A map of my writing organized by topic

Making Life Better
“Follow me if you want to live!” — A. Schwarzenegger
Culture and Politics
Opinions based in as many facts as I can find
Tech and Geek Your…

Getting scooped by Steinbeck did not stop her

One of my pandemic reads was the well-known John Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath”. It was revealing to read about the horrors of migrant families in the depression and that arrival in California did not end the struggle.

Just this morning I learned about a new aspect of this story: The uncredited source of much of the material. Sanora Babb deserves acknowledgment for her contribution.

Sanora Babb with James Wong Howe CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikipedia

During the depression era, Babb was working for the Los Angeles-area Farm Security Administration helping to set up camps for the migrants arriving from the Dust Bowl. She…

What is old is new again

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

I’ll say it again: TikTok is just a NAB cart. A NAB cartridge, get it? No? Then I’ll explain with a history lesson, but in the story style of Joe Rohde, I’ll start at the end and work backward so we can trace the roots.

You probably know what TikTok is or you wouldn’t be reading this but to illustrate, I will distill the platform to its essence. TikTok is a method of broadcasting short-form content from one (or a few) to many (thousands). Filters, stitching, duets, and effects are the window dressing on this base functionality.

If we strip…

Proof of Stake will take over as the green choice

Photo by Gabby K from Pexels

The Bitcoin cryptocurrency ecosystem is estimated to be consuming 130 terawatt-hours, as much electricity as all of New Zealand. Twenty-six times as much as all of FaceBook’s data centers. Printing US currency consumes 0.1 terawatts, of course there are other environmental factors to consider with physical currency such as the consumption of cotton and flax, production of ink, and incineration of de-circulated bills but the total consumption does not come close to Bitcoin.

Under the Hood

Let’s start with a quick look into the design of the currency without getting too technical. The core of the technology is the hash which is a…

John Irving demonstrates less is not necessarily more

Photo by the author

I was reading John Irving’s Trying to Save Piggy Sneed and noticing his use of punctuation. At first, I thought these were the occasional complexity where an aside is needed for clarification but on further reading, it became apparent this was inherent to Irving’s style. My observation was confirmed by the author in his homage to Dickens: “He is a master of that device for making short sentences seem long, and long sentences readable — the semicolon!”

My admiration of his phrasing plays out particularly well with this sentence from the same chapter.

Dickens’s original ending to Great Expectations, that…

The Medieval Project Manager

Statue of Saint Sebastian at Koruko Andre Mariaren basilika in Donostia, Spain. Photo by author.

Religious radicals known as flagellants appeared in 13th century Europe as penitents seeking to atone for sin by mortifying the flesh and experiencing the Passion of Christ. These adherents would use whips with knots and sometimes nails to flail themselves rhythmically to songs or chants, known as Geisslerlieder.

La Procession des Flagellants by Ensemble Tormis

By the 14th century the movement became somewhat popular as a superstitious response to war, famine, and disease; along with a view that end times were near. The Black Plague gave the movement an extra boost due to the severity of the pandemic. Unfortunately, the…

Ms. Psaki schooled Fox News and left us a lesson

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

By now we are all aware of how Jen Psaki slam-dunked Peter Doocy of Fox News regarding MLB and voting rights in Georgia. It was a beautiful moment we attribute to the quick intellect of Ms. Psaki but there is so much more here, including a life lesson for all of us.

Let’s unpack this.

Peter Doocy starts by bringing a knife to a gunfight.

“Is the White House concerned that Major League Baseball is moving their All-Star Game to Colorado where voting regulations are very similar to Georgia?”

Typical leading question where a statement is wrapped in a question…

10 cryptocurrencies and their country equivalents

A trio in Stockholm. Photo by author

The basis of cryptocurrency is decentralization and not being associated with a specific country as “fiat” currency. But if it were…

Bitcoin — China

The 800-pound gorilla crypto coins might lead you to believe it would be associated with the hegemony of the United States but you would be wrong. China is the largest single market and arguably the largest economic influencer, similarly, where Bitcoin goes so goes the altcoins just as other Asian markets follow the Land of Ming. Since 65% of Bitcoin is mined in China this association has some real connections.

Ethereum — USA

The sister of Bitcoin brings some innovations to the…

“Follow me if you want to live!” — A. Schwarzenegger

How Art Saved Me

Mastery as an Essential Part of Mental Health

The Power of Yes

A simple word for soaring with eagles

My Vaccination Today is Not the End

Reflections on Hope and Expectations

My peanut butter needs stirring.

Opinions based in as many facts as I can find.

A Life Lesson From Jen Psaki

Ms. Psaki schooled Fox News and left us a lesson

Skim Proof Reader Engagement

John Irving demonstrates less is not necessarily more

The Twisted Tale of Hollywood Healthcare

Cheating Workers Out Healthcare Before It Was Cool

Our Outrage in 2017 Was Correct

A call from Senator Harris’ office 2 weeks after Trump took office

Get Ready for the Roaring 20s

Pandemic rebound risk

The Complex Threat to Joshua Tree

Preservation and accessibility in the face of growth

Visualizing Capitol Riot Arrest Data

Making Sense of Public Data with Python and PHP

My Privileged Career Ladder

A Journey of Expertise and Bias

Medieval Manure is Content Gold

A Resource Guide for Writers

Fiction is a Path to World Peace

Books change our brains in some surprising ways

Hungary has a Trump Library Blueprint

This Presidential Library Will Be the Most Important One

Are Cooperatives Socialist?

How we can all…

Paul Coogan

Project Manager, Artist, and Data Visualization/Activist Geek

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