palingenesia

the blog of Brandon Gandy

Month: October 2018 (Page 1 of 2)

On Catharsis

That’s all we have, finally, the words, and they had better be the right ones.1

“Content,” as it’s so often called, is more abundant and cheaper than ever.

We have access to more movies and television, more books, more music than ever before. We are glued to our screens. We scroll our feeds every day to see what everyone we know is posting, and we put up our own posts for others to see on their own feeds. All the while, not fully conscious of what all of this is: we are consuming narrative, and providing our own narrative in turn to be consumed.

Perversely, we seem more than happy to ignore the importance of narrative as an actual communicative device. It feels like too many people are ignorant, or all too keen to dismiss the idea, of narrativeĀ as a tool to learn about the world and the people in it; or as a coping mechanism for when you are going through hard times; or a way to connect you with your deeper self.

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The Idea Series: Week 5

No preamble this week; let’s dive in.

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10 of the Best Things that Happened to Me

It’s good to reflect on your life and single out the events that have had large, net positive impacts. When you focus on the things for which you’re thankful, it’s like drawing from a bottomless well of happiness. This is an entirely personal exercise, so feel free to skip past.

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The Importance of “Why?” in Troubleshooting

There are two types of troubleshooters I’ve met.

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The Idea Series: Week 4

This week, I lost the Old Blog. Let this be two lessons: a) make backups of your work; b) you don’t have a backup until you’ve tested it. I had to re-create the entire blog, this time opting for WordPress, and I had to do some deep digging to find copies of several posts totaling several thousand words written. But I did find them!

Anyway, let’s get to the Ideas.

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The Secret to Superstar Time Management

We’ve all seen the bits in TV shows or movies where a character has two dozen things they need to do and they’re shuffling them all and doing everything wrong and all of a sudden their countless spinning plates come crashing down in a heap. We’ve probably all been right there in those shoes.

This is about how to keep those plates up and even spinning of their own accord. How to make your time work for you.

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The Idea Series: Week 3

I don’t know what happened to the week. Just yesterday it was Tuesday and I just finished writing down my ideas for the ninth. Now it’s the fifteenth? It went by so fast! At this rate, I’ll be done in no time!

(This is something I’ve said to myself almost every Friday since I can remember.)

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How to Write a Good Bug Report

The ability to write a good bug report is so much more important than the bug report itself.

More often than not, a shoddy bug report is going to get closed offhand, despite the validity of the bug itself. Most developers don’t have the time to parse through and guess at what the report actually means, and they certainly don’t have the ability to “fix” something if they don’t know what it is they’re fixing. This is especially true if you ever try to open an issue with an open source project — for better or for worse.

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The Idea Series: Week 2

I called it. Day One I had over twenty ideas and felt like I could go forever. Almost every day this week has been difficult. Each day I thought, “Should I just try to come up with the same kinds of ideas? What Idea Themes do I pick? How do I pick them?”

Which I guess is kind of the whole point of this exercise.

But I prevailed, and here are seven more days of ideas.

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10 Ways to Be More Happy

We all have our down days. I think it’s important to acknowledge them when they happen. Don’t deny the feelings. Give them their names, give them space, and deal with them. It’s difficult. But it’s necessary.

This day was one of those days for me, so my ideas for the day were centered on ways to give long-term benefits to my overall mood.

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