Journal > Dispatch #9 (November 2023)
Posted 2023-11-01 under #dispatch
It was nice to have a quieter month after so much travel this summer. We got a few extra weeks of warm weather, which meant a few more weeks of biking with Nev, and plenty of time at the museum and all the local playgrounds. I decided to run the Bull City Race Fest half-marathon despite having to rest my ankle for the last week of training (result, certificate). I faded pretty hard down the stretch, but still managed to finish in under two hours – not bad for an old.
At my job, I did a cool project working with data from a Freematics car telematics device. I built a data exploration API using Gin and learned
jq to truncate enormous JSON objects1. I also got to, just like, drive my car around to test things out.
I also made some updates to my
golong tool to prep for a fantasy NBA draft. Now it can munge multiple CSVs of data and supports multiple position eligibility2 and average stat projections3. It worked great, and my team’s looking solid so far. I’ll open source it one of these days.
I’m still having a blast with the Novation Circuit Tracks I got last month. I came up with a track I actually really like, which I’m calling “Radiatus” (which is a type of cloud):
Here’s an extended mix:
It’s really fun once you’ve got all the parts set up just to play the Novation, bringing drums and leads in and out – that’s how I recorded these tracks. I imagine it’ll only get more fun as I learn how to better twiddle the knobs to change the sounds. We’ll see – maybe I’ll come up with 2-3 more cloud-themed tracks and release an album!
My phone (and yours probably) sends me these photo slideshows periodically, and I’m an absolute sucker for them. One recently featured a track by Lack of Afro, and I’ve been listening to his stuff ever since. Check out “For You” (or really any of it – it’s all good).
I made a few updates to the website this month:
- Created a music page that aggregates all the MP3s I’ve uploaded.
- Imported all the posts I’ve written on my company blog into an “Elsewhere” section – I’m pretty proud of some of this stuff and wanted to make sure I have a copy of it I control. I was able to automate a lot of the process with Nokogiri and Pandoc, but I still had to manually review every post, which was a fun trip down memory lane, though some of my old ideas are BAD.
- Polished my Markdown link renumbering script (keeps my links in numerical order). This might be useful to other folks & might be worth rewriting in Go and releasing.
I’m really happy with Hugo – it’s simple but flexible enough to handle every challenge I’ve thrown at it. Building and maintaining this site has brought me a lot of joy this year.
- Adventure: head to upstate New York for Thanksgiving, run Troy Turkey Trot
- Project: make another track as good as that one 👆 and finally build that music workstation
- Skill: get better at playing along with a click track; write songs, not just grooves
- Non-fiction: Step by Step Mixing, Bjorgvin Benediktsson
For the past ten years or so I’ve been a musical rut, playing the same half-dozen, half-written songs on guitar once every other blue moon and listening to the same handful of punk bands I listened to in high school. I’ve been a musician for most of my life. Between church choirs, garage bands, and a cappella groups, I’ve been involved in organized (but never professional) music-making for the better part of several decades. But, after so long uninspired, I thought that maybe the musical part of my life was mostly behind me. Until the Tascam Portastudio 414 MKII brought it all flooding back.
Where you go, what you buy; a perfect snapshot of millions of ordinary lives. They were betting that this would be the currency of the future, as fundamental as oil: the stuff that rules the world.
They were wrong, but in the process of being wrong, they created a monster.
If there is one cultural work that epitomizes this shift, where you can see our new epoch coming into view, I want to say it’s “Back to Black,” by Amy Winehouse. The album dates to October 2006 — seven months after Twitter was founded, three months before the iPhone debuted — and it seems, listening again now, to be closing the door on the cultural system that Manet and Baudelaire established a century and a half previously.
Today’s happiness and personal-finance gurus have no shortage of advice for living a good life. Meditate daily. Sleep for eight hours a night. Don’t forget to save for retirement. They’re not wrong, but few of these experts will tell you one of the best ways to improve your life: Ditch your car.
It does everything I want a word processing program to do and it doesn’t do anything else. I don’t want any help. I hate some of these modern systems where you type up a lowercase letter and it becomes a capital. I don’t want a capital, if I’d wanted a capital, I would have typed the capital.
I was getting back complex nested JSON structures containing arrays with thousands of elements. To truncate all arrays in a JSON response to two elements, you can do
curl [url] | jq 'walk(if type == "array" then .[0:2] else . end)'. ↩︎
An NBA player is often eligible as both a forward and a center, for example. ↩︎
NFL projections are typically season-based, NBA are per-game – the tool can now take per-game projections multiplied by projected games played to get total points. ↩︎
- “EDM Song Structure: Arrange Your Loop into a Full Song”; backed up 2023-11-02 03:01:04 UTC
- “The Tascam Portastudio 414 Let Me Fall In Love With Music Again”; backed up 2023-11-02 03:06:19 UTC
- “The internet is already over - by Sam Kriss”; backed up 2023-11-02 03:10:20 UTC
- “Why Culture Has Come to a Standstill - The New York Times”; backed up 2023-11-02 03:15:31 UTC
- “The Real Reason You Should Get an E-bike - The Atlantic”; backed up 2023-10-29 18:17:07 UTC
- “The beauty of finished software | Jose M.”; backed up 2023-11-02 03:13:08 UTC