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Especially on subjects I know something about, I will not hesitate to toot essays -- long-form posts which go into some detail. So, if you're not OK with me doing so, you basically have two options: (1) just grin and bear it, or (2) block me.

Much of what goes into my long-form essays is historical context. Without knowledge of history, you're inexorably doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past. Unfortunately, historical education rarely exists outside of a formal classroom, much less in a contextual form that is relevant to a topic. It took me more than 30 years to really understand what that meant. But, I get it now, which is why I'm eager to at least expose people to historical context when and where it seems appropriate.

Personal experiences comprise another significant portion of my essays. While this evidence in favor of an argument is anecdotal, it is especially strong anecdotal evidence, having experienced it myself.

Finally, there is allegory. Throughout my years on this planet, I've found only one thing to be an absolute truth: No two people understand exactly the same language. None. Sure, you and I may mutually understand subsets of a couple of languages which we think we know as English, but the reality is frequently quite different.

Growing up, I used to be a lot like Sheldon Cooper. I'd explain something using succinct, DRY language, literally expecting my audience, whomever they may be, to understand at once. This never happened, and would frequently lead to knock-out, dragged-on arguments.

Well, time has passed; and, now, I'm well passed the half-way point of my life. (So, rest assured, you won't have to endure me for much longer. Maybe about 25 to 30 years, if insurance actuarial tables are right.) I don't have time for engaging in such things anymore, so now you get more flowery, redundant prose because, bluntly, I don't feel like repeating myself anymore. There are no "good fights" to fight anymore. At least, not in this way.

If you don't like how I write here on the Fediverse, if you don't like how I respond to toots, and would prefer that I post shorter form bodies of text, well, I hear you and I do try; however, there are times when it just doesn't work out.

Case in point, consider this response I wrote. Had I only replied with only the very first paragraph, it would have sounded like I was extremely curt and rude. At least I think so. The longer form was obviously less convenient for whom I was responding to, but anyone else reading this will see that (I hope) what in isolation seems curt instead, in context, was an attempt at allegory to help explain my point of view.

So, to conclude, I really don't care anymore about how anyone feels about the length of my toots. So, here, I shall be curt: either get over it, or just block me. I really don't give a shit anymore. With a maximum of 30 years left in my life, your inconvenience is no longer a priority in my life.

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As folks know, I've been on something of a journey of re-discovery with respect to mainframes, thanks in large part to the public availability of MVS 3.8 and Hercules.

I'm detecting MVS's influences on Unix, which I've touched upon earlier, but also other environments as well, like Commodore's 8-bit environment. The "screen editor" has strong 3270 vibes, and the Commodore DOS shares much with the mainframe's management of data sets, while advancing on the state of the art at the same time.

In light of the fact that I've already received one "good riddance" toot, though, I can't help but notice that the NIH of the Unix community has infused itself into the greater Linux community. To be expected, I suppose, seeing that Linux is a POSIX OS.

Look, no system is perfect; and as much as I'm finding MVS actually preferable to use over Linux for some things, it goes without saying that MVS isn't perfect either. How can it be? It's literally the first OS of its kind in human history.

My advocacy/excitement for MVS should never be construed to also mean that I don't appreciate contemporary operating systems.

But, one thing I am seeing, though, is that the age-old truism by Henry Spencer can apply just as well to systems which came before Unix. The recent recommendation of using timeout to enforce a time limit on a process on a case-by-case basis (versus uniformly across the whole system, where trusted binaries are the exception, not the norm) is a case in point here.

And anyone who dares to tell me that I should just wrap everything in a shell script to establish the environment prior to launching the binary has just walked right into justifying the existence of JCL.

Remember, you only get to be smug because you won the mind-share, not because you won technologically. That's a subtle, but important, difference.

Got a project that needs an AMD Ryzen AM4 processor, storage, and a power supply. Anybody got those lying around and willing to part company with them? Parts are going to a community project, so cash is going to be difficult, but trade is an option. Let's talk.

So it seems, between the new AMD CPUs, Intel CPUs, and Nvidia GPUs, that everyone is pushing power consumption and heat as hard as they possibly can to get the most performance out of their chips.

I wonder if this is due to competition or if it's more to do with the end of Moore's Law where we're hitting the limit of current transistor tech.


Of course architectural changes can help, like how Apple went for ARM and how AMD is moving to a chiplet GPU design like they did for CPUs, but yeah... it's not looking good.

Also, just about everything is ridiculously expensive this generation. DDR5 RAM, motherboards, CPUs, GPUs, and new PSUs are all going up in price.

So consider this a reminder that the new shiny isn't necessarily better, and that "old" tech does the job just fine for most of what we need!


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It is not without a certain irony that Microsoft's research unit calls for the "end of productivity paranoia“ while other parts of Microsoft where / are busy building software fueling exactly this fear among leaders and employees.

But other than that, I find the latest Work Trend Index report from Microsoft, which is based on a survey of 20000 people and the data they have from Microsoft 365 and LinkedIn once again very informative:

Not going to lie, I think one reason why BASIC was so popular in the 8-bit era is because of how much simpler it is to write or port.

Forth is small and compact; but, it is so in part because it is clever. And, we all know about clever code.

I think this will be the last Forth interpreter I write. I think I'm done after this.

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I couldn't make it.

I got as far as modeling the desired interface under GForth, and confirmed that it behaves correctly there.

But, my next step will be to translate this code into SystemForth-native software, including writing all the low-level dependencies.

This means introducing limited support for double-width numbers, multiplication code, etc.

UUGH. This is a pain. This is the part of implementing a Forth interpreter that I hate the most, because you have to write soooo much code before anything works.

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There was a time when I could figure this stuff out on my own. But, right now, it's just not happening.

So, I'm going to cheat.

I happen to have a copy of Forth Encyclopedia, which includes a number of Forth-79 and (I think?) FigForth words and how they're typically implemented.

For now, I'll just use this as a reference. I can always change things up later if needed.

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I'm in a rare mood. I'm absolutely champing at the bit to work on System today.

My goal is to get it working with (at least) single-precision integers, so that, e.g., $38 3 + 6 + EMIT will print the letter A to the console.

Wish me luck.

So, it seems like a large subset of the people who were openly hostile to and it's ideas concerning how to lay out the filesystem years ago are now pushing for "/usr unification", even outright copying the use of symlinks to maintain compatibility with legacy software.

Literally, the only thing missing is a solution to handling conflicting versions of an installed program and a suite of package management tools designed to exploit this new structure.

This should be fun to watch. :blob_popcorn:

To my lovely Christian friends and followers- please take note.

There has been an uptick recently of Christians appropriating Jewish holidays- first Passover, now Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.

This is highly offensive to Jews for a number of reasons.

This Twitter thread from a Christian explains why you don't need our holidays/traditions and should please leave them alone.

Apparently, Twitter is doing something on the backend which might cause people to be muted.

If you use Twitter, check that shit out. Perhaps a buggy database automation script or something, but honestly, I wouldn't put it past them that this is some nefarious way to somehow improve engagement or some bullshit.

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Jumped on Twitter today only to discover that my wife's account was muted, as though I'd muted her.

I, umm...

I just can't even...


My husband has been missing in Chile since last week. We and his friends and colleagues miss him desperately. If you have information that could help us find him please call the police on +44 1926 415000 giving the reference number INC 153 18/9/22 UK/Warks Police


Just gave a presentation comparing Ascetic Programming to the wider world of Entity-Component-Systems.

I was hoping it'd help clear things up. I feel that all I did was just confuse things further. Bleh!!

I give up. :blobshrug:

Why must reveal.js PDF output be so broken?

All this to say, take it easy... be understanding, and gentle if you can. Assume the best in others when they write, not the worst.

Also like, if you’re feeling irritable... maybe step away from the keyboard. Anger is terribly contagious.

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I remember an adage that if you arrange two features as rows/colunns in a two-by-two classification table, then one of the four fields is always useless. I’m now trying to find a source or the original phrasing but haven’t found anything so far.

I don’t remember where I’ve first read it at all. Does anybody have an idea/a pointer for me? Boosts welcome.

Commodore's model numbers conventions for storage devices shows a clear trend. Starting with the 1531 for the datasette, the 1541 for the VIC-20/C64 floppy disk, the 1551 for the TED series, and the 1571 and 1581 for the C128, one must wonder whatever happened to the 1561. 🤔

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A bunch of technomancers in the fediverse. This arcology is for all who wash up upon it's digital shore.