jm + life   29

We’re more likely to get cancer than to get married. This is a wake-up call | Ranjana Srivastava | Opinion | The Guardian
Later, in clinic, I see patients ranging from a stoical university student to a devastated father to the frail octogenarian who can’t remember the day, let alone that he has cancer – each patient an illustration of a recent Macmillan Cancer Support UK finding that it is more common for an individual to be diagnosed with cancer than to get married or have a first child. One in two people will encounter a cancer diagnosis in their lifetime, which is why the report says that, alongside marriage, parenthood, retirement and the death of a parent, cancer is now “a common life milestone”.
cancer  life  milestones  death  uk  health  medicine 
7 weeks ago by jm
Cycling to work: major new study suggests health benefits are staggering
We found that cycling to work was associated with a 41% lower risk of dying overall compared to commuting by car or public transport. Cycle commuters had a 52% lower risk of dying from heart disease and a 40% lower risk of dying from cancer. They also had 46% lower risk of developing heart disease and a 45% lower risk of developing cancer at all.
cycling  transport  health  medicine  science  commuting  life  statistics 
12 weeks ago by jm
Nick Mathewson on Twitter
"Gaze not into the abyss, lest you become recognized as an abyss domain expert, and they expect you keep gazing into the damn thing."


Words to live by....
ffu  funny  the-abyss  life  work  experts  expertise  sme 
may 2017 by jm
Rule by Nobody
'Algorithms update bureaucracy’s long-standing strategy for evasion.'
The need to optimize yourself for a network of opaque algorithms induces a sort of existential torture. In The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy, anthropologist David Graeber suggests a fundamental law of power dynamics: “Those on the bottom of the heap have to spend a great deal of imaginative energy trying to understand the social dynamics that surround them — including having to imagine the perspectives of those on top — while the latter can wander about largely oblivious to much of what is going on around them. That is, the powerless not only end up doing most of the actual, physical labor required to keep society running, they also do most of the interpretive labor as well.” This dynamic, Graeber argues, is built into all bureaucratic structures. He describes bureaucracies as “ways of organizing stupidity” — that is, of managing and reproducing these “extremely unequal structures of imagination” in which the powerful can disregard the perspectives of those beneath them in various social and economic hierarchies. Employees need to anticipate the needs of bosses; bosses need not reciprocate. People of color are forced to learn to accommodate and anticipate the ignorance and hostility of white people. Women need to be acutely aware of men’s intentions and feelings. And so on. Even benevolent-seeming bureaucracies, in Graeber’s view, have the effect of reinforcing “the highly schematized, minimal, blinkered perspectives typical of the powerful” and their privileges of ignorance and indifference toward those positioned as below them.
algorithms  bureaucracy  democracy  life  society  via:raycorrigan  technology  power 
may 2017 by jm
a digital clock in Conway's Game of Life
I'm sure everyone has seen this amazing feat, but I wanted to make sure I had it bookmarked ;) Gliders and lightweight spaceships, apparently...
life  games  alife  conways-life  gliders  hacks  cool 
march 2017 by jm
Family life and "flow"
via twitter: "interesting conversation between author of a parenting book and the guy who introduced the concept of "flow"" -- summary, family life is interrupt-driven (via nagging) and fundamentally hard to align with "flow"
flow  life  family  work  nagging  happiness 
january 2017 by jm
Video Games Are Boring
I'm not remotely interested in shockingly good graphics, in murder simulators, in guns and knives and swords. I'm not that interested in adrenaline. My own life is thrilling enough. There is enough fear and hatred in the world to get my heart pounding. My Facebook feed and Twitter feed are enough for that. Walking outside in summer clothing is enough for that. I'm interested in care, in characters, in creation, in finding a path forward inside games that helps me find my path forward in life. I am interested in compassion and understanding. I'm interested in connecting. As Miranda July said, "all I ever wanted to know is how other people are making it through life." I want to make games that help other people understand life.

We are all overwhelmed with shock, with information, with change. The degree of interactivity in our lives is amazing and wonderful and I wouldn't exchange it for anything, but it is also shocking and overwhelming and it's causing us to dig in and try to find some peace by shutting each other out. On all sides of the political spectrum we've stopped listening to each other and I fear we are all leaning toward fascist thinking. We should be using this medium to help us adapt to our new, interactive lives. This is how we become relevant.
essay  feminism  society  culture  games  gaming  life  art 
november 2016 by jm
“I Want to Know What Code Is Running Inside My Body” — Backchannel
Sandler wants to be able to explore the code running her device for programming flaws and vulnerability to hacking, but she can’t. “Because I don’t have access to the source code, I have no power to do anything about it,” she says. In her eyes, it’s a particularly obvious example of a problem that now cuts across much of modern life: proprietary software has become crucial to daily survival, and yet is often locked away from public exploration and discussion by copyright.
copyright  safety  health  pacemakers  law  proprietary-software  life  medicine  implants 
august 2016 by jm
IMDB on automation, pt 2
Quotable: "how long can work on making a routine task more efficient before you're spending more time than you save?"
quotes  time  automation  hacks  life  imdb  productivity  efficiency 
july 2016 by jm
Kevin Lyda's mega pension post
Cutting and pasting from Facebook for posterity... there are some really solid tips in here.

'Some people plan their lives out and then there are people like me who randomly do things and suddenly, in retrospect, it looks like a grand plan has come together. In reality it's more like my subconscious pulls in useful info and pokes me to go learn things as required. If you live/work in Ireland, the following "grand plan" might be useful.

This year has apparently been "figure out how to retire" year. It started late last year with finally organising all my private Irish pensions (2 from employers, 1 personal). In the process I learned the following:

* Many Irish pension plans allow you to start drawing down from them at age 50. There are downsides to this, but if you have several of them it allows you more room to avoid stock market downturns when you purchase annuities.

* You can get 25% of each pension as a tax-free lump sum.

I also learned a few property things. The key thing is that if you have a buy-to-let property you should *not* pay off its mortgage early. You can deduct 75% of the interest you pay against the taxes you'd owe for rental income. That means the interest you pay will essentially be close to or even under the rate of inflation. A residential mortgage might have a lower interest rate nominally, but the effective interest rate is higher.

The Irish state pension is changing. If you are 68 after 2020 the rules have changed - and they're now much simpler. Work for 10 years and you get the minimum state pension (1/3 of a full pension). Work for 20, you get 2/3 of of a state pension. Work for 30, you get a full pension. But you can't collect it till you're 68 and remember that Irish employers can apparently force you to "retire" at 65 (ageism is legal). So you need to bridge those 3 years (or hope they change the law to stop employers from doing that).

When I "retired" I kept a part time job for a number of reasons, but one was because I suspected I needed more PRSI credits for a pension. And it turns out this was correct. Part-time work counts as long as you make more than €38/week. And self-employment counts as long as you make more than €5,000/year. You can also make voluntary PRSI contributions (around €500/year but very situation dependent).

If you've worked in Europe or the US or Canada or a few other countries, you can get credits for social welfare payments in those countries. But if you have enough here and you have enough for some pension in the other country, you can draw a pension from both.

Lastly most people I've talked to about retirement this year have used the analogy of legs on a stool. Every source of post-retirement income is a leg on the stool - the more legs, the more secure your retirement. There are lots of options for legs:

* Rental income. This is a little wobbly as legs go at least for me. But if you have more than one rental property - and better yet some commercial rental property - this leg firms up a bit. Still, it's a bit more work than most.

* Savings. This isn't very tax-efficient, but it can help fill in blank spots some legs have (like rental income or age restrictions) or maximise another legs value (weathering downturns for stock-based legs). And in retirement you can even build savings up. Sell a house, the private pension lump sum, etc. But remember you're retired, go have fun. Savings won't do you much good when you're dead.

* Stocks. I've cashed all mine in, but some friends have been more restrained in cashing in stocks they might have gotten from employers. This is a volatile leg, but it can pay off rather well if you know what you're doing. But be honest with yourself. I know I absolutely don't know what I'm doing on this so stayed away.

* Government pension. This is generally a reliable source of income in retirement. It's usually not a lot, but it does tend to last from retirement to death and it shows up every month. You apply once and then it just shows up each month. If you've worked in multiple countries, you can hedge some bets by taking a pension in each country you qualify from. You did pay into them after all.

* Private pension. This can also give you a solid source of income but you need to pay into it. And paying in during your 20s and 30s really pays off later. But you need to make your investments less risky as you get into your late 50s - so make sure to start looking at them then. And you need to provide yourself some flexibility for starting to draw it down in order to survive market drops. The crash in 2007 didn't fully recover until 2012 - that's 5 years.

* Your home. Pay off your mortgage and your home can be a leg. Not having to pay rent/mortgage is a large expense removed and makes the other legs more effective. You can also "sell down" or look into things like reverse mortgages, but the former can take time and has costs while the latter usually seems to have a lot of fine print you should read up on.

* Part-time work. I know a number of people who took part-time jobs when they retired. If you can find something that doesn't take a huge amount of time that you'd enjoy doing and that people will pay you for, fantastic! Do that. And it gets you out of the house and keeping active. For friends who are geeks and in my age cohort, I note that it will be 2037 around the time we hit 65. If you know why that matters, ka-ching!'

Another particularly useful page about the state pension: "Six things every woman needs to know about the State pension", Irish Times, Dec 1 2015, https://www.irishtimes.com/business/personal-finance/six-things-every-woman-needs-to-know-about-the-state-pension-1.2448981 , which links to this page to get your state pension contribution record: http://www.welfare.ie/en/pages/secure/ RequestSIContributionRecord.aspx
pensions  money  life  via:klyda  stocks  savings  shares  property  ireland  old-age  retirement 
december 2015 by jm
3 Lessons From The Amazon Takedown - Fortune
They are: The leaders we admire aren’t always that admirable; Economic performance and costs trump employee well-being; and people participate in and rationalize their own subjugation.

'In the end, “Amazonians” are not that different from other people in their psychological dynamics. Their company is just a more extreme case of what many other organizations regularly do. And most importantly, let’s locate the problem, if there is one, and its solution where it most appropriately belongs—not with a CEO who is greatly admired (and wealthy beyond measure) running a highly admired company, but with a society where money trumps human well-being and where any price, maybe even lives, is paid for status and success.'

(via Lean)
amazon  work  work-life-balance  life  us  fortune  via:ldoody  ceos  employment  happiness 
august 2015 by jm
The Travis CI Blog: Making Travis CI a Family-Friendly Place to Work: Our Maternity and Paternity Leave for US Employees
This is excellent -- I wish more companies took this attitude. Applause for Travis CI.
after a couple of weeks of research, we made a decision to offer our expectant mothers AND fathers:

2 weeks before the due date paid at 100% (optional, but recommended);
20 weeks for normal births paid at 100%;
24 weeks for births with complications paid at 100%;
Flexible working hours after the 20/24 weeks are complete (part-time arrangements can be made);
Your job will be here for you when you return.

When we relayed this information to the two US employees, one became a little teary because her last employer (a much bigger and older company), didn't offer anything. This being her second child, it was a huge relief to know she was going to have paid time off with flexibility upon return. While it was a great reaction, it shouldn't happen this way. If you value your employees, you should value their need for time away. At the same time, if you want to hire someone, whether or not they are already pregnant should be irrelevant.


Well exceeding even the Irish maternity leave entitlements, since it covers fathers too. And this is a startup!
travisci  startups  work  life  family  kids  paternity-leave  maternity-leave 
august 2015 by jm
It’s Not Climate Change — It’s Everything Change
now this is a Long Read. the inimitable Margaret Atwood on climate change, beautifully illustrated
climate  climate-change  margaret-atwood  long-reads  change  life  earth  green  future 
july 2015 by jm
The old suburban office park is the new American ghost town - The Washington Post
Most analyses of the market indicate that office parks simply aren’t as appealing or profitable as they were in the 20th century and that Americans just aren’t as keen to cloister themselves in workspaces that are reachable only by car.
cbd  cities  work  life  office-parks  commuting  america  history  workplaces 
july 2015 by jm
Soylent, Neoliberalism and the Politics of Life Hacking - CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names
Soylent’s not purchased by the Mark Zuckerbergs or the Larry Pages or the other tech aristocrats [...] Rather, it’s been taken up by white-collar workers and students destined for perpetual toil in the digital mills. Their embrace of life hacking represents the internalisation of management practices by the managed themselves.
life-hacks  soylent  food  politics  taylorism  efficiency  capitalism  work  life 
may 2015 by jm
Please Kill Me (Eventually) | Motherboard
There is much that the wise application of technology can do to help us ease off this mortal coil, instead of tormenting ourselves at the natural end of life in a futile, undignified and excruciating attempt to keep it somehow duct-taped on. Train more people in geriatrics, for example. Learn new ways to make life safe, healthy, fun and interesting for the old. Think like a community, a brotherhood, not like atomized competing individuals a few of whom can somehow "beat the system" of the universe. Maybe it is better to examine clearly what we are with a view to understanding and acceptance than it is to try to escape what perhaps should be our inevitable ending.
death  mortality  cryogenics  alcor  geriatrics  life  singularity  mind-uploading  ray-kurzweil 
april 2015 by jm
Working Time, Knowledge Work and Post-Industrial Society: Unpredictable Work - Aileen O'Carroll
my friend Aileen has written a book -- looks interesting:

I will argue that a key feature of working time within high-tech industries is unpredictability, which alters the way time is experienced and perceived. It affects all aspects of time, from working hours to work organisation, to career, to the distinction between work and life. Although many desire variety in work and the ability to control working hours, unpredictability causes dissatisfaction.


On Amazon.co.uk at: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Working-Time-Knowledge-Post-Industrial-Society-ebook/dp/B00VILIN4U
books  reading  time  work  society  tech  working-hours  job  life  sociology 
april 2015 by jm
Programmer IS A Career Path, Thank You
Well said -- Amazon had a good story around this btw
programming  coding  career  work  life 
february 2015 by jm
Screen time: Steve Jobs was a low tech parent
“This is rule No. 1: There are no screens in the bedroom. Period. Ever.”
screen-time  kids  children  tv  mobile  technology  life  rules  parenting 
september 2014 by jm
How I decoded the human genome - Salon.com
classic long-read article from John Sundman: 'We are becoming the masters of our own DNA. But does that give us the right to decide that my children should never have been born?' part two at http://www.salon.com/2003/10/22/genome_two/
human  genome  genomics  eugenics  politics  life  john-sundman  disability  health  dna  medicine  salon  long-reads  children 
may 2013 by jm
Older Is Wiser: Study Shows Software Developers’ Skills Improve Over Time
At least in terms of StackOverflow rep:
For the first part of the study, the researchers compared the age of users with their reputation scores. They found that an individual’s reputation increases with age, at least into a user’s 40s. There wasn’t enough data to draw meaningful conclusions for older programmers. The researchers then looked at the number of different subjects that users asked and answered questions about, which reflects the breadth of their programming interests. The researchers found that there is a sharp decline in the number of subjects users weighed in on between the ages of 15 and 30 – but that the range of subjects increased steadily through the programmers’ 30s and into their early 50s.

Finally, the researchers evaluated the knowledge of older programmers (ages 37 and older) compared to younger programmers (younger than 37) in regard to relatively recent technologies – meaning technologies that have been around for less than 10 years. For two smartphone operating systems, iOS and Windows Phone 7, the veteran programmers had a significant edge in knowledge over their younger counterparts. For every other technology, from Django to Silverlight, there was no statistically significant difference between older and younger programmers. “The data doesn’t support the bias against older programmers – if anything, just the opposite,” Murphy-Hill says.


Damn right ;)
coding  age  studies  software  work  stack-overflow  ncsu  knowledge  skills  life 
april 2013 by jm
SmoothLifeL
'A continuous version of Conway's Life, using floating point values instead of integers'. 'SmoothLifeL supports many interesting phenomena such as gliders that can travel in any direction, rotating pairs of gliders, 'wickstretchers' and the appearance of elastic tension in the 'cords' that join the blobs.' paper: http://arxiv.org/abs/1111.1567 , and slides: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iyTIXRhjXII

(via jwz)
life  games  emergent-behaviour  algorithms  graphics  via:jwz  cool  eye-candy  conways-life  floating-point  continuous  gliders 
october 2012 by jm
Don’t waste your time in crappy startup jobs
7 reasons why working for a startup sucks. Been there, done that -- I wish I'd read this years ago. It should be permalinked at the top of Hacker News.

"In 1995, a lot of talented young people went into large corporations because they saw no other option in the private sector– when, in fact, there were credible alternatives, startups being a great option. In 2012, a lot of young talent is going into startups for the same reason: a belief that it’s the only legitimate work opportunity for top talent, and that their careers are likely to stagnate if they work in more established businesses. They’re wrong, I think, and this mistaken belief allows them to be taken advantage of.

The typical equity offer for a software engineer is dismally short of what he’s giving up in terms of reduced salary, and the career path offered by startups is not always what it’s made out to be. For all this, I don’t intend to argue that people shouldn’t join startups. If the offer’s good, and the job looks interesting, it’s worth trying out. I just don’t think that the current, unconditional “startups are awesome!” mentality serves us well. It’s not good for any of us, because there’s no tyrant worse than a peer selling himself short, and right now there are a lot of great people selling themselves very short for a shot at the “startup experience” -- whatever that is."
startups  work  job  life  career  tech  vc  companies  pay  stock  share-options 
july 2012 by jm
zen.org Communal Weblog » Bigger Than His Body
'My beautiful, smart, funny, geeky, blue-eyed, bearded, amazing husband died last night with me and two of his aunts holding him.' So sorry for Elana and their boys -- Brendan was a nice guy and a great hacker :(
brendan-kehoe  awful  leukemia  life  death  rip 
july 2011 by jm
self-replicating configuration in Conway's Game Of Life created
The "spaceship" configuration replicates in 33699586 generations, using 2 construction arms and a volley of gliders circulating between them
via:newscientist  game-of-life  life  cellular-automata  gliders  self-replicating  from delicious
june 2010 by jm

related tags

age  alcor  algorithms  alife  amazon  ambition  america  apple  art  automation  awful  books  brendan-kehoe  bureaucracy  cancer  capitalism  career  cbd  cellular-automata  ceos  change  children  cities  climate  climate-change  coding  commuting  companies  continuous  conways-life  cool  copyright  cryogenics  culture  cycling  death  democracy  disability  dna  earth  efficiency  egg-freezing  emergent-behaviour  employment  essay  etymology  eugenics  expertise  experts  eye-candy  facebook  family  feminism  ffu  floating-point  flow  food  fortune  funny  future  galway  game-of-life  games  gaming  genome  genomics  geriatrics  gliders  google  google-glass  graphics  green  grim-meathook-future  hacks  happiness  health  history  human  imdb  implants  ireland  job  john-sundman  journalism  kids  knowledge  law  leukemia  life  life-hacks  long-reads  margaret-atwood  maternity-leave  medicine  milestones  mind-uploading  mobile  money  mortality  nagging  ncsu  nytimes  office-parks  old-age  pacemakers  parenting  paternity-leave  pay  pensions  perks  pervasive-computing  phrases  politics  power  privacy  productivity  programming  property  proprietary-software  quotes  ray-kurzweil  reading  retirement  rip  rules  safety  salon  savings  science  screen-time  self-replicating  share-options  shares  singularity  skills  sme  society  sociology  software  soylent  stack-overflow  startups  statistics  stock  stocks  studies  taylorism  tech  technology  the-abyss  time  transport  travisci  tv  uk  us  vc  via:jwz  via:klyda  via:ldoody  via:newscientist  via:raycorrigan  work  work-life-balance  working-hours  workplace  workplaces 

Copy this bookmark:



description:


tags: