The koning of everyday life

I understand your distress at not being able to visit your loved ones, your mother, father, grandmother or grandfather in their care homes. Especially now when you only want one thing: to hold their hand and comfort them.

I'm an American so I fundamentally don't understand monarchy. Rejecting that concept is, like, our entire deal. From afar, though, it looks like monarchs in Western society become the sort of care-taker of something important in everyday life: both pride in country and culture, but also some kind of model of the ideal citizen. I don't know, again, that role is so foreign to me (literally – hahah) that I can't analyze it. I think US presidents and celebrities fill this role for Americans, which has mixed results.

Original source: Full Text in English of Dutch King's speech on the coronavirus pandemic

“Tea for dong!”

According to customers and vendors, pangolin scales and meat can be used as a form of medicine to cure a variety of ailments (it is said to nourish the kidneys), but primarily to invigorate men’s sexual performance and bolster female beauty. The exotic nature of the pangolin—and the illegal trading that is central to its distribution—has an obvious analogy in the masked palm civet cat, a small mammal native to India and Southeast Asia served as a delicacy in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, usually prepared with chrysanthemum petals and shreds of snake.

Original source: “Chinese Virus,” World Market

Learning leads to innovation

In fact, from a recent Forrester survey, we discovered that companies that adopt a culture of fast failure grow revenue four times faster than the industry average. This comes from a survey of over 500 executives, directors, and innovation leaders that allowed us to identify fast failure as one of three core capabilities of becoming an adaptive enterprise.

Original source: Fast Failure Is Not Dead

Find your own path productivity

Don’t ask: am I organized enough? Instead, you might ask: Am I shipping work in sufficient quality and quantity to cause the changes I seek to make? If not, what’s stopping me?


Shipping has never been a problem for me. What has always been a problem for me is shipping work that is important enough. 

And targeting the audience and best medium to help them:

> So I’m asking, What is the change I’m trying to make? And, Who’s it for and what’s it for? And then I ask things like, What’s the medium that will help it get there? Is it a blog post, or a talk? Or is it a book? What box does it fit in?

And, using a megadeck that you pick and choose slides from for each presentation:

> When I give a talk I have about 200 slides, and none of the slides have words on them. Each has a picture and the picture brings up a story that I want to talk about. Each story is associated with an image in the presentation.

Original source: Seth Godin Hates Being Organized


Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday that Canada would shut its borders to almost all noncitizens, part of travel restrictions that have been implemented across the globe. German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday announced a nationwide shutdown of bars, nightclubs, theaters, museums, brothels, casinos, cinemas, swimming pools and gyms. Religious services also were banned.

Meanwhile, in the first public address from a Dutch prime minister since the 70s oil crisis:

‘It will take months to build this up and in the meantime we must protect people,’ Rutte said. ‘Our choice is to go for maximum control, to lower the infection peak and spread it out over a longer period while we build up immunity and don’t overload hospitals and intensive care departments.’

And, the coffee shops switch to take away (“to go” as we say in American).

Original source: The Washington Post

Trailing indicators

As a result, both travelers association ANWB and public works department Rijkswaterstaat reported no traffic jams this morning – an unprecedented situation, reports.

Monday mornings usually see around 400 kilometers of traffic jams on Dutch roads by 8:00 a.m. “Now that was about four kilometers. And then these were traffic jams due to collisions or blowouts of trucks,” traffic reader Cees Quax said to NOS.


Airline Air France-KLM says it will ground virtually its entire fleet for at least the next two months and passenger numbers are expected to plunge by up to 90%.

  1. Holy shit.
  2. It me!

Original source: Netherlands on lock down: No traffic jams as schools, businesses remain closed

“Still winging it.”

I’m not a great planner. I wing it, a lot. I listen to the world and try to tell which way the wind is blowing. When I say “plan” I really mean creating the possibility of opportunity. I till the soil to try and grow my own luck. I create options. And I invent things, relentlessly. I am solidly a second-division writer, at best, by any model and definition. But I’m still here because I work and think, a lot, to make new things and try new things.

Meanwhile, something I have to remind myself of no matter what “The Current Situation” (because there’s always a “Current Situation” going on in my broken mind):

And yet, my own reality is that I tend to deal with stress by working. And I tend to relieve stress by writing.

Original source: The Orbital Operations For 15 Mar 2020

Separating the writing from your emotional state

My writing epiphany — which arrived decades into my writing career — was that even though there were days when the writing felt unbearably awful, and some when it felt like I was mainlining some kind of powdered genius and sweating it out through my fingertips, there was no relation between the way I felt about the words I was writing and their objective quality, assessed in the cold light of day at a safe distance from the day I wrote them. The biggest predictor of how I felt about my writing was how I felt about me. If I was stressed, underslept, insecure, sad, hungry or hungover, my writing felt terrible. If I was brimming over with joy, the writing felt brilliant.

Original source: Finding comfort in the chaos: How Cory Doctorow learned to write from literally anywhere

Java 8 considered great

Upgrading Java is, like, taboo for some reason it seems. “Java 8 Is Still the Standard”

Commercial support ended on Jan 2019, from Oracle at least:

From October 2014, Java 8 was the default version to download (and then again the download replacing Java 9) from the official website.[244] “Oracle will continue to provide Public Updates and auto updates of Java SE 8, until at least the end of December 2020 for Personal Users, and January 2019 for Commercial Users.”

Original source: What Tens of Millions of VMs Reveal about the State of Java – The New Stack

Six page memo HOWTO

Avoid digressions and pedantic detail. This isn’t a thesis assessment, stakeholders will trust the writer with some details if they are show they are being honest about addressing all sides of the problem.

And, on the mysterious ppendices:

Use Appendices: if it isn’t centrally important to the argument but might come up in discussion, move it to the Appendices. Now it is easy to abuse appendices and end up with a 6 page document which needs more than 6 pages to be understood. As an example, the following content is fine: Long Tables, Detailed Graphs, FAQs on exceptional cases, Long lists of specific examples. Importantly, there should be no narrative text in the Appendices.

Other advice and an overview of structure.

Original source: Using 6 Page and 2 Page Documents To Make Organizational Decisions

The virtual commute home

When my alarm goes off, though, I don’t go right upstairs to talk to my family. Instead, I have a sacred “commute” time, where I take half an hour and read a book, play a game, or have a nap to reset, so I am a pleasant human when my family sees me. I think I learned this from my dad, who would always come in the door and disappear into his room for 20-30 minutes after work.

Original source: Work from home, the Heidi Way

Cloud native infrastructure benefits

First, it is a vibe in the market. Customers ask for it and with the latest version of VMware vSphere you can purchase the install base. This is perhaps a somewhat boring explanation, but there is just market demand for containers and K8s.

Second, standardization: it is the de facto standard in the market for cloud-independent, infrastructure hosting. To me, it’s excellent a standard is being created and the best thing is: it’s a stablestandard.

Third, we see increased operational efficiency for our customers with a more self-healing, desired state infrastructure. So, you need fewer people to operate it and you achieve more speed for your developers.

Original source: Why we have a Cloud Native practice at ITQ