A Breath of Fresh Air

Thu 25 January 2024 by R.L. Dane

It's funny to me how simple, practical changes can produce lasting effects. It's also funny how something can seem so insurmountable when you're stuck in a certain mindset, only to realize that it's just a matter of a simple change of thinking and habits.

When I was younger (read: thirties), I idolized the idea of waking up at 5 am. I had a couple of friends who made a habit of getting up at 5, and it felt like a heroic thing to me. I tried it a few times: wake up, incredibly bleary-eyed, stumbling through some morning devotional readings and blunder through the rest of the day.

I guess because I've gone through REAL insomnia since then, my body is somehow more tolerant of schedule shifts, and I'm able to get up early with a little bit more consistency than before.

This morning, like a handful of other times the past couple weeks, I found myself awake at or just before five am, did a quick morning routine, hopped in my car, and found a coffee shop that's open early.

Today, I discovered a really neat coffee shop just a couple few miles east of me in an area I don't usually spend much time in (not a bad area, just older). This coffee shop had really nice music (I stopped going to Starbucks both because of their anti-union activities, and because they almost always have uncomfortably loud and often garish music), a nice atmosphere, and comfy seats. PARADISE!!

I pulled out my Pinebook Pro laptop (a very cheap and incredibly useful little ARM Linux subnotebook I got a few years back), pulled up my daily reading and notes, and went to town while enjoying some really good hot tea and a bagel while perusing one of the Gospels.

And you know what? It made all the difference in the world. I got home tonight and instead of feeling anxious and wanting to fill the time with TV or silly internet videos, I just chilled out on the couch and did a little bit of shell scripting. I felt a general sense of emotional welness and contentment, mainly because I got an early start on the day, and was able to spend time in reflection without feeling that I was behind the curve all day long.

Sometimes the simplest things can have incredibly lasting effects.
So never give up. Things can change.

Why Not Just Be Free?

Mon 22 January 2024 by R.L. Dane

I have had ONE motto scrawled on the "generic boogie board"/"information age magic slate"/"non-computerized liquid crystal display" thingie on my fridge for months now, usually in artsy and nearly-unintelligible cursive scrawl:

𝓦𝓱𝔂 𝓷𝓸𝓽 𝓳𝓾𝓼𝓽 𝓫𝓮 𝓯𝓻𝓮𝓮?
(Why not just be free?)

This phrase came about from a long video conversation with a dear …

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Thu 18 January 2024 by R.L. Dane

Content Warning: this is all coming from a fairly Christian worldview, and so may seem a bit like proselyting to those from other traditions and beliefs. I'm just putting out what I'm mulling over, so as always, you're welcome to read it, or wait for another nerdy UNIXy post a …

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Fun Chance Meetings

Thu 28 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

A couple days ago, I was discussing with my counselor the importance of in-person relationships. I commented on how incredibly easy it is to open a computer and drop into a meaningful and enjoyable conversation within a few minutes (especially on the Fediverse!), but that it felt nearly impossible to …

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Use what works for good

Tue 26 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

Exactly a month ago, I wrote an article challenging the prevalent pragmatist-argument for choice in the digital world.

I'd like to refine that thought a bit further, based on recent experiences.

A little over a week ago, I started crafting an article covering FOSS keyboards for Android. This is one …

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A Handy-Dandy Star Wars Guide

Thu 14 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

I was speaking with a couple Fedifriends about Star Wars, and (naturally), we started having a mini-debate on which Star Wars movies actually "count."

The following is my personal thoughts on the issue, in a handy-dandy list format:

DISCLAIMER: I am, at the end of the day, a fairly casual …

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So, I Guess I'm a Vampire, Now

Wed 13 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

As anyone who knows me on the Fediverse can tell you, I've been a bit of a light-theme snob. (If you're not sure what I'm referring to, I'm talking about whether text on a screen (computer or otherwise) is chiefly light colors on dark colors (dark theme) or dark colors …

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Two months later

Mon 11 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

Content warning: This post deals with loss

As I have alluded to before, there is a certain process of effacing that time does to loss and grief, as well as the memory of the departed.

I'm staring at the two month mark, and while I've had some truly dark moments …

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The KGB, the Computer, and Me

Sat 09 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

Last night, I re-watched The KGB, the Computer, and Me, a 1990 episode of NOVΛ chronicling Cliff Stoll's efforts to catch a West German hacker who was using the Lawrence Berkeley Labs' computer systems to hack into military computers in the late 1980s.

I say re-watched, because I …

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FOSS Games, Part II

Thu 07 December 2023 by R.L. Dane

I got a lot of wonderful feedback on my original FOSS Games are actually pretty good! article, and I wanted to share with you all the information that was so kindly shared with me.

Here are some FOSS games highly recommended by the community, although I have not personally played …

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