social media, cybertown, internet homes, ui
i grew up around,.. i suppose,.. "pre-social-media" internet services that were still somewhat community oriented like xanga, myspace, and there was this weird thing called cybertown that ran on,.. flash i think? but it was this persistent 3d city with common areas that people could hang out like there was a mall and park and theater, but also like it gave you your own personal "home" that you could deck out with various things purchasable with their own cybertown currency that you could "earn" via "jobs" which now that I think about it sounds pretty capitalistic but that's beside the point here,...
with these online communities, in a way it was like putting out there a side of yourself in a more or less persistent environment without it necessarily being "content", like messing around with the HTML/CSS in xanga or myspace, decking out your virtual home in cybertown, or even AIM profiles to an extent and I kinda wonder if we're losing something with social media today. with less customization..ability of profiles and more focus on a uniform UI (which probably aids accessibility?), has the focus shifted more towards "content creation"? do things like cybertown homes and myspace profiles exist today?
yeah, i know "content" and "content creation" are vague terms...
(kb)ai, robots, take five
another interesting thing from this kbai class: it covers STRIPS and Shakey the Robot, which was a robot from the late 60s-early 70s developed at Stanford and ran on LISP (I wonder if this was Lisp 2? only lisps i've gotten around to learning have been clojure and various schemes) and Fortran and did stuff (according to wikipedia) like A*, Hough Transforms, and visibility graphs? (haven't encountered the third one in my studies yet). There's the original demo video here, complete with the robot scuttling about and pushing blocks to Take Five: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmU7SimFkpU . if for some reason I ever make a video myself pushing things around, I would like to set it to Take Five.
software boxes and floppies
i remember getting sibelius 4 in undergrad and the size of that box. the boxes for computer software were pretty large when i was growing up but maybe it was because i was smaller, like i remember the mechwarrior 2 box being pretty big or like the oh no more lemmings box but i think that one was a bit smaller, but also sometimes boxes also came in more like,.. reasonable console game box sizes? i wonder if vintage computer formats will have a subculture like vinyl does,.. like,.. "yeahhh, this number munchers game just plays smoother when you run it off 5 1/4 floppies",.. i guess i do follow twitter accounts with floppy disk pfps
(kb)ai, cs grad school, creativity
one thing i find interesting about the class material so far is that when it talks about ai agent learning, it stresses small amounts of data (vs the large amounts of data a lot of ml methods frequently rely on). i kinda wonder how much "state-of-the-art" ai research is still focused on that "small data" assumption and also it makes me imagine like,.. ai agents with "we only use small amounts of ethically-sourced data" on the box... if computer software still came in boxes
(kb)ai, cs grad school, creativity
taking knowledge-based ai this semester, been reading ahead and seems interesting, basically a mashup of cognitive science and ai, how humans would approach problems. seems to give a bigger context into ai than my other ai classes have (ai for robotics, ai). i guess out of all the cs topics, i find ai the most interesting in general? in that it seems to patch together these relatively straightforward concepts (at least they start out seeming straightforward) and then magic happens and now you have a little thing that can figure out mazes or play games or what not. i wouldn't mind studying ai things more in the future but i suppose also i don't particularly feel creative in ai, or any cs topic really, and i suppose i've stopped feeling creative for awhile in my previously studied subject (music) although i kind of live in the opposite of a stimulating, creativity-inducing environment and don't really socialize,.. at all. starting to wonder what i'm going to do with this cs degree now that i'm starting the back half of it and thinking maybe evidence that ai is interesting to me might be helpful (which would seem to require some sort of creative motivation that i don't have atm). also, it seems that a lot of work in the field have applications that i would rather not get into.
also, pretty late to the game, but i've been reading through ubunchu, the ubuntu-propaganda manga https://myanimelist.net/manga/13578/Ubunchu?q=ubunchu&cat=manga , don't think all of it ever got translated to english though and my japanese reading skills are ,..slowly growing but minimal
https://myanimelist.net/anime/37914/ looks like the dennou coil director is making a comeback but also i never got to watch dennou coil and i don't have netflix =\ also, "low intelligence AI" kinda sounds like the quality of AI things i've implemented lolol selfburn
there's something to be said about programming languages that are a little more strict with you in terms of types/object properties/etc. and i've spent a not-insignificant amount of time so far this semester figuring out bugs which turned out to be typos or wrong types (mistypos?) that don't throw any errors bc python and the things you can get away with but mb if i continue down this ai/ml/cv path after this degree i'll be stuck writing more and more python bc tooling outside of it for these things doesn't seem to be that great... anyways back to making more typos and mistypos 👍
part of me is tempted to try to find mice that don't have scroll wheels because whenever there is a scroll wheel, i'm tempted to use it and after awhile, it aggravates my carpal tunnel. even though half of my computing life is in tmux/vim, i'm still tempted to use the scroll wheel to scroll through output smh.
Debian first experiences, GNOME complaining
haven't gotten a replacement laptop yet (because i hate buying things and obsess over everything and then get anxious and,.. yeah) but have Debian 11 installed on an old desktop tower. Seems like a bit more work than the Ubuntu I'm used to (and the install process was definitely less straightforward) but not much difference? Also, tried out GNOME but a lot of the design decisions seemed weird and annoying (sorry GNOME devs if you happen to stumble upon this) like how scrollbars and pop-up info for files overlapped the actual folder view in Nautilus so I couldn't see the details of the bottom-most file, Activities seemed overly flashy and cumbersome, what windows were actually open were hidden by default (and when turned on, not grouped?), and also drag-and-drop from file-roller to Nautilus was broken,.. so I switched back to the XFCE I'm used to. Maybe I'll try Plasma in the future? But it seems like people say things tend to be broken there. After my GNOME experiences, not overly motivated to try anything GNOME-related for the time being...
Not sure what I gain using Debian over Ubuntu (other than a more painful install experience)? But wanted to try something non-Canonical (hah!) and it seems okay for the time being.
use cases would be maybe gaming lol, but audio live coding hopefully again one of these days, but more importantly ai/ml/cv stuff. i guess self-repairable would be good too but doing computer surgery today reminds me of why i barely do any hardware projects (i have clumsy, half-broken hands despite being a percussionist...)
that being said, what should my next laptop be? linux-friendly a must. a dedicated gpu would be nice (but i never quite got it to work on my old machine outside of nouveau drivers), intel preferable and some sort of decent warranty plan (bc i break things). having physical ports would be nice too. a somewhat nice, sturdy case would be nice too. i had a dell xps 9550 that was ok (15.4 inch, metal top and bottom, some sort of carbon fiberish plastic body), before today the touchpad didn't click anymore, some keyboard keys got stuck, and i replaced the fans once, and the whole thing once due to battery swell, but it lasted 5-ish years. should i get another dell xps? go lenovo something (are they still good)? something else like asus or something? have the heartbleed/meltdown things been sorted out yet? is it a right time to buy or is some new architecture gonna drop soon? i have a windows tower so i'm ok for now but by next february-ish i need something.
lol spilled water on my laptop (and a lot of other things) and it has the flashing orange light of doom (even after taking a hairdryer to the parts). ordered a usb nvme enclosure so hopefully i can mount the old ssd on an old linux-enabled machine (and luks won't complain) and recover stuff from it (like projects due wednesday oops).
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