Feeling kinda melancholy on a perfect autumn day.


 

Today was one of those perfect fall days. Blustery, cool, sunny, dramatic sky. The sounds and smells of walking through crispy leaves brings back memories.

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Fort Hill Park &
Shedd Park
Lowell

I can’t picture building these systems without computers.


Tiny, precision gears and gear works from the textile history museum…

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American Textile History Museum
Lowell

 

I’ve worked in two museums, so I know stuff.


 

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The artist transforms his self portrait into a minimalist flow of whiteness; in the process he bares his soul in spray strokes of pure light. Bringing an almost brutalist sensibility, he exposes technique without ornamentation, without excess, without apology.

The installation does not merely enhance the portraiture. Rather, it serves to ground the artist’s work in the context of additional connective senses. The precise geometric placement of the receptacle — the so-called ‘Dumpster’ — joins in time and space with the ancient wall of brick and mortar to excite the nose and evoke aromatically linked memories as ancient and wild as the space itself.

A further study of the painting reveals more sensual distortion. The subject’s eyes, traditionally considered the locus of the visual sense, are here metamorphasized into a child’s representation of hearts, traditionally considered the locus of the emotional senses. Thus, the eyes literally become the connection to the heart, the lens to the soul.
 

(barf)
 

Behind the gray dumpster
Harvard Square
Cambridge

 

I work in Harvard Square.


Harvard Square in Cambridge is disorganized. The streets and sidewalks are filled with punks, students, street people, hipsters and hippies, bankers, construction workers, hawkers, office workers, tourists, retirees, signature collectors, fast food cooks, musicians, stoners, artists, police, and professors. The weird and the bland. And it all spills down into the gigantic Harvard Square Red Line Station underneath it all.

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On the left, normals trying to spread god-magic. On the right, a college kid busking classical violin.

 
Harvard Square T Station
Upper Unpaid Concourse
Cambridge

 

I buy lots of bird seed.


I live in a city neighborhood bordered by parks and a cemetery. Wildlife means squirrels, skunks, sparrows, doves, crows, and pigeons, with a smattering of skunks, hawks, foxes, and hedgehogs.

The squirrels started making pests of themselves, so I headed out to O’Connor Hardware and got me a squirrel-proof bird feeder.

The way this thing works is if something squirrel-heavy jumps on it, the outer cage drops by a few inches, blocking access to the holes in the inner assembly holding seed. But birds are very lightweight, so when then land on the outer cage, they can still get to the seed.

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But chipmunks are light enough that they don’t cause the feeder to close. I watched this little guy fill his pouches a half dozen times. Most of the time, the sparrows didn’t even care that he was there.

Awwww, he’s adorable.

The Backyard
Lowell

 

I used to own a design and video business.


In the old days:

  • Apps used to be called “Software”.
  • Software used to be sold in “boxes”.
  • Boxes of software used to be bought at things called “Computer Stores”.

This box of QuarkXPress 3.3 weighed over 10 pounds:20141013 sware01 600x395

Mac OS X is now a free download, but v10.0 (with the blue X) has a CompUSA sticker price of $129.99:20141013 sware02 600x539

WordPerfect v3.5 for Mac was perfect.   And it only needed 8 floppies for installation:20141013 sware03 600x439

Every box of software was double-boxed for freshness.20141013 sware04 600x450

And boxes of software included documentation. Real, helpful documentation:20141013 sware05 600x450

They pretend to pay me and I pretend to do tech support.


As of around 8 this evening, my poor little 7½ year old MacBook Pro is alive again.
 

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Something had gotten very messed up on the disk. If I had a few extra bucks, its 4 year old Hitachi mechanical drive would’ve been replaced with a new solid-state drive (there was a 512GB SSD on newegg.com this weekend for under $200). But with a clean install, it’s now pretty perky again.

And no data was lost thanks to dual-backups.

Trust me. I’m a professional.


My computer started acting just a little bit wonky last night, so I ran Disk Utility to fix it. This is the result:

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The blinking question-mark-folder is a bad thing.

But it had a happy ending and my newly-rebuilt computer is on its way to a full recovery

Today’s moral: backup are a very good thing.

Big thanks to
Time Machine & Backblaze

This is just what today needed.


 
First fire of the season.
In fact, first fire in a few years.

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The Fireplace
My Living Room
Lowell