Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Culture, history, TECHNOLOGY

We have mentioned this theme before in several posts, such as Operations and actions. Culture comes first due to the people focus that is being demonstrated, suggesting, of course. a type of teleological framework. People and culture go together. History is several things, but there is what happened and what is written about. We all know that Thomas and Margaret were; not much was written of the couple at the time. We have no examples of pen on ink from Thomas. So, we can think, almost, tabla raza. One might say that we will see more instances of people-oriented history through time, mostly due to technology.

Which we take for granted? How many even wonder about the moment-to-moment miracles related to a mobile mobile-device moving through space-time, yet continuing its connection to the cloud (generic usage) with minimal disruption? If you complain of outages, etc., then, I would suggest looking into the technical details of what is going on. In many instances, we have problems arise that really have no solution besides some type of kludge, say moving to another area that might have less interference. We could discuss this all day.

Similarly, we have science projects running wild with computation and finding that their results cannot be reproduced in another setting, either immediately, or after some period of time. And, until lately, this was not even on the table for discussion. That is, computational resources, et al, will be very much part of any experimental scheme's explicit list (perhaps, even with experts whose job it is to resolve associated problems).

Beyond our scope? Not really. Of late, I have been toying with WikiTree due to several reasons. Yet, I am trying, at the same time, to keep the future in focus while dealing with the minutia of this type of computing. WikiTree will not even let someone come into the Great Migration Project area with their transition file (Gedcom, whatever). We see bad stuff out of ancestry all of the time. But, that's more of a management issue.

One technical issue deals with the underlying issues, which usually can be thought of as hardware and software, but is actually more nuanced. And, in hardware, it's interesting to see the changes over the past couple of decades. One of late was the need to adapt to the presentation approach of the 'smart' phone. That is, the old browser-oriented mode (starting in the time of Mosaic) was getting to be too onerous for the flexible way that was possible. Too, though, some went too far with SQL (and equivalent) where one had no idea of structure. A balance seems to have emerged.

So, it was that we did some adjustment a few times in an incremental fashion: Technology and practice (overview of ways and means). And, some of this was recorded in a post at our Technology blog (Friendly to the mobile crowd). We want to move the technology blog away from Wordpress (so, it's on the stack of goals and tasks). Essentially, when moving out of OfficeLive, I fell back to the old approach of tables and images. Buttons were just images (snapped from Microsoft) with links. To get into an adaptive mode, I went with HTML/CSS. Since then, some javascripting has been added.

You will be surprised about how powerful that is. I can show a 3D-graphic handler written with javascript that is impressive.

As we left OfficeLive, I looked at a bunch of alternatives that were available at the time (2012). Did not like their ways. Then, while doing the mobile-friendly look, I considered a slew, many top-of-the-line. Again, you give up too much. Of course, WordPress is nice. Perhaps, we'll run it on our own server (virtual). We'll see.

We have already tried several means for discussion, etc. Right now, FB is being used, somewhat. There has to be some means for research and commerce. The latest AARP warns the old folks that many who are offering web services are not to be trusted.

You know, when they started to monkey with browsers, it opened up the door for others to take advantage of the innocent. We all know the stories. Mostly, they seem to go into one ear and out the other. Not for the Thomas Gardner Society, Inc. We'll have safety and security high on our priority list as we proceed.

As said before, anyone who wants to get hands-on experience, in the Linux environment, we have more than enough work to be done. Is it possible to have roll-your-own in the future? Given how much trust been lost, I would say, why not?

I'll have a post that pulls together all of the posts related to this theme and an important aspect: content versus configuration. These are really two of many hats that have to be worn. Any major organization has these covered by a team of people.

Remarks: Modified: 12/26/2018

12/26/2018 -- For a long while, I pointed to this page as my favorite on the web: This Week’s Finds in Mathematical Physics. Later, it was changed to “This week’s finds.” But, for years, it was basically textual with graphs presented thus, with some graphics added in. Look at Week 118 (March 14, 1998). It was not until later in the aughts, that we saw serious changes. Here is an example from 2011 (a transition year). The old posts are there; a timeline shows post numbers by year.

Now, we have a new look: Azimuth. It’s interesting that the two current posts are on geometric quantization. And, the blog is using modern markup approaches. Oh yes, another example of the power of WordPress.

Still, I hope that the old posts stay around for comparative purposes.

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