Archive for June, 2015


June 29, 2015

This week felt kind of dull and uneventful. Struggling with tinnitus pretty badly but on top of that things are just moving slowly and I’m not really making much progress on stuff.

Sunday Snapshot


Mostly listened to old Pen Addict, old Generationals/Technical Difficulties, and also started listening to Bionic from the beginning. Mostly started listening just so I can hear more of Myke Hurley’s work, but it turned out really interesting. There really aren’t/weren’t enough people discussing Android in a way that’s actually putting everything in context.

For some reason I wrote down to mention Episode 60 of Technical Difficulties in the snapshot, but I have no idea why.

I also started listening to Start Up, which is by a guy who is involved with a bunch of NPR shows trying to start a podcast-reated business and the process he’s going through. Really good stuff.

Cortex is coming out great but it’s actually kind of unpredictable and bizarre. It’s easy to overthink whether or not something is a thing that Grey would overthink. Or something. I tweeted at Myke Hurley if they were going to have to try and reconsile Myke’s Field Notes obsession with Grey’s “shred everything shreddable” policy.

Also discovered that there’s a single feed that just has EVERY show, but I have to get a lot more caught up before that’s actually useful for me.

Finished catching up on the memory palace … so I guess he needs to make more. :)


I didn’t read much at ALL. Probably got through 10 pages of REAMDE. Kind of too muc

Pens and notebooks:

I’ve mostly just written with a Brown Black Hi-Tec-C 0.4mm this week in my “electrical” Field Notes Workshop Companion. I bought some relatively nice stationery from Office Depot for when I need it soon enough, as well. I find myself liking the 03 Preppy with the Quink the most, at least in terms of use. I try to balance it out but this week I’ve written a lot less total, and that’s probably why the Hi-Tec-C is getting used.

Can’t wait to find out more about how these inks look on this new paper.


I only really watched some old stuff at home. I’m trying to figure out if I should include that stuff here, and if so, I have to get in the habit of making a note of it in Field Notes. Oh well.

Sunday Specie

I keep meaning to get in the habit of analyzing my daytrading bot’s performance weekly. Here we go:

From June 21th to June 27th, average profit was 0.49%, volume was 1442400 DOGE (about 0.5 BTC), so profit was 7142 DOGE, or about 0.0027 BTC or about 0.67 USD. That’s still about 1.4% total profit per week. I really have to get more capital in there.

I didn’t start writing that program to do the analysis for me yet. I should really make it a project in OmniFocus.

Sunday Statuses (omnifocus)

OmniFocus making it difficult to do the review properly this time. But also maybe that’s just because I’m a little rushed.

Project statuses:

  • Graduate: I didn’t do last weeks homework. I forgot to drop the lab I was gonna drop so now I don’t get a refund. I am not good at this..
  • Take care of yourself: I did yoga four times this week, which is OK. I cycled 12.54 miles because I decided to crazily ride my bike the five miles to the bike shop and back. I didn’t read anything until today, only a few minutes. I’m late on how often I want to shave and haircut. Will probably be odoing that soon anyway because I’m applying for a job. I bought a multi-mineral pill with zinc and iodine just in case that hellps the tinnitus.
  • Take care of your house: Paid all the bills. They’re not in yet but it’s easy to guess usually. My sister is moving back in and with a new cat, so we’re about to have to do litter more often. I didn’t do any longer-term cleaning, but I did rearrange my wardrobe and decide to throw out/donate 25 t-shirts. I have a few more things I want to do with regards to that, so I should probably come up with a few actions to put in omnifocus for it.
  • <liMaintain web presence: I don't think I did much. I'm not done editing episode two of the podcast. I created a podbean page and put the first episode up, but I haven’t taken the steps to get it listed in iTunes.

    I’m getting back into the habit of keeping my tumblr queue full, but the main thing I’ve been neglecting is twitter. I don’t actually care about facebook but I do want to be making one post a week just so my wall isn’t filled with stuff other people posted. Web presence is going to have a lot more fuel soon once my podcasting plan actually gets underway.

  • Keep in contact with friends: Sort of reconnected with someone on Tuesday and also today. Really want to give a musician buddy a call some though. Still got three presents to buy.
  • Finish building Baby Whale: I bought a crapton of lumber but it’s actually all going to be used for deck I whimsically decided to build. I should have some 2x4s left but they’ll only help with the amp if I change the design a bit. I did try sharpening my tools today, so I might be able to chisel better and actually get some proper joints made.

I put these two under “take care of yourself” but they’re really just one-off treats that might boost productivity as a side effect since they promote journaling and writing:

  • Podcast: In the past week we recorded another episode but it’s taking me much longer to edit. I’m about halfway done with all the professional logistics stuff to get it on podbean and iTunes at all, and then I’ll possibly worry about making a squarespace. Thinking about making a squarespace for myself anyway and then just having a podcast page. Anyway for now go listen to the first episode of our podcast here.

I need to add actions to a lot of the projects. A lot of things are kind of in limbo but that’s what this post is really for, for me to reread to job my memory when I’m processing things later.

Now I’m supposed to decide if any of these projects should be reorganized to give their actions more clarity. I also have a bunch of projects in omnifocus that have zero actions because I never made any. I think I’m going to wait until next week to make any changes because I like doing things wrong.

Well, there we go. hopefully I actually do this next week as well. I still haven’t posted a Jetpens haul post or a field notes post but oh well.

Sunday Snapshot + Sunday Specie + Sunday Statuses

June 21, 2015

Part of GTD that I don’t really do yet is the review process. Since I haven’t finished reading the book, so IDK exactly what kind of review is supposed to be done weekly, but I’m going to try to remember to do some kind of review anyway, and blog it here to keep myself honest. If you see me miss one of these Sunday posts, you should yell at me on twitter or gchat or aim or sms or

I’m also inspired by Tasha’s Sunday Snapshot post series, so I’m going to add to the weekly review the kinds of things she puts in her Sunday Snapshot posts, IF THAT’S OK WITH HER.

Sunday Snapshot


In the past week I’ve listened to a LOT of episodes of The Pen Addict Podcast. I think I listened to episodes 40 through 72 all this week. What the hell, self. Anyway, this podcast is amazing but they’re really going to ruin my wallet. I ended up adding three of four things to my last Jetpens order (remind me to blog about what I got) because of it, and then I ended up making a second Jetpens order for fountain pen converters and inks, and then ended up subscribing to Field Notes Colors, all because of how passionate these guys are in this podcast.

I’m also trying to get caught up on Generationals/Technical Difficulties. I finally got to the point where they renamed the show. I’m more behind on The Pen Addict though, so I’ve been listening to it more. Generationals talks about GTD in the most helpful way of any podcast that ever talks about it. I’m pretty sure episode 029 or maybe 033 was one of my favorites, where Gabe talks about his career and how he is happier in a field he is less passionate about, because when he was in a field he was passionate about, he was ALWAYS working with people who didn’t care about what he was working on as much as he did. This concept is starting to make me reconsider a lot of things because I’m starting to feel anxious about being put into a similar position someday.

Speaking of GTD, #pisode 39 of Hello Internet (which is of course my favorite podcast ever) was about it. It was kind of weird to be honest because Brady hated the book. Also, Myke Hurley is interviewing CGP Grey about workflow and productivity and habits and so on in a new podcast called Cortex. I’m finding it highly entertaining … but IDK if it’s for everyone.

I also started listening to the archive of The Memory Palace. I highly recommend it–it reminds me a lot of Lore, so if you like that one, check it out. Or if you like history in general. I heard about it because they interviewed the guy from it on Stuff You Missed in HIstory class.


I think I only managed to read a few dozen pages in REAMDE by Neal Stephenson. I NEED to finish it NOW because I already got his new book, Seveneves, and I’m not going to let myself start it until I finish this one. REAMDE is actually really good on a page-by-page basis, it just doesn’t grab me when I think about the plot from a mile-high perspective. Also I want to reread The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon because the Pynchon in Public Podcast has been discussing it. But I probably won’t do that until I finish Seveneves.

Unfortunately I’m also having to read Protective Relaying Principles and Applications for class, and that’s exhausting a lot of my reading desire. This book is fairly accurately described as “the power electronics engineering bible” and is exactly as interesting as it sounds.

Pens and notebooks:


I’ve been using a Pilot Hi-Tec-C Blue-Black almost constantly. I also got two Platinum Preppy fountain pens, one in the 02 nib and one in the 03. I love both of them, but the black cartridges they came with aren’t black enough for me, so I bought two Platinum converters (which actually cost more than the pens did), and two bottles of fountain pen ink. I got Parker Blue-Black Quink and Diamine Green-Black. I love both of them but the main problem I’m having is that neither write very well in my field notes.


Speaking of which, I got my first Field Notes subscription in, and they’re completely amazing. The paper is SO much better than Moleskine and the “workshop companion” series is quirky and fun. It’s got dot grid paper which is clearly the best option and the Hi-Tec-C writes on it completely perfectly. The fountain pens don’t write on it well at all, but this is kind of a known problem with Field Notes. You probably don’t want a fountain pen crammed in your pocket with your notebook anyway.

Field Notes colors subscription Summer 2015

I also rediscovered the Kuretake Fudedogochi Super Fine, which is an amazing brush pen intended for drawing but it’s fine enough to be a great regular writer as well.


I also found my old Doane Paper idea journal that I used to use as a geocaching log. I’ve only used 7 or 8 pages in it so I’m kind of looking forward to using it again for something else at some point.




Last Saturday I saw Jurassic World. Great movie once you sit through the exceedingly dull first thirty minutes which consists of nothing but character backstory. I get it, we need a little bit of backstory to relate to the humans before they start showing the dinosaurs and Chris Pratt, but we didn’t need it to take up 25+% of the movie. Maybe it wouldn’t have been so bad if the product placement wasn’t so egregious.

But then once Chris Pratt comes on screen, the whole movie turns around and is a really rewarding watch. That’s really all I have to say about it.

Sunday Specie

I keep meaning to get in the habit of analyzing my daytrading bot’s performance weekly. Here we go:

From June 13th to June 20th, I bought 1586176 dogecoin for a a total of 1.2536260 bitcoin, and sold 1577984 dogecoin for a total of 1.26494513 bitcoin. Doing the math, I gained 8192 dogecoin and 0.01131913 bitcoin, which totals a profit of approximately $4.37. My capital at the beginning of last week was around $41, so that’s kind of amazing. The average buy/sell pair I made had a profit of 1.43%. This is the best week I’ve had in ages. The week before I had an average profit of 0.76% for each buy/sell pair. I’m not sure if I should do any more tweaking at this point. If someone wants to invest in my bot … let me know. The more coin I put through it the lower my fees go, of course. I’m heavily considering depositing actual USD, but I want to make sure I’m profitable multiple weeks in a row first.

I do all this math in libreoffice calc, but I should write a python program that does it more quickly for me.

Sunday Statuses (omnifocus)

UGH, Omnifocus makes it easy to do the past week including today, but not the week starting eight days ago. So this will include stuff from today but not include stuff I haven’t done yet today, I guess.

Project statuses:

  • Graduate: I failed to contact several people that it was essential for me to contact. I won’t graduate this semester. I am doing a bad job at this project. I’m not sure what I need to change in the system.
  • Take care of yourself: I’ve been doing better at yoga and cycling and callisthenics and so on. I only missed one day of yoga last week and I cycled a total on 10.6 miles. Also only missed one day of reading and I did fine on hygiene although one more bath would be optimal. Really proud that I somehow have gotten myself into the habit of flossing, it’s like I’m a real adult. I do need to practice piano scales more often (I did only once in the past week.) I bought selenium to possibly help with tinnitus, so at least I’m taking some action there.
  • Take care of your house: I forgot to take out the trash only once. Changed cat litter twice but that doesn’t seem to be enough … twice is supposed to be enough if my girlfriend is also changing it but I don’t think she is. *shrug* I keep deferring major cleaning tasks, which is bad, but in the past week I actually did a few, namely clean fan blades and deep-clean bathtub and clean refridgerator. I still have room for improvement but I don’t think I need to make any changes in omnifocus.
  • Be responsible: I keep being too lazy to cancel some subscriptions I’m paying for. I also keep putting off reconciling my bank account transactions to make sure everything is legit. I guess I’m being relatively responsible.
  • Maintain web presence: I’m getting back into the habit of keeping my tumblr queue full, but the main thing I’ve been neglecting is twitter. I don’t actually care about facebook but I do want to be making one post a week just so my wall isn’t filled with stuff other people posted. Web presence is going to have a lot more fuel soon once my podcasting plan actually gets underway.
  • Keep in contact with friends: I’ve been doing OK. I need to buy my girlfriend a birthday present. I wrote a letter and mailed Kelsi’s birthday present. (Two months belated, oops.)
  • Write thankyou notes for last Christmas: I still haven’t. Oops.
  • Finish building Baby Whale: still need to figure out how to work the wood. Haven’t made any progress on this one in a few months. Don’t want to change any of the actions in omnifocus yet but maybe I will next week.

I put these two under “take care of yourself” but they’re really just one-off treats that might boost productivity as a side effect since they promote journaling and writing:

  • Bought a subscription to Field Notes Colors. (Future post about this if you remind me.)
  • Bought fountain pen converters and ink.

And then here’s the coolest thing–a new project.

  • Podcast: Sometime in the past two weeks I recorded a podcast with Cameron, and I finished editing it yesterday. It’ll be up soon, but there are several actions we have to take before it can be listened to. Of course, if you want to be an early listener and tell me if there’s anything we should probably not do, email me or Cameron or comment on our blogs or tweet at me, etc.

Now I’m supposed to decide if any of these projects should be reorganized to give their actions more clarity. I also have a bunch of projects in omnifocus that have zero actions because I never made any. I think I’m going to wait until next week to make any changes because I like doing things wrong.

Well, there we go. hopefully I actually do this next week as well. Remind me to post a Jetpens haul post and a post about field notes I guess.

Testing out LaTeX

June 15, 2015

Here’s what I typed up trying to test out LaTeX. Tried to convert it to HTML and then post but I didn’t feel like making the CSS work with WordPress so this will have to do. Beware: boring.

1 Protective Relaying: Art or Science?

The philosophical debate of whether protective relaying is best viewed as an art or
a science may seem unnecessary. However, as one examines why the debate is seen
as unnecessary by various individuals, their reasons vary greatly. Some consider
the question to be too obvious to be worth debate—but such individuals exist on
both sides of the argument! On the other hand, many who consider both sides
carefully consider the argument pedantic, as they assume that everyone has
already considered everything the way that they have, and that no one’s minds
will be changed by anything they say. But this is undone by the existence of the
first group, of course.
1.1 Concepts

As the author is a well-known pedant himself, it has been found necessary for this
article to include some kind of comparison of art and science and what aspects
of these subjects are relevant to the discussion. These aspects must be
identified, otherwise anyone engaging in this debate will just go around saying,
“This is art.” or “That’s science.” without ever saying what art or science

So first, a comparison. Art and science are both some kind of reflection of a
higher reality in the work of people. Art is hard to define, but it isn’t impossible
to describe in an abstract sense what artists do. Artists tap into emotions and
interpretations and apply them to mundane or unexpected situations so that
something real that they have discovered to be real is communicated through such
application. That is, something that is real, but unknown to many, can be
communicated and made known through the artist’s decision to produce art.
Whether this real thing is particularly profound or not isn’t really relevant. It can
be a statement on some subject that the artist is chosing to make, but it
doesn’t really have to be. If needed, it can be a statement on the fact
that the statements that artists make aren’t particularly interesting or
necessary, and the artist can make it by intentionally not making much of a

But this type of abstraction doesn’t make said statements made by artists
through their work any less a reflectionn of reality.

Science is more obvious. Many would simply define science as ”the

study of reality” to begin with. What is generally considered to be the
boundary between what is science and what is in some other realm is
falsifiability. That is, science is the study of things that can be determined to be
true or false. It may not be the case that actually determining whether a
scientific fact is an accurate reflection of reality will be possible for a long
time—this doesn’t exile such study from the scientific realm. Scientists perform
experiments which provide evidence that supports a hypothesis. As this
support from many experiments by many scientists accumulates, scientific

1.2 Science

At this point I decided to stop writing about this boring drivel.

1.3 Art

Yes. This is how I type in bold using LaTeX.

I can now add áccents to any word.

1.4 Another part

I suppose the point is that the decisions made by engineers in this ridiculously
specific subfield reflect more upon those engineers as individuals than they do on
the specific problem those decisions are addressing.

Power system protection requires protecting against hundreds of possible
future problems, many of which have unknown probabilities, and many of which
would have unknown consequences if these problems were to occur. Each of
these problems can be protected against in equally myriad ways. So the
decisions engineers make are based almost wholly on an individual engineer’s
desire to conform to some paradigm that is abstract enough that it’s
functionally equivalent for one to say that an engineer is adhering to a design

Getting (every)Things Done, or something.

June 14, 2015

I don’t have anything to write about other than everything–everything takes too much time though.

May or may have not mentioned trying the GTD system using Omnifocus to help my productivity. Don’t feel like actually describing it to you in any more detail than this:

  • Stop trying to remember to do anything at all ever–this is the main thing and despite the book claiming to steal this idea from kung fu it is actually stealing it from cognitive behavioral therapy. Basically the idea is “give yourself permission to not have stress”.
  • When you think of something, instead of thinking “I should remember this” think “I should write this down immediately”
  • Things that are written down are to be “processed” or “clarified” as often as possible, at least daily or whatever.
  • Things are processed into three categories
    • Not-actionable: worthless
      • Delete these immediately
    • Not-actionable: data
      • File these in a filing system
    • Actionable
  • Set a start date and a context for each actionable item
  • Hide everything from yourself that has a start date that hasn’t happened yet, and that has a context that isn’t where you currently are
  • Now, even if you have 100 things to do, only the three or four that you actually can do are in front of you
  • Omnifocus does all of the hiding for me, so I’m using zero brainpower (in theory) figuring out what I can do right now, and zero brainpower (in theory) remembering “I should do x later”

So yeah.

I’ve gone full retard, as they say, with putting literally everything into Omnifocus. I can look in “perspectives” in Omnifocus and see what I actually accomplished. The mac version is better than the iphone version and honsestly this makes me want to try and get an older mac mini or something just for this singular purpose.

Looking in the completed perspective I can see that I did 5-10min of yoga four times in the past week–my goal is to do it every day. I went cycling once–goal is three or four times. Total cycling mileage was 3.5miles, goal is 10 miles. Etc.

This kind of weekly review process is supposedly an essential part of getting GTD to actually work, and I haven’t been doing it at all.

Anyway, back on topic:

I’m thinking about blogging my processing of school notes just because that way I’ll actually be processing them. Also, scanning them and processing them lets me give myself permission to shred them, which is very satisfying.

I have finally been given an excuse to learn LaTeX for school, so I’m thinking about writing blog posts in it once I learn it. To teach myself LaTeX I started essaying on a topic that my professor repeatedly brought up in class. It will be my next post here. Warning: it is extremely boring.