The nearly 400 year legacy of a cutting edge ceramic coffee filter

This NY Times piece on a 1,020 year old shop in Kyoto has been making the rounds online. It got me thinking about other examples of products or skills that have traversed centuries, and a random discovery we made at a shopping stall: a paperless ceramic coffee filter. Last October we travelled to Imari andContinue reading “The nearly 400 year legacy of a cutting edge ceramic coffee filter”

Writing macrons on macOS and iPadOS

This is a quick tutorial on how to easily type macrons on Apple devices with a hardware keyboard. The onscreen keyboard on the iPad makes this easy, but not when you are using an external hardware keyboard. This will be particularly relevant to academics needing to write Japanese terms in rōmaji. I searched the webContinue reading “Writing macrons on macOS and iPadOS”

Advocating for the teaching of knowledge to kids

Having been in the Canadian education system for a few years now, I am very impressed with the high-minded ideals of the early education system here. Things like teaching critical thinking, creativitiy, breaking down a problem, LID, etc are challenging and interesting, and meant to get a jump on the future. However it is prettyContinue reading “Advocating for the teaching of knowledge to kids”

Nostalgic utopianism — a review of Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus

Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus: How Growth Became the Enemy of Prosperity  by Douglas Rushkoff Power corrupts and money ruins everything. These are basically the premises that Douglas Rushkoff starts from in his latest book, a critique of the concentration of power in the digital economy and the inequality it breeds. He uses theContinue reading “Nostalgic utopianism — a review of Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus”

More people than bots?

In 1975, BusinessWeek magazine imagined the rise of the paperless office as computer use became more widespread. Of course, over the following two decades, consumption of paper doubled. A couple more decades on, we are finally seeing year-on-year decreases in office paper use, at least in North America and Europe. One recent tech fascination isContinue reading “More people than bots?”

Sectioned — On tech coverage in local media

Our mayor ran on a platform including tech. Our premier seems to have shifted her economic policy to tech. Our downtown is physically changing thanks to tech. Dozens of new tech companies start here each year. Dozens die, too. We are told it is a $1 billion industry. (Tourism is $840M by comparison.) There isContinue reading “Sectioned — On tech coverage in local media”

Nice coverage of tech issues at the local level

Kudos to Kelowna Capital News, one of our local newspapers, for running a special on technology last week. Tech is one of the dominant problems in the global zeitgeist, and it is not often that a local paper will put the resources into exploring such an issue in a local context. The Tech Talk packageContinue reading “Nice coverage of tech issues at the local level”

A slim crisis — a review of Disruptive Power

Disruptive Power: The Crisis of the State in the Digital Age by Taylor Owen From the book: Coupled with the power that is derived by the state’s increasing sophistication in this space — whether through automation, biometrics, or the new forms of social control and the violence they enable — there is reason to questionContinue reading “A slim crisis — a review of Disruptive Power”

More than computers — A recap of LinuxFest Northwest 2015

For me, this year’s LinuxFest Northwest 2015 was learning more about the politics of the Free Software movement. This track featured some excellent and eminent speakers, and I enjoyed it very much. Here is a short recap of each session: 1. Deb Nicholson, the Director of Community Outreach at the Open Invention Network gave anContinue reading “More than computers — A recap of LinuxFest Northwest 2015”