts their announced PTO.


veen  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: How to Bitcoin by mk

The day’s not over yet! Mk still has some time to pump and dump.

veen  ·  19 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: How to Bitcoin by mk

Are you selling anything today?

veen  ·  22 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Paul Waldman: "It never hurts to hope"

veen  ·  33 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Cornel West: Howard University’s removal of classics is a spiritual catastrophe

It's interesting; a line through the past years of my work is that it slowly went from "here's a fun analysis to help you foward!" to "I'm handcrafting the model that is gonna determine what you need to do". I'm staying far away from anything that even remotely resembles ML and have developed the skill to properly communicate what my results do and don't say, so it doesn't come close to any case she's describing.

The problem, however, is that for large and complex challenges of our time there generally aren't ways of dealing with it that avoid any biases and prejudices by those who create them. Now "college rankings" isn't among those challenges, but something like climate change totally is.

    I wonder if the Facebook kerfuffle is maybe going to make this stuff more prominent, more front'n'center.

From my vantage point, there's been an increase in the number who realize that a) we can't trust these models on their face value, but b) we do still need large and automated solutions, so c) we need to be much more careful of how we use them, d) without throwing the baby out with the bathwater. There's still an awful long way to go, though.

veen  ·  35 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: 456th Weekly "Share Some Music You've Been Into Lately · 2

veen  ·  40 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Best Time-Management Advice Is Depressing But Liberating

    A life spent chasing the mythical state of being able to do everything is less meaningful than a life of focusing on a few things that count.

I read / leaf through Essentialism with a frequency that's rare for me. I'd give it a read if you want more advice on the above.

If everything that's being thrown at you matters to you, that means that nothing really matters to you. This week alone, I said no to two speaking engagements because I had more important things to do. I try to be incredibly strict in how I spend my time, moreso when I am under a lot of work load. If that means disappointing people along the road because I don't do what they ask of me, so be it.

veen  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 20, 2021

These days most of my programming is in PostGIS, which is an extension on regular PostgreSQL to enable very powerful geo-functions. Sometimes I write more Python, and in the past year I've also combined the two, writing Python scripts that call the database and send some data back and forth to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Today I went back and forth between writing big, heavy queries in a PostgreSQL database, and writing lightweight dynamic queries in Retool. I'm using that for the first time to create an interactive dashboard for a well known client of ours. The other project will probably entail some large tables that show the result of the analysis and a map visualization as an output, which what my deliverables are in most projects.

veen  ·  41 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 20, 2021

The definite conclusion to "how many hours in a row can I do proper programming work" is 5 and a bit, I say after 9 hours of it. My brain is mush.

I'm working on very cool projects, though, which eases the pain a bit. One of them is to basically make the model that predicts the demand for fast/superchargers for half of the Netherlands in 2030, which will be directly used the coming years to find sites and plan for it. As far as impact goes, it's maybe my biggest project yet.

Critical Role season 3 is around the corner and I for one am hyped. Anyone else here who watches that? I've been watching Dimension 20 the past few months, here's to find out if I am now ruined forever by Brennan Lee Mulligan's amazing DM-chops.

veen  ·  46 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Carrington Event

I just found out it's created by Ronald D. Moore. My SO absolutely loves Outlander, so I might be able to sell this on her with that fact.

So far I haven't seen anything else good on Apple+. Although, is Jon Stewarts new show any good?

veen  ·  48 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: America Is Running Out of Everything

    I'd be curious as to your take; you know hella more about transportation than I do.

I hope I do, but in a fairly narrow range. I'd argue "transportation" is as broad as a category as "engineering"; the nuances of shipping logistics are approximately as far removed from my corner of transportation as chemical engineering is to you. I could've chosen that speciality, but I didn't, so beyond knowing some basics like what a TEU is I won't be able to provide much insight.

My worry however is not about the refined products, but about all the intermediary and low-value parts that are necessary to create refined products. If shipments are going to suck ass for the foreseeable future, and we have lost the ability to produce much of the basics locally, how are a lot of our products going to get made? A supply chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and I'm worried we're gonna see a lot more weak links the coming years, with problems 'trickling up' from "it's too expensive to ship iron to make bolts" to "it's too expensive to ship bolts to make bicycle frames" to "bicycles are twice expensive and/or out of stock".

The current GPU shortage is not exactly caused by these kinds of issues, but it does show just how difficult these processes are to improve or change when necessary.

veen  ·  48 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 13, 2021

Have a week off from work. I almost always enjoy a quick break in between Summer and Christmas, as it's always the busiest time of year in terms of work for me. We had some travel plans, but ended up simply taking time off to do whatever instead. I've been praciticing the piano and reading a bit more, and spent a few hours cooking an extravagant dinner the other day.

Today we visited a framer for a piece of art I'd bought two years ago - a Stanley Donwood piece in his Holloway series. We also spent a good while figuring out how best to frame some beautiful maps that we really want to give a beautiful spot in our home.

Yesterday I spent the day making a start to a new side project. Basically, I want to make a website that's as nice & approachable as How Many Plants, but for (Dutch) shared mobility solutions, to solve the problem of discoverability and lower the barrier to access on my own. I don't know if anyone else wants that to exist, but I do.

veen  ·  53 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: America Is Running Out of Everything

Considering that anything complex is often just a combination of less complex, cheap parts... Isn't it then just a matter of time before commerce is next?

veen  ·  68 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: They just don't get it, do they?... HBR: Who Is Driving the Great Resignation?

And the other half is casually looking around for opportunities...

veen  ·  68 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: September 22, 2021

I really do wonder to what degree globally people have been sleeping worse. Personally, the number of fully restful nights I've had in the past eighteen months can be counted on one hand. I used to not dream almost every night and not wake up? Now I have long, vivid dreams almost every night and sleeping through is a win.

    I gotta get back in the habit of reading. Just reviewing my comments when I first joined Hubski make me feel as though I've gotten dumber.

Same here... I did get through a few books and can attest that starting with fun & short is the way to go. But the ol' habit is gone, and I miss it.

veen  ·  76 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: September 15, 2021

The past week has been f'n all over the place. Busy as hell, stressed out, finding a moment of peace, then stressed again. Spending a day with family, then finding out grandpa is on death's door. Covid scare, presentation stress. Highs and lows. I'm holding on but barely.

I was curious how it compares to our investor-ruined Dutch real estate market. One in six (15%) homes went to investors and one in four in the big cities, on average the past decade. Q4 2020 reached new heights of 30 and 40% respectively. So I regret to inform you that it’s not the kind of trend that naturally slows down.

veen  ·  90 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: September 1, 2021

Remind me to never commit to speaking at a conference 3 months in advance ever again. In two weeks, I'm speaking at a single-track conference for public transport professionals. My talk is scheduled right after four senior executives and one well-respected academic have had their turn, and boy am I struggling with the fear of saying dumb shit in front of a very large group of people I respect. Whenever my mind wanders, it wanders to the talk. This Monday I finally locked in the topic, next week I need to submit my slides, so any advice beyond "stay true to yourself" is welcome.

Besides the low-key anxiety, I do feel happy about finally getting back to connecting with people in my field again and having something to say to them. It's one of the things I didn't expect to miss the past year.