Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

Sun. Nov. 13, 2005: A monastery with high speed Internet connections

David finds the Scandinavian surroundings a bit … quiet.

(by David): I’ve stayed at the Radisson SAS Espoo before, on an expense account trip to Finland. In 2003/2004, I stayed in Simo’s extra apartment. (No, it wasn’t for trysts. He was living across town, and it was a convenient place for kids to stay before and after school, for those odd weeks when they weren’t with their mother. A modern solution to a modern challenge). On the last few trips to Finland, it’s been now a habit to stay with Minna, and cook for her family. (Live-in chefs with master’s degrees are in rather short supply, anywhere). It’s too bad that Minna’s house was full up on the trip, but I’ve been running around so much recently that the quiet is a good thing.

The hotel is on the edge of the campus of the Helsinki University of Technology, so it’s only a 20-minute walk (practically east to west across the campus) to the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management. (The Finns refer to the “Tuotantotalouden osasto” as “Tuta”, which is supposedly a playful pun on childhood, Finnish). There’s small plaza with two small grocery stores, pharmacist, bank, etc., so it’s reasonable to live fairly normally here.

The airplane touched down in rain, yesterday, and it’s been steadily gray. With the sea near the front doorstep, I can’t remember days this gloomy in Vancouver. One of the professors asked me why I don’t come to Finland when the weather is better. That’s because the Finns are smart enough to enjoy the short summer when they can. Thus, classes when the weather isn’t great.

The hotel is nice enough, and I actually like the minimalist Scandinavian decor. Since I’m here by myself this time, though, I feel like I’m some sort of monastery. The hallways are quiet. I haven’t opted for pay tv, so it’s Finnish television. I get to watch last season’s O.C., Karate Kid 2 (the one in Okinawa), and other American shows with Finnish subtitles on the screen. I did get to see an episode of Six Feet Under that I hadn’t seen yet, which indicates that Canada is two seasons behind, when the Finns are only one behind.

The isolation is actually tolerable, because I’ve really had a chance to do a more thorough investigation of Internet radio. When I’m in the office in Toronto — even when I’m working in a client’s office — I’ll usually plug headphones into my Thinkpad and listen to JazzFM, which I normally play on the radio at home when I’m working. I hate fund-raising time, though, so in offices, I’ll sometimes switch to KCCK, which is a college radio station in Iowa. It reminds me of days when I used to live in Evanston and listen to WXRT — which use to play progressive rock (e.g. Peter Gabriel, as well as jazz (e.g. Pat Metheny). Subsequent trips to Chicago have disappointed me, because WXRT isn’t the station of old. It’s a sign of old age, I guess, because radio stations have to keep up with times, and as people get older, they seem to stop listening to new music (even by the favourite artists they listened to, between ages 20 and 30).

Despite the “radio” choices on RealPlayer and (shudder) Windows Media Player, I’ve found the selection of stations on Live365 to be quite broad. Unlike the kids, who download MP3 audio onto Winamp, I’ve found Live365 to be an ethical alternative, because they pay royalties to the musicians they play. I’m not yet a VIP member, so I’m still a free rider).

I’ve been listening quite a bit to Attention Span Radio, which has two stations — one that plays primarily jazz fusion, and then another that plays contemporary (post-bop) jazz. The variety is enough that I’ll end up doing searches on AllMusic to figure out who the artists are.

On this trip, though, I’ve been blown away by RvrJazz, which seems to be a radio station just slightly north of New York City. They claim to be modelled after WRVR — a station that I’ve never heard — in the 1980s. They play a lot of CDs that I actually own. There’s something about following Pat Metheny with cuts from Steely Dan. Even WXRT in the 1980s was never this close to my listening tastes.

But, because jazz fusion isn’t everything, I’ve also discovered Into the Mystic”, which is spun by a broadcaster in Columbus, Ohio. I probably ran into this station searching on Kate Bush or Rickie Lee Jones. Diana would like this station.

I listen on the extra Walkman headphones that I carry around in my knapsack, and then the tinny computer speakers when I’m not sitting at the desk. I’m beginning to wonder if I should be like the boys, and have speakers hooked up to my computer at home ….

  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • RSS on Coevolving

    • Doing, not-doing; errors of commission, errors of omission
      Should we do, or not-do?  Russell Ackoff, over many years, wrote about (negative) potential consequences: There are two possible types of decision-making mistakes, which are not equally easy to identify. (1) Errors of commission: doing something that should not have been done. (2) Errors of omission: not doing something that should have been done. For […]
    • Systemic design agendas in education and design research
      The final publication of the October 2016 Relating Systems Thinking and Design Symposium workshop "Some Future Paths for Design Professionals: DesignX and Systemic Design" was published as “Systemic Design Agendas in Education and Design Research” in FormAkademisk, following 2 years of rewrites, reviews and revisions.
    • A federated wiki site on cPanel
      Federated wiki is deployed on a node.js server, an environment which has become available on some cPanel shared hosting providers. Here are some instructions written while restoring a wiki site originally installed in 2014-2015 on a cloud provider.
    • Artificial intelligence, natural stupidity
      Reading The Undoing Project, by Michael Lewis, reminded me of a PhD course at UBC with Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky, before they were recognized as Nobel prize candidates.
    • The impacts of platforms
      Platforms have had only a short history, so much of the research is still definitional, with proposed frameworks.
    • Platforms, an emerging appreciation
      When the term "platform" is used, today, what does that mean?
  • RSS on Media Queue

  • RSS on Ing Brief

    • Contextual dyadic thinking (Lee, 2017)
      Contextual dyadic thinking is proposed by Keekok Lee in her 2017 The Philosophical Foundations of Classical Chinese Medicine. This is as a way of appreciating Chinese implicit logic, as an alternative to dualistic thinking that has developed over centuries in Western philosophy.
    • Dao, de, wei, wuwei (Lai 2003)
      Appreciating wei and wuwei has led to the context of dao and de, in the writings of Karyn L. Lai. The scholarly review acknowledges prior interpretations of de and dao.
    • Engineering Resilience vs. Ecological Resilience (Holling, 1996)
      For @theNASciences in 1996, #CSHolling clarified definitions of resilience, with engineering seeking one equilibrium state, while ecology recognizes many. Those who emphasize the near-equilibrium definition of engineering resilience, for example, draw predominantly from traditions of deductive mathematical theory (Pimm,. 1984) where simplified, untouched ecological systems are imagined, or from traditions of engineering, where the motive […]
    • Service coproductions as reciprocal activities
      In addition to extrinsic economic exchange, #JohnMCarroll #JiaweiChen #ChienWenTinaYuan #BenjaminHanrahan @ISTatPENNSTATE say service coproductions relying on all participants to collaborate in both economic exchange and social exchange. Service coproduction is a special case of service provision in which the roles of service provider and service recipient both require active participation. Examples include healthcare, education, and […]
    • Science and Society in East and West | Joseph Needham | 2004
      In researching #SystemsChange, fundamental differences in science and philosophy in the west and the Chinese were surfaced by #JosephNeedham. A useful translation of wéi and wú wéi (i.e. 為 and 無為 , or 为 and 无为) is the ways of "human will" and "nature" as juxtaposed.
    • Wiki as computational platform
      Thinking forward on #federatedwiki, rather than backwards by @wardcunningham. > [Federated wiki] is a computational platform for the collaborative construction of things that work and will continue to work as platform technology evolves underneath it. > Too much thinking about wiki as a note-taking system will just hold it back.
  • Meta

  • Translate

  • 
  • moments. daviding.com

    Random selections from the past year
  • Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
    Theme modified from DevDmBootstrap4 by Danny Machal