The Intellectual Wilderness There is nothing more useless than doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.

2021.10.27 11:09

How to Destroy the Middle Class

Filed under: Politics / Geopolitics,Society — Tags: , , , , — zxq9 @ 11:09

Step 1: Impose a tax on unrealized capital gains right before hyperinflation takes off.
Step 2: Sit back and enjoy the show — you’re done!

The above is not an exaggeration.

Don’t think only about crypto and stock holdings. Think bigger. Your car, your house, your clothes, your dog, the food in your refrigerator, and any other property that is held in your name is fair game for such a tax.

Now consider how hyperinflation works: The nominal value of everything skyrockets, but the material and utility value stays the same. This is effectively a wealth tax that accelerates over time disguised as a “tax on the rich”, which it absolutely is not.

In the context of hyperinflation people will be taxed at an ever accelerating rate simply for owning anything at all, and only the mega-rich will be able to afford accountants that can get them out of owing.

I have to say, this is a genius plan to destroy anyone who isn’t a billionaire already and create that magical scenario we’ve heard so often before as a mantra of the “Build Back Better” WEF people: “You will own nothing”. Indeed, very few will own anything if this sort of tax is actually imposed.

Fascinating times. The cascade will be really interesting to watch.

2021.10.26 11:54

Space-Based Solar Done Right

Anyone who gives a bit of honest thought to the so-called “renewable energy” market cannot escape the conclusion that the vast majority of it is fake — politicians creating a moral panic to grant themselves unquestionable authority over appropriations and then handing appropriated funds over to losing ventures run by their friends and family that they themselves retire into as directors and board members. It’s a genius scam as scams go, but suffers from the fatal flaw of all scams: it accelerates the tragedy of the commons.

Imagine that, a scam that worsens the more general category of problems it claims to make better.

That said… “sustainable energy” is a genuine issue. Why use this other term? Because words mean things and there is literally no such thing as “renewable energy” as energy use is disruptive and we live in an entropic universe that mandates that energy cannot be renewed. This isn’t just an abstract philosophical idea, it’s physical law. Energy use can, however, be sustained over any foreseeable period of a future where humanity continues to thrive and that’s something we can think seriously about and come up with solutions for.

Terrestrially it is pretty clear that we have no idea what is going on with climate in any real sense and that we have almost completely prohibited ourselves from thinking clearly about climate change by moralizing it as a political issue. I am therefore going to ignore the idea of emissions and atmospheric content for just a moment and talk strictly about two things we know from general planetary science (studying other planets and planetoids):

  • Exposure to solar radiation correlates strongly with surface temperature
  • Atmospheric pressure correlates strongly with surface temperature

This means that even if I completely ignore carbon emissions (and health) that fossil fuels and other non-petroleum hydrocarbon use releases, these sources are also finite and have their own limitations regardless of the ZOMG DA CARBONSES moral panic. This also means that while I can accept that terrestrial power generation using atomic generation makes a lot of sense from a sustainable energy perspective, it still has limitations of scale: it is imaginable that we could simply use up the finite amount of available fuels at some point and/or find it difficult to build the sheer number of plants necessary to supply all of our energy needs (much less transmit the power once generated).

Terrestrial solar energy, wind power, various forms of ethanol, tidal power, current power, hydroelectric dams, etc. are all interesting but suffer from the same finiteness and scale problems that hydrocarbons and nuclear power have, but have an even greater and very direct environmentally disruptive impact by massive conversion of land use at scales never seen in human history. It just isn’t sustainable, much less reliable 24/7.

The bottom line is we need another solution for energy resources, and there just happens to be a massive nuclear furnace just a 150 gigameters away. Plenty of people have noted the obvious problems with terrestrial solar power and thought “Oh, hey, what if we just put solar farms into space and beam it back with lasers or microwaves?” In fact, Isaac Asimov gave quite a lot of thought to the idea and recently the idea has resurfaced across pop-sci media for whatever reason.

There is just one problem: While we don’t know anything for certain about the effects of “greenhouse gasses” we are quite certain about the effects of solar radiation — and solar farms in space effectively increase the radiation collecting surface of the planet.

To be clear: Space-based solar power that is beamed back to the planet literally microwaves Earth.

We can argue back and forth all day about the effects of carbon emissions on the climate, but one thing we cannot escape is the conclusion that increasing the surface area exposed to the Sun to any economically significant degree will have a warming effect on the planet.

Oh noes! I just shot down the great salvation of the human race! However can we still run PoW cryptofarms and transcoding servers for OnlyFans camwhores in AWS and Runscape servers and sexbot factories if we can’t access the delicious space power?!? The solution is actually quite easy and obvious: Put the hot process in space along with the solar arrays.

My prediction is that humanity will eventually begin building not just some, but the majority of server farms, data mines, and even industrial production sites in space. Continuing to put it all at the bottom of the terrestrial gravity well that we have a very strong desire to preserve is clearly not a sustainable idea. Space-based industry eliminates pollution issues, emissions concerns, is truly sustainable, and won’t microwave the planet.

The main problem with this idea is that people are retarded and don’t understand how non-crazy this concept is, and probably won’t until someone already has a set of self-powering and massively profitable space-based data services and perhaps even fabrication facilities in space — at which point the public will turn on them as “greedy rich people” and start moralizing about [random distraction] until the whole thing breaks down and has to be remade.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for today. Enjoy the crash!

2021.06.11 10:42

Building Erlang 23.3.4.3 on Devuan/Debian/Ubuntu

Filed under: Computing,Science & Tech — Tags: , , , , , , , , — zxq9 @ 10:42

Erlang R24 is out! …but there are, as usual with a version X.0 release, a few rough edges (enough of them around the important-but-annoying WX and OpenGL updates that I’ll be writing another post about that shortly…).

In the meantime, R23.3.4.3 is excellent and quite reliable. The steps for building with kerl are nearly identical as for R22, but it is worth re-posting them with the relevant version updates (or if you like the video version, Dr. Kumar made a few demonstrating his home Erlang + ZX build). Also, if you’re in a part of the world where erlang.org’s docs are occasionally really really sloooooooowwww don’t forget the R23 docs mirror (or my Erlang page with linky links to everything).

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
sudo apt install \
    gcc curl g++ dpkg-dev build-essential automake autoconf \
    libncurses5-dev libssl-dev flex xsltproc libwxgtk3.0-dev \
    wget vim git
mkdir vcs bin
cd vcs
git clone https://github.com/kerl/kerl.git
cd ..
ln -s ~/vcs/kerl/kerl bin/kerl
kerl update releases
kerl build 23.3.4.3 23.3.4.3
kerl install 23.3.4.3 ~/.erts/23.3.4.3
echo '. "$HOME"/.erts/23.3.4.3/activate' >> .bashrc
. ~/.erts/23.3.4.3/activate
wget -q https://zxq9.com/projects/zomp/get_zx && bash get_zx

As usual, the ~/vcs/ directory is just my convention for version-controlled code that my $HOME sync scripts know to ignore, and you might want to install Erlang to some place global on your system like /opt/erts/ or whatever. The steps above work without root privileges with the exception of the apt commands. Remember if you are on Devuan or Debian that you need to perform the sudo commands actually as root unless you configure sudo on your system, then the rest as your normal local user account.

2021.06.4 09:26

確率事象

いくつかの無駄な考え:

  1. 天地万物はプランク限界でピクセル化されています。
  2. エベレットとボーアの解釈はどちらも正しい: 宇宙は遅延評価され、未来は「記憶」するには費用がかかりすぎる.
  3. 相対論的効果は、イベントの評価に必要な伝播遅延と削減バジェットのために発生する創発現象です。
  4. 確率は文脈から外れて滑らかに見えますが、ピクセル化とイベント順序の依存関係により、無限に小さな確率のイベントが実際に発生することが制限されます。
  5. 実数は偽物であり、有理数は実数です。 すべての数値には有限の解像度があります。
  6. 上記の点のために、残念ながらかなり多くの数学が間違っています (たとえば、真のタンジェントは、単一の値ではなく、そのスコープによって制限される範囲です)。 しかし、偽の数学は、その大部分が真っ赤な嘘であると認めれば、工学を完成させるのに十分に妥当な近似値です。
  7. 人は、自分の幻覚に夢中になりすぎて、上記のことを注意深く考えることができません。

2021.06.2 14:39

Random: The Erlang runtime (aka BEAM) when fed bad data

Filed under: Computing — Tags: , , , , — zxq9 @ 14:39

Random: How the Web was Designed

Filed under: Computing — Tags: , , , , , — zxq9 @ 14:37

2021.05.11 15:36

A personal appeal

Filed under: Uncategorized — zxq9 @ 15:36

Hello, World!

UPDATE: Things are looking better, but I’m not out of the woods yet. I have been surprised, amazed and humbled by the generosity and concern of the Erlang community. Wow.

Things are still up in the air, so if you happen to need someone to tackle one of the things I’m good at, please let me know. My core competencies:

  • Programming (Erlang, Python, Elixir, Go, C, asm, Lisp, SQL, etc. pretty much anything but K)
  • Project management
  • Distributed systems architecture (or evaluation and restructuring roadmap)
  • Robust systems architecture (or evaluation and restructuring)
  • Teaching (programming, design, English, Japanese, intelligence cycle, decision making process, etc.)
  • Geopolitical analysis and assessment
  • Intelligence analysis

I’ve tried to publish information and working projects for the open source community, however minor my contributions, and at the very least if you happen to be a user of one of my projects and decide to donate on that bases please at least tell me something I can improve for you so that I don’t feel like a total leech.

Donation methods — but if you donate please send me an email and let me know why and what you want it to go towards in terms of existing projects or projects you hope for:

ETH: 0xdaAa0a6789C7ab85c20d3af50475d0f2aCb72D9
BTC: 3F3es8UgDrcxWRKrSBeotcexDHqe7PhpPf
SubscribeStar: https://www.subscribestar.com/zxq9
PayPal: zxq9@zxq9.com

If you read this far, thank you for your patience.

2021.05.4 17:56

Tsuriai: Now engaging in smart contract work

I never thought I’d see the day, but Tsuriai (the tiny Japanese software company I work for) is now in the Ethereum smart contract market as a developer — which means I am now in that same market.

Need a smart contract or blockchain/IPFS-based project developers/consultants/educators*?
Just shoot the office an email at info@tsuriai.jp and they’ll hook you up.
They can even accept payment in ETH now, which makes it a lot easier to contract from overseas.

What a world!

[*Or, as always, Erlang developers or consultants, distributed systems analysis, and pretty much any other BEAM-related services, education or assistance!]

It is pretty well known that I don’t think smart contracts are going to save the world from itself because the problems in the US, Europe and China have everything to do with violations of social trust by government and lack of faith in people among the people themselves (as well as lack of faith in culture and tradition), but… smart contracts actually are kind of fun to write and our workflow is pretty darn fast.

There are clear use cases that fit the Ethereum-style computing paradigm and even some that clearly benefit from deployment on something like IPFS rather than a traditional server back end, and we can talk the client through the pros and cons. I suppose the most common thing to want to implement is NFTs at the moment, and some forms of NFTs (especially distributed name registry systems <hint!> <hint!>) are clearly extremely valuable solutions to otherwise difficult to administer problems.

2021.04.30 09:10

Valgrind “Hello, World!”: Python 3.6 VS Python 2.7 VS Erlang R23

I’ll just leave this here…

Python 3.6

ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ cat hello.py
#! /usr/bin/python3

print("Hello, world!")
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ ./hello.py
Hello, world!
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ valgrind ./hello.py
...
==19264== HEAP SUMMARY:
==19264==     in use at exit: 320,946 bytes in 166 blocks
==19264==   total heap usage: 1,698 allocs, 1,532 frees, 2,505,946 bytes allocated
==19264== 
==19264== LEAK SUMMARY:
==19264==    definitely lost: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
==19264==    indirectly lost: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
==19264==      possibly lost: 5,608 bytes in 10 blocks
==19264==    still reachable: 315,338 bytes in 156 blocks
==19264==         suppressed: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
...
==19264== ERROR SUMMARY: 8163 errors from 116 contexts (suppressed: 0 from 0)
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$

Python 2.7

ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ cat hello2.py 
#! /usr/bin/python

print "Hello, world!"
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ ./hello2.py
Hello, world!
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$ valgrind ./hello2.py
...
==19416== HEAP SUMMARY:
==19416==     in use at exit: 417,246 bytes in 199 blocks
==19416==   total heap usage: 2,958 allocs, 2,759 frees, 3,085,205 bytes allocated
==19416== 
==19416== LEAK SUMMARY:
==19416==    definitely lost: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
==19416==    indirectly lost: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
==19416==      possibly lost: 528 bytes in 1 blocks
==19416==    still reachable: 416,718 bytes in 198 blocks
==19416==         suppressed: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
...
==19416== ERROR SUMMARY: 489 errors from 30 contexts (suppressed: 0 from 0)
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/python$

Erlang R23

(On this one I can include the entire output.)

ceverett@icecream:~/Code/erlang$ cat hello_world 
#! /usr/bin/env escript

% Example of an escript
-mode(compile).

main(_) ->
    ok = io:setopts([{encoding, unicode}]),
    io:format("Hello, world!~n").
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/erlang$ ./hello_world 
Hello, world!
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/erlang$ valgrind ./hello_world
==25872== Memcheck, a memory error detector
==25872== Copyright (C) 2002-2017, and GNU GPL'd, by Julian Seward et al.
==25872== Using Valgrind-3.13.0 and LibVEX; rerun with -h for copyright info
==25872== Command: ./hello_world
==25872== 
Hello, world!
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/erlang$

Hey, Python! What the actual fsck is going on here?!? Jeebus… The Good Idea Fairy came along and convinced the webtarded among you to start throwing kitchen sink features in (“walrus operator” — yeah, great idea, that, and totally worth losing the sober guidance of Guido over…) along with 8163 memory errors. Sweet! Oh how far the great have fallen…

Honorable mention: Ruby 2.5

I didn’t expect much better from Ruby as the Good Idea Fairy has been forwarding all xer mail there for years, but wow… just wow

ceverett@icecream:~/Code/ruby$ cat hello_world.rb 
#! /usr/bin/ruby

print "Hello, World!\n"
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/ruby$ ./hello_world.rb 
Hello, World!
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/ruby$ valgrind ./hello_world.rb
...
==27051== HEAP SUMMARY:
==27051==     in use at exit: 2,921,234 bytes in 20,690 blocks
==27051==   total heap usage: 65,312 allocs, 44,622 frees, 16,447,358 bytes allocated
==27051== 
==27051== LEAK SUMMARY:
==27051==    definitely lost: 385,479 bytes in 4,421 blocks
==27051==    indirectly lost: 640,953 bytes in 5,808 blocks
==27051==      possibly lost: 1,626,429 bytes in 9,663 blocks
==27051==    still reachable: 268,373 bytes in 798 blocks
==27051==         suppressed: 0 bytes in 0 blocks
...
==27051== ERROR SUMMARY: 162050 errors from 402 contexts (suppressed: 0 from 0)
ceverett@icecream:~/Code/ruby$

162,050 memory errors. For Hello, World. How can there even be 162,050 instructions in the resulting set of commands to the system?

2021.04.6 16:37

Random: T’Challa’s Song

Filed under: Overlooked Resources,Society — Tags: , , , — zxq9 @ 16:37

Once upon a time, a student asked his music teacher the most difficult philosophical question in all of music and received wisdom.

T’Challa: “Teacher, there are so many instruments to pick from, which one is the best?”
Mrs. Ngudu: “Which is the best? You are the best instrument, T’Challa. All the music comes from you! Do you understand?”
T’Challa: “I think so…”

What he did with this wisdom was… novel.

Mrs. Ngudu

The principal

T’Challa’s cousin…

As a teacher you never know to what heights or in what manner your students may someday soar.

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