Day 33 the one with the missing computer power supply problem

Dog looking out window

2018: Day 33 the one with the missing computer power supply problem
Word count 87,502 + 3,321 or 90,823 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

It is 7:12 PM and things are just starting to calm down for the day. Things ramped up today and did not slow down. That happens from time to time. You may have noticed that my YouTube live stream had a triumphant return today after a brief hiatus. My first attempt at hosting a live stream today did not go as planned. It actually went terribly. The stream started and no audio was present. Both my primary microphone and my backup microphone were not streaming any audio. That as you can imagine would make for a pretty boring live stream broadcast. Today my Open Broadcaster Software had to upgrade and somewhere along that path the microphone settings needed to be refreshed. That was an easy enough to fix and implement. Within a minute or two I was backup and streaming. I had to go into my videos on YouTube and delete that false start before it got posted. That was easy enough to manage.

Today I had an idea for a television show called Crypto. It would follow a startup cryptocurrency founder and a core group of friends. It could be like a better version of the television show Chuck filled with interesting asides. The team could get pulled into feuds with state actors, rival coins, and highly strange investors. I’m thinking the show could really be about the community of folks it takes to get a cryptocurrency setup and keep it running. Maybe at some point I’ll adapt my idea into a series of short stories and publish those here this year during the long race to 1,000,000 words. That seems like an interesting way to spend part of my writing time. I started to sketch out a whole season of episodes with a few character arcs. It could be great mix of cryptocurrency fanfiction and epic techno thriller. All of the state sponsored efforts and schemes are ripe for serialized satirical hyperbole.

Today included some wild cleaning efforts. One of my favorite collections of my collegiate publications was moved from one wall to another. An original photograph from my cousin was moved from the back wall to the front wall. One University of Kansas magnetic dartboard moved across the room to hang above the door. All of that happened pretty quickly. Cleaning up the rest of the bookshelves took a little longer than expected. They were full of all sorts of nonsense. I’m guessing they had about three solid years worth of nonsense spread out all over them. Things get put on bookshelves and they just stay in there. I guess that is sort of the point and also part of the problem. Only one shelf remains to be cleaned in my office. That should be the hardest one to clean, but hey it is possible.

You may have noticed the thumbnail for today’s post is of Captain Pickles the dog looking out the window. All of those cords hanging down in the photo are not managed properly. They are now. My desk is clean and things are working out well. I had tried to do a photo mashup the clean and the unmanaged table. Captain Pickles the dog did not cooperate for the 2nd photograph. That happens sometimes. You can enjoy the majestic look of Captain Pickles being super focused on the world outside the window. Learning about the world around around us is always fun. It is amazing just how focused the dog can get on searching and looking for anything that might happen outside the window. Not that much happens outside the window. A lot more searching happens during the process than actually finding something. I spend a lot of time thinking about the process of searching for things. Part of striving forward and staying positive is about looking toward the edge of what is possible. That edge is really powerful. We strive to get to that edge and to keep pushing it forward. Every day the idea is that the edge of what is possible gets a little farther from where we started. That is the basis of the journey and the foundation of how we sustain our momentum to keep fighting the good fight to improve and enhance the world around us. Sure some folks might believe the here and now is a true utopia. I’m not inline with that thought.

Topic 1: My Corsair Air 750 case arrives tomorrow

You might have guessed from the title of this blog post the problem that exists. It seemed like a great idea. I was going to boot up my old graphics card connected to my n-1 motherboard. It has some RAM and a decent processor. It could power up an operating system and allow me to set up one more cryptocurrency mining computer in my office. It was going to be devoted to mining TurtleCoin. I was going to call it the Borg computer. It would run from parts assimilated from other computers. Resistance as it turned out was not all that futile. Without a modern power supply the entire build was a risk. By risk in this case I mean that it was not going to work at all. That as you can imagine was enough to make me frantically search the basement for the missing power supply. The power supply in my Lian Li cube is capable of powering an original AMD Athlon 64 bit CPU and a bunch of peripherals that are connected with IDE cables. It simply does not have enough wattage to power a modern graphics card and motherboard. It is also really old and kind of loud.

Tomorrow the new case will arrive and I will work on getting some things connected. It will be a fun little adventure, but it was not be a satisfying one. Hitting the power button will not make anything happen. A computer needs a power supply. That is just one of those basis computer 101 facts that anybody that got one of those A+ (Plus) certifications from CompTIA IT Certifications. That power supply needs to be connected for the magic to happen. I’m thinking about making the trip down south Saturday to visit the Denver Tech Center Micro Center. Ordering a power supply at this point does not feel like the right thing to do. This feels like a problem that only a trip to Micro Center will fix. Being able to go visit Micro Center in Kansas City and just walk around was something that I took for granted. No stores near me really sell computer parts. We have some big box retail stores, but none of them sells a combination of awesome parts like a Micro Center. Even at this time of night the drive would be 35 minutes. Strangely to me that feels like driving to a different city.

I may get online and make sure they have the power supply in stock before making the drive. I could probably pay for it before hand and still just walk around the store for fun. This is something that a service like TaskRabbit might do for me. That would not be as satisfying as actually roaming around a real technology store for an hour or so. The risk with a trip like that is that I end up coming home with more tech than just a power supply. Ok —- apparently I thought TaskRabbit did a lot more than what the website indicates. Go figure. That was a misunderstanding on my part.

Topic 2: Watching the Bitcoin values

Throughout the day I have been keeping an eye on the dashboard over at Coinbase. It shows the real time values of 4 key cryptocurrencies. Today was not a banner day for those folks that have invested in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin coins. Last year Bitcoin had almost hit $19,206. Right now it is sitting at $8,771.14. I’m wondering if we are going to see a plunge to under 5K tomorrow followed by some type of rebound. It seems like all the exchanges use BTC as a benchmark or standard for conversion. My humble mining account holds 0.0072 BTC. It is worth less USD this week than last week, but I’m still going to wait out the 100 days to see where things end up. Tomorrow will be a very interesting day for people who buy and sell cryptocurrency.

A massive hype bubble for bitcoin existed. Pretty much every time somebody did a Google search for the coin it was predictive of price increases. The more people that wanted to know about bitcoin the higher the prices went. Right now things are just falling. People online do seem to be showing some signs of panic.

Topic 3: Giving up cable television

We had cut the cord before and stopped paying the monthly subscription rates for cable television. I’m not entertaining the idea of giving up the cable modem, but cable television is probably not necessary. We really only have one television in the house. The kids really only watch Netflix. I’m going to start looking at what it would cost to just buy internet services. It may take a bit to research all the internet providers in my area to see which one provides the best uptime and service. It looks like DSL or cable modem are my two choices for internet provides. The DSL was ok back in Colorado Springs, but the upload speed is a deal breaker. I really just want to move up to a gigabit internet service. I already looked at replacing my cable box with a TiVo OTA box. It seems like a responsible thing to do, but I need to dig in a little more and look at all the options and figure out the right path forward.

I did some research and it does appear that we can reduce our monthly costs by about half. We just might be giving up cable television this year. I’m seriously considering buying the TiVo Roamio OTA 1TB DVR and switching to internet only service. Right now this seems like a brilliant idea, but it takes time to figure out all the logistics. Our only real concern related to live sports programming is having access to University of Kansas basketball games. They are mostly on the ESPN family of networks these days. Being able to watch those games is key to being able to make the switch and reduce my monthly entertainment costs. We have to buy a new TiVo box and or figure out how to use the Xbox One S as a DVR. Either way we have to buy an OTA HD antenna. So many are on the market these days. It is sort of hard to figure out from the ratings and reviews which of the OTA HD antennas is really the best. That is key for me during this transition. We need a really good antenna. My search for the next few weeks is going to be about trying to find the world’s best OTA antenna. If you have a suggestion to help me get on the right track, then please drop a brand and model or a link in the comments.

Maybe it will be a good thing to not have access to cable news on a daily basis. I really do like to check on CNN from time to time throughout the day. I guess giving up cable has been done before and things worked out ok. We will see how it goes. I’m pretty sure that is the path we are going to go down at some point this month.

Topic 4: Rounding out the night

Cleaning up my office and removing clutter has been a big part of my efforts this year. One of the problems I have been dealing with relates to accepting clutter. It is easier to just leave the clutter and move on. It is much harder to address it and fix things real time. This post today will push my word count over 90,000 words written on this blog this year. I have pretty much removed any mental clutter and put all my thoughts down on paper. That is a really powerful thing to complete. It is a monumental task to knock out. Being ready to write free of negative baggage is important. My goal is always to stay positive. Staying positive and trying to move forward is the key to figuring things out. You may have guessed that I truly believe in staying positive and keeping a high degree of motivation going.

My glasses are still missing. Today i’m going to clean up my laundry pile on my dresser and check each one of my suit coat pockets to see if my glasses are just in hiding. It is also possible that maybe they fell between the seats in my car. Those are the three places I’m going to search for them today. It is possible that they got left someplace. That means I have two remaining pairs of glasses hanging out with me. I don’t really like my n-1 pair they are not that comfortable. My n-2 pair is great, but they have a few scratches and are a slightly older prescription. They still work, but they are not perfect and they do not have the blue light filter. I think at some point this year I am going to get a new pair anyway. It might be a good idea to go ahead and move up my eye doctor visit for the year.

Topic 5: Fitbit Ionic initial thoughts

My new Fitbit Ionic is way more comfortable than my Fitbit Blaze. I’m not exactly sure how and why that is the case, but I hardly notice the Ionic. It feels pretty comfortable from the start. The battery life does appear to be about 4 days based on my usage patterns. I did end up changing up the clock face to the Tabs design. It says that clock face was created by somebody called DevRag. They called it a stats intensive clock face and that is pretty ture. Overall it is my favorite Fitbit Ionic clock face at the moment. I did take a few moments and looked at the sport band for the Ionic. The one I ended up buying is what they call slate blue and burnt orange. The face edges are burnt orange vs. silver. It just caught my eye and I liked the style better than the black or silver watch frames.

Topic 6: My fountain pen collection

My fountain pen collection has not been growing lately. I’m really happy with my Parker IM Premium Matte Black Fountain Pen with a Medium nib. I use only a Parker blue ink that comes in a little ink well bottle. I have been refilling the pen with a Parker fountain pen converter that uses a standard twist fill method. It works great and it is my daily workhorse writing instrument. Switching over to fountain pens has been a new adventure for me and it is something that I have really enjoyed. I had no idea what a nib was and how it worked. Ballpoint pens were how I engaged in writing. They were my writing instrument of choice. That was the case until very recently. It has probably been within the last year that I started using this one fountain pen and refilling it from an inkwell.

I gave up on using regular paper notebooks and started using large plain hard cover Moleskine Art Plus Sketchbooks. The fountain pen works great with that thick paper. Writing by hand is something that is great for taking notes and for brainstorming. You can imagine that the fountains pens and the whole day dreaming and brainstorming practice work out great. It took me a little bit to get used to writing with a fountain pen, but now it is my favorite way to interact with paper.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and my ASUS C101P using Google Docs

P.S. We are digging into the second day of february right now. I’m writing every day and producing words at a record pace. I really need to start digging into topics in more detail and spend more time really debating the topic on the merits digging a layer deeper into the form, function, structure, and assumptions related to that topic. Right now I’m burning through topics at a pretty fast rate. Some of these one paragraph topics are just not getting enough discussion. I’m opening the topic and giving it some coverage, but things are not getting taken to the next level. Writing at this pace is going to involve changing up a little bit of my writing effort. I really wanted to put together a ton of words today and push my writing efforts over 100,000 words for the day. Last night I sat down to write and just could not produce at that level. It probably has to do with not picking topics to write about that inspire passion on my part.

Writing about things that you are passionate about is just easier. The prose is less terse and more epic. You can imagine as we move forward toward writing another 900,000 words this year. Picking the right topics will be very important. That is going to pretty much ensure the success and prevent the failure of this writing journey. You can imagine that producing 1,000,000 rambling stream of consciousness based words would be hard to follow. Right now my efforts have to get a little bit more targeted. I might need to sit down with my trust fountain pen and sketch out about 5 topics for the day and then execute that plan every day on time and with quality. We have made it do day 33 of this journey and I’m learning that making outlines and getting a plan together is actually a really important part of the writing process. Maybe just winging it is not enough to get things done anymore.

Maybe this week could have been more fun. I just could not really get into a solid groove for writing sustained bursts of words. I’m wondering if maybe trying to write more in the morning and waking up at 5:00 AM next week might be a good test case. Maybe an extra 30 minutes of early morning writing will be enough to push things forward. The only problem with that strategy is that the more typing that happens that early in the morning the greater the chance that the dogs will wake up the kids and that will just kickstart the entire day. The dogs are always a consideration in the process. They are at their absolute loudest first thing in the morning. I’m exactly sure why that is the case, but it does appear to be true.

The total word count for this blog post is quickly approaching 3,317. That is a big target to hit. I have removed the upcoming topics section and that just makes the target even more interesting. What I still think is really interesting is that the word count between Google Docs and WordPress is different. They must be using very different algorithms to determine what exactly is a word. For me the definition is simple. Every non punctuation related utterance separated by some sort of spacing is a word. I did some quick searches on it and the answer does not appear to be easily found. Maybe that is something where I will dig into the code and figure it out. I did figure out how to add a countdown to my 100 days of cryptocurrency mining extravaganza. That is pretty exciting I guess. Countdowns are always fun to have on the website.

This last sentence is going to put us over the word count edge for the day. With that in mind stay positive and keep striving forward.

Day 32 the one where a new month started and my office got clean

Nexus 9

2018: Day 32 the one where a new month started and my office got clean
Word count 84,161 + 3,341 or 87,502 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

I’m writing about 6 single spaced pages in Google Docs per day this year. That is exciting. Welcome to the first pages of February. I’m glad that you are here to enjoy the journey. My glasses are still missing, but hey I’m sure they will show up at some point.

I am getting emails and application alerts from Netflix today. For some reason the algorithms over at Netflix seem to think that I should be watching Cars 3 tonight. Yeah that last sentence presumes that the algorithms over at Netflix are capable of some degree of thinking or at least independent processing with some element of decision making built into the process. Sure that is probably a little premature in the life cycle of the algorithms that Netflix has built. General AI is probably a few years away and most of the specific use case AI efforts are very focused. This is an example of an area where I could see a combination of things being built out in concert. It is also possible that the algorithms are built to be adaptive and capable of organic expansion based on mutation. I’m sure they are in the aggregate built to make suggestions and improve success rates over time. Even a series of A vs. B tests working at a high enough volume testing a variety of theories could get us to a useful setup. Yeah I just lost about 20 minutes thinking about how I would work out movie picking algorithms. Sometimes I wonder what building out algorithms and doing data work would be like on a daily basis.

Today is another day where things started off slowly. I’m contemplating writing a short story tonight. Today might just be a night of venturing off into the world of being a fiction writer. Yeah —- I should have gotten up at 5:30 AM and written a sweet vignette. Instead I just wasted an hour or so and had some espresso. That new Nespresso Expert machine really does make some pretty decent coffee. I’m not 100% sold on the price of the pods. My first experience recycling pods worked out well enough. All that nonsense was enough to just help get me going. Getting into the groove of writing took a little bit of time tonight. Things are just getting going and it is 7:30 PM. that might just be a little late in the game to get going.

Ok things are just going to divert to fiction writing time. I’ll try to signpost it all. My first attempt at a short story did not go all that well. It was not natural and organic writing. It felt forced and uncertain. A good short story should take you along the way. You should not be trying to drag it to the finish line. That is a key indicator that you are working on a false start. That happens sometimes. Back when I used to write in notebooks it was not a very big deal to just tear up a page and move on. Things are easier to cross out and give up on when you are writing by hand on paper. Computers are supposed to make things easier and in a lot of ways they do achieve that goal. In some very important ways they change the dynamic between the writer and the page. They breakdown that hidden wall between the production of prose and the publication of prose.

Maybe tonight could be devoted to working on some foundational ideas about the nature of quality along the journey. The inquiry does appear to be the journey and the journey does appear to be inherently linked to the inquiry. This could be the night that things gear up for a chautauqua geared around the metaphysics of things related to this journey. We could dig into quality and value. That might be the right way to go. It might be easier than trying to force the production of a short story that does not really want to spring into existence. Every option for writing tonight is about talking this stream of consciousness in a different direction. It is about focus my attention on something meaningful and really digging into that topic. At some point this year I am going to write a series of missives that will make up the foundation of a spycraft thriller. That is probably going to happen sooner or latter. I would say that it is almost inevitable. Those short stories have to be inspired. They have to really pull a reader into a world that feels completely real and plausible. Those are the types of books I write.

It has been some time since i sat down and just devoted time to writing a book from start to finish. These blog posts if you have not figured out are written from start to finish. No real editing. No effort to censor or delete the previous sentence. If things feel like a false start, then I just call it out and try to do better. I broke that rule here during day 32 here and circled back up to the vignette section. I think it was worth it. A little bit of a short story is trailing this paragraph. I had to jump back in front of that block of prose and write a little bit of an introduction to help explain how all of this happened. That does not justify the poor quality of the following prose, but at least it acknowledges that the level of quality was not there for prime time.

False start 1: A poorly executed attempt to write a short story titled, “Weekend Recruitment a short story from the Robert Heart Series.”

Desert roads always give you time to think. Those long hall drives are the ones that spark the imagination. Walter has been making trips from California back to Colorado and all over the southwest for decades. They always give Walter the time to remember that we all want to belong to something big. Believing is a healthy part of what drives us forward. That is pretty much the premise of every approach for any recruitment that has happened in the last two decades. Things are getting more complex every day. Folks talked about the widing net of social control and that was no joke. At some point you will get to know Robert Heart and you will learn what being a real patriot is all about. That is a story for another time. This story of recruitment is about something different. It is about what Walter K. Wilburton does best. Bringing people into the fold takes a certain level of skill. It really does. Every recruitment has to work. That is the name of the game when you reach the level that Walter is at.

<<< This is the end of false start 1. >>>

I just was not feeling it and the prose suffered. That short story went sideways and pretty much crashed into the mountain of its own failure. Sometimes I guess it is just not the right time to sit down and try to write a short story. Maybe the process of producing 3,000 words per day has stolen some of my whimsy and imagination. Maybe constant production has sapped my creativity. It is also possible that I’m just a little bit tired and a good short story will show up at the exact time and place it is meant to show up and not a moment sooner or later. It could just be as a professional writer I’m not able to muster enough creativity to produce a short story on command. Reacting to the world around me and chasing down the things that catch my interest is a lot easier to write about on a daily basis than allowing a world to spring forth from a fountain of creativity.

Topic 2: Searching for a new router

Back in 2014 I purchased an ASUS RT-AC87U Wireless-AC2400 dual band gigabit router. It has worked well enough over the last few years, but it has started to go wonky. By wonky I mean it has to be reset and then it starts providing internet to the house again. You can imagine that is discouraging and at first made me thinking the security had been compromised. I do not believe that is the case. I think maybe it just got hot from sitting on top of my cable modem and stopped working 100%. It could have also gotten hot from a combination of the sun and the cable modem or something I guess. It is also possible that maybe the router just has not stood up to the test of time and it is starting to fail. I started looking at some new options to replace that router and they are very expensive. Routers seem to have gotten more expensive than I expected. Two of the models that I looked at today that seem to be really good devices were also about $400 and that alone was enough to make me want to factory reset my current router and hope for the best.

Topic 3: Updating my Fitbit Aria scale

Talk about devices that are challenging to update. I’m pretty good with technology and I gave up trying to get the Fitbit Aria scale to accept a new network. It could see them and I know the password was right, but it failed to connect to three of my home networks. In a last ditch effort to make it work I renamed one of my networks and reset the password to the combination I knew the scale had used before. Even that attempt failed miserably. I started search the Fitbit help forums for answers. I would like to track my weight on a daily basis, but my technology is not making that easy. The Fitbit support forums on the subject are just full of reports from sad and frustrated customers who cannot get the scale to connect. I may just give up on the device after one more attempt.

Topic 4: 1,500 words in and no title

Most of the time before reaching the halfway point these blog posts have a title. Today I’m considering calling this the blog post without a title. That is probably a bad idea. At one point, I gave up on giving my posts clever titles and just named them using a standard Year Month Day (YYYYMMDD) naming convention. That would make things easier, but it makes it really hard to sort things out in the end. Sometimes a title helps make things more focused and allows the reader to have some idea about what is about to happen. Not all of my titles are that useful really, but at least they provide some idea about the content of the posts. Throughout this journey I have been trying to make sure that each post is at least a window into something. A new chapter. A new story. At the very least, I have tried to make sure that each day is different to some degree. That is the spice of life that brings joy to the world around us. Striving forward in a variety of ways to experience different things.

Topic 5: Rounding out this blog post

You may have already guessed that last night I was just not feeling it. Today however things have returned to normal operations and I’m back at it at full enthusiasm for life, the universe, and well everything. It could be the wonderful lungo style espresso beverage from my Nespresso Expert or it could just be a nice of good sleep. Either way things are moving forward and progressing along today. Yesterday, I thought it would be a good idea to listen to my Nirvana Unplugged vinyl record today. That recording is one of my favorite albums to hear from start to finish. I started looking for a copy on DVD from eBay. Maybe buying up concert films of bands that I enjoy could be fun. It only looks like a few Nirvana DVDs are out and about on the open secondary market. It really does seem like I have doubled down on buying up physical media. From my vinyl record collection to all my DVD and Blu-ray purchases. My stockpile of physical media just keeps growing.

That is probably just foreshadowing of the size of my future collections. Just thinking about my sports trading card collection alone the amount of space it takes up just grows from year to year. The last time I sold a ton of my sports trading cards was before I got married. That was a long time ago in what seems like a very far away land. Well I guess it was not all that far away it was up in Boulder, Colorado. That is about 15 minutes up the road from where I am at now. We lived right next to the post office and selling trading cards was pretty easy at the time. Cards sold on eBay and I packaged them up and walked next door to mail them that same day. It usually was a process that happened in batches. Most of my eBay listings were all done pretty close together. That meant the auctions ended at about the same time. A lot of people paid right after the auction ended. Some folks did did not pay very quickly.

It is snowing right now in Denver. It is a thing very light snow that is sticking to the road and is just sort of applying a dusting to things. I’m curious to see how much snow we end up getting. This week I did manage to venture out and buy some kind of pet safe not salt product that can breakdown ice on the driveway. That is an important part of keeping the household up and running. Google local weather seems to indicate that snow might just be happening until about noon and then things will clear up. I’m ready. I have some Nirvana booted up and I am ready for the day. Maybe two more shots of espresso would help, but at the moment I’m ready for the day.

Topic 6: An update on cleaning my office.

Yesterday one of the three bookshelves in my office got picked up. Some stuff did shift from that one bookshelf to another one. That means that the last two shelves will be harder to clean than the first two shelves. The whole process of getting things picked up and removing the clutter has been a challenge. I need to finish cleaning up the 2nd shelf today or you just might see that mess during my triumphant return to YouTube today. My plan is to turn off the NiceHash miner software during the live stream and just jump back into mining cryptocurrency after the broadcast ends. Building a second computer will allow me to remote into one box and show some live mining during my YouTube broadcasts. It will also let me dig in and show you some more complex Tensorflow and other deep learning screens.

The second bookshelf is really not all that dirty and it is really just a matter of cleaning up some clutter and organizing the books a little bit better. This blog post finally got a title, “Day 32 the one where a new month started and my office got clean.”

Topic 7: Cable management

You may have been wondering how long it would take me to clean up and manage the cables under my desk. Yesterday I crawled under my Studio RTA executive glass desk and zip tied all the cables together up and away from sight. That is working out pretty well given that Captain Pickles the dog is now sitting under my desk. Now that things are cleaned up our 8 month old puppy just wants to sit and look out the window all day. That is fine. Nothing really happens in our neighborhood. Sometimes the squirrel the dogs are at war with runs by the window and a bark-storm occurs. My new cable management has helped remove clutter and get things in order within my office. At the same time, that change has opened the door to some extra puppy driven wildness.

Topic 8: Today’s thumbnail

Yesterday I called an audible and replaced a photo of my Google Nexus 9 tablet with a photograph of my new Fitbit Iconic fitness watch. That was a good change and I stand by that decision to bring in a more relevant thumbnail for the blog post. Today however I have elected to use that photograph. I tried to grab a photograph of the snow outside and so far it is not very compelling. That fact has been taken into consideration and today will be the day that you get to enjoy this Nexus 9 photograph. It is now an end of life technology that may not get to be the center of attention again.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and my ASUS C101P using Google Docs

P.S. You may have noticed that the end of the blog post has changed a little bit. I have removed the upcoming topics list from the daily post. It was just adding an offset to the daily word count and it was not something that was being used a ton. That pretty much meant that it had to go. I’ll try to keep the list in a running topic list in a separate document. It may be something that I keep in a notebook. Writing the topics down by hand just might help them become more meaningful for me. Something needed to change. Those topics were supposed to inspire me and help me push forward entire blog posts. That just was not happening. My writing routine was not sparked by a featured topic or even a theme. Each new day just began the process of muddling through from start to finish. At the moment, I’m leaning toward a framework where any topic that bubbles up gets tackled real time instead of getting added to a list for future consideration.

On the brighter side of things the copy and paste function is still working and working well. That has saved me countless minutes each day. For some reason I am still writing in Google Docs and pasting into my blog post. The squirrel just ran by my office window and Captain Pickles missed it. It is snowing and very cold outside. I guess it is just one of those days. Here in just a few moments I’m going to go make two shots of espresso and start the day. This morning writing session was required to fill in some word count from yesterday. I have to stop going to bed without finishing my writing for the day. I’m basically tracking at about 1,000 words behind schedule each day. That means I’m going to sleep knowing that I’m going to have to get up and write frantically in the morning to catch up before the day starts. Without question that is not the best strategy to take to move things forward on a daily basis. My morning writing session should offset the daily word count and help kickstart things to make my nightly writing session more manageable.

This last paragraph here today is being written to stretch out my word count to more than 3,317 words for the day. Getting to that word count will help me catch back up to my daily writing target. Welcome to February the month tagged with an extra goal to make up for certain writing goal deficines in January. It could be worse I guess. The journey toward writing 1,000,000 words in the same year will truly test my resolve, dedication, and persistence. Today we are rounding out to just a little bit above that word count and we removed the upcoming topics section. That means that today happened. Was completed within target and is now complete.

Day 31 the one with the SOTU and a new Fitbit Ionic arrived

2018: Day 31 the one with the SOTU and a new Fitbit Ionic arrived
Word count 81,144 + 3,017 or 84,161 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Welcome to day 31 of my writing journey. Thank you for being here. Ok —- you may have noticed within the last post that I am a little bit behind my goal. It happens. Writing 1,000,000 words in the same year is hard. It turns out at the start of this blog post that I’m about 8,856 words behind my writing goal for the year. That pretty much means that after writing 3,000 words today I am going to need to sustain a new word target of 3,317 words per day in February. It would also be possible for one really good day of writing to help return my pacing to goal levels. Things will probably work out better if I have just a couple of days above the writing target to help catch up. You can imagine that worrying about that goal has taken the bulk of my energy tonight. Tonight I just need to knock out this blog post and be ready to start a new day at 5:30 in the morning. Something will have to give as I increase my daily word target. That something is writing a little bit more. It is really just 10 more minutes to push me over the edge each day.

I’m way behind schedule tonight. It is 9:10 PM Eastern and The State of the Union has started. I’m watch it on CNN. It is on in the background tonight. That may or may not help me along my way to 3,000 words. I suppose I could live blog the #SOTU, but that is just not my style. Political live blogs are probably not going to be a part of my daily writing routine. Setting politics aside I’m going to try to write about the things going on around me, the things that I know, and the things drawing my interest. Every year I watch most of the major political speeches. My mp3 collection is full of famous speeches of all types. I’m particularly fond of speeches from former Presidents John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. That is something that has held my interest since high school. People used to write deeply moving and exceedly well themed speeches. They were just better written. That is probably a function of the fact that somebody really spent a ton of time working on them. They were not drawn from the moment they were written to stand the test of time. Seriously, a lot of modern speeches do not live up to the standards of the past. I know that sounds harsh, but it is true. A lot of modern speeches are passing blocks of words put together to make an immediate point vs. trying to write something that holds up for generations.

The thumbnail for today is of my Nexus 9 tablet. That is the device I was musing about yesterday. I think the photo turned out well enough and you can enjoy the tablet’s majestic splendor as it sits on a phone stand. Update: I changed my mind and uploaded a photo of the Fitbit Ionic watch during setup. The photo is less majestic, but you might enjoy it more.

Topic 1: My new Fitbit Ionic arrived

I’m going to be honest about my Fitbit Blaze fitness watch. Overall owning it was just ok. The Ionic is my 4th Fitbit product. The Blaze was my third Fitbit wristband. It was not revolutionary. It lacked basic features and it just never really lived up to the potential it had. To be honest they needed my leadership or somebody with a similar level of skill to push their products to the next level. Somebody should have driven these products beyond deliver and into a special category of technology. Even my new fitness watch the Fitbit Ionic lacks inspiration and from a software perspective is a poorly coded product. Maybe they were going for some kind of disappointing minimalism, but it is still disappointing. The hardware that Fitbit makes is ok. It has never given me a rash or irritated my skin. For me the products work well enough and holds up over time. They eventually breakdown, but that is what happens with something that I wear every day. The software that is built for this watch is just so limited and uninspired. Consider this for a moment if the Fitbit Ionic had come out 5 years ago it would have been groundbreaking. Today it is the afterthought of what would have have been novel and innovative 5 years ago. I’m sure I could have chosen nicer or software language to explain my feelings about the Fitbit software, but hey it is honest and accurate.

All of the packaging for the Fitbit Ionic was designed and built pretty well. Unboxing the device was satisfying. Included in the box were both small and large wristbands. That is a plus. The device had the large wristbands connected. The box also included a very basic proprietary charging cable. I’m wondering if maybe it would be easier to buy some type of charging docking station for the phone. After getting all the items out the box it was easy to put the box back together. That was pretty much all that box is ever really going to do. Maybe at some point I might put it back in the box and sell it on eBay, but for the most part that box has done everything that it was ever going to do.

Setup took forever with the Fitbit Ionic fitness watch. It went through three waves of updates or installation. It was hard to tell exactly. A bar just sort of moved from left to right across the screen. It just kept going. The entire process took about half an hour and was mindblowingly slow. After the device went through all three waves of updates it started up and wanted to be plugged in and setdown on the desk for calibration of the sensors. The folks over at Fitbit need to figure out how to make the setup process quicker and easier.

That is where the Fitbit Ionic is right now. It is charging. At about 93% I’m not exactly sure how much longer it will take to charge. Instead of displaying the time remaining to charge like any modern device it just hangs out flashing basic information. Comfort wise the watch feels much better than the Fitbit Blaze. I’m going to wear it overnight and I’ll let you know how it stacks up over the next couple of days. My first take on it is that it is comfortable.

Topic 2: Mining more TurtleCoin

It happened again. Before I thought it through tonight my two graphics cards were devoted to mining TurtleCoin. Both of my NVIDIA GTX 1060 graphics cards are mining using a pool in the United Kingdom. I guess the mining pool that I connected to last time is offline or unavailable. That does not really concern me. My mining efforts are already approaching 500 TurtleCoins. It should just be a matter of hours before my account contains more than 2,000 coins. I’m not exactly sure why I went back to mine more TurtleCoins. I’m thinking about mining abou 5,000 TurtleCoins. That is just an arbitrary number that I picked out of the air, but it will be fun and maybe with some luck the value will go up. Obviously, this mining effort is purely speculative.

Running the xmr-stak for mining TurtleCoin just grinds my computer to a halt. I tried to make a couple changes in the configuration file to slow down the CPU mining and to limit the GPU miner just a little bit. I’m not a fan of CPU mining. Through all of my mining efforts things have gone well enough. I have over 2,000 TurtleCoins at the moment. That is a far cry from the 5,000 I’m thinking about amassing, but hey it is a good start. I might engage in a little bit of TurtleCoin mining each day.

Topic 3: Another block of words

Ok my mind is reaching that point where I’m pretty well done thinking for the day. That is going to be an interesting challenge considering that about 2,000 words still need to be written. Maybe just hammering the keys for a few minutes will help spark some creativity to overtake the need for procrastination. Sometimes just getting in rhythm is enough to help move things forward. These moments where I am centered and ready to go in any direction open the door to some interesting possibilities. These are the moments where writing can just be about writing. That my thoughts can just move from thought to screen.

Ok it is 10:31 PM Eastern time and The State of Union is now over. It pretty much slowed down the pace of my writing. I have listened to decades worth of these speeches. Some of them are very good. Other ones are lacking. My favorite speech at the moment is the JFK’s inaugural address. We have to understand the world around us. Most of the time for me that is about thinking and considering the intersection of technology and modernity. Technology is changing society from the edges. We are on the verge of seeing rapid change across all sorts of health related technology.

It is getting late. My interest in writing is limited at the moment.

Topic 4: Revisiting my start to blogging

Apparently, the Internet Archive Wayback Machine has saved my domain 132 times between August 31, 2000 and September 13, 2017. Oddly enough that means that it has not save any of my 2018 writing extravaganza geared at producing 1,000,000 words in the same year. I remember sitting down and writing back in 2000. The captures from 2000 and 2001 are pure nonsense. I have no idea what that content is or how or why it existed. Some of the captures from 2002 are a blast from the past. My coding skills were less evolved at the time. It is interesting to see the themes that I had built out back in 2003. That Wayback Machine is wild. My current blog and archive pretty much go back to when I moved to Colorado. A ton of content exists from before that, but it did not get archived or imported.

Moving around from site to site and from different blogging software to another caused some stuff to get lost along the way. Perhaps that could have been avoided, but it probably does not really matter all that much. One of the things that I am considering doing tonight or tomorrow is going through my regular reads blog roll and figuring out if any of those folks are still at it blogging away. Those blog rolls from 2003 or 2004 go back far enough that some people still called it journaling. It is hard to imagine that all those years of my life and my online content are just archived away. Maybe that Wayback Machine will sweep back over and get this years content. I do like the idea in general of my content being around forever. At some point this domain will expire and all of this content will just disappear. That is how things work. I have prepaid for as long as possible, but at some point this will all just expire. That is how the modern internet is setup. Domains and hosting are not permanent.

That is one of the reasons that archives and publishing parts of my work are so appealing. Preserving things is really about making the available. I remember getting my domain setup and building out websites. It was fun to test them and to build code. Some of my layouts are probably better and more involved than what I have right now in 2018. It is amazing to think about that. Things were different. We went to meet ups and worked together to share and exchange links it was a real community. Today it seems like I just write to engage the habit of writing. That has been true for years now. I have not attended a blogger meet up since we moved to Colorado. I’m not sure that is really something that would be as interesting now as it was a decade ago.

Topic 5: Closing out the night

Today has been a weird day. This post is somewhat disjointed. That happened based on the number of time that I have started typing and stopped. Things all around me have been happening and catching my attention. Each of those moments of distraction makes the prose less structured. Keeping things well structured is about finding a solid writing flow and allowing it to kick in and just riding the wave to completion. That just did not happen tonight. Maybe tomorrow will be a better writing day. The next post will be for a different month. February might bring a new wave of productivity.

The brightness has been turned all the way down on my Chromebook. I’m locked into this whole writing thing. Maybe it was that last shot of espresso kicking in or maybe it is my 2nd writing wind for the night. Reading a few of my older blog posts was kind of fun. It is interesting to see how my writing style has changed. It has probably changed for the better over the years. I can at this point pretty much sit down and write without a whole lot of editing and tinkering. In fairness to my past efforts they were not really edited or tinkered with either. I think if it had been possible to just live blog and have things post as they were typed that is the direction I would have taken. It would have been epic. People could have just watched the words appear on the screen in real time. Maybe that is something that could be built out now. I think Google Docs sharing does something like that when multiple people are in a document.

My focus today has not be on one topic. I have not sat down and taken one good topic to task by looking at it from a ton of angles and just breaking it apart. In the past I would have started to breakdown the topic in terms of form, function, structure, and assumptions. That framework has been the basis of how I attack topics for years. I used to just sit down and write observations and post them. That is how the functional journal was born and it has continued over the years. This year may be a little different. This year should be a little bit different of a narrative. It should be more involved. Overall the size of my posts had increased a ton and I am covering some interesting topics. Some of the topics are not interesting and are pretty much just a starting point. They are just surface considerations.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and my ASUS C101P using Google Docs

P.S. The month of January is coming to an end. We are marching along the journey to writing 1,000,000 words in the same year. Blog, blog, and away I guess. This process of writing has been working out well enough. No day along the way during this first month was missed. That was a good measuring stick and I’m glad things have moved along. I have learned that the whole writing process has to be broken up into sections. My writing productivity tends to produce about 1,000 to 1,500 words in a sitting. That means that when I sit down to try to write more than 3,000 words in one sitting it creates problems. Writing in bulk is really about channeling passion for a subject. When i’m just sitting and writing for the sake of writing I’m going to hit a point where I am just done. That is going to happen based on what I have seen and known so far during this writing journey.

At the start of this journey I was wondering if it would be sustainable. Writing at a pace of 3,000 words for the weblog every day is not something that I have done before. I write all day and most of what I end up writing does not get published as a blog post. That means that on top of everything else that is written I’m going to need to produce 3,000 words. It turns out that it is possible and I can manage to keep writing every day. We are now as I’m writing this last paragraph 31 days into the journey. That means 1 out of 12 months are now complete and in the books. Things are looking up and my plan to catch back up is in place. It should be easy enough to push forward and to start really thinking about things in a deeper way. The process of writing and getting all of the basic writing out of the way is now over. You can tell that my writing has morphed and is in some ways evolving throughout the process. I’m hoping that the final product ends up being readable and entertaining.

I did backup my blog today. The file is pretty large these days at over 10 megabytes of XML. I did end up looking at the ports on my computer today and it does not appear that I have an active firewire port. It does look like some firewire to USB adaptors exist. That may be one way to go about downloading some of my older videos. I know somewhere around here I have a firewire pci card.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 30 the one with some Kansas basketball and some writing goals

Nuggets live game

2018: Day 30 the one with some Kansas basketball and some writing goals
Word count 78,137 + 3,007 or 81,144 of 1,000,000
Words behind goal: 8,856 (February goal will be 3,317 words per day)

Dear Reader,

This missive of consciousness will be streaming to you a little bit later in the day than expected. Last night I shutdown my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P before hitting my 3,000 word writing target and went to bed. All the writing that was going to happen had happened. The intellectual well was dry. At that point, the journey was done for the day. My thoughts were basically over for the night. Today my mind is alive with thoughts and observations. None of them are very nice. That is probably the byproduct of this wicked migraine. These things happen from time to time, but today is one of those weird days where my headache has lingered. Ugh —- enough about my wild migraines.

This weekend is still looming big in our household. Everybody is just a touch worn down from all the birthday party shenanigans. I have started looking at getting some more Denver Nuggets tickets. That game was pretty fun to attend in person. We are drawing closer to the end of the season. In May just before my birthday the NBA finals will begin. Maybe next year the Nuggets will build a team that could make a legitimate championship run. I’m ok with just seeing some competitive games. This last one was pretty good. So good in fact that you are going to be graced with another Denver Nuggets thumbnail today. This one attached to this blog post is of some actual live game action. I was looking for another really good weekend game that starts early enough to work with my schedule. I’m not big on staying up until really late at night. That is not really something that I want to do on purpose.

At a pace of 3,000 words per day we should be hitting 90,000 words written by the end of day 30 of this writing challenge. You might be surprised to know that today is day 30 and we are not on track to hit 90,000 words. After 29 days my word total was at 78,137. You can probably tell that productivity is not hitting the mark. To hit the 1,000,000 word mark my daily average in 2018 has to stay about 2,739.73 words per day. After 29 days my average words per day is at 2,694.38. That is close to the target, but it is below the target. To catch up in one solid shot of writing it it would require a big day of 11,683 words. That is probably not going to happen tonight. I mean it could happen. It would probably require a good deal of inspiration to strike all at one time. I would pretty much have to catch writing lightning in a bottle. It will probably be a more effective strategy to just increase my writing target by a couple hundred words per day until things average out.

I did not realize until writing this post that I was so far behind my daily writing goal. This is one of those things that did not happen all at one time. Several days had to contribute to this curious problem of lower-than-expected writing output. I’m going to try to write as much today and tomorrow as I can manage to help catch up. I knew that writing 1,000,000 words in the same year would be hard. It will take a sustained level of dedication. From here on out it has to be about exceeding my daily writing goal. One day at a time. One batch of 3,000 words at a time. I’m going to stand up from my desk and run a victory lap after hitting 100,000 words for the year. That is going to happen at some point next month. It will be an exciting moment and it will be followed up by 9 more 100,000 word writing milestones this year. That is an exciting thing to think about. It is still a little bit daunting.

I’m thinking about potentially including the differential within the byline. That might have helped me avoid getting behind on delivering my writing goal. Sometimes having a really solid beramater for success can drive things forward. It is also possible that maybe it is better just not to know exactly how far off the goal really is in terms of writing productivity. Keeping that type of bellwether statistic at the ready might just cause the prose to be forced. You will already know from the top of this blog post if that metric was included. I’m not sure even if gets included today if it is a metric that should linger at the top of my blog posts. Writing 3,000 words per day has turned out to be a really legitimate challenge. I probably just need to grab my C101P when my alarm goes off at 5:30 AM and start writing. Those first few minutes of the day are not very productive. Those minutes before coffee are always just a little bit off.

Topic 1: Kansas Jayhawks vs. Kansas State Wildcats

I’m gearing up to watch some basketball tonight. The game is on ESPN tonight. At some point, I will be getting bowl of Nearly Naked popcorn. That is my go to snack at the moment. Captain Pickles is running amuck in the house at the moment. Something is going to get chewed up. Puppies are difficult at times. I do not ever remember having as much energy as this dog does. It comes in waves and it is intense. Today should feature a college basketball game that is enjoyable to watch. Those Kansas State Wildcats tend to put up a fight, but they don’t really have the caliber of players necessary to compete in the Big 12. I’m still a little shocked that the Big 12 still only has 10 teams. At some point, it would make sense to expand back to 12 member institutions. I’m gearing up to watch some basketball tonight on the old Sony Bravia television. I looked at some of the new Sony 4K Bravia televisions. They look pretty fantastic, but the cost was on the prohibitive side of things.

I did spend some time looking at projectors tonight. It would be nice to be able to project up on the ceiling. Television has been about screens. Eventually we will see screens be replaced by some flavor or headsets or projectors. That is something that I would have thought would happen before 2018. For some reason it seems like smartphones, computers, tablets, and televisions are still the primary content consumption devices. Projects are not in that top 4 media content consumption devices. Perhaps that might change at some point, but it will not be this year. This game is much closer than it should be here as we are approaching half time. Kaylee is almost asleep. I’m going to be able to watch the 2nd half and eat popcorn downstairs.

Ok this game has 2:25 left in the first half. Svi is really starting to develop into a complete player. Coach Bill Self is going to have to work on developing the team as a whole this year to have a solid tournament run. Halftime is here. Kansas State missed their last 12 field goals going into halftime. The halftime show is not compelling at all. I have come to the conclusion that both sports television and the 24 hour news challenge folks should expel the guests that just spew nonsense. If the guest or host cannot engage in substantive conversation that elevates the level of discourse they need to be removed. I’m just tired of the shouting and rampid talking over people that happens on television. That is just an unnecessary level of nonsense that makes its way onto television.

Topic 2: My next computer case

For the last week or so the Corsair Carbide Series Air 740 – High Airflow ATX Cube Case has been sitting in my Newegg cart. One of the specs on it is 3 internal 3.25” bays. I’m wondering exactly what parts should be included in my next computer build. Now really is not a very good time to build a computer. Prices on components seem to be higher than the last time I build a computer back in 2016. I looked all over for my stack of motherboards and could not find them in the garage. It is possible that the motherboards are gone forever.

I’m thinking of just ordering the case ahead of time and build the computer one part a time. This game just keeps going with the Jayhawks not really pulling ahead.

Topic 2: My 7th NiceHash Miner Payment

Very early this morning NiceHash sent a wallet payment my way for the last 3 days of mining efforts. This was by far my smallest payment from NiceHash. Apparently, that day of letting xmr-stak run mining TurtleCoin was enough to depress my overall payment by about 0.0002 BTC. Converting that to USD equates to $2.17 at present BTC to USD values. They change all the time, but you get the picture of the opportunity cost to stop renting hashing power to NiceHash and mine 1,038 TRTL. At this point, I can comfortably say that the opportunity cost of $2.17 USD was well worth it.

NiceHash wallet payments in reverse order:

7. 2018-01-30 04:28:59 Mining payment → 0.00102840 BTC
6. 2018-01-27 04:51:21 Mining payment → 0.00120973 BTC
5. 2018-01-24 04:25:25 Mining payment → 0.00125795 BTC
4. 2018-01-21 05:32:06 Mining payment → 0.00133244 BTC
3. 2018-01-18 04:27:55 Mining payment → 0.00119401 BTC
2. 2018-01-15 04:30:34 Mining payment → 0.00105970 BTC
1. 2018-01-13 04:51:00 Mining payment → 0.00118327 BTC

The 7th payment does not cross the 0.002 threshold in my NiceHash wallet for a free transfer to Coinbase. You can imagine that the whole process of mining and transferring to Coinbase is based on having the BTC in a wallet where it can be exchanged for USD. That is the game plan. At the end of the 100 days of mining adventure all that BTC that will have been collected will need to be sold to USD via the exchange to allow for paying off the graphics card that was purchases. At the very least it will be an offset to the cost if not an overage.

Topic 3: On my Nexus 9 tablet

My Nexus 9 tablet is still running. Today it seems to be faster and run better than the day I bought it. It is an LTE enabled tablet. I set it up on the Google Project Fi data only service. That makes it a great little device for browsing and accessing the internet on the go. Most of my writing efforts have switched over to the ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P. That device has no LTE antenna and requires a Wi-Fi connection. I guess my Google Nexus 9 tablet went end of life back in October 2016. The last security update it has downloaded was the September 5, 2017 android security patch. Apparently the end of guaranteed security updates was October 2017. I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do to update the device. It is running Webroot SecureAnywhere mobile complete security. That is probably the best thing I can do now that the system itself is not being updated by Google. It is a great little tablet. I’m going to use it until the day it stops working.

That is the hard part of buying technology. Google has some different upgrade paths for technology and it is very interesting. My Chromebooks appear to upgrade as long as Google is making updates to Chrome. Phones and tablets seem to have a different upgrade path that involves an end of life cliff that just makes them less valuable over time. I’ll admit that my smartphones do not really last longer than the update window of a couple years. For some reason, I am rather hard on my phones. They get used daily and travel with me all over the place. That combination of being carried everywhere and heavy usage pretty much means they are not going to last forever. My Nexus 9 tablet oddly just keeps marching along. A couple quick searches of my Inbox found this email update, “Your Google Store Order from Jun 28, 2015 Has Shipped.” that means that my Nexus 9 is only 3 years old. It feels like a much older device. I guess that is the way of technology these days. Things are going end of life in the technology world at an increasing pace.

Topic 4: Hard drive mining

At this point in time, I do not really understand all of these folks mining using hard drives. It seems rather interesting and I’m going to spend some time today working to understand it. It seems a little bit like an interesting setup. I’m wondering if this is going to star a run on hard drives at some point. We have seen a massive run on graphics cards. They are pretty much sold out everywhere. It seems like the setup for this type of hard drive mining is more intense than just installing NiceHash. Maybe the barrier to entry for the process will help keep some of those hard drives on the shelf. It might be worth a trip out and about to see if these massive external hard drives are disappearing from shelves.

After giving this whole hard drive mining thing some thought my real question about the whole setup is not profitability it is what it would do to my internet bandwidth. I have never hit the bandwidth limit from my cable company. I’m wondering what would happen if you put 100 terabytes up on this storage system. I’m assuming that means that you are going to pull data up and down. I’m going to try to learn some more about how the process works so I can understand my concerns about bandwidth. You can tell that this is a topic that I’m very curious about and what to learn more about. So many of these new mining methods, technologies, and even schemes are spinning up. I do mean schemes in the nefarious sense of the whole thing. Some these things cannot possibly be legitimate.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and my ASUS C101P using Google Docs

P.S. The hunt for my glasses continues. I am not exactly sure where the lastest pair of them actually went. This n-2 pair is working out well enough. These last couple of days I have really needed to put on the glasses and go about my day. That is not really something that happens on a normal basis. I wear them a bit each week. Mostly when I am looking at the screen for long periods of time. Most of my computer based efforts are really 20 to 30 minute spurts. Very few of the things besides writing require over an hour of dedicated screen viewing in one sitting. That is really a very good thing and something that I have tried to ensure holds true. I had thought about the day in terms of 30 minute blocks. I try to stay focused within each 30 minute block on something that requires my attention. Anything that starts eating up more and more blocks I start to ask myself why that activity or topic is requiring so much time and effort. Maybe that is the key to how I start to break down complexity in solvable blocks.

My office is almost cleaned up. The underside of my desk is clean enough. I still need to work on some cable management. I have a photo of Captain Pickles looking out the window that will be a thumbnail at some point. You can see in the photo that last bit of under desk cable management that needs to be completed. It is a process. That part of the process is not complete. Today my focus should have been on the built in wooden office bookshelf sitting next to me. It is on my right and it is a mess. Maybe I’ll change things up and focus on the bookshelf behind me and work on cleaning all of that up. I do need to take down the reflective picture frames and move them to the other wall at some point. They have been creating lighting challenges for my videos.

I’m going to start from the bottom shelf of bookshelf and work my way up one shelf at a time. That should be a good way to start making some progress on getting the entire room cleaned up. My time here in January is drawing short and now is the time to finish cleaning things up for my triumphant YouTube return when February starts. I want the backdrop for my videos to be free from clutter and nonsense. So much stuff has been dumped on my bookshelves and that it has been there for years in some cases. I’m not sure any of it is needed on a daily basis. It is just stuff. It is just stuff that sits on a shelf. Outside of residing on the shelf it does not do anything useful for me. That means cleaning it up should just reduce clutter and have no real impact on my day to day activities. You will be able to tell soon enough if my efforts were successful or if more work still needs to be done.

I’m writing the last sentence or two of the post for today. It is strange enough that Google Docs believes this post is over 3,000 words and my weblog software does not. I guess we have to keep using the weblog software as the single source of truth.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 29 the one where I mined some TurtleCoin cryptocurrency

Pepsi Center

2018: Day 29 the one where I mined some TurtleCoin cryptocurrency
Word count 75,128 + 3,009 or 78,137 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Last night we went to the Pepsi Center to watch the Denver Nuggets play basketball against the Dallas Mavericks. You are probably aware of that from last nights blog post. Today you are getting another thumbnail from that trip. This one is from outside the Pepsi Center right before we went in to watch the game. Overall, I think the Pepsi Center is a decent event center. It works great for basketball and hockey. It would be fun to get season tickets to one of those teams. Maybe that is something that will happen at some point. At this point, I think it might be a special occasion or a few games a year kind of thing. One thing is for sure. I do consider Colorado Avalanche hockey tickets to be expensive. Today I’m pretty tired from watching the whole Denver Nuggets game and getting behind on my overall writing schedule. Trying to catch up means that today is going to be a big day of writing. Maybe I can find something that will help energize my enthusiasm for writing today. That might just mean expanding my mining efforts.

Topic 0: Mining some TurtleCoin

Thanks in part to the latest podcast from Kevin Rose called Block Zero I started to mine some TurtleCoin shares today. Yeah I have ventured out from the relative safety of the NiceHash Miner ecosystem to a fringe cryptocurrency. Today I listened to the founder of TurtleCoin on the Kevin Rose podcast. I went out and elected to download and install this mining software for TurtleCoin. That is not really an endorsement on my part. I mostly just thought it would be amusing to mine for a few turtles. They gave me 10 turtles for my wallet via something called a faucet and I managed to mine for another pending balance of 24.15 TRTL. Maybe just the idea of having 34.15 TRTL amuses me. Yeah —- you can probably tell it amused me. Letting the GPU miner xmr-stak.exe run on a TurtleCoin pool was enough to reduce my NiceHash daily estimated BTC to less than one dollar. It was an acceptable opportunity cost.

The process to install everything to mine TurtleCoin on Windows 10 was pretty easy. I downloaded the software package from Github. The main TurtleCoin website will point you in the right direction for the current download. You can visit the online domain TurtleCoin.lol and find the download. I’m really not sure that you should do that. I mostly mined the cryptocurrency for amusement. After downloading the package it seemed to want to run a blockchain sync process for like an hour. After all the synching was complete it asked me to start a new wallet. That was pretty easy they have have a text based simple wallet function built into the platform. The idea of using a text based wallet took me back a bit. I’m sure at some point they will have a nice GUI based wallet that installs from the start. At some point, I’m going to have to figure out how to sell a TurtleCoin. It does not appear they are on any of the exchanges at this time.

That first 500 words from the blog post were an example of overly stilted technical prose without enough explanation to really define the topics being discussed. Alas, I’ll try to do better at some point during this writing journey. Sometimes I spiral down down a path toward sharing information vs. telling a story in a useful way. The TurtleCoin miner has been running all afternoon. I have about 800 coins mined so far. It takes a minimum of 1,000 coins for the mining pool to transfer the coins back to my simple wallet. Oddly, I have no plans to do anything with the coins. It just seemed like something that would be fun to get setup and fun to mine for the day. So many cryptocurrencies exist. You have to be careful downloading and working with miner software. Even this one miner that Kevin Rose has used and people seem to talk about flags my Webroot antivirus software. After I get to 1,000 coins the software is getting quarantined and removed. Cryptocurrency really is the wild wild west of software online.

My Windows 10 installation on its own is very stable. Today alone I have seen about three all out system crashes and restart events. That probably has something to do with all the mining software. It is possible that running the NiceHash and the TurtleCoin software at the same time is not the greatest idea. That did not stop me from making it happen. I’m tracking the mining progress and counting down till that 1,000th coin gets mined tonight. Things are getting close the latest count is over 930 coins. My general thoughts on TurtleCoin are really summed up by all the questions I have about it. People who really got into bitcoin early got to see coins arrive much faster. That was what peaked my interest in TurtleCoin today. I wanted the experience of watching the miner find a ton of coins. It really is more fun that way. My NiceHash miner pays out in BTC. You are probably aware by now that all of my mining efforts have resulted in just a fraction of one bitcoin. I’m talking serious decimal places. Watching a miner bring in coin after coin is way more fun.

My open TurtleCoin wallet address is TRTLuyBt4HK8fs8g7PjVVaSToM8dsVmUeV3cKvs8fughh3qNrd49zAG33DhHhJuVQoUUmnEUBqdkmHh3rgBEwE15PYaHxfzLggv

Topic 1: Mining strategy

This is a topic I struggle with. It was literally hard to write about. You are probably only getting a paragraph on this one. I believe that blockchain as a technology has some very real and meaningful use cases. Some of the cryptocurrencies being built now and from what I can tell 1,000s of them exist are highly suspect. The value of them has been questioned by Warren Buffett and countless others. That is what makes this effort highly conflicted. In terms of a long term mining strategy it might be prudent to simply mine a bunch of coins on each of the emerging coins and hope one of them ends up being the next bitcoin. We will call this the buckets of everything rainy day fund approach. That is one way to go about it. It is a rather blanked coverage option that simply hedges by covering all the bases. People use all sorts of mining strategies. My selection of NiceHash to mine by selling hashing power has worked out well. I’ll be able to recoup the cost of my graphics cards and move on with some BTC. A strategy that involves mining a ton of different coins and home one of them hits it big probably has greater upside potential. It also has greater risk to completely fail as a strategy.

Topic 2: Star Trek Discovery

Tonight is the night that episode 13 of the CBS streaming series Star Trek Discovery is available. The new Xbox One S is setup to play that episode shortly. Joni is legit excited about new Star Trek episodes. I’m still wondering if I should watch all the Star Trek Voyager Borg episodes instead. It might be better to just watch a couple episodes of Voyager each day instead of trying to watch all the borg episodes back to back. Paying CBS a monthly fee to watch shows with commercial still brings sadness to my life. Maybe at some point CBS will accept TurtleCoin. I would feel better about giving them turtles. I just checked in on the my TurtleCoin mining effort and my wallet has received a payment of 1,028 coins. I guess now would be the time to check off mining 1,000 coins from my to do list for the night. It looks like we missed a few episodes this year already. I’m about to get a bowl of Nearly Naked popcorn. It is pretty good. I guess the last episode we watched was episode 9. Today we are watching episode 10 on the CBS streaming app via our Xbox One S. As you can tell I’m not 100% supportive of CBS charging me for streaming shows, but I do like having new episodes of Star Trek. If I was in charge of television programming, then they would still be making episodes of Firefly. This episode is a massive plot pivot. We will find out shortly if this is massively lazy writing or inventive story telling. It could end up going either way.

Topic 3: Rounding out the night

Today I have been working on catching up to my expected word count. I spent several hour messing around with TurtleCoin today. That was an interesting foray into mining a minor cryptocurrency with a small and wild community. I checked out the Discord website/chat community part of TurtleCoin for an hour or so. It really cemented my thoughts on building a 2nd computer or potentially digging out an old motherboard and dropping a decent graphics card on it. That is probably something that every mining hobbyist has done already. That is where all the graphics cards have gone. I’m going to try to figure out where my pile of old motherboards went. The last time I remember seeing them was in the garage, but that was a couple of weeks ago.

This will be a week where a ton of work needs to happen. It will be very busy. We are quickly approaching February. I’m considering marking February a themed writing month. That is a compelling idea that pulls me in far enough for some consideration, but it does not seem likely for actual execution. The idea of me sticking to a single writing theme for an entire month of producing prose is highly unlikely. February has 28 days. That pretty much equates to writing 84,000 words on a specific theme. I guess it could all be spent writing a thriller novel or maybe a treatise on the future of blockchain. It could just be a month of rambling and roving prose that focuses in on the events of the day.

Topic 4: The final lap of catching up

What a whirlwind of a weekend. Our trusty toaster even gave way this weekend. We had to make a special trip to Costco and pick either the 4 slice or 2 slice toaster. That is pretty much it. They only had two options for toasters at the Costco. Things worked out well enough we went with the 2 slice toaster option. The last toaster never really worked right. It was a horrible product, but we used it until it failed. Costco had a couple options for toaster ovens. We have never had one. They seem rather pleasant. You may not be surprised to know that “toaster oven vs. toaster” is a commonly searched term on Google. Searching for “toaster oven use cases” did not produce as many results as I would have expected. It might have been a better strategy to search for recipes and toaster ovens. I settled in to read an article from the Food Network on the, “13 reasons you are underestimating your toaster oven.” Obviously, the idea of making some cornbread jumped out at me. It is pretty unlikely that we are going to buy a toaster oven and that is undoubtedly also the reason why we don’t have a toaster oven. That was an example of causality in action. Our lack of interest is the reason we don’t have one.

I just realized that we are at like 2,000 words for the day. I could just leave the post like this and move on. That would be admitting defeat.

Topic 5: Breaking out my glasses

I just ended up breaking out my glasses. It took me a minute to try and locate them today. I found pair n-1 and pair n-2. At the moment I’m actually wearing n-2 from a few years back. My new glasses are around here somewhere, but where exactly they have gone I am not sure. Up until a few minutes ago I thought that my new glasses were in the car. It turned out the glasses in the car were actually n-2. Maybe I’ll check my Timbuk2 command messenger bag. One sec.

They were not in the messenger bag either. Now i’m wondering if maybe they got put in a suit pocket and are upstairs somewhere or fell out at the dry cleaners. Today has been a day of the music of Guthrie Govan. That happens from time to time. It is not something that happens every day and Govan is by no means as much a part of my life as the music of Warren Zevon.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. You may not have enjoyed my deep dive into the word of fringe cryptocurrency today. The topic has caught my attention. I learn best when doing applied research. That means really digging into and understanding things in a hands on way. Just reading about working with a command line based cryptocurrency would not be as interesting as actually doing it. Just digging in and reading step by step guides is exciting. It was even more exciting to see the TurtleCoins start to show up. That part of the process really is like mining gold. That rush is more than just being in the wild wild west it is about the promise of future gains. I would be amused to see the value of TurtleCoin go up. That would be the best case scenario. Based on my review of my NiceHash mining data the opportunity cost was about $3.50. I’m sure the process of mining and digging into TurtleCoin provided me more than the opportunity cost in pure entertainment value.

It may be a regular thing for me to dig into and mine a few fringe cryptocurrencies. That means they are new enough to not be on an exchange or be supported by an ecosystem like NiceHash or Coinbase. That also means they have a much smaller market cap and could potentially grow at a much higher multiplier. People are always looking for the next great stock. I guess finding the next great coin might just be like that search. You would have to put in a few caveats about the inherent risk within the cryptocurrency market. The fluctuations are great and the risk of things just disappearing goes up as you venture toward the fringes. It is a strange world where people are publishing white papers and trying to extend the foundations of blockchain for privacy, security, and interesting use cases. We will see where it all ends up and that is something that will probably be highly variable for the next three years.

It is a wild time in the world of cryptocurrencies. So many of them are popping up and the technology is changing rapidly. A lot of Github projects are launching and forking at high speed. That means that we are seeing a great deal of innovation. It also means that the number of scams and technologies that will fail is very high. You have to really pay attention to what you are getting involved in. Warren Buffett and a lot of very skilled evaluators of economics think this is a huge bubble waiting to crash. That should give you pause. My efforts are for research and entertainment purposes. That means if all my coins fall to a value of zero I’m ok with that.

Now the whole concept of building another computer to mine with is probably counter to the sentiment in the previous paragraph. I know that is the case. My interest in building another duel graphics card computer is probably misguided. It is probably based on the fact that I like to build new computers and it seems like an interesting thing to do given the potential offset of cost from NiceHash mining. The market could tank and remove the possibility of that offset. That a very real concern about this whole cryptocurrency mining bubble that exists. It all could come crashing down or the party could go on for a year or two. We will see for sure. I’m kind of curious to see which way it will end up going.

Ok. I need to go buy a bag of salt for the driveway. Apparently it is supposed to snow later this week and I need to be prepared. That should be pretty easy. I’m going to buy a bucket to keep the salt in as well. We had a ton of snow that has been slowly melting in the yard, but we lucked out and did not have all that much ice in the driveway. That is where things get really difficult. Snow is easy enough to deal with, but ice is an entirely different story altogether.

Getting to 3,000 words today was rather hard. It took a lot of effort and determination to push to hitting the goal. Maybe that comes at a cost to the quality of the prose being produced or maybe it just washes out in the end. Either way it happened. It is done. We hit 3,000 words and I’m going to move on to writing a post for tomorrow. I need to make sure that I do not fall behind again on a weekend.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 28 the one with Denver Nuggets, Butterflies, and my 6th NiceHash miner payment

Nuggets game seats

2018: Day 28 the one with Denver Nuggets, Butterflies, and my 6th NiceHash miner payment
Word count 72,117 + 3,011 or 75,128 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Get some espresso. Check. Consume that espreso and start the day. Check. Facing a questionable parth forward to writing success tonight is going to be about sprinting to 3,000 words. Between visiting the Butterfly Pavilion all morning for a birthday party and watching an entire Denver Nuggets game today was packed with out of the house adventure. Maybe we should just start with the basic themes that are fueling my writing this year and then try to dig deep for some thoughtful words to close today out. That sounds like a good method to move forward at the moment. The time to write is now. This written session will be all about catching up and breaking through an obstacles or barriers that might be slowing me down.

First up just might be an update on where things stand based on my 100 day cryptocurrency mining marathon. Earlier today all of my cryptocurrency mining efforts yielded a 6th NiceHash wallet payment. My computer has been running the NiceHash Miner software v2.0.1.9 all day every day with two GTX 1060 graphics cards. That resulted in a payment very early this morning of 0.00120973 BTC with a fee of 0.00002469 BTC. That is about $13.78 in USD. My journey toward mining cryptocurrency for 100 straight days continues. That pretty much means that we will be mining from Monday, January 1, 2018, until Wednesday, April 11, 2018. During that time frame every two payments from NiceHash I’m able to transfer funds for free to the Coinbase wallet. Today I ended up with a total of 0.0072 BTC in my Coinbase wallet. That works out to about $82.31 in USD. That number fluctuates rapidly throughout the day. My mining efforts so far are pushing closer and closer to paying off my graphics card purchase.

NiceHash wallet payments in reverse order:

6. 2018-01-27 04:51:21 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00120973 BTC
5. 2018-01-24 04:25:25 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00125795 BTC
4. 2018-01-21 05:32:06 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00133244 BTC
3. 2018-01-18 04:27:55 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00119401 BTC
2. 2018-01-15 04:30:34 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00105970 BTC
1. 2018-01-13 04:51:00 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00118327 BTC

At this point adding an NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti graphics card to my computer case would be the best option to really kick up my mining efforts. Unfortunately, the prices of those cards have gone up so much that it does not really make sense to add one for 100 days of mining. It would take a lot longer than 100 days to mine enough using NiceHash Miner to recoup the costs. Assuming that the the NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti fully optimized could make about 6 dollars per day and cost about $1,000.00 it would take about 166.66 (decimal repeating of course) days to make back the investment on a pure cash basis. That is not really all that bad all things considered, but it is longer than my timeframe. I’m going to sit back and wait for some sweet NVIDIA Volta or Ampere architecture cards to start rolling out into the wild. You can probably imagine that over the course of the next few weeks I’ll be trying to learn more about the graphics cards that NVIDIA is going to be producing in 2018. The Pascal architecture was an epic leap forward that really did change the landscape of computer graphics. That type of achievement leaves people asking what will be next. People are curious about that from three different perspectives. First, gamers interested in VR, 4K, or just super immersive displays. Second, people driving deep learning forward are hungry for more and more CUDA cores to drive processing forward in new and interesting ways. Third, the increasingly wild wild west of cryptocurrency miners is always looking for the next great technology to increase profitability.

Topic 0: A Kevin Rose podcast

Thanks to the power of a Google Play podcast subscription I have been listening to Block Zero a podcast about cryptocurrency from Kevin Rose. Without hesitation I can say that Kevin has been contributing to my general entertainment for over a decade. These first three podcasts for Block Zero have been really good. The first episode in the series went down a general macroeconomic rabbit hole that was super interesting and oddly technical. It was really interesting to listen to a very engaging conversation about the future of blockchain and just what the idealized version of the technology could do within the broader context of global economies. Each of these podcasts is probably too involved in technological discussions to truly pull in a general audience, but I appreciated them. I guess my note on this one would be a thank you to Kevin Rose for putting this podcast together. Maybe I will figure out how to send Kevin Rose a thank you tweet later on today. I’m not sure if this humble blog is something that draws the attention of Kevin on a daily basis. Maybe Twitter is not the right platform either, but hey it won’t hurt anything to give it a try.

Topic 1: Top Chef Colorado S15 Ep6

It seemed like a good idea it to put on Top Chef Colorado Season 15 episode 6 during naptime at the house. That did not seem to help my writing progress. Today was one of those days that I got sucked into watching the show instead of writing. It turns out that was a questionable choice based on my time management today. Both Joni and I have been rooting for Brother Luck on Top Chef this year. We were patrons of the Craftwood Inn back in Colorado Springs back when Brother Luck was the chef. The episode today was just maddening to watch. I probably should have just spent that entire hour head down writing. That would have helped out my word count. Trying to circle back and write 3,000 words after attending a Denver Nuggets game that started at 7:00 PM on a Saturday night might not have been my best effort at decision making.

Topic 2: Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks

Gates opened at 6:00 PM for the game. We left the house right after 5:30 PM. That gave us enough time to get gasoline and make our way to the Pepsi Center. Traffic was hit or miss just like any journey down I-25. It is a highway listed on the map and it does have all sorts of speed ups and slow downs. Congestion and just out and out poor design have plagued travels for years. Things never really go smoothly on that road. Bottlenecking at on ramps and just general problems happen all the time. Getting to the game on time worked out well enough. We were able to park right in the first lot off Speer. They call it Toyota something. We ended up parking in the second row of cars facing the main entrance road for the Pepsi Center. It was very easy to part and ultimately very easy to get back out of the parking lot. The only really befuddling thing that happened was related to the price of parking. It was $20 cash to park in that lot or $15 if you paid by credit card. That seemed like a scam of some sort, but the printed signs said the same thing. If it was a scam, then they were all in on it. I checked Twitter and nobody else seems to be worried about it.

After arriving and getting parked we ended up being able to walk across the street and stand in line for about 5 minutes before the doors opened at 6:00 PM. Things were going well and we were on our way to our seats. Our seats were just 7 rows back in kind of a corner area to right of a basket. It was super easy for John to be able to really watch the game up close. Essentially we were right next to the television cameras. I’m sure they were really expensive and sadly only HD ready. They were not even filming the game in stunning 4K resolution. That has to change at some point. A major leap in the technology infrastructure surrounding filming live sporting events probably has to change. Those courtside cameras and the cabling, internet pipe, and video editing and processing equipment will have to be upgraded to support 4K content.

This item needs to be addressed, but it did not really upset me at the time. It just sort of grossed me out. John dropped a hot dog on the ground. It resulted in having to make a hard call on what exactly to do with it. It would have been pretty easy to let the kid eat a hot dog off the Pepsi Center floor. Alternatively, it would have been an option to rip my slice of pizza in half and call it good. Obviously, I ripped my slice of Marco’s pizza in half and we abandoned the hot dog. It was one of those things were the hot dog made it from the concessions stand all the way down the steps to our seats. In the process of trying to sit down and add ketchup from packets to the hot dog it just sort of rolled out of the tray and onto the floor. I actually became aware of it from the folks walking by saying “Oh no” and muttering. These things happen I guess.

National Basketball Association games are just better in person. Things seem to move faster. You can really see the pace of play. Something is always happening. They pretty much throw t-shirts or other things into the stands throughout the night. Games are managed really well and things are entertaining. John Paul made it through the entire game. 48 minutes of basketball were viewed. The Nuggets won the game with a defensive stand. All and all things went pretty well. I think the game turned out to be a great birthday present. We even got a Denver Nuggets knit hat for $5 at the start of the game. I think we also got a 1990’s Nuggets poster of some sort. I’m not entirely sure what it was we did not unroll it. We also got an XL Denver Nuggets shirt during one of the 3 point basket celebrations. The person sitting in front of us with a Denver Nuggets Faried 35 jersey on snatched the shirt out of the air one handed and in one fluid motion handed it to John.

Topic 3: Rounding out the day

Without a solid opening vignette yesterday and some poor planning we are at about 2,000 words for the day. I wrote until falling asleep. My best effort was not good enough to bring success to this writing endeavor for the day. My goal went unfulfilled. That is problematic. Right now we are eating into my one day buffer. We have talked about it a little bit before, but I try to finish up the blog post for the next day about 24 hours ahead of posting schedule. That gives me enough buffer room to keep on moving and have some pauses in the whole process. It also gives me enough room to catch up if something goes wrong within my writing schedule. That is what happened this weekend. Right now these words being written really early in the morning should be for tomorrow not today. That pretty much means that throughout Sunday I will be trying to play catch up. It is not that bad really. Today is a day where i just need to produce over 4,000 words to close out the week on a positive note.

I just uploaded 7 photos from the game last night to my blogging software media folder. That means that throughout the week you will get to see some wild and exciting photographs of live NBA action or maybe just photos of the court. That is good news on the thumbnail front. Either I will captures something better this week or I already have it covered. You would be surprised at how much capturing a good thumbnail weights on me throughout the day. Some days I just do not travel around very much. You have to really focus in on taking good photographs when you are out and about to have unique and interesting thumbnails. The only place you would really see them all in chronological order would be on Twitter. It saves all the media from my tweets in one general area. Each blog post contains the photos, but they do not get saved as a gallery anywhere on my website. Pretty soon I will have amassed 31 photos for the month of January. I do not think they will be compiled into a coffee table book of epic photographic artwork.

This blog post for today might just come up short. Writing at this daily pace is supposed to force me to dig deeper and cover topics more fully. That does seem to be happening. I am starting to really move beyond being purely word economic as a writer and provide better coverage of content. Expanding coverage and really thinking about the topics being covered helps fill out all of the supporting details or explore related reasoning. On a side note, I have noticed that my typing this morning is drawing more and more red squiggles from Google Docs. That pretty indicates that I am tired. Fully booted up and well rested my typing is pretty spot on. When I get tired I start leaving out words from sentences and letters from words. The general idea and intent of the expressence are their, but the utterance itself lacks grammatical fortitude.

Pancakes just happened. That means that this catch up writing session has just extended past the early hours of the morning into just the morning. Today I gave some vegetarian hot and spicy patties a try. They were pretty good. I have been eating the maple version with my pancakes. I just switched out my music from industrial rock to the top songs from Halestorm. I had to ask the internet what category of rock Halestorm the band falls into. Apparently if American hard rock was a category they would be the epitome of that category. Otherwise they are probably considered to be hard rock. I am certain that they are not an industrial rock band.

Topic 4: That last effort to close things out

Things are alive in the house by now. Between the wildness of 2 dogs and 2 kids things could be classified between running amuck and outright chaos. That happens. I’m about to go fill up my 48 ounce Nalgene with water for the day. That is pretty much the official start of my day. It lets me know just how much water is on tap and that things are moving right along. Today was a day that started with music vs. listening to the news. Listening to the news this year has been an interesting endeavor. My honest belief is that I could do a better job moderating a news cast than most of the anchors that allow people to just talk over each other in an endless string of self serving sound bytes. That type of surface level conversation compresses the learning potential of the news and creates an echo chamber of political edges that ignore the general will of the people. People just want to know what is going on in the world around them. They want to know if the things that are going on are going to impact them in a positive or negative way. Most of the politics surrounding everything else is more complex than a series of sound bytes is ever going to be able to cover. Seriously, covering things in a meaningful way would take a lot more time than what even the 24 hour news channels devote to anything. It probably has to do with the nature of how news is consumed in single servings at random times. Building up a ton of knowledge about a topic through deep and meaningful conversation requires time. Single serving consumption of major news events with a few minutes here and a few minutes there will never thread the needle to understanding of complex issues. So we have that communication problem to overcome.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. Today has hands down been a day of playing catch up. This has been a busy weekend. That happens from time to time. In this household it is going to happen at least twice a year on birthday weekends. Figuring out how to best manage the challenge of writing 3,000 words a day and not dropping any other balls is really difficult. That might just sound like hyperbole, but it is really just literal prose. Keeping up with my 1,000,000 words in a year challenge is going to require a huge time commitment, but it really should not stand in the way of general family merriment. Oops, I forgot to fill up that water bottle. I’ll be right back…

I’m back to round out those last 50 words necessary to push this post up and over the 3,000 word threshold. Those words will be written one word at a time with a positive attitude focused on what can be done and what is possible as this day starts to kick into high gear. Ok —- we are about to hit 3,000 words and be caught up just in time to start working on another 3,000 words for today.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 27 the one where we talked some core values and wondered about dinner

parking lot snow

2018: Day 27 the one where we talked some core values and wondered about dinner
Word count 69,107 + 3,010 or 72,117 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Tonight we are going out to dinner. I am rather excited about it. It is very rare that we have an adult dinner out on the town. Things went well enough. The weather in Denver has been unseasonably warm. We have had a lot less snow than I have seen before. Things did get down to about 30 degree tonight. You might have noticed that the blog post is starting a little later in the timeline today than usual. Things just worked out that way. Writing tonight started late at 7:46 PM. Normally in the morning a quick little vignette writing session occurs. That vignette gets a little bit autobiographical or very focused on a specific topic. Even a few words strung together makes things a little bit easier for the evening writing session. Today was just not want of those days. I have an idea why that happened, but it is less than flattering.

Recovering from that slight fall in the backyard the other day is taking longer than expected. It seems like that is the case more and more as each year passes. Today I went with a ThermaCare back heat wraps. It worked well enough to remove the stiffness and get me back up and running. Some basic stretching also seemed to help. It was really just one of those take a step and sorta tumble over falls in the backyard on a bunch of ice covered in snow. Besides hurting my pride it really was just my full weight landing on my back. Nothing got bruised, broken, or sprained. That happened. We talked about it. I am going to try to move on from it. For those of you who know me well enough to know that a big old tumble displeased me greatly.

My entire office desk is now cleaned up and ready to go. That pretty much means you are probably getting a random fish photograph as a thumbnail today. I’m sure that will bring joy to your life. Pictures of fishes from the Denver Downtown Aquarium are the best. You are in luck that I do not have that many more of them to share with you. Tomorrow when we visit the Butterfly Pavilion for a birthday party i will have to replenish my stock photography backstore. Having a unique and interesting photo to link to each blog post is really beyond my current skills. I’m sure by summer it will have devolved into a cute puppy photo of the day.

Overall my office is about half way cleaned up. If you divide it up into four quadrants, then the two closest to the wall that include my desk are good to go. The two quadrants that include the doors are still a mess. Oh wow Captain Pickles just got right up in my face while I was writing with my Bose Qc35 headphones on. These headphones really are good at noise cancelling I did not even remotely see the dog approaching. Most of the time I end up writing with just one headphone on and the other sorta half off my ear so that I can hear things going on around me. Tonight based on the amount of productivity that needs to occur in a very short window I thought it would be a good idea to just lock in and focus on writing. To that end the noise cancelling headphones were fully engaged. They worked. I was surprised. That will probably happen again at some point.

Topic 1: My core values

This topic could take awhile or maybe I will end up being overly word economic and it will just take a few sentences. You will know which way it went as you keep reading this section. It should become pretty obvious which way it went. My core values are an expression of where I am at today. They fit with my thoughts at this moment. Maybe they will change over time, but they have been in place for some time. It bascily for better or worse goes a little bit like this: collaboration, transparency, and preventing failure are the triumvirate of values that guide my actions. Yeah I know what that word means, but I like to extend it to operationally cover three guiding values. You may have guessed that I am not sorry for stringing that sentence together or extending the meaning of that one word. I’m going to spend the next three paragraphs describing what those values mean to me. You might have a little different take on them, but that is ok.

Collaboration to me describes the process of working with a myriad of different folks to accomplish common goals. Sure you can collaborate with just one person, but in my experience things are usually more complex than that in the real world. The reason for me that collaboration is a value that stands out is pretty simple. Together we have the potential to accomplish great things. Together we are better together (Putnam, 2004). The broader academy of human thought that contains all of our written knowledge was built on the shoulder of giants. It would be pure hubris to believe that one person alone can consome and work with all the knowledge we have accumulated so far. At this point that is highly unlikely and getting more unlikely ever day. We all process things differently and working together through collaboration is one of the best ways to ensure that we move forward. That is pretty much the one paragraph summary of why I value collaboration as a core value.

You probably thought that my values would just be a restatement of the bushido code and all 8 virtues involved in that. I don’t really have the energy at the moment to really explain the difference between values and virtues, but that is essentially the diatribe that should be occuring right here right now. Maybe at some point along the journey to writing 1,000,000 words in the same year that comparison is coming your way. It probably is coming your way. Today is not that day. Today is the day we are going to talk about three values and move on to the next topic. We covered collaboration without enough of an example to help bring things into focus.

Transparency is an interesting value to care about. I have written millions of words and published a ton of them online. You probably can find my thoughts on just about any topic worth discussing. My general take on things is that you put everything on the table and figure out the right path forward. That is much easy to say than it is to accomplish. The easiest way to describe transparency is to evaluate negotiating without anything to hide. My basic premise within that evaluation is to assert when all the cards are on the table everybody knows everything that is going on and negotiating the next move is pretty easy. Within the business world transparency is about avoiding surprises and moving along without hiding anything. That explanation is probably not my best effort. I will try to circle back to transparency and provide you with a better example. That last sentence is an example of being transparent, but it is probably just as lacking as the rest of the paragraph.

Maybe the last value of preventing failure will turn out better. Writers write and write well. My last couple paragraphs are making me question whether or not my writing is improving by producing 3,000 words per day. Part of accepting the value of preventing failure is going all meta on things and thinking about the overall situation and how failure can be prevented. Yeah —- I know that my definition of preventing failure has to use other words to define it or it will be lacking. It works like this from a definition perspective preventing failure is about removing the barriers or obstacles that would prevent or obstruct the path to success. Maybe it would have been easier to just throw up #winning and move on. Yeah that last sentence was indulgent. Maybe if i was better at preventing failure a little bit of self-censorship would have prevented you from having to read that sentence. You are probably getting the point of this value without any witty or insightful prose helping to guide you along the way.

Together collaboration, transparency, and preventing failure are the values that have caught my attention and help guide my actions. They are all focused on helping to push things forward and improve the world around us. That is a pretty strong theme that you will find in my writing as you keep reading throughout this year. Together those values help inform my journey. I’m sure you can probably figure out better examples or sum things up in a better way. At some point, I’ll take a moment when I am really inspired and writing world class prose to give it give it another go and string something together that is really outstanding on the subject. Maybe my efforts today will muddle through enough that the topics themselves will be able to carry the day.

Topic 2: Nuggets basketball games

We justed to drive down from Boulder, Colorado to attend some Denver Nuggets basketball games. It was not something that inspired me to buy season tickets or anything, but it was a memorable part of my Boulder experience. That is a town with a wealth of things to do if you are willing to get out and about. Maybe the same can be said for Colorado in general, but that is a topic for another day. Today we focusing in on my interest in Denver Nuggets basketball games. Tomorrow night I’m going to go see the Denver Nuggets play the Dallas Mavericks. NBA games are usually pretty good. Maybe that last statement should be modified a little bit. Regular season games can run the gambit in terms of quality. For the most part my argument would be that attending games in person is usually a pretty good experience. It is an experience of non stop things happening.

I’m worried that tomorrow may be a shorter blog post. Between the Butterfly Pavilion and a Denver Nuggets Game my window to write will be pretty limited. That pretty much means that I am going to need to pick a topic from the list below and knockout 3,000 words in a rapidfire way. To achieve that it will have to be a topic that I’m very passionate about. Anything less than inspiring passion will probably result in a disappointing writing session. To get things done I will need to sit down and write nonstop for a solid hour or more tomorrow. We will see if that happens. It could happen. We could end up on track.

Topic 3: Rounding out the night

Tonight we made it through a few topics. This whole writing thing is more or less about reaching this point right here right now. This is the point in my pure stream of consciousness where things could go in just about any direction. My mind is clear and my writing is just on the razor’s edge of continuing or stopping. That happens from time to time. Intellectually I am trying to take topics to the point of exhaustion where everything about them that needs to be said has been said. That is different from taking things to the point of physical exhaustion. That just happens at the end of the day for the most part. You are probably aware of my habit of just being done writing and setting this Chromebook down. At the moment this blog post needs to go on for another 1,000 words. I am also seriously considering just going to sleep and finishing up this post in the morning. That may not be the worst strategy for producing high quality prose. Sometimes when you are done writing you are done and pushing forward does not yield anything of quality.

The thumbnail selected for today is of a parking lot snow pile and a decent view of the mountains. I figured this picture put things in focus. The mountains are beautiful and pretty much permanent. That snow pile stands out in the picture, but it is a very temporary feature in the parking lot. Things will warm up and the snow will melt. The mountains will remain the same in the background throughout my lifetime. That is pretty much how that works. Colorado sends up with these epic snow piles in parking lots. Snow comes and gets cleared from the pavement. It all ends up in these epic piles. They take forever to melt. Each pile just hangs out and most of the time gets very dirty. Some of the darkest snow piles happen at the end of the melt cycle. You can imagine that they pick up all sorts of nonsense from the entire parking lot and end up piling it with the snow together in a giant heep.

Topic 4: My next big cleaning challenge

Right now in my office the worst mess is probably sitting on my bookshelves. I have two legal bookshelves in the back of my office. You may have seen them on my YouTube live streams. They are full of books and otherwise covered in things that probably should not be on the shelves. Off camera to the right is a built in bookshelf. It is just packed full of nonsense. Only two of the six shelves are really full of books. Yeah you read that correctly four of the six shelves are mostly full of nonsense. It is better than keeping all that nonsense on the floor, but it is still where all the stuff from my office ended up. It is the last bastion of clutter in my newly cleaned up office.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. Copy and paste between Google Docs and my blogging software is still working. That is fantastic and is saving me several minutes each day. Those minutes should be put right back into writing world class prose. It does not appear that is happening today. I’m about to go make a piece of raisin toast and get ready to head out to the Butterfly Pavilion. My supply of lungo Nespresso pods has become dangerously low. I need to remember to put in an order for some lungo pods from the Nespresso website. The website has 4 different types of lungo pods the Envivo, Fortissio, Vivalto, and Lunzio. I’m pretty sure that all of the pods are decent. They were all in the welcome package I think. This is not really helping me close out the postscript. I’m going to have to change subjects away from talking about lungo pods and dig into something else.

Maybe that next thing will be related to where we are in the whole writing cycle. We are very quickly approaching the end of the first full month of writing 3,000 words per day. In terms of months that will put this endeavor at 1 of 12 months complete. Sure I am rapidly approaching the 100,000 words milestone. That milestone will put me at 10% of the goal complete. I might have to celebrate that milestone in some way. It would have been awesome if that 100,000 words had all been written in the month of January. That would have been an epic and awesome monthly achievement. It could still happen, but things will probably end up falling a little short. I am still working on a better word count plugin for my blog posts. Right now I’m just showing the total counts at the top of the post to give you an idea of where we are at in the journey. In terms of sorting all these words my blog system uses both month and category to help sort through words.

I checked and the edit category section does not have an option to display them ascending instead of descending. It would be nice to be able to read all the posts in chronological order. Right now they are sort of upside down in terms of the order they were written. That is something that I probably need to figure out before the end of this journey. Arching all of these words in a readable way would be a good idea. The other method of sorting is the monthly archive feature. It is located at the very bottom of the page if you were wondering. It says archives and then select month. I opened the drop down and picked January 2018. That bucket of posts includes 26 total blog missives at this point. That is my highest monthly output since January 2015. That month included 30 posts. It would be nice to be able to compare the word counts between the two months to see if I have picked up speed or if things have slowed down over the years.

The raisin toast turned out pretty well today. Our toaster actually just died today. This toast was made in the oven. I’m guessing the purchase of a new toaster is on the horizon.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 26 the one where I cleaned my office and moved my computer

my new computer door

2018: Day 26 the one where I cleaned my office and moved my computer
Word count 66,081 + 3,026 or 69,107 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Some epic office cleaning finally happened today. The folks over at Cooler Master USA shipped me a Trooper style case door for my Storm Stryker case. It fits great on the left side of the case. The only problem being that the Trooper and Storm Stryker cases have very different color schemes. The Storm Stryker case by Cooler Master is all white with some black trim. The Trooper case is black with red accents. To compensate for the mismatch on my computer case my office had to be cleaned. I turned the new Trooper door to face away from me toward the wall and now everything seems fine. For a regular gaming computer build the Cooler Master Storm Stryker or Trooper cases are very good. They have a ton of features and are well thought out.

The Storm Stryker case now has a working side door with a solid vent for my Noctua NF-A20 PWM premium-quality quiet 200mm fan from Noctua Cooling Solutions. You might be thinking that a 200mm fan venting out the side of the case is patently and markedly ridiculous. It is possible that your assessment is correct, but that is the only way I could manage to cool down my 2 GTX 1060 cards cards that are running at 100% capacity thanks to the NiceHash Miner v2.0.1.9 software. Cryptocurrency mining generates a ton of heat. Dissipating that much heat was not what the Storm Stryker case was designed to handle. It is a gaming case. These mining types cases use a totally different fan setup.

I’ll try to figure out how to merge two photos together to show you the before and after state in my office within today’s thumbnail. Thanks to the power of the Google Photos collage feature on my Pixel 2 XL android phone that brings together 2 to 9 photos you are going to get to see a sweet sweet thumbnail today. I managed to merge 4 photos together of the computer case. That one turned out poorly. I managed to get just two photos put together. It should give you a very clear idea of why my office had to be cleaned and why my Storm Stryker had to be moved. Cleaning my office felt pretty good. It will probably make me more productive. Ok —- it probably has nothing to do with my level of productivity, but it is better to have a clean office than a dirty office.

I just did a preview of that thumbnail in the blog format. The quality is not the best, but it does show my horrific cable management. The only drawback of the collage feature is the low image quality. It stiches the photos together, but it does it at a much lower resolution. I guess that is the price of using an app feature vs. opening a true photo editor and combining the photos. Objectively, my cable management needs to improve. Maybe that is what will be on tap for tomorrow. Using some zip ties to manage the cables is probably the right thing to do for my office. You have probably already guessed that those cables have gone completely unmanaged for over 3 years. You could question why now why tomorrow could be the day that these cables get managed. The answer is simple enough. That one photo made me really take a look under my desk and realize that those cables are just all over the place.

I spent some time looking at the Corsair Carbide Series Air 740 high airflow ATX cube case today. That would be my first time a case of mine would not have an external optical disc drive. It has been years since I owned an external CD writer. Now seems like the right moment for a few quick eBay searches. My searches did turn up a wonderful Xbox 360 external HD DVD drive for sale. You can imagine that seemed like an inviting purchase. I do have an entire shelf of HD DVDs. My one HD DVD drive is sitting in my Lian Li cube case. That case has a floppy, a zip drive, DVD, CD, Blu-ray, and HD DVD drives. I think the zip drive is a classic zip 250 unit. I’m not even sure my modern motherboard has all the IDE pin connections for those devices. The cable management on that setup is better. Apparently, when that case was assembled I cared about cable management.

Based on past experiences with computer builds it will take about 6 months of browsing to make a decision. That could very be an indication that I enjoy the hunt and putting together computer builds. Maybe the process of hunting for the right computer configuration is more appealing than the process of assembling it. My hesitation probably has to do with the price and just how much it costs to build a top of the line custom build computer system these days. Just buying a system that is manufactured at volume and solid in a retail store probably delivers a better value. That is not really how I go about building computers. They are generally built for coding and workstation type efforts mixed with a little bit of gaming. I drive my workstation computer builds pretty hard from time to time and that is not something that is going to diminish. It is probably something that is going to get worse based on the more advanced deep learning builds in my future.

At some point this year, I’m going to dig back into building the Bob, Alice, and Eve adversarial cryptography problem set. That is something that I think is worth my attention and is worthy of a lot more study in terms of understanding and replicating exactly how spontaneous communication rules changes would be hashed out between Bob and Alice. That is a problem space that has drawn my attention before and is worth a little bit more evaluation.

Topic 1: NVIDIA webinars are pretty great

The folks over at NVIDIA really wanted me to attend a webinar called, “Develop and Deploy Deep Learning Services at the Edge with IBM.” It was during the day and that just did not happen. They just sent over a link to the webinar with a sweet “Watch Recording” image right in the middle of the email. Oh my, the content was pre-recorded. That means I’m watching a recording of a pre-recorded webcast. They did host a live QA that I missed. Their work in AI is one of the main reasons that I bought an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB Founders Edition graphics card directly from NVIDIA. I ended up paying more than I normally would for a graphics card back in 2016. Part of that was knowing that I was buying into the NVIDIA echo system and all of their efforts to advance deep learning.

I still don’t really use my Bose Qc35 bluetooth headphones with my Chromebook very often. They are mostly reserved for the hour before bedtime. That hour is spent listening to music on my Pixel 2 XL android powered smartphone. The first time I got TensorFlow up and running on an instance of Ubuntu with my GTX 1060 was exciting. I may or may not have literally taken a victory lap around the house. Yeah —- I totally did that. It happened. Sometimes the battle to get software to work is really taxing. You end up engaging in some dangerous Googling to solve the problems. You hope maybe that watching one more YouTube video will provide the answer. The honest truth right now is that YouTube really is full of some awesome step by step guides from people. The amount of information and guides we can access right now is astounding. The first time I installed Suse linux I read part of a manual in German.

Topic 2: Cleaning my office

We are back to the topic that dominated today’s vignette. During the course of typing tonight my mind wandered to questions of both how and why I have so much stuff in my office. Maybe it is time to just simply move from one quadrant to the next and get rid of everything that does not need to be in my office. Most of that stuff has no reason for being in my office. A lot of it should probably either be sold or thrown away. It might be time for the great eBay purge of 2018. Most of the time my eBay usage is related to purchasing sports cards. A lot of those purchases are professionally graded and encapsulated George Brett cards. That is a topic for another day. The only real drawback of selling a bunch of stuff on eBay is the process of having to drop stuff in the mail every time it sells. All that packaging and mailing of stuff will be a lot of work. That may be the price of doing business in this case.

A lot of the junk in my office just adds to what I would call a general state of clutter. One of the purposes of buying a tempered glass desk was to avoid clutter. I remember buying this Studio RTA executive desk. That desk is made up of a 56 inch executive desk section and a 44 inch computer desk section. They have a middle connector that allows them to form up into an executive L shape in the proportions described above. That desk from Studio RTA will probably outlast everything else in the entire house. Seriously, they made it pretty much indestructible. It is hands down the most durable piece of furniture I have ever owned. I remember buying it, but I do not remember exactly when that was. That is one of those things that seems to be lost to the ages. I have had it for at least 12 years. Back in college I had a door on top of two filing cabinets as a desk in my last apartment. That worked out pretty well from what I can remember. That was a rabbit hole that I just tumbled down. I started looking back at my photo archive to try to figure out when that desk was purchased. That is thirty minutes that are going forever.

Topic 3: Backing up my files

I used to be really good about making weekly backup discs with all my files on them. That was back when they would all fit on a CD and eventually a DVD. I have been wondering if those files are still valid on the discs. Every optical disc has a shelf life and some of them are hitting 10 years. That probably means it would be a good idea to go back and check on them. Some of my camcorder tapes are even older. I wonder if they are all still working. The problem with those tapes is that they are all standard definition. Even the thought of working with standard definition files on my computer makes me sad. I’m sure at some point even the thought of working with sweet sweet 4K video will feel the same way. We have made some amazing advances in content over the years and upscaling helps, but sometimes the original content ends up being pretty far behind.

Maybe tomorrow morning I’ll try to plug a firewire card into a pci slot within my Storm Stryker case. I’m hoping that maybe just maybe the firewire cable is in the bag with the camcorder. However, if my memory serves me correctly the majority of those tapes might be wedding footage. I have been a videographer at a number of weddings. To the best of my knowledge we have never actually watched our wedding video. We have some pictures up on the walls of the house so those got some use out of them. Wedding videos always sound like a good idea, but who really goes back and watches them all the time.

Topic 4: Closing out the night

Tonight I’m listening to some music by the band Halestorm. That seems to be working out well enough. My writing efforts started off strong and are fading fast. I’m trying to avoid shutting down my Chromebook at 2,000 words. That type of act just causes me to fall behind my writing goal. It has been taking about 1,500 words to reach what now feels like a tipping point. It is a point where the things that needed to be said are long since written and something else is starting to happen. My efforts are normally driven by a very pure stream of consciousness style writing effort. Now we are following this somewhat moe structured stream of consciousness. The end result as you can tell is this rambling prose. Most of it has simply been written without any editing. That is interesting in and of itself. My writing skills are improving to the point where my efforts are readable even without extensive editing.

Today was one of those days where the new puppy Captain Pickles barked a lot. Maybe now is the time to stop calling the dog new. We have had the dog for like 4 months now or something like that. It took some time, but I think the dog considered this to be home. Throughout the day the dogs mostly just nap in my office. I got them a new bed at Costco the other day. It kind of has shag carpet and an L shaped edge. Peppercorn the dog our 12 year old australian cattle dog/blue heeler mix really seems to like it. Over the course of the years we have seen Peppercorn sleep more and more each year. I guess that is how it works.

Today after cleaning my office I did notice that the heat appears to be climbing with the new configuration. It probably has to do with putting the computer up on some wooden blocks. You can kind of see them in the thumbnail. The resulting inch or so of separation between the carpet and the bottom of the computer allowed one of the case fans to work better. Right in front of the power supply I had installed a Corsair Air Series AF120 LED quiet edition high airflow fan. That little fan with a little more space was able to cause a lot more heat to leave my computer case. It is pulling a ton of air from the floor up into the area directly below the graphics cards.

Yesterday before going to bed I used the MSI Afterburner program to turn down the power limit on each card to 75%. That allowed the cards to run at much lower temperature overnight. It appears the NiceHash Miner v2.0.1.9 software ran fine overnight with the graphics cards running at 75%. It probably lowers the overall hash power per day. I’m going to do some analysis to figure out what type of hit my mining effort is taking.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. Friday is going to be a very interesting day. You may have noticed that each of these blog posts is about 24 hours behind real time. I worked very hard initially to write enough words in the first couple of days to ensure that a blog post could occur every day. All of the noise that kept me up on new years eve did not hurt that process. Each day I try to make sure that 3,000 words are ready to publish in the evening. My goal is to make sure that each day before the end of my morning writing session a blog post is ready to publish. That is pretty much how the mechanics work.

This morning I had a lungo pull of coffee from my Nespresso Expert machine. It looks like today I’m going to need to order some more lungo style pods. At the time of purchasing my Nespresso machine I did not really understand that the pods could not be purchased anywhere near me. They have some boutique stores and an online store. You can get the pods from a few different places online, but you better plan to have more on the way before you run out of pods. The real benefit of ordering the lungo pods is that it takes one of them to get 3.75 ounces of coffee. I prefer to use one pod to make a lungo vs. two pods to make a double shot of espresso.

Today I’m going to devote some time to cleaning up my desk. Underneath my desk is clean. The top of the desk needs some work. Today is the day that is going to happen. Maybe during cleaning up the top of my desk I will manage to zip tie all the cables. Today will be a day of cleaning and working to get everything in order. That just might involve playing a few Warren Zevon vinyl records. I’m going to start from one edge of my desk and just clean from left to right. I’m setting a timer of 1 hour to get that done this morning.

This one last sentence was writing to drag this blog post up over the 3,000 word threshold. I’m not sure if that is good or bad or if it is just how things are now. Maybe it is an epic conclusion to a wild day.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

Day 25 the one where I got my 5th NiceHash wallet payment

a fish

2018: Day 25 the one where I got my 5th NiceHash wallet payment
Word count 63,058 + 3,023 or 66,081 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

This whole cryptocurrency mining effort seems to be working out ok. We are moving right along toward my 100 day mining goal. Today I apparently did not drink enough water. Every day my desk is graced with a Nalgene made in the USA everyday 48 oz water bottle. Today however I have only worked my way down to the 32 oz water line. That means I’m going to be drinking a bunch of water during this writing sessions tonight. Drinking 68 oz of water per day seems like a good idea. At this point I’m able to remember to drink that 48 oz water bottle throughout the work day. It is a good start toward drinking 68 oz of water per day. It seems like a decent goal.

Very early this morning the folks over at NiceHash sent a 5th payment to my NiceHash wallet. That means that between January 13, 2018 and January 24, 2018 I have seen 5 payments over .001 BTC to my wallet. Every one of those payments is just a fraction of a bitcoin, but they do add up over time. I’m going to hold every one of these BTC payments until we hit 100 days of mining. That type of action would normally indicate that I believe the value of bitcoin will be increasing. Please don’t read that type of endorsement into my actions. I’m just doing it as part of a research study. A study that you get to read about every day as you enjoy my musings on a daily basis.

NiceHash wallet payments in reverse order:

2018-01-24 04:25:25 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00125795 BTC
2018-01-21 05:32:06 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00133244 BTC
2018-01-18 04:27:55 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00119401 BTC
2018-01-15 04:30:34 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00105970 BTC
2018-01-13 04:51:00 NiceHash Mining payment → 0.00118327 BTC

It takes 2 payments from NiceHash to have enough BTC to transfer for free from my NiceHash wallet to my Coinbase account. According to the dashboard my next payment from NiceHash will happen on or around January 27, 2018. You can probably recognize the pattern here that is happening from my mining efforts. About every 3 days NiceHash pays out some BTC. Every 6 days I’m able to transfer that BTC to Coinbase. You cannot sell BTC from the NiceHash wallet which means that only the BTC that makes it over to Coinbase can be sold for USD. You can buy mining power via NiceHash and you can be coins directly on the Coinbase exchange. Either way it all seems very interesting.

Back on January 10, 2018, Warren Buffett rebuked the value of bitcoin. Ever since that moment the already wild cryptocurrency ride has gotten a little bit wilder. None of Warren’s words have stopped hobbyist cryptocurrency miners from buying up just about every graphics card on the market that is capable of mining. Some of that I will admit is just people speculatively buying cards and reselling them at higher prices. I bought both of my graphics cards are reasonable market prices. The first one I purchased directly from NVIDIA online back in 2016. It was an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB Founders Edition for $299.00 online. The second one I picked up this year online from Newegg at a total of $323.73. It was a ASUS Dual series GeForce GTX 1060 DUAL-GTX1060-O3G 3GB graphics card. It cost me more than the NVIDIA founders edition graphics card I bought 2 years ago that has double the memory. Keep in mind that my graphics cards server 3 functions: deep learning, gaming, and mining.

I’m not a speculative graphics card investor. Apparently, I do enjoy watching YouTube videos about the strange mining rigs people have built out. That is mostly just a mix of curiosity and my out and out love of technology. People have spent thousands of dollars building these open air graphics card mining rigs. Some of them look very professional and some of them look highly suspect. My next computer build will have somewhere between 2 and 4 graphics cards. It will be either working on deep learning models or mining. That will be based on my needs at the time. That also assumes that the market for mining cryptocurrencies will continue to be profitable.

It is a strange market right now. A lot of speculation is occuring. NVIDIA is slowly trying to move from pascal to volta cards. That is going to disrupt things. Every other day it seems like the value of the major cryptocurrencies are fluctuating wildly. My best guess is that bitcoin is a bubble. Something like Kodakcoin has a value based on an actual work product. I think legitimate valuable use cases exist for blockchain as a technology. This is an example where the early uses of a technology are probably different from the end state. Some of the blockchain methods that produce smaller tailing efforts or more coins might just win out. It is hard to imagine that 80% of all bitcoins that are ever going to be mined have been mined already.

Topic 1: Pure reflection

With a decent 1,000 word vignette to start this blog post things are trending in the right direction. Yesterday things did not go as well, but that is going to happen. Things pop up. Life happens. The journey toward writing 1,000,000 words in the same year is going to see some ups and down. I knew that was going to happen. I’m thinking about dedicating an entire month to writing pure fiction. That could happen. It would be very interesting to say the least. Being a reflective practitioner can be useful. I like to take the time to really think about things in a deep and meaningful way.

Topic 2: Grilling in January

For some inexplicable reason John Paul wanted a hot dog grilled outside yesterday. We had five inches of snow on the grill. Grilling using our weber grill was interesting. I made this wild pinto and habanero veggie burger and a few hot dogs. It was cold outside and the grill did not exactly heat the food very well. That is probably a good reason to avoid grilling outside during the month of January. The primary reason was probably the snow. It was everywhere. I could have probably done a better job of explaining this topic. I’ll give it another try here and see if my prose game can be kicked up a notch.

Frozen tundra was not enough to stop me from grilling last night. Everything outside was covered in a few inches of snow from Sunday. Parts of the yard received over 8 inches of snow. That should have been enough to stop my grilling extravaganza. John Paul was picking dinner. That dinner had to be grilled hot dogs. Oven hot dogs were not going to satisfy the request. My vegetarian dietary concerns were not aligned with that. A quick trip to Whole Foods helped me acquire some Engine 2 plant strong pinto habanero plant burgers. They came three to a package and that seemed to work out well enough.

I ventured outside to find the chimney starter for the coals. Things went ok after a bit of effort to shake the snow off of the chimney starter. The charcoal seemed to ignite ok and things were off to a good start. Our Weber charcoal grill is decently sized. It works well enough. It was covered in at least 5 inches of snow. Some that had turned into ice. After getting the coals going and putting the lid back on the grill I watched the ice melt off the kettle. The temperature got up to about 350 degrees and the hot dogs and plant burgers were put on the grill.

I’m sure the entire cooking process was highly commercial to anybody that witnessed it. The sun was going down and and I had to just sort of wing it. The plant based burgers from Engine 2 did not have any grilling instructions. They just got placed on the edge and they cooked for a few minutes. Only one time during the entire process did my feet leave the ground and I tumbled over in the snow. Fortunately I did not hit my head on the ice and only bruised my pride a little bit. Snow got everywhere. In my pockets, shoes, and all over my coat. I got back up and managed to complete cooking the meal. That was pretty much how things ended up. We had dinner it was exciting.

That second attempt to explain this topic was better than the first, but it could have been written better. One of the joys of writing every day is thinking about what it takes to produce rock solid epic and awesome prose regardless of subject matter. You have to be able to take any topic and tell a story. That story has to be compelling and epic. From nothing something has to spring forward and that is the true art of storytelling.

Topic 3: Clarity of purpose

Writing to the point of exhausting the mind of everything that needs to be said at the moment is strangely liberating and at the same time maybe just the beginning. One of the things that seems to be becoming more and more true is that we do not have the time to have real conversations anymore. Either in the workplace of in our personal lives. The amount of time we have to engage in real and complete conversations is just limited. Very few conversations I have on a regular basis last longer than 15 minutes. This writing session is going to take up about 2 hours of time. That is longer than I spent talking to any one person in a consecutive interval this year. That might be a sad commentary on my interpersonal communication skills or maybe it is an astute observation about our modern life and times. It could go either way. I’m going to assume that it was a solid observation and keep moving forward to break it down into pieces.

Writing in a meaningful way is about having a solid clarity of purpose. That is about knowing where you are and where you are going as you move forward along the way. Some of that is about process and some of it is just about having purpose. Maybe that is easier to write about than to achieve.

Topic 4: Charging the ASUS C101P Chromebook

The USB Type-C charging on my new ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P is fantastic. It is much better than that proprietary charging cable on my last model. The one thing I have noticed is that the right bottom corner toward the edge gets warm during the charging process. It is noticeable. It is probably warmer than it should be. Batteries keep getting bigger. Our ability to charge them keeps getting faster. A few examples exist of where that has gone horribly wrong. I’m over a month into using this device and it seems to very well made. My only real issue with the device is why it has a solid inch of bezel around the whole screen. They keyboard is usable and at times I even kind of like it. Travel between keystroke and input is enough and I have been using it for a couple of hours per day. I do feel like the screen could have been much bigger within the same form factor. This much bezel is just a ridiculous waste of space. I do plan on writing a review at some point with all the pros and cons of the device. This charging heat issue will remain on the watch list.

Topic 5: Today’s fish thumbnail

Yeah —- I have no real excuses for the selection of today’s picture. I think it is a picture of a goldfish that I took. It is not even the best picture that was taken during our trip to the Denver Downtown Aquarium. It did make the cut for thumbnails. I realized that all of these photos are pooling under my Twitter feed. Apparently, at this moment in time I have 610 tweets with a photo or video attached to it. That seems like a good number, but I have no idea how that happened. Most of that is related to YouTube videos and the automatic thumbnails that are created as a part of that whole process. Some of them are rather terrible. I’m sure they use some type of interestingness filter and maybe some of my videos do not have that much dynamic content so the number of thumbnails will always be limited. For some reason it appears the algorithm is a big fan of when I make extreme arm motions. It could be worse I guess. They could all be photos of me with my eyes closed or caught mid sneeze or something.

Wait we lost focus for a second in that last paragraph. We are supposed to be writing about picture I randomly attached to this blog post. However, now that we have talked about it and debated the relative value of to the post I’m wondering if the internal link went from being extra topical to being inherently germaine. It could go either way I guess. Meta content could be presumed to be seperate from the core blog post and therefore make the goldfish separate from the post without any real reason for being here today as part of the post. Maybe even this meta discussion of the blog post during the blog post can open the door to the goldfish being a valuable part of the post. Either way it was just a photo and now it is a thumbnail.

Topic 6: Rounding things out

We have covered a few topics tonight. Some of them were meaningful and some of them were about goldfish. This whole writing journey is about figuring things out. That means we are going to look at and explore topics that capture my attention. That is how things show up here and how they end up receiving consideration. I just check bitcoin prices on the Coinbase dashboard. Maybe being entertained by the drama associated with cryptocurrency has pulled me into that world. No real reason exists for me to want to know if the price went up or down. Even the very small amount of a bitcoin that I have in my wallet is not valuable enough to warrant constant supervision. My time is worth far more than that, but here we are and I’m still watching the prices. Maybe it is the fear of missing out on either the bubble collapsing or values exploding keeps pulling my attention back to where the market is going.

This last little bit of typing for the night should be in rhythm. Each of these keystrokes needs to follow the same type of pattern and rhythm that happens when writing at a good clip. I need to just ignore the red underlines and keep writing for a few minutes. Maybe coming back to them in bulk vs. one at a time will help my writing become a little bit more fluid. It will help me avoid so many starts and stops. Those are the parts of this whole process that make it harder to get going. Maybe it would be a better strategy to just increase my accuracy rating to the point where those red squiggles just do not show up at all during my writing sessions. That is probably a good goal to aspire to you on a regular basis. Sitting down and just writing rock solid prose from start to finish with no real need to edit is something to aspire to achieving on a regular basis. We will see if over the course of writing 3,000 words per day that is something that naturally evolves out of writing or if it is something that never really happens.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. Getting into the groove and writing seems to happen in spurts. Some parts of this writing journey feel highly forced. Other parts of it are liberating or at least intellectually stimulating. That has to in some way be liberating. Today I am going to close this blog post out at over 3,000 words and get back on track. I need to close things out before falling asleep. Yesterday was not the best model for moving forward. I think pretty much mid sentence the Chromebook got shut and sleeping commenced. That is pretty much the way ever night concludes these days. This is the path that I elected to walk down. This journey was careful weighted and examined. I even wrote that really inspiring open letter about writing 1,000,000 words during the same year. It seemed like a great idea at the time. Like any really great idea it just jumps out at you in a kind of blatant way. Devoting 2 hours per day to writing was a major commitment. That two hours per day could have gone to a wide variety of things. At this point in time, I think that this two hour time commitment is worth it. I mean it is not like going to see Pearl Jam play Wrigley worth it, but it seems to have its own merits. Maybe tomorrow I will watch Pearl Jam 20 on blu-ray disc. That was a great film. That is a film that I have not seen in some time. I remember really enjoying it and maybe that joy will be good to revisit tomorrow.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

2018: Day 24 the one where I realize every day of the journey is about the effort being put into it

a layered photo of fish

2018: Day 24 the one where I realize every day of the journey is about the effort being put into it
Word count 60,037 + 3,021 or 63,058 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

That post from yesterday was waiting for a postscript to be written this morning. For some reason that just did not happen today. No morning writing session occurred. That ended up putting me over 60,000 words for the year, but short of my 3,000 word goal. Maybe I need to set a daily reminder to start writing at 5:30 AM each day. Rounding out those first 1,000 words for the day is very important. Seriously, sitting down to write 3,000 words in one good shot has not been my best recipe for success. We will see what happens it is well after 7:00 PM and the first few words have started to flow. Maybe I need to remove all distractions and just really focus in and write for the next hour.

I had hoped to write 100,000 words this month. It would have been awesome to start this mad dash to 1,000,000 words with a 100,000 word month. January could have been that month. It has plenty of days at 31. Writing at a pace of 3,000 words per day every day for 31 days would have equaled out to 93,000 words. Hitting that goal would have let me just 7,000 words short of 100,000 words. That would have been pretty fantastic. It would have been epic. That is probably not going to happen at this point. The words are coming along nicely. We have gotten out of the gates and are marching down the path. Every day so far this year has included a legitimate writing effort.

Every day of the journey is about the effort being put into it. Something about that last sentence does ring true. A lot of things are about the effort we put into them. Maybe it is the rhythm of my typing today or the myriad of distractions, but my thoughts are not flowing the way they should be. People keep talking to me. It is possible that just now a really epic thought has been lost to the ages. I’m going to try to recover. Writing like a pro means working through distractions. Obviously, I have been struggling to write like a professional tonight. Some things we can influence. Some things are not ever going to be influenced. My thoughts were starting to coalesce around understanding the things you can influence by putting time into them. It is those investments that deserve more consideration.

I have spent a lot of time thinking about my 4 years of undergraduate education, 1 year pursuing a graduate degree, 5 years of doctoral studies, and 3 years of postdoctoral education. During the course of all those years I could have put a lot more time and energy into my education. That is something that as a reflective practitioner I am willing to admit. The same student in year 13 of that journey would have a completely different point of view than the one who started the journey. That might be something that has started to make sense to me due to a little bit of perspective. I’m fast approaching a decade since earning a doctorate of philosophy. I left that lower case on purpose. This discussion is not about formality or trying to line up all of my formal educational accolades. We can do that later. This series of thoughts is about trying to convey the point that putting in more time and effort throughout that journey would have benefited me in some meaningful ways.

Having the opportunity to sit down with the student who started classes at the University of Kansas so many years ago while impossible would have been impactful. Sure right now I could spend the next 2,000 words writing an open letter to my past self on the first day of college to help other people benefit from my experiences. That sounds like a decent thing to do, but today may not be the day for that type of effort. My writing efforts are a little bit lackluster today. That type of impactful letter deserves to be written on a day when I am at the height of my powers. Sure you might be thinking as a professional writer I should just dig deep and make it happen. My reserver of writing powers is not that useful. I’m going to go ahead and add this topic to my list. It has been added to the top of the list.

Topic 1: Being positive

Every moment we focus in on what is next. In that moment of decision we can elect to be positive. I make an active choice on a daily basis to focus on being positive. Being positive can be contagious. That is the best case scenario. Earlier I started to get into a real writing rhythm. You can almost feel it in the way you are typing. It feels good to type in that purposeful way. You know that you are making some progress, but it is more or less about the prose and everything else just sort of fades away. That is what writing with a true single minded purpose is all about. My efforts toward writing are about having a positive impact on the world around me and ultimately on the academy itself.

That is a topic that we have not really dealt with this year. We all stand on the shoulders of giants in terms of our knowledge. Everything we believe to be true. All of the things that we accept as knowledge. Are built on a foundation of shared learning that is sometimes summed up as the academy. My operational definition for it is the collective knowledge we keep as a society is created and stored within the academy. In some ways that sums up the purpose of our institutions of higher education. In other ways it just describes a library. Either way it is a concept that I have spent a lot of time thinking about. Contributing to our overall collection of knowledge as a society is a decent and acceptable goal.

Yeah I snuck that into a passage about being positive. Maybe that is what I need to do to move forward. Everyday we strive to improve things. To make things better. That in and over itself is a lofty and somewhat daunting goal. Some folks may not accept that presimse. They may not accept the premise that things could and should be better. As we move toward the inevitable intersection of technology and modernity we face certain choices as a society. That is something that we have to figure out how to deal with as the very social fabric that binds us together is tested in new and unexpected ways. The things that have happened in the last 100 years would be hard to comprehend at the start of the last century. Technology has started to rapidly change society. That is something that I have spent a lot of time thinking about. I even hosted a podcast about it some years ago. Maybe that is something that could end up on YouTube at some point.

Topic 2: I’m still using the NiceHash Miner

Very early in the morning tomorrow or very late night the NiceHash crew will make a transfer to my wallet. This will be the 5th transfer of BTC to my NiceHash wallet. Oddly enough it seems to take two transfers worth of BTC for me to hit the threshold for a free transfer from my NiceHash wallet to the Coinbase exchange. My Coinbase portfolio now features 0.0047 BTC. That is just a fraction of a bitcoin. I’m still using the NiceHash Miner v2.0.1.8 software on my Windows 10 computer. Sure I spend about 15 minutes per day daydreaming about building out another computer. Should that time be spent making an investment in something that matters. Probably. Yeah —- I guess they should be spent in a better manner. That may not happen any time soon. I’m thinking that my current plan of mining cryptocurrency for 100 days is interesting. You might remember that 100 days from Monday, January 1, 2018 is Wednesday, April 11, 2018. Maybe that will be the day that I finally sell off all of this BTC that has been mined. Maybe with some luck. Maybe with a lot of luck bitcoin will climb back up to record highs. That seems pretty unlikely. I keep watching it rebound a little bit and then fall back to around $10,000.00 in value.

I had actually considered grabbing the old computer case from the basement and booting up my Lian Li cube computer to engage in some mining. My first real computer build included an AMD Athlon 64 processor. That board and chip are sitting in my Lian Li cube in my office right now. That computer was parted out and built at some point between 2003 and 2004. That seems like so long ago, but at the same time those memories seem so vivid. I have had several computers in between my current Storm Stryker i7 build and that first computer. I am not entirely sure why it has survived all these years. It could be the overall size and weight of the computer that makes it to big to reasonably dispose of without a lot of effort. It does house my HD DVD drive and that could come in handy at some point. Maybe at some point this week I will boot it up and see if it still runs well enough.

Topic 3: Rounding out the night

I thought tonight will include a lot more writing. Perhaps getting such a late start made the task of sprinting to 3,000 words unrealistic. Engaging in multiple writing sessions per day is the only way to sustain this level of productivity.

Topic 4: Today’s thumbnail

This weekend I spent some time at the Denver Downtown Aquarium. During that visit a number of photographs were snapped using my Pixel 2 XL camera. You are probably aware that the Pixel 2 XL has an outstanding camera. One of the photos that was taking is attached to this post at a thumbnail. It is a photograph of an aquarium exhibit with a reflection from the whole room. Those type of reflection photographs are always some of my favorites. I enjoy them, but you probably would not be surprised to find out they are almost always a happy accident. Sometimes you just notice the picture looks good and you go with it. That is what happened within this picture. It does not really have anything to do with the blog post today. I just liked it and added it to the post. You can probably expect at least a few more aquarium related thumbnails. I have already uploaded them to the blog media section. That means they are just one click away from you being able to enjoy them. I’m pretty well convinced that the whole thumbnail thing is going to devolve into a series of pictures of Peppercorn the dog sleeping. They will be cute and that should work out out, but it is devoid of any real creatively.

Topic 5: I fell asleep…

Dealing with what turned out to be a kiddo with an ear infection was slowing everything down. I was working toward writing 3,000 words. Things were moving right along. My morning writing session was decent enough. It happened. That is good enough for me to start getting a solid routine going. Getting to the point of having a routine is important. I felt like last night things were starting to come together. Maybe we were starting to get into something meaningful or at least interesting. Sometimes at the end of the day you are just writing and locked into the process of getting works down on paper or in this case the screen and everything just stops. I must have set down my ASUS Chromebook Flip C101P and went to sleep. It probably literally happened in one very tired movement. My sleep threshold is really low and from the time the Chromebook was closed and sitting on the floor I’m guessing sleep occured within about 60 seconds. I could probably match up the time stamp on the Google Doc to the sleep time stamp on my Fitbit sleep tracker. That would work out well enough. It might be a ridiculous use of technology, but hey why not use data to answer data related questions.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. I’m just working to figure out how to move things forward. Today ended up a little bit short. That means you are in for a treat. This will be a 1,000 word or so postscript. That means the level of insight and analysis for the post game writing session should be nearing legendary proportions. Part of the process of writing 3,000 words per day is about reflection. It is about taking the time to think about the things that are going on and the things that are going to happen. Yesterday, it seemed like a good idea to start cleaning up my office. Some of that might be driven by my need to add another computer to my office. That pretty much meant that the dog bed had to move over under the whiteboard. Neither of the dogs seems to mind at all. They are happy enough that the back half of my office is completely clean.

Cleaning up my office is a major challenge on an ongoing basis. Things got super cluttered this year. One of the best parts of doing a daily YouTube live stream was that drove me to keep my office clean. Well it drove me to keep the parts of my office that were in the livestream camera feed clean. Today I’m really only writing and mining cryptocurrency. Neither of those things requires my office to be picked up. Getting my office back to a good cleaned up state is just about removing clutter from my life and being organized. Focusing on being organized is a good thing to think about and to focus on achieving.

I just cracked open a 100 calorie pack of Emerald dry roasted almonds. That snack might just help power me through closing out this blog post for the day. Keeping at the 3,000 word benchmark is an important part of being able to hit the goal. Each day a layer of the onion has to be peeled back and I have to dig deeper and deeper to keep writing. That is probably one of the better parts of the process. Writing at this pace is about digging deeper into things and writing at a higher level. Some of that means being willing to write in a near autobiographical manner. Some of it means that my writing style has to become a little bit more personal. You may have noticed my overall writing style has been evolving day to day and week to week. I’m sure by the end of the year my first block of 100,000 words will be different than my last block of 100,000 words. Writing 1,000,000 words in the same year is going to change the way I write.

One of the things that I have noticed is related to the format of my writing blog posts. My format of vignette, topics, and a postscript has been working. We are on day 24 of the writing journey and it seems to be working. Most my previous blog posts are 100% freeform. Writing within this canned format is probably the only way to really move things forward. You may have noticed that every post really does start out with the “Dear reader” opening. That has been included to note that each day I’m writing to an audience vs. writing just for my own purposes.

Maybe today I should have locked in and spent some time writing about artificial intelligence. That would have been a good thing to do. Maybe it would have been good to lock into writing or working on some type of academic paper. That would have been easy enough. Picking the right topic would have helped push it forward. Writing an academic paper that is not based on a topic will probably work out poorly and end up in failure.

I thought maybe it would be good to conclude this blog post with a few notes about how happy having copy and paste working again has made me. Being able to paste from Google Docs directly into my blog post without having all the paragraph formatting breaking down is fantastic. It has really made me realize just how annoying it was to have to format line by line and check each post after it published to make sure the formatting was not broken. This has improved my writing quality of life by about 10%. That is a completely arbitrary number that I just made up. It is possible that being able to cut and paste was worth more than 10%. Maybe the point here is that it brought joy to my world. That is good and that has helped us get close to the 3,000 word mark for the day and that is good. This postscript got a little out of control. That happens. I will try to get back on track tomorrow and keep my postscript writing projects under control. They probably should be spanning into the 1,000 word range. That is a pure recipe for disaster.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.