The past few days I've been bringing in my new WIFI-only iPad and trying to use it tethered to my iPhone 5. It's been a frustrating experience so far. I've found that it works OK when the iPad is first tethered to the iPhone, but shortly thereafter the internet connection seems to drop out on the iPad, even though the iPhone is still reporting it to be connected OK.
I finally moved my cellular provider from O2 to Three, because Three has an unlimited data + tethering plan. So far it’s been working really well. I brought in my wireless-only Nexus 7 to BNP Paribas’ office today, tethered it to my iPhone, and been able to access my email, notes, and other online services quite well. My Nexus 7 is paired with an Apple Wireless Keyboard, and it actually makes a very usable environment.
Over the last few days there’s been some rumblings in the blogosphere about whether technology will or won’t destroy the middle class.
There was this piece in the Washington Post by James Bessen arguing that although there might be short-term disruption, there will be plenty of work in the future for the middle class.
This was countered by Kevin Drum in Mother Jones who argues that you can hardly compare the technological changes that have happened in the past, with what is currently happening with regards to computing.
Continue reading “The Technological Arms Race and the Middle Class”
This post is about how to get Django on a Linux box connected to SQL Server. It took me quite a while to get working, so I’m documenting what needs to be done to save other people time.
I am experimenting at the moment with using my phone as my primary computing device. I think that this is the future. There are phones coming out (hello iPhone 5s) with remarkably powerful processors. We can connect our phones to a bluetooth keyboard at the moment. The next step is to be able to send the display through to a nearby screen.
The good news is that there should be an exponential increase in the need for iOS and Android programmers.
I read a really interesting post on Reddit explaining Markov Chain Monte Carlo, which drew the analogy between MCMC and a long game of Frogger.
I had heard a while ago that the ideal holiday was one in which you had a fairly bad start to it, but with a peak experience close to the end of the holiday. The rationale is that we tend to base our judgement of the holiday on the range of our trough-to-peak experiences. The larger the spread between the trough and the peak, with the peak occurring towards the end of the experience, the better we perceive the experience to be.
I’ve been reading the “Beyond Scarcity” series on FTAlphaville recently, and it’s made some very interesting points. The posts argue that the current economic environment is deflationary with regard to goods. I think that is true, and one of the reasons is because of technology. Firstly technology is constantly making everything more efficient and because of global competition this is both reducing the production costs and making goods cheaper. Secondly technology is causing structural unemployment, which means less people have money to spend and there is less money flowing around the economy. Other factors causing deflation are the tight monetary conditions, the aging population, and potentially the effects of quantitative easing.
So I was thinking about being older today, and I saw this Louis CK clip about how older people are smarter – “Older people are smarter, and if you get into an argument with someone who’s older, you should listen. It doesn’t mean they’re always right; but even if they’re wrong, their wrongness is rooted in more experience.”
Sometimes I think the best way to get things done is just to allocate space in the day in order to achieve them. For example; I find it hard to write blog posts. Left to my own devices, my blog would resemble a desolate wasteland. But all I need to do is allocate 10 minutes out of my day in order to write something, and I can get something written that I can upload to my blog.
This is the beauty of time-boxing, of the Pomodoro technique: It forces you to allocate a fixed section of time in which to achieve something. If you just make a space in time it’s amazing what you can do.