Is Pride a Sin, a Necessity, or Something in Between?

Pride is a tricky thing…for me, at least. You grow up receiving praise for things you do, but also getting a heaping helping of “reality checks” where authority figures or peers tell you not to brag too much or get “too big for your britches.” Still, should you be proud of yourself or not? That’s where today’s rumination took me. Continue reading “Is Pride a Sin, a Necessity, or Something in Between?”

Making the World a Better Place

I was direct messaging with an internet friend recently about what to do to find a “mission” in life–always a big thing for me–because I like a solid reason to get up in the morning and be motivated. What I came up with as a potential project was to start researching technologies to make the world a better place. Today I’ll take a shot at explaining what I mean by that and then, over subsequent posts, I’ll discuss individual topics or technologies of interest. This could be a hit, it could be a flop; in any case, it’ll keep me entertained. And being the harmless egoist I am, that’s pretty much why I’m doing this. So let’s start with something “simple,” like answering, “What do I mean by ‘make the world a better place’?” Onward! Continue reading “Making the World a Better Place”

Curating Your Own Past

Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.
George Orwell, 1984

Any quotation from 1984 usually implies that the author is about to write something sinister or dystopian. Today, I’m going to turn that notion on its side a bit, consider the wisdom of Orwell’s “Big Brother,” and discuss how it relates to how people think about their past, present, and future. Continue reading “Curating Your Own Past”

Masculinity, Non-Toxic or Otherwise

I’ve been reading a lot about “toxic masculinity” on the Twitterverse and elsewhere, and I suppose enough comments got under my skin to post something here. The goal is not to flame anyone, denounce anyone, or otherwise have an unseemly flash of temper. I merely wish to share the thoughts of a nearly-50-year-old guy who grew up in a household run by a single mother and more or less taught himself how to be a man. Continue reading “Masculinity, Non-Toxic or Otherwise”

Reflections on Jerry Pournelle

I saw in the midst of all the hurricane-related news this morning that science fiction author, technologist, and political advocate Jerry Pournelle has passed away. I am saddened by this, though not greatly surprised, as Dr. Pournelle has been in ill health for a while now. Still, he shaped a great deal of my thinking and post-formal education, and so I’d like to take a few minutes to share my thoughts on the man. Continue reading “Reflections on Jerry Pournelle”

What’s the Matter With These Kids Today?

If you believe a recent article in The Atlantic, kids born 1995-2012 (in other words, kids my niece and nephew’s age) are going to be “destroyed” by their mobile-technology-driven lifestyles. I am not going to respond directly to all of the article’s points, but for a change, I’m going to stand up for the younger folks. They might be doomed by some future cataclysm we cannot imagine yet, but I don’t think smartphones are going to be the direct cause of it. Continue reading “What’s the Matter With These Kids Today?”