2018: Day 98 the one where I had Google Wifi
Word count 186,440 + 3,051 or 189,491 of 1,000,000
The thumbnail from today was taken at a Costco warehouse. That little bit of shelf space represents the totality of what the folks managing the warehouse are trying to sell in terms of physical media holding cinematic creations. Really it is just a wave of new releases that show up and disappear without any real backstock or curated content. You would have to just buy the latest content if you want it and move on. No opportunity exists in the store to swing back through a retrospective look at the last year in terms of content. Sure the shelf space for Blu-ray discs has been shrinking and it does not appear that Costco is planning to stock 4K Blu-ray discs. I guess the market for that type of content is being replaced by streaming. Today a lot of folks probably were streaming the masters golf tournament. I would imagine this was probably the largest streaming day for the tournament in history. That would be a function of the rise of streaming and the sheer length of the tournament.
Today I’m off to a better start with my writing efforts. Peppercorn the dog woke me up at 05:30 hours. I’m sitting in front of my desk after having a great lungo pull of espresso from my Nespresso Expert machine. I still have not made it down to Lone Tree, Colorado to visit the Nespresso Boutique store. Right now I just have to remember to buy pods every couple of months. My desk was wicked clean the other day. It was picked up the other day. Somehow and I’m not entirely sure how it happened a ton of random nonsense is just hanging out on top of my desk. That effort is going to probably eat up an hour of my time today. You may not have been able to see the pile of nonsense during my triumphant return to live streaming on YouTube yesterday. The Logitech BRIO may be a 4K webcam, but it focuses more farfield vs. the massive pile of nonsense on my desk.
Today may be the first time in a long time that I complete two live streams on back to back days. Sure the last live stream was back on February 1, 2018. That pretty much sums up the live streaming sessions that have happened during 2018. Maybe they are back. We will see just how many sessions happen. The Corsair 740 Air custom built computer is setup with the Open Broadcaster Software and is ready to stream to YouTube in stunning 4K. My internet connection was able to support a pretty decent upstream speed yesterday. That is promising and removes the technical barriers for a daily live stream. Motivation and time are the two things that might just block the live stream from having a come back.
All of that nonsense on my desk has now been picked up. That is good news for my office mess situation. None of that really helped me produce a few words and push this writing project forward. Today was the day that my live stream streak hit two days for the year. That is good if you are into that sort of thing. I managed to host back to back 15 minute lives streams. Getting setup for tomorrow will require doing a bunch of reading. Reading enough content to be up to speed on artificial intelligence everyday, writing 3,000 words, and live streaming for about 15 minutes is a good routine. It is a solid routine that involves a lot of work. For what it is worth it seems to be a reasonable use of my time these days.
One of the things that I spent some time thinking about today relates to a series of short stories. They are centered around the idea of everyone has a story to tell. Some of them are just more interesting than others. That concept should allow the exploration of a series of stories that run the gambit of writing style and themes. Part of learning how to write better short stories is really just writing about what inspires passion and seeing where it goes. Within the mystery that is writing is really just that spark that starts it all. Getting going is the hardest part. Writing is about putting in the time to generate the words. Good or bad they are art and within that context are inherently valuable. They either inform, entertain, or educate. Even a good series of false starts can sometimes help you win the race.
Pandora really wants me to have Pandora Premium free for 30 days. Figuring out how to get all of my music on my phone has been a little bit harder than I expected. You can imagine that over the years I have purchased a ton of compact discs. Most of them have been ripped into mp3 which I would like to have on my phone to enjoy. That is something that I’m working on managing. Right now I’m using Google Play Music and it works well enough to play the content that is on my phone, but adding new things seems to be a little bit of a challenge. I’m sure that it will be something that is easy enough to figure out. It is just one of those things that I have yet to fully figure out. That is really one of the major problems of trying to switch music applications. My vinyl record collection will work on any record player really. It is not bound to a specific company or application on my smartphone. It does however require a specific set of equipment that is nowhere near as portable as my smartphone.
The Google WiFi system really does seem to work really well. Right now I’m sitting on the far end of the house and things are working pretty well. Upgrading to a new router was a big step it is not something that I do very often. The only thing that I have not attempted to upgrade is my Fitbit Aria scale. Getting that thing to connect to a wireless network is not the easiest thing to accomplish. It is a rather difficult and strangely time consuming task. We will see here in a few minutes if that is something that can be done today. Last night I just ran out of time during the writing process which was unfortunate. I got to 2,000 words and that was pretty much the end of my night. I truly ended up getting a good night of sleep. That was good I guess. My writing goal has 267 days left to produce 1,000,000 words. That pretty much means that I need to write about 813,560 words in the next 267 days. That works out to about 3,047 words per day. For those of you keeping score at home the required words per day or overall task difficulty has been going up throughout the last month. That happens, but it really needs to stop happening. My writing productivity needs to be geared toward producing a much higher volume of words on a daily basis.
Seriously, that probably means that I’m going to need to move from writing autobiographical pose mixed with the type of functional journaling that I have always done to producing a short story per day. Some of those stories might weave together to produce something of a little bit more substantive than a one day writing effort, but that is the direction that things needs to go. In order to really kick things up a notch I’m going to have to start to get out of my comfort zone and really push things forward. My writing journey has been about digging deeper each day and trying to move toward a greater level of understanding about the world around me. This move is going to be more about getting back into the practice of producing short stories and writing that type of content on a daily basis. The ideas we need are everywhere. Each moment is a story and all of those stories come together.
Tonight I’m going to push forward in a very introspective way and gear up to my writing effort for tomorrow. Flipping the switch and changing up my writing style is going to take a little bit of effort and a lot of focus to drop any of the self censorship or self governing that might slow down that writing process. I have found the key to good writing is to just go with it. All of the roughness and raw emotion has to be on the page or the effort will ring hollow and lack truth. That is easier to write about and thinking about than it is to execute on the page. For me a good short story is something that sneaks up on you and pulls you in for an emotional ride that starts and stops. I’m not really into the type of cliffhanger fiction that make it uncomfortable for the reader at the end. Sure that might not be as avantgarde as it could be, but it is where it is at the moment. My efforts for the night are pretty much half over right now in this middle of this paragraph or somewhere right around here in this lengthy stream of consciousness.
My thoughts are pretty much written as they arrive and throughout the course of more than a decade of doing this the external product does seem to be reasonably well put together. It seems to happen in sentences. Sometimes I’m looking enough to string a few good paragraphs together. For better or worse this really is a stream of consciousness. I do not go back and edit the things being written. I normally open a word processing document and just write from start to finish. At this point in the journey the need to go back and edit every word being written is just not compelling enough. That could be an excuse or it could just be the reality of trying to write at such a pace.
Things are very quickly approaching a benchmark or maybe you could call it a milestone of posting 100 days straight on the blog. That is really just a byproduct of engaging in the effort to write 3,000 words per day. It is a a good milestone in terms of writing. Getting into the habit of daily writing and producing prose is something to celebrate. I have been wondering when the effort to write would turn the corner and the prose would shift to a different level. That is something that i have been keenly awaiting. Perhaps my anticipation of the level of content changing has actually helped to hold things back a little bit. That could very well be the case. Within this journey a ton of ups and downs are going to occur. Some of the prose is going to be epic and some of it will explore the depths of banality by testing the nature of nothingness.
You might be trying to figure out what exactly kicking up my writing level up a notch would entail. When I sit down to write academic prose it has to conform to a certain level of quality to be publishable. Blog posts do not have that type of standard or peer review for that matter. The possibility does exist however that my writing will turn the conformer from introspective and autobiographical to the style of a true public intellectual. Inherent within that last sentence more than just a little bit of hubris might be hiding. Sure that might just be at the crossroads of this inquiry into the meaning and depths of quality. My goal here throughout this year has been to explore the breadth and depth of quality beyond just the limits of the word and how it can be used. This effort is really about the nature of what quality means within a variety of contexts and within a variety of efforts. This chautauqua will not delve directly into the metaphysics of quality, but instead it will just examine operationally the nature of quality. That might seem like subtle semantic difference, but it is enough to open the doors I want to open and pursue.
Maybe my thoughts have been influenced by spending time thinking about and reading the works of John Paul Sartre. It is possible however that maybe my thoughts are just wondering and tired after nearing the first 100 day milestone in this writing journey that will include 3 of them and a good bit more. My interest are in understanding the bleeding edge of technology and what is possible. Getting to the edge of what is possible and peering over it is one of the true joys in life. Within that context my inquiry has really been about understanding the intersection of technology and modernity. Mixing in some thoughts about quality and value within that question and you are really starting to figure out what the edge of possibility means and what it will mean to take that first true step beyond that edge.
Figuring out how to thread the needle and present a cohesive argument about creating a Tao around striving toward that step beyond what is possible would be worth the effort. That is really the parallel adventure to believing in and participating in a grand inquiry into the nature of intersection of technology and modernity. Sure using that turn of phrase in consecutive paragraphs might cheapen the value of the words it is necessary at this point to being up the parts of the things that will need to be brought together to move things forward. That is really a much a part of the journey as the journey is a part of a path. Part of striving forward is about the journey and how that striving happens and toward what it ultimately pushes us along the way.
Today was one of those days where my thoughts were conflicted and I wondered about wonder. Sure that all probably drove me to buy a few more Margaritaville Hawaiian shirts on eBay. I get them and wash them before adding them to my collection. This collection might be worse than my sports trading cards, postage stamps, or computer parts. We will see how it turns out and what value it brings to my days. Deriving joy in terms of utility should help calculate just how much a Hawaiian shirt can mean on a day to day basis. My favorite shirt has brought me a ton of joy and that is good I guess. I’m not sure why I have some type of emotional attachment to a shirt, but that really does appear to be the case.
Oh, I almost forgot to write about the blog post title from today in more detail. One of the things that I spent some time trying to figure out today was how to disable the wireless hotspot on my cable modem. I just wanted devices to connect to the Google WiFi and use that network in the house. For some reason nothing in the application settings on my Google Pixel 2 XL customer service application allowed me to disable the wireless networks. I jumped onto the website and dug around to try to figure out an option. This device pretty much set itself up and I’m not all that familiar with how to login to the cable model software and make change. They virtualized most of the functions I would want to change on the mobile application and the website. Anyway before going into a ton more detail about all the different permutations that I tried you have probably already decided that my efforts were not successful. We have the cable modem network, a Google WiFI mesh network, and the Google WiFi guest network.
As long as we are digging into technology related problems today I solved one other problem today. My ASUS TUF Mark 1 motherboard is great. It has 2 USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports including a Type-A and a Type-C. My Logitech BRIO 4K webcam was plugged into the Type-A port. My installation of the Open Broadcaster Software was having all sorts of problems handling the webcam. All of that changed with one change today. I moved the cable from the webcam from the USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A port to a standard USB 3.1 Gen 1 port and the video just started working. At that point, I could configure any video option in the dropdown without any problems at all. This might not seem like a big deal, but it has probably taken 5 or so hours of troubleshooting. I almost made a YouTube video about it to help other people overcome the same challenge. I’m not sure how many folks have a Logitech BRIO and use OBS, but I imagine that number is growing. Within my current setup and my previous setup the same problem showed up. It was really intermittent. Sometimes things would work out well and sometimes it would just not work. Most of the time I would reboot the machine and try alternative configurations until the webcam worked in OBS. This solution seems to be a lot better. My guess is that either a driver conflict exists or the added throughput crushed the handler.
I’m using my Bose QuietComfort 20 Acoustic Noise Cancelling headphones plugged into my Chromebook tonight. It probably would have been a good idea to charge my Bose Qc35 headphones last night. The noise cancelling earbuds are my backup audio device. I keep them in my bag just in case I need them. They were going to be my go to audio device until I had to go wireless with the Google Pixel XL. That was the tipping point where these headphones went from primary to secondary position in my audio device rotation. They work well enough, but they just do not sound as good as my over the ear headphones. Pandora just asked me if I was still listening. I have been sitting here and typing on this keyboard for a hot minute apparently. That is what it takes to produce 3,000 words for publication.
Dr. Nels Lindahl
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and or my ASUS C101P using Google Docs