Slow, modern Heptameron story eleven XI

The first electronic calculator I remember, and the only one I remember seeing or using for years, was my mother’s. It folded in half on a plastic leather hinge and I think was a Casio SL-100B. I remember the folding hinge getting two cracks on each end, leaving these little tabs that I don’t remember ever trying to pull on.

It was solar powered with no memory, so had no real way to damage it. I played with it often to see what I could do to get the “E” to show up. Dividing by zero was easy, I think after that I found out I could keep multiplying things by large things and that would do it, and at last, taking the square root of a negative.

The best memory I have of it is putting in some huge number (it had 8 digits if it was an SL-100B, so 99,999,999 was the highest it went) and repeatedly pushing √ until I got to 1. I remember the numbers would fall rapidly, then become 1.0000something, and after falling below 1.000,000,050, became just “1.”.

This was more entertaining than multiplying things to reach an overflow because I didn’t have to come up with another number as multiplier, I just put in the initial number and watched it change with “√” until it reached the unchanging “1.”. In this, I now realized, I had a zero-player game, similar to “Conway’s Game of Life“: pick an initial state (99,999,999) and the rules (“√”) and everything in every turn afterward is unavoidably known (fixed value) and the same (no randomness or chance [stochasticity?]).

The U.S. Mail delivers intrigue

On the Postal Service website just now is an advertizement for their “Informed Delivery” tool, that emails you scanned images of mail pieces that are going to end up at your address.

From: USPS / To: Jane / Informed Delivery Daily Digest 7:52 a.m. / COMING TO YOUR MAILBOX SOON / MAIL / picture of letter with return address “John Doe / 123 Any Street / Anytown USA 55555”, canceled stamp, and address “Jane Smith 123 Any Street / Anytown USA 5555”.

Aside from the maybe incorrect address formatting (The USPS seems to want you to use abbreviations for road names, so 123 Any ST) and notable lack of a state or territory for Anytown, why is John Doe sending a letter to Jane Smith at the same address?

Continue reading The U.S. Mail delivers intrigue

Slow, modern Heptameron, story ten X

Another childhood memory with no speech at all.

From when I was about 5 until after I moved out around 20 years later, I lived with my parents where they lived, in a rural area on the edges of a sub urban area. In the sub urban area was a little shopping plaza at an intersection with 3 others. These were not “malls” I don’t think, although 1 might have qualified. A different one had that so-distinct 1970s? look to the sign out front, which I wish I could know the name of that style.

The one I am thinking of tried to be old timey in a very vague way. It had a brick front and an actual arcade (I think) with brick columns and roof lines and in the middle a clock on a higher than the rest roof.

When I first saw this was early, probably close to 5 or 6 years old, so about when I was learning to read a clock (something I do remember). This one you could see two sides of when you were in a car in the parking lot. From then until I last saw it, whenever later / ago, these two perpendicular faces’ hands never moved and were so different it was unavoidable to notice.

I think the two facing either “side” of the stores were the same, and I don’t remember that I ever, after I had learned to drive and could go there myself, walked around the back to see if it even had a rear face.

Highly memorable poem

Frank Solani’s pome about brushing teeth (which I don’t like and don’t to very often sigh) reminds me of 4 poems that are really 1 long one, that for some reason I almost completely memorized with no effort or attempt when I first read 3 of them.

The first is the well known “Queen of Hearts” that Lewis Carroll put in is first “Alice” book, the other 3 are the follow-ons for “the King of Spades”, “the King of Clubs”, and “The Diamond King”. You can read about them on the WikipediA and read them themselves on Wikisource.

Short post on the shortness of posts here

2.5 things have been/are going on that are quite responsible for not posting at all here for some months:

I love work. Not all of it is enjoyed, but there is so much stuff that really is useful to do and I get to do and get payd to, as well as earn the approval of almost all of my co workers, which means much to me. I am not diagnosed with autism, but the description of the term “hyperfixation” sounds accurate to alot of this. I took something home on Friday, after staying way late to work on other things, because it didn’t get done and is time-limited. More on that, I hope, soon for you.

I am in process of purchasing a house to live in. The apartment I moved to almost 1 year ago is passable but not great, its landlord is disengaged and disinterested in it. The last one tried to be/appear interested in repair and improvement of their property. I have a place pickt out, have made an offer that was accepted, and am working with my finance institution to get the mortgage performed, contract signed, other things found out. I have a really good real estate agent (who is also a “realtor”) that has made this process much clearer/safer.

The remaining “half” is the constant tiredness annoyance that I think is psychiatric, because it certainly started there.

Milk jug colorization

I noticed a while ago that, in the area of the world that I am familiar with, which is to say 2 or 3 of States in the “northeast” of the United States, of the 4 types of retail cow milk (skim or 0% milkfat, 1%, 2%, and “whole” or 3.25%) only “whole” milk is consistently sold with a red cap and label. The others are totally unstandardized and different colors are used for them and some times the same-ish color is used by two different bottlers for different types/grades (cyan is skim milk at 1 retailer and 1% at another one, both with stores around here).

Does any one have more information on this, preferably stories not published but experienced or known? Legal or other citations OK too.

Just an old-time professor

For a few years in the mid 2000s, I took a number of courses at the county college (2-year, Associates-granting public institution) taught by this 1 professor, H. I propose to tell some storys about him, that he told me or that we had.

Continue reading Just an old-time professor

3-eyed electric meter

A quick one: this simplified graphic of an electric power meter, as seen on common residential and light commercial services, looks like it has 3 eyes and is unimpressed:

NYSEG meter is unimpressed with your power profile.

Unicode calls this a “neutral face” but to me it’s unimpressed with what it sees, or what it is registering.