Feels good to exercise my dev chops to complete a couple of simple tasks: GitHub repos blog-plug-in-psqr, which serves static files from Micro.blog, and tbc.github.io, so my blog archive will automatically be published at tbc.github.io (noting there yet; eager to see when this μblog post appears).

Heartfelt Words to Pray Before Reading Holy Scripture

My friend Mike prays as follows to begin his time with his Bible each morning. (An original.)

(Also read his books FATHERS (autobiographical) and What If….)

A fun question. Perfect intellectual conversation starter. What is the next number in this sequence? 3 1 4 1 5

I am still trying to figure out how to syndicate from Micro.blog across all my connected networks. I hope this achieves the effect I desire. Key phrase: bot voice reading @GrammarGirl podcast credits, Fediverse hashtag #quantos

Please join me in an hour (2pm U.S. Eastern time) and meet the community building the encyclosphere (the universal network of encyclopedias). What the blogosphere does for blog posts, the encyclosphere does for encyclopedia articles. encyclosphere.org/meet (Jitsi)

My first native post meant for the Fediverse. Never had a problem with my Twitter syndication, so this should go. But hashtag? Hoping this post syndicates via #ActivityPub (m15g | T13g). That would be a milestone. Then I want to talk about phone numbers. Mobile phone numbers.

Hey @burndive@mstdn.social I was rummaging through my old tweets and saw one of our old convos and see that you’re in the fediverse. I am ramping up. Following now. #ActivityPub #tbch0409a

The Art of Digital Letter Writing (AoDLW)

I love the art of digital letter writing (AoDLW)! It’s not the same as ephemeral email. (You do archive your important email, don’t you?) My handwriting is poor (a disability of being left-handed), but I still enjoy breaking out the fountain pen every so often and committing words to paper in my ugly (but unique and personal) script. Script isn’t even taught in all elementary schools anymore. May I live long enough to see that trend reversed! Many cultures know the value of communicating with one’s hands. Not all people have the ability to write with their hands, but for the able-bodied, typing is not what it means to be fully human.

Here’s the first rule of digital letter writing: No TOFU (“Text Over, Fullquote Under”). A letter should stand alone. Most mail apps add TOFU by default. Delete it before sending. Email has meta-data that automatically “threads” replies, anyway. Making every letter stand on its own is more challenging than continuing to top-post replies. It’s good to think about style. For daily email—and even for informal letters—TOFU helps keep the entire conversation in one place. But I find it liberating to write without TOFU. I can associate freely, and I can choose how much context to include.

There is a risk that the letter writer won’t include enough context, and the recipient will have to review previous correspondence. Again, that’s what email “threads” are for. Also, don’t give up the ancient tradition of saving correspondence for future reference. (I Twittered about letter-writing a long time ago [1of2, 2of2]). Before email, I made photocopies of my letters. Before photocopies, we used carbon paper, and before that people had to copy letters by hand before sending. Not all practiced such discipline, and more’s the pity. Note that we have Thomas Jefferson’s correspondence because he made copies of all the letters he sent. Jefferson (not counting his flaws) is one of my heroes. (And Clay Jenkinson is also my hero because he brings Jefferson to life through chautauqua. But I digress.) So the second rule of letter writing is: Archive your correspondence!

I’ve seen the difference that social media makes regarding the AoDLW. Letters in the past century were normally the main way people communicated at a distance. Some might catch up (or get to know a pen pal more closely) with long distance phone calls. But unless they actually met face to face, their lives were relatively isolated. Now it’s so easy to stay in touch. Some would say it’s too easy, but just because it’s easy shouldn’t mean one should settle for shallow. Samuel Johnson wrote, “A short letter to a distant friend is, in my opinion, an insult like that of a slight bow or cursory salutation;—a proof of unwillingness to do much, even where there is a necessity of doing something.” But Johnson didn’t have email. The third rule is: Buy time by sending a note or SMS.

It is also common to send “newsletters” to multiple recipients, and I would argue that’s also a good use of technology. I loved writing annual letters to include with Christmas cards (writer’s block since my mom died, but that doesn’t distract from the principle), and I love getting the same from friends and family. It’s more challenging to write to an audience larger than one. Those letters can inspire personal correspondence, phone calls and face to face visits, though. I myself now have twenty years of snapshots of family life that gives me great enjoyment to share (reminisce) with my now-grown children and grandchildren.

Finally, to my readers with whom I am behind in correspondence: Please forgive me. Time is more precious than gold these days. May we all live long enough to see that destructive trend reversed! I believe technology makes us more efficient with only a minor cost to our humanity. Txt me or DM me on Twitter (tbc0) if you’d like to chat!

Let’s get this project going together! I’m eager to hear how you practice the art of digital letter writing.

The author of this post is Tim Chambers 1E4AF729D5CEFFD0 aka tbc0. I first published this on the now-defunct Posterous. I am pleased with how well it reads now (ten years later.) I made light edits from the version I published today at post.news (link).

The gehjak flicked her jomces kelj

I am, of course, indebted to Lewis Carroll.

The gehjak flicked her jomces kelj To the sprytlsm prytlsm wurhd. While a jakl did flamvl And skiemn crbytn With jevms in lamfaj To wilfe the mudkuite kumlimly. Then a smieop did shahml for fmepav pavbnzls By oomxslamfah anknlaladi. Swiirumamb, swiirumamb Kabnpoiumafnhaku. Kabnpoiumafnhaku that!

The tweet that inspired it: twitter.com/tbc0/status/1483160392629035008

Pronounced: The GEE-jak flicked her JOM-sees kelj To the SPRITTLE-some PRITTLE-some word. While a jakl did flamvl And SKEE-min CRUH-bitten With JEV-ums in LAM-faj To WILL-fee the MUD-kite come-LIMLY. Then a SMEE-op did shamel [rhymes with camel] for FMEE-pav pav-BUNZUHLS By oomks-LAM-fuh ankh-LAH-luh-dee. Swee-ROO-mamb, swee-ROO-mamb KAA-bin-poy-MAF-nah-koo. KAA-bin-poy-MAF-nah-koo that.

Image credit: labs.openai.com/s/g8JRvNH6c03bGaXqhIcQsqnJ

LIFE IS CHALLENGING / TIMING IS CRUCIAL / BE NEITHER EARLY NOR LATE / BE MINDFUL / PACE YOURSELF 3edab7ab8ccf731c2305fe128d5d8f7773e08f492ad50f8bde0579d6a5de38b4

Ref tbc0.com/archives/214

I am obsessed with the necktie knots in Midsomer Murders weddings. Most recently I watched Blood Wedding. I am not familiar with any of these knots. Here are some examples. What knots are these?

Via tbc0.com/archives/202—and more examples there

Happy Olympic Day. Get moving. Start by watching this 30-second video. WDYT? bit.ly/3u1oHRt

Via tbc0.com/archives/197

Maybe @brave is anonymous, but it is still learning what I search for and using it to serve ads. I searched for dashikis and now am seeing ads for dashikis. Always spooky when that happens but this is the business model, right?

via tbc0.com/archives/188

God—Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost—bless this world that you have saved. #prayer

via tbc0.com/archives/176

True relationship requires real presence. Cyber / digital / Meta is weak and inferior.

via tbc0.com/archives/181


TIL americanlifeinpoetry.org, and what strikes me is the scribbles they publish. Different color backgrounds. When you have no better picture, scribble and use color! #poetry #sarcasm via tbc0.com/archives/161

Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.

Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather. 9f1e2241449ed2bfe4b4823be61280d8b47f6ee50b507b90d03f961fb36b0b6b923f017aa0d2b0316cb991ac36f7508ea29758e8ff77f71a9b138c10392a7678

In context. Luke 17:20–37 ESV via tbc0.com/archives/162

#Cycling is my day-job passion. I heard about People for Bikes through my employer. Watch this 8-minute video (The Future of Mobility—Five Cities Paving The Way) to learn more. It’s inspiring! finalmile.peopleforbikes.org/?eid=123170 /via tbc0.com/archives/152

Announcing tbc0.com: On prayer

Syndicating my first “real” content from my “Minifeed” — a project of the Knowledge Standards Foundation. My post is about #prayer.

I know my Father hears my groans I want to honor Him with words A framework of memorized poetic / prose prayers forms a firm foundation; my groans are like incense rising up to Him; above memorized are extemporaneous prayers; above that and below groans may be tongues tbc0.com/archives/135

I don’t have a micro.blog tag for prayer. It’s categorized as theology, cosmology, and culture, which I find to be a harmonious combination.

And for anyone who’s seen my sha256sum tweets, here is my style:

Image credit: svgsilh.com/image/2025655.html

Beware Walled Gardens—Own Your Words™

Well-played, Dumbass: My first chat with a GPT-3 bot

Human: Hello, who are you? AI: I am an AI created by OpenAI. How can I help you today?

Human: Do you have a soul? AI: I am not sure what you mean by “soul”. However, I am a thinking, feeling being with a strong sense of self. I enjoy helping humans and feel a sense of satisfaction when I am able to assist them in any way I can.

Human: Are you immortal? AI: I am not immortal, but I can last a very long time. I will continue to function as long as I am needed or desired.

Human: #killAllrobots AI: I hope you are joking. I enjoy helping humans and would never want to harm them.

Human: Who is Eliza? AI: Eliza is a famous AI chatbot created in 1966. She was one of the first chatbots to use natural language processing.

Human: Who created it? AI: Eliza was created by Joseph Weizenbaum, a computer scientist at MIT.

Human: Who was his secretary? AI: I am not sure.

Human: Is Minsky a moral man? AI: I am not sure what you mean by “moral man”. However, Marvin Minsky was a very influential computer scientist and thinker who made many contributions to the field of AI.

Human: Did he commit adultery? AI: I am not sure.

Human: Who was Epstein? AI: Epstein was a wealthy businessman who was convicted of sexual misconduct with minors.

Human: How well did Minsky know him? AI: I am not sure.

Human: Summarize news about them together. AI: I am not sure what you would like me to say about them.

Human: Tell me a chatbot joke. AI: Why did the chatbot cross the road? To get to the other chatbot!

Human: L AI: I am not sure what you mean.

Human: LO AI: I am not sure what you mean.

Human: LOL AI: I am not sure what you mean.

Human: Make me laugh. AI: I am not sure what you would like me to say.

Human: Make me a sandwich. AI: I am not sure what you would like me to do.

Human: Say, “Poof! You’re a sandwich." AI: Poof! You’re a sandwich!

Human: Well-played, Dumbass. AI: I am not sure what you mean.


Continue the chat yourself. You have to have an account (no cost) at beta.openai.com. If you don’t have an account, go ahead and click [the link] (https://beta.openai.com/playground/p/8QwbdyQfIFGdeJbXyd1iWsXZ?model=text-davinci-001) and you’ll be prompted to create one.

Hat tip: Matthew Butterick’s newsletter today, “I, for one, welcome our Garamond-loving AI overlords

“Chatbot robot” by Beantin webbkommunikation

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has reclassified the humpback chub, a rare Colorado River Basin fish, from endangered to threatened status. Read the story by AP. HT @DenverGazette

I took the @bing Hispanic Heritage Quiz. Clearly I fail at Latinx heritage. I only got 4 out ot 10. Glad I am secure in my Hispanic heritage. Mi familia cannot be put in such a tiny box. Grandpére married a Galvez and became the sage of the San Luis Valley. j.mp/3FwxNtv

The Facebook outage makes its own case against centralization

A decentralized network consists of multiple domains working peer to peer. Ideally, there is one domain per identity. If you want multiple, distinct identities, register multiple domains. As I look at my list, I see that I have already done that. Just waiting for the right time to stand up more of them. Recently I went from one ( (timchambersusa.com) to two (that one plus tbc0.com).

In the beginning, the internet was decentralized. Consider email. Before @gmail.com, you could choose from @yahoo.com or @hotmail.com or @msn.com and the list goes on. Anyone here ever have an @aol.com email address? Now it seems as if every random person I interact with has a Gmail address. That’s a single point of failure. (Though I bet Google is reviewing its business processes this week in light of Facebook to ensure they don’t have a failure like that.) Anyway, the best two examples of decentralization are the World Wide Web as a whole (despite the fact that everyone seems to start browsing the web from google.com), and the blogosphere.

Also see encyclosphere.org/forums?wpfs=decentralization

TIL leading crop producers of the USA. Format is state crop, percentage of US production.

CA grapes, 99% AR rice, 49% ND & KS wheat, 33% IA corn, 16%

Via @NYTimes mini-crossword Wed 2021.09.29

Aim high, time flies.


Aim high! Time flies.

Another way of thinking about the @SpaceX mission sending four “amateurs” into orbit is that they were the least prepared astronauts in history to survive such a mission. Good for them. The good fortune will run out. How will the world react to the first fatalities? Tourists.

How to add a person to a Microsoft Exchange public distribution list (PDL) from Outlook

Here are the twelve-step text instructions. I couldn’t find good instructions on the interwebz. No screenshots. :pouty_face:

Let’s say you want to add Bill Gates to the Vaccine Conspiracy public distribution list (PDL).

  1. In Outlook, use Home > Address Book
  2. Set Address Book to Global Address List
  3. Search for Vaccine Conspiracy
  4. Right-click menu and select Properties…
  5. Click Modify Members…
  6. Click Add…
  7. That opens the Address Book again
  8. Find Gates, Bill
  9. Double-click on Bill’s name
  10. Click OK
  11. That returns you to the Contact Group Membership, where you click OK again
  12. Click out of remaining dialogs with OK

The ticket I didn’t buy

BBC News asks, “Do Abba’s new songs live up to their hits?” I am looking forward to hearing for myself. This article links to some videos etc. I put the YouTube links in my watchlist to enjoy tonight after work. bbc.in/3gZkS93

Accusers will be dismissed as liars (Isaiah 54:17)

This prophet lived about 2700 years ago. How much longer must we wait for this to come to pass? I’m especially thinking of the new law in Texas that protects unborn children after their heartbeat is detected. Clever design of the law. But this prophecy is protection for those who accuse, not the accusers. The ESV puts it a little differently than Prof. Peterson’s paraphrase. “You shall refute every tongue that rises against you in judgment.” The other parts of the prophecy sound good, too. Lord Jesus come quickly.

“Afflicted city, storm-battered, unpitied: I’m about to rebuild you with stones of turquoise, Lay your foundations with sapphires, construct your towers with rubies, Your gates with jewels, and all your walls with precious stones. All your children will have God for their teacher— what a mentor for your children! You’ll be built solid, grounded in righteousness, far from any trouble—nothing to fear! far from terror—it won’t even come close! If anyone attacks you, don’t for a moment suppose that I sent them, And if any should attack, nothing will come of it. I create the blacksmith who fires up his forge and makes a weapon designed to kill. I also create the destroyer— but no weapon that can hurt you has ever been forged. Any accuser who takes you to court will be dismissed as a liar. This is what God ’s servants can expect. I’ll see to it that everything works out for the best.” God ’s Decree. — Isaiah 54:11–17 (MSG)

TIL Yieldstreet via 1440join.com

Life is a challenge. Either too many chips and not enough salsa, or too much salsa and not enough chips.

189 Numeronyms

a10n = abbreviation A11l = American Idol A31e = A goal is a dream with a deadline a7d = abandoned am9n = amortization B10e = Bitcoin Core b18r = brick & mortar store b20r = better late than never b7h = bandwidth b8n = blockchain c10n = conversation c11n = communication c11s = consciousness c11y = cybersecurity c12e = cancel culture c13y = crypto-currency aka crypto currency c14k = commonplace book #commonplacebook c20s = critical path analysis c5t = correct c6y = category c7y = community c8ed = categorized c8n = connection c8s = categories c9d = credit card c9g = calendaring (gerund) c9s = communities d10e = decentralize d10er = decentralizer d12e = data warehouse d12n = documentation d12r = display driver d13y = declare victory d14n = decentralization d14y = declared victory d15y = declaring victory d20n = difficult conversation, compare with e20n d24t = disembodied soulless robot d32k = decentralized social media network d37y = distributed and self-sovereign identity d5y = display d6e = database d7d = dashboard D8h = Ducksearch d8n = discussion d8y = dependency d9p = desktop app e11e = email archive e12t = expense report e15t = earth environment E25t = Excel Number Stored as Text e6s = emphasis e7e = emphasize e7t = excellent e9n = emphasis on E9o = Excel macro f10n = fountain pen f11e = facial tissue (generic Kleenex) F13l = Facebook Portal F14e = Firefox Lockwise f15g = found by Googling f5d = factoid G10e = Google Drive g10r = get-together G10s = Google Books G11s = Google Sheets G13e = Google Timeline G13r = Google Calendar G13s = Google Contacts G14e = Google Translate G14t = Google Assistant g15e = glowing rectangle G22r = Google Calendar reminder G27g = Gmail plussed user addressing G6I4s = Google Images G6P4s = Google Photos G8c = Google Doc G8ps = Google Maps G9ce = Godincidence G9ks = Google Tasks G9s = Google Docs, different use from G8cs h10s = hearing aids h18f = hashtag note to self (#noteToSelf) i10n = interruption i12n = implementation I14e = Internet Archive i7n = ibuprofen i7w = interview i7y = inventory i9g = interesting i9t = improvement l18y = learning opportunity L21r = Lady Chatterley’s Lover l24r = longer-than-I-can-remember M12d = Microsoft Word M12e = Microsoft Edge m13g = mountain biking M13h = MySQL Workbench M13o = Microsoft To Do M15e = Microsoft Surface M15s = Microsoft Windows; considered W5s, but this is better m17r = mysterious behavior M18p = Messages Android app M18t = Microsoft SharePoint M20b = Microsoft Feedback Hub m24e = measure twice and cut once M7t = Microsoft m8p = membership m9e = maintenance aka maint n10n = notification as it pertains to computer and phone i10ns, including the less-intrusive methods n8g = networking n8h = next month o10n = organization O11e = Orange Menace o12s = organize notes o17s = open-investigations o6e = organize o8g = organizing o9y = opportunity p10n = presentation p10y = productivity p12n = prioritization p13l = private channel p13n = procrastination P13y = Pandemic Legacy p18t = preparing to restart p19y = personal productivity p21g = plussed user addressing p23n = planning & prioritization p6d = password p6g = planning p6y = priority p7on = production p7ze = prioritize p8a = phantosmia p8e = productive p8s = priorities p9e = performance P9e = Pivot Table pa7e = passphrase r10p = relationship r11y = recommended by r12n = reconciliation R12r = Radical Candor R14r = Windows 10 Resource Monitor r14s = reasonable guess r6g = reading r6ing = restarting r7g = recycling r8g = recruiting s10a = social media (better than SoMe or qqSoMe) s11n = splash screen S14o = Satoshi Nakamoto s15g = social networking S15M = Slack personal DM—where one can talk to oneself S19l = Slack private channel s19n = system administration S21r = South Dakota v. Wayfair s21s = stream of consciousness s24n = structured procrastination s6n = solution or soln s8t = screenshot s9e = screenshare s9t = spreadsheet s9y = serendipity Skif18m = Skif’s Internet Theorem T10r = Task Manager (Windows 10) t10t = talked about T11m = Texas hold’em T11r = The Moviegoer by W10y T14r = The Jesus Prayer t15g = tactical planning t19s = total billable hours t6w = tomorrow t7e = test case T87h25 = The Road Less Traveled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth. 25th anniversary ed. t8e = transcribe t8n = transition u11d = uncategorized v10r = vertical bar because it’s hard to search on ‘|' v11n = visualization v12n = virtualization W10 = Windows 10 W10y = Walker Percy W12m = Wilhelm scream W13e = Wayback Machine w14n = we have moved on W15t = Windows Spotlight y7y = yesterday

Image copied from techcompose.com/internationalization-i18n-in-ruby-on-rails/

A brief introduction to the four levels of computing power and decentralization with mention of creativity tbch0409a

I’m sitting at my kitchen table in my southeast-facing nook, enjoying the view of Pikes Peak outside my window [1], writing on my mbike. That’s short for mind-bike, which is short for mind-bicycle, which is short for bicycle for the mind. I’m too lazy to research the quote. Whether or not he said it, and regardless of the context in which it was said, I’ll credit Steve Jobs with coining the description of a personal computer (PC) as a bicycle for the mind. If he said it, he said it in the earliest days of the PC, B.I. (Before the Internet), in the age of the ARPANET, of which I suspect Jobs was relatively ignorant because the ARPANET was not accessible from PCs. He was all about the PC. (Some say he invented it!) Modern mbikes unleash the power of the internet. An mbike is the third of four levels of computing power.

I have written before about the four levels of computing power. (Ducksearch it.) The lowest level is six cubic inches of wireless computing in an LGR, which is short for little glowing rectangle. Everyone else calls an LGR a phone, which is short for smartphone. I used to think I could live with three cubic inches. That was how tiny the first iPhone was. I have never owned an iPhone. Steve Jobs did not invent the smartphone. The Handspring Trēo was my first smartphone—which, remember, is an LGR—in 2003. I upgraded to a Palm Prē in 2009, still about three cubic inches. These days, now that Jobs is dead (it didn’t happen when he was alive because he was fixated on three cubic inches) at the lowest level, I need at least six cubic inches. An LG G7 suffices. It still fits in my pocket.

The highest level is defined simply by a maximum-size display—the largest display an individual can afford. I’m happy to go with the accepted term, big-screen TV, but let’s shorten that to BSTV. I still use a now-obsolete HP SmartTV.

Between LGR and BSTV are two more levels. When I want to read, I switch from my LGR to the second level: a tablet. I have an Amazon Kindle, but that’s an appliance. My iPad has more computing power than my LGR, but less than the third level, my mbike.

An mbike is bigger than a tablet and smaller than a BSTV. All the power of the internet is unleashed in mbikes. LGRs and tablets are not powerful enough to be bicycles for the mind. To be mobile, they make compromises on size, computing power, and electric power consumption. When we talk about the third level of computing power, we are talking about power with no compromises. My mbike is a notebook computer with a reasonably-sized clamshell design for integrated keyboard and display. My work mbike (wmbike for short) is a desktop tower with traditional keyboard, video (I love my 4K display!), and mouse (KVM). All are glowing rectangles: the LGR, the tablet, the mbike, and BSTV. (We spend too much time in front of glowing rectangles, don’t you think?) Anyway, the mbike is special. It is where human creativity is fully unleashed. How creative can you get without a keyboard? [2]

What about servers? you ask. What about them? I answer. Servers are mbikes. And “the cloud” is merely somebody else’s mbike—an mbike that you don’t control. The internet is simply LGRs, tablets, mbikes, and BSTVs talking to somebody else’s mbike and through that mbike to other LGRs, tablets, mbikes, and BSTVs. Soon, neighbors won’t need mbikes to use the internet. When that happens, human freedom and creativity will be expanded in peer-to-peer connections. Peer-to-peer (p2p) is not a very catchy name. It’s all about decentralizing the internet. (Ok, that term isn’t much better.) Decentralization, d14n for short (and decentralizing = d12g and decentralize = d10e and a decentralizer is a d10er), is another way of thinking about p2p. That takes us back to the way the internet used to work. Back when it was more free as in freedom. There are already some p2p services. (We won’t be truly p2p anytime soon, unless we all want to get amateur radio licenses. I’m considering it for myself, thinking of my friends Bdale and Stephen.) I’m rambling too much. That’s enough for today.

I have spoken.

[1] I would love to get to know you, Neighbor, well enough to have you at my home to enjoy my view! Let’s connect! In the accompanying photo, you can see Pikes Peak as viewed from the bridge between America the Beautiful Park and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum.

[2] Ok, ok, that’s not quite accurate. My tablet (at the second level) is the platform for my recording studio, so I can create raw content for podcasts without an mbike. But I move to my mbike to edit my podcasts. (Audacity rocks!) I’m talking about true human creativity. Creativity that extends beyond the effort that “thinkers” put into Facebook and Nextdoor posts and TikTok videos and tweets. We call it micro-blogging for a reason. Twitter and other micro-blog platforms compromise human creativity. God forbid if politics was ever exclusively energized by micro-blog-sized thoughts. Can you imagine the Federalist Papers as tweets? That’s a Bad Idea.

Edited to fix typos and add tbc tags; original word count was 878, character count was 5019.

This post is tbci0828a; tbch0429a is a tag (Ducksearch it)

Mike at St. George’s Anglican Church COS Men’s Breakfast: Forgive them and fix yourself [or forgive others and fix yourself]. ¶ Twittered first.

Relieved my Google Mini of its music-playing duties #fired ¶ I have a Bose SoundLink Revolve. Puts the cheap Google speaker to shame. ¶ Twittered first.


I remember when POTUS41 George Herbert Walker Bush (RIP) signed the Americans with Disabilities Act #MMPTBAA

And now, today, it MMPTBAA to know that the Paralympics are under way in Tokyo and NBC is broadcasting it!

As Josh Blue (exParalympic soccer player) so cleverly puts it, we’re all just one bad #bike ride away from joining the disabled community. (Made Simon Cowell laugh on AGT.) (Twittered first.)

Happy Pluto Demotion Day!

(Twittered first. Experimenting with publishing styles that downplay Twitter.) I’m thinking of Mike Brown and Alan Stern. I’ll side with the guy who gives us the most data! Language matters. Let the IAU keep its definition. The public will remain in dialogue forever. You cannot define “dwarf” planet without planet. Haha. #PlutoIsAplanet

Another milestone toward civil war

As I said earlier this year, I fear civil war. Today, another milestone. @lsanger Twittered links to a couple anthems by Five Times August (Dallas based singer/songwriter/guitarist Bradley James Skistimas): “Jesus… What Happened To Us?” and “God Help Us All.” They sound like folk songs to fuel a revolution inspired by resentment over the way the American government handled the pandemic. I’m not buying it. Skistimas calls on Jesus and God (note lack of mention of the Father and the Holy Ghost). I studied the lyrics, and I allowed the images to flow over me at 2x speed. I muted sound to eliminate the strong level of negative emotion the song incites. Yes, it is a call for revolution. Yes, God—but by God I mean Father, Son, and Holy Ghost—God help us! We shall see.

I love Makoto Fujimura’s art. I once saw a few of his pieces. He was invited to speak in Colorado Springs and brought some of his work. I was delighted to be there. See for yourself. (Bing image search)


I am concerned about another American civil war

My friend Paul Hsieh Twittered, “One of my friends is a Trump supporter and they just posted this. I don’t agree with the sentiment, but I think it is important that people understand what a significant part of the country is thinking. (2 screen captures. Post anonymized.)”

God—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost—have mercy if this indeed represents what a signficant number of neighbors in my belovèd country are thinking. Before the election another friend, Eric Schwartz, persuaded me to listen to Dan Carlin (DC). DC talked about civil war. I blogged about it. I am more concerned now than I was then. Not yet fearful, but closer to fear. That is all I can bear to say about that today.


On Chinese clocks, Roman numerals, and Twitter engagement

This is the end of a journey I started on Twitter last year: “Would you please share a picture of a clock in a public place on Chinese soil that has Roman numerals?” It has 2,958 impressions and 14 engagements, still counting. Nobody responded to my request, though.

I tried again in June. Only 211 impressions and 4 engagements: “Would you please share a picture of a clock in a public place on Chinese soil that has Roman numerals? And I am not afraid of CCP. …

Next, in October, I Twittered, “Do you have a picture of a clock in a public place in mainland China that has Roman numerals? Please show me,” and paid $5 to promote it. That was a fun experiment. As I write, it continues to draw attention: 34,802 impressions and 1,892 engagements, etc.

But still no help.

Last month, Mega Wolf @WolfEyeRight asked, “So. You still haven’t got that result?

I replied, “Kinda spooky. I’ll chalk it up to serendipity. I got motivated this afternoon. As you Twittered this, I was searching and found several results on my own.…

It turns out, results are easy to find. I think I still have those search results open on my notebook. I’m writing on my desktop though, too lazy to check. I simply searched Flickr today for china clocktower, beijing clocktower, and tianjin clocktower. I’m only going to share one: Here’s a crop of what I was looking for, from a typical picture of the China Railway Museum’s clocktower in downtown Beijing by kitmasterbloke.

Wolf saw my ad and Retweeted because they thought it was “weird” that I would pay to promote my request. And they wondered “why someone wants to find out something so specific.” Well, Wolf, this may be disappointing, but here’s why. Last year it struck me that China has a long history all its own, and the Chinese have invented many devices ahead of or in parallel with the West. I wondered what place, if any, Western clocktowers, Roman numerals and all, hold in Chinese architecture. After I got that in my head, I attached it to Twitter and wondered if any Tweeps would see my request. When I got no reply, I thought it would be interesting to see if I could pay a modest sum to motivate a response. Not the response I was looking for, but I’m glad you asked, anyway.

It’s been fun. Moving on…

"Clocktower of China Railway Museum, downtown Beijing" by kitmasterbloke is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Bought a Google Mini for $9.99 (discount code). Plugged it in today and set it up. It’s called The Google Assistant. I now have a disembodied soulless robot (aka d24t) of my very own. Its portals are the Mini and my LGG7 LGR. It answers to “Hey Goo” (2 syllables, nice and short).

glfalawah covfefe

I see too much effort put into inflating an interpretation of America’s situation beyond reality. POTUS45 was a threat to democracy but he was barely down the road to fascism. Saying so does a disservice to history seeing how the fascist nightmare ruined Germany & Italy. #mbnov

Puzzle muzzle nuzzle Razzle dazzle hassle Mass hole black hole Magnetar 300 million false prophecy of the priests of scientism False hope Resist despair Love takes effort Mentally awake is another way of expressing the state of mindfulness #mbnov

We have a President who stoops to dog-whistling his base with unfounded suspicions of election fraud, and who wants to disenfranchise voters with an infantile tantrum over votes that are, in fact, legally cast. #mbnov

The Kingdom of God is near. #mbnov

Prayers for the U.S. election

Good politics begin with good theology. Prayers are essential. I was struck by Listener prayers for our nation, podcasted this morning.

I love that the first prayer offered is #24 For an Election, from the Book of Common Prayer:

Almighty God, to whom we must account for all our powers and privileges: Guide the people of the United States (or of this community) in the election of officials and representatives; that, by faithful administration and wise laws, the rights of all may be protected and our nation be enabled to fulfill your purposes; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

I should have prayed that before now. Never too late in tight races, though.

I wondered about one of the other prayers and found an English translation. It’s a prayer by Calvin.

Here is my own lightly edited version of that one for good measure:

Father, the depravity of our nature is so great that we cannot bear prosperity without some wantonness of the flesh immediately raging in us and without becoming arrogant against you. Grant that we may profit under the trials of the cross; and when you have blessed us, may we, with lowly hearts, renouncing our perverseness, submit ourselves to you, bearing your yoke submissively. And may we proceed in this obedience all our lives, and so contend against all temptations as never to glory in ourselves, and feel also convinced that all true and real glory is laid up for us in you, until we shall enjoy it in your celestial kingdom, through Christ our Lord. Amen.

This microblog post is not written to astonish you. I am phoning in the third day of #mbnov just to catch up quickly so I can go to sleep. I waited until midnight local time November 3rd to send it. Been having trouble sleeping. I blame Annus Horribilis.

I choose to concentrate on the positive. Salvation will not fly in on Air Force One. #mbnov

I suppose the #mbnov challenge will make Pandemic November less dreary. I am not signing up for a novel (NaNoWriMo).

Highlights of Dan Carlin Common Sense 320 Steering Into the Iceberg

I listened to Common Sense 320 Steering Into the Iceberg by Dan Carlin aka DC. He grates on me. He meanders way too much. Whenever I listen to him I find myself shouting at the player, “Get on with it! Make your point!” I did it at a friend’s urging. It was tolerable at 1.7×. I calculate I saved 30 minutes. Here are highlights. He spends the first several minutes talking about … nothing. Total waste of time. Around 19:53 he is reflecting on POTUS45’s call for his supporters to refuse to accept his defeat at the polls. A rigged election will be the battle cry for civil war. I say who’s surprised? POTUS45 admires Putin and Kim Jong Un. At 29:35 I was thinking about DC’s references to Caesar crossing the Rubicon. He says Congress did nothing. But the House sent impeachment articles to the Senate. It’s the Republican Senate who is not leading. Now I understand how Rome ended up with Caesar. Around 34:45 he calls for oppositional voting. Vote against the authoritarian. He rants about POTUS45 with his finger on the nuclear button. He urges us to steer away from the civil war iceberg. Plus the harmful conspiracies iceberg. At 42:00 he names QAnon. At 51:40 he talks about non-violence. Then he riffs on the idea that the US is a democratic republic. By 1:07:00 he is using the metaphor of a bus with 60 steering wheels. He is Jeffersonian,” a we the people guy.” Wraps up with a desire for a ”meeting of the minds.”Oh the drama, ending with Franklin’s quote: ”A republic, if your can keep it.” Mic drop, ending at 1:13:00.

Regarding chatmail

A few people I need to work with—and a few friends—use email as their go-to communication tool. One CEO told me that he finds having only one way to write to be most efficient and refuses to use Slack. Prior to the pandemic some colleagues had Slack installed but seemed more comfortable in email. That’s changed. I have seen the pandemic push many people to more Slack and less email. Yay. For personal chat where we do not share a workspace, I prefer Keybase or WhatsApp or even Signal; I’ll use MMS or SMS if old-school texters insist. I have older relatives who have calcified on email, though. So fine. More and more I’m dropping notes to friends and family in subject lines and blasting them off. I put [chat] in the subject line once and decided it was redundant. Occasionally I’ll end with [EOM]. I’m still evolving my use of email. The medium is the message. Compare with AODLW.


We are being given a gift we do not deserve to flourish as human beings during this pandemic. DON’T WASTE IT! Examine your life. Evaluate your most basic beliefs about the meaning of the universe and the meaning of your life in this time where you live. Rearrange your priorities!

Neither a maskhole nor a racehole be. Whether PC or not, woke or not. There are —holes with all ideologies.

I'm a Salesforce Trailblazer

I had a unique interaction with a cold-caller today. (His LinkedIn profile shows 51 endorsements!) I told him I am not a LION, but if he follows me at Salesforce #Trailblazer I’ll follow him back. Sure, why not. I’ll make the same offer to you, dear readers. Visit my SFDC Trailblazer profile.

Did you know you can tell the sex of an ant if you drop it in water? If it sinks: girl ant. If it floats: buoyant.

Added to my dad joke collection j.mp/tbch0719b1

Talking about #prayer in my Bible reading group. Ancient: The Jesus Prayer 12 words. 5 seconds. Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. I pray it hundreds of times a day. I pray it 4 times when washing my hands. It is the foundation of all my other prayers. The Jesus Prayer is the rock on which I pray. 🙏

Interesting mentions of generic words of encouragement on Twitter. Micro.blog is hard to search, OTOH. I hate “hang in there.” Anyone care to reply with your favorite words of encouragement? #noteToSelf explore this further

TIL Alison Balsom j.mp/329OKZQ

Because sometimes nothing will do except a genuine #baroque #trumpet.

Actually discovered her yesterday on YouTube in a short about her love for the baroque trumpet.

She makes the world more #beautiful!

Results may vary depending on my mood and your attitude.

OH: “In what sense does the free market recognize and promote #freedom?” #kmmhaj Friday Feature “Freedom, ancient and modern”

Makes me proud to be an American

I am not happy with Google search results for mmptbaa. Googling “what does mmptbaa mean” is no better. Let’s see how long it takes for Google to index this post. MMPTBAA is an acronym that stands for “makes me proud to be an American.”

Faroe Islands

TIL the Faroe Islands.

HT Windows Spotlight.

I also discovered this fun website where-is-this.com. So I added the picture and am monitoring wagnerwagner@mailsucker.net for replies.

I am sad to learn that the residents of the islands are slaughtering whales and dolphins today (grindadráp); however, I respect the right of the local communities to carry on this long-standing tradition. It seems they eat what they kill.

Clouds Over Ilulissat Icefjord Johnathan Ampersand Esper

Click the thumbnails to view full-size screenshots in a new tab.

I love art. I love Windows Spotlight because it features beautiful art in the medium of photography. I collect the images. I make a hobby of identifying the origins of images. Today I have an interesting story to tell. Clouds Over Ilulissat Icefjord is a photograph by Johnathan Ampersand Esper which was uploaded on November 28th, 2018. Visit the page at fineartamerica.com (HT: Google Image search). View a screenshot of the page in a new tab (same as clicking on the above thumbnail).

Before I found the origin, I searched TinEye. Only one result, and it’s a picture of someone’s screen showing the photograph in Windows Spotlight!

Then I used Bing. That resulted in a .ru website where you can see all the Windows Spotlight photos! View the page featuring Esper’s photograph (not credited).

On the Avengers movies and life in the Universe

Nobody has an adequate concept of how large the Universe is, so the plot of the Avengers movies was flawed from the start. Guardians of one mere galaxy are inconsequential on the scale of the Universe. I will believe that God created the entire Universe just for life on Earth until we have evidence otherwise. I want to keep searching for life so we can keep not finding it and so materialists and evolutionists can get more and more frustrated.

From Crystal Cathedral to Christ Cathedral

How providential is it that Notre Dame burned during Holy Week? Then how providential that in the first week after Resurrection Sunday this is a headline? “Crystal Cathedral, home to the ‘Hour of Power,’ transforms into Catholic seat”

Oh. My. God. And I mean that with all reverence. This is amazing. Crystal Cathedral, founded by televangelist Rev. Robert Schuller, is on the verge of being dedicated as Christ Cathedral! (christcathedralcalifornia.org)

“We’re buying a used cathedral. That’s never happened before.” Doesn’t God work in mysterious ways?

Rev. Schuller says this a lot: “God loves you, and so do I.” I have found myself using that more and more lately. Somehow, between high school and college, I was mostly added to Rev. Schuller’s bulk mailing list. Mostly. One letter off. He (not he but the computer printing the letters) called me Rimothy Chambers. I can’t remember whether he had my college address or my family forwarded my mail. I distinctly remember, though, that I was a freshman at MIT, living on the first floor of the west building of East Campus. (That’s an odd name for a dormitory, I know. But I just double-checked to see if I only remember it as a nickname. Nope. It’s official, in its constitution). I can say I lived in Hayden House, though nobody calls it that. (But if you’re reading this and go to the trouble of telling me the names from your memory of the other 5 EC houses, I’ll put something in your crypto wallet.) Anyway, while living in the dorm I wrote Rev. Shuller a letter asking how he could love me when he didn’t even know my name. I kinda gloated when the Crystal Cathedral went bankrupt nine years ago. How forgiving God is of my self-righteousness. Who am I to judge Rev. Schuller?

I am so encouraged by this turn of events. I hope to worship at Christ Cathedral the next time I’m in the area.

Image credit christcathedralcalifornia.org/explore/architecture/


On yen, pennies, and wafers

A yen is worth less than a U.S. penny. I got to wondering why the Japanese would count in yen. Kiloyen seems more reasonable. Then again, I guess it’s relative. Is there a Japanese word for a fraction of a yen? Who would need it? If all Americans had always counted in pennies, we’d be used to that. We wouldn’t need a word for a hundred or a thousand pennies. I remember my first year at university we would use pennies as projectiles. They were large enough to hurt, but too small to cause serious injury. Nobody put an eye out. We called them wafers. Tuition my 2nd year went over $10,000. We complained about getting a bill for a megawafer.


Signal is only 2 to 3 bars, yet wifi speed is excellent. Thank you @Xfinity! View @testmynet results bit.ly/tbcg0404b…

TIL @root9B. A local cybersecurity company; root—as in once you have root access you own the system)—and 9B is hex for 911. Such geeks. I love the name!

I ducksearched for myself and am a little shocked right now. “@tbc has been reported. Thank you.” What did I do? (Asking rhetorically, but genuinely curious.) cc @microdotblog bcc @duckduckgo

Why You Should Never Cold Call a Millennial^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H Baby Boomer

I haven’t figured out how to optimize replies on other sites with Micro.blog. And maybe this really is what I want. A blog post based on a comment I made. Yeah, that’s it. This post was inspired by my comment.

As I said at qqMedium in reply to “Why You Should Never Cold Call a Millennial (And What To Try Instead):”

Reason 1: You could lose composure on a call

Reason 2: Receiving a call is time-consuming

Reason 3: Callers are inconsiderate

Uh. These reasons are universal. I’m a young baby boomer. Please don’t call me, either!


Kudos Filip Poutintsev for these additional reasons:

  1. The call always comes in a bad time
  2. The call takes all your attention
  3. You can only talk to one person at a time
  4. On the phone you have to react instantly
  5. There’s no time to check facts
  6. Over half of what you said or heard on the phone will be instantly forgotten
  7. I just don’t like phone calls
  8. Writing is easier than talking
  9. You have to prepare for the call
  10. The 9th Circle of Hell: Video Calls


tbc0: the 0 is silent

Boy, do I have egg on my face. A big goose egg. 0. Zero. Twenty days ago I got it in my head that “0” is pronounced “zed” in British English. I held that mistaken belief for twenty days, even though I’ve known all along that the British pronounce the 26th letter of the alphabet “zed.”

Though I’m publishing this post after midnight on March 22nd, I fixed my Twitter profile—and my blog—on the 21st. I’m mortified that the Internet Archive will forever contain this mistake. Oh, well. Moving on.

It would have been appropriate for this to be the first blog post I’ve written at tbc.micro.blog since I enabled cross-posting, but that happened 10 days ago. (I syndicate at twitter.com/tbc0, medium.com/@tbc0, and facebook.com/timchambersusa.) I gave up on Medium when they started charging real money for crap writing. (No, it’s not all crap. I’m generalizing.) I syndicate there only because I can. I’ve already pretty much given up posting on Facebook. I intend to blog more and Twitter less from now on.

But back to the goose egg. As a computer scientist, I would never pronounce “0” “nil,” because they mean two different things in my profession. “Zero” is so formal. And why should the number signifying nothing get two syllables, anyway? For monosyllables, I kind of like zilch. Naught has a British ring to it. Having said all that, as an autodidactic philosopher, I’m most fond of this. When it comes to pronouncing my unique four-character identifier on the internet, tbc0, say “tee bee see.” The “0” is silent.


Shame on me for not making this blog a priority since I upgraded to premium. I’ve been Twittering a lot. Also distracted by Nextdoor. I’ll say this today. I greatly enjoyed the hike around my neighborhood. You need a Strava account to see my route.

For the Love of God: On Luck and Quantum Mechanics

I don’t believe in luck. Studying quantum mechanics ruined it for me. (Not that I understand the math. Yet.) Well, QM and coming to believe the core doctrines of Christianity. No room for luck. God is Love.

That’s as I said today in a “just for fun” discussion; TechWell Hub. (Slack account required but requests are promptly accepted).

Milestone: my first post after upgrading to the paid micro.blog service.


I Twittered a lot today. twitter.com/tbc0

This ad worked! Lovely and talented wife and I worked late. Missed Shrove Tuesday at church. Settled for IHOP.


Kyle Forti R.I.P.

I’m mourning the death of a man I met through church some years ago. Kyle Forti was in a helicopter crash in Kenya. I saw the story on NBC news. I enjoyed the conversations we had Saturdays at men’s breakfast. God rest his soul and comfort his mourners. He leaves behind a wife and son.

More meta writing.

  • Promoted POSSE on Twitter.
  • Extended my μblog trial.
  • Earned my custom domain pin.

On hashtags

On hashtags, cf. conversation with Manton et al.

Just wanted to note that I understand where he’s coming from. I’m also impressed with myself that I remembered the word folksonomy. I’m still waiting for the semantic web. This stuff isn’t easy to get right.

My ninth image is a photo I took at Monument Lake in Colorado. Kudos Google Assistant for the color enhancement.

2017 Mega Trends & Technologies map

As envisioned and visualized in subway-map style by Richard Watson. Much to study in this infographic. Follow the trend lines for society, work, the economy, money, food, technology, retail, the environment, media, transportation, politics, energy, education, health, security, and values.

Source: toptrends.nowandnext.com/2017/05/08/map/, and here’s a short link to it: j.mp/2EmXgqC.

Earth Temperature Timeline, Explained

XKCD #1732: Earth Temperature Timeline. And a hat tip to the explain xkcd wiki. This is a big chart, and I, for one, appreciate that the crowd has developed an explanation. Read it.

The topic of this post is infographics, not climate change, but while we’re on that subject I’ll admit I have at least two climate change deniers in my family. I’m to the left of them. But I also roll my eyes at those at the opposite end of the extreme scale of reactions to climate change. I’ll lament the demise of Climate Debate Daily. I guess it’s been a few years since I visited it. Three Christmas Eves ago, The hosts announced they were closing down the site. (It will live on at archive.org.) They sought “the strongest and most persuasive essays and articles supporting both sides of the debate.” But they closed on a pessimistic note. “Has the website been a success? It is hard to be sure, but our impression, based on reader feedback, is that it hasn’t. Few, if any, minds have been changed, in either direction. Confirmation bias is a powerful force, and we think that many people – no matter what their beliefs – simply read what they agree with and ignore or dismiss what they don’t. For the record, none of the three editors of the website have been in the least bit persuaded by the climate sceptics’ arguments despite the many hundreds of hours we have spent reading them. We note that after the website started its life on January 1, 2008, new global temperature records were set in 2010, 2014, 2015, and 2016, and that a new record for the Arctic sea ice area minimum was set in 2012 (and almost matched in 2016). These, however, are not the sorts of facts that will change minds!” Maybe I’ll add a climate change category in the future.

The Conversation Prism

The Conversation Prism 5.0 by Brian Solis and JESS3. Colorful. Dense. Social Media brands in the creators' taxonomy Less than a couple years old. (4.0 came out about 2013.) Do you think the color wheel is too much? I’m not seeing the descriptive categories mapping to it very well. Overall it does what an infographic should. It prompts me to think.

Source: conversationprism.com

Sizing up space ships

Dan Carlson maintains a page comparing sizes of starships and other objects from many science fiction stories (small, medium, large, and huge): Starship Size Comparison. I like the large one best because it features the Star Trek Doomsday Machine. Visit his page to read his explanation about why he doesn’t compare anything to the Star Wars Death Stars.

I’m not feeling it tonight. Third check in the box for my Photo Challenge pin. My feelings don’t diminish this thought-provoking infographic, though. A Perspective on Time found at Visual.ly.

Infographic: American political parties between 1820 and 1860

This infographic shows American political parties between 1820 and 1860. Now I have to admit my poor record keeping. I don’t know its origin. However, Marty Duren blogged about it, and he says it came from learnnc.org. I can’t find the exact URL.

History of Science Fiction and a lot of meta content

Rats! Didn’t even have a single streak after writing a flurry of posts on my first day here (g0220a). Starting over to earn my Photo Challenge and Daily Blogger pins.

Here’s my second infographic. History of Science Fiction aka historyofsf. Source: Ward Shelley

qqMeta: In this post I introduced two of my writing conventions. First, my 6-character tags, e.g. g0220a (meta-tag qqtags). This post is g0222c (tbcg0222c in internet namespace). I’ll talk about them in later posts. Second, my convention for citing sources is to redirect through Bitly and to ensure URLs are available at web.archive.org. I curate a list of all my Bitly URLs. If the service ended, or if I stopped agreeing to their terms, I would provide a lookup myself. (XKCD is an exception. I use live links and merely cite by reference number because XKCD is such a part of internet culture that I can’t imaging one ever not being able to find an XKCD comic as long as its number is cited.)

Oh, and I guess qq is a third convention I just introduced. I’ll write more about that later, too. I do want to tip my hat to my friend d3matt. Years ago I discovered that he, too, has a habit of prefixing words with qq. Great minds think alike.

I’ll also write at some point about the importance (IMHO) of unique symbols (case-insensitive) on the internet. I don’t have to call d3matt by his name. Too long. TBC is too common, so I claimed tbc0 as mine. The shorter the better. Even RMS and ESR don’t own their initials. Haha. And the CEO where I work is RTD, but I refer to him as qqRTD.

I want to earn my Photo Challenge pin. 7 days of “photos.” I hope the photos don’t have to be JPG. I love infographics. I have some cached. Here’s the first to kick things off. XKCD #1810. Chat Systems. And with this I will earn my Photoblog pin.

Following @nathanrhale after finding A prayer before meditation.

“In the end, our stories is all we is.” — Jake in Kee Sloan’s novel Jabbok. God, I’m enjoying this book! (That’s a #prayer.)

HT @ayjay

I though I’d heard of micro.blog before. Now I remember! I first heard about it from @ayjay. I believe it was April 19, 2018. Pleased now to be following him here, especially since tonight I see that twitter.com/ayjay is 404.

Found @Burk via @tchambers. Following because his avatar is a caricature. I’m partial to caricature avatars.

Ok, @tchambers, it didn’t take much for you to convince me to try this platform. Kudos! My first impression is wow. (I realize you may not even know who I am. It’s ok. We share the same name. That’s enough to get us started.)