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## Mon, Sep 16, 2019

* TOC
{: toc } 
  
### Recap July 24 - Sept 16, 2019
 
It's been a record 5 weeks since I've done a proper log entry here! Apologies to my wonderful readers. However you haven't missed terribly much as I've mostly been putting the finishing touches on the Whole Code Catalog, going to a few conferences and other traveling. Here is the quick recap:

#### BobKonf 2019

I decided last minute to attend BobKonf colocated with ICFP in Berlin this year to see Adriaan Leijnse of “Relativistic FRP” and Conal Elliott give talks. (These are both online and well-worth watching!) I was fortunate enough to spend a couple hours with them both, talking about the future of extending FRP, particularly into the domain of distributed computing. While we didn't speak of him directly, I started watching Paul Borrill's videos about this time about the intersection of physics, time and distributed computing after Adriaan sent them to us, as they were instrumental in his thinking through relatavistic FRP. More on this later.

#### ULF and PPIG 2019

I attended a User Liberation Front meeting with Jonathan Edwards, Antranig, Luke and Marianna, Stephen Kell, and others in Cambridge before we all went to PPIG. It was wonderful seeing them all! I wasn't as much of a fan of PPIG and ended up leaving a day early to get back to work at home.

#### Launching WCC

Last Monday I finally launched the Whole Code Catalog. It was definitely successful enough for me to be happy (front page of HN for a couple hours, 172 retweets, couple hundred new twitter followers, ~50 new Slack members, no uptick in podcast downloads, still about 1.1k listeners/subscribers, 500 people on futureofcoding.org/index.html but unclear how many on the Catalog because I sadly forgot analytics on it), but not much more than that. It definitely didn't go crazy viral, but it still feels like it justified the time I put into it. It was nice emailing with Stewart Brand and getting a nice Twitter comment from Gary Bernhardt. However I feel very much "done" researching others' projects, especially modern ones, for the next couple months at least, so Edition 2 of the Catalog is at least a year a way, if not longer.

#### Strange Loop 2019

I had more fun than expected at Strange Loop! The talks were way better than I was expecting. I didn't get to see it live, but  [Paul Chiusano](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCWtkvDQ2ZI) gave a talk. John Austin (from the FoC Slack) gave a wonderful talk on the [history of RGB color](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AS1OHMW873s). I saw a fun talk using the Spotify API and I am now working on rebuilding the Spotify Running feature they discontinued to allow me to again run to the beat of the music. I started it on Dark but am now on Glitch because there was another user's project that I could fork easily. I am looking forward to watching this talk on [Mesh networks](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQ5He4gkCzc). As a fellow RSI sufferer, [this talk](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKuRkGkf5HU) was very inspiring.

I enjoyed spending time with Paul Chiusano, the Dark team, @pvh, and John Austin. I bumped into Hillel Wayne a couple times but sadly did not get to speak to him much. I've been thinking a lot about his [What we know we don't know talk](https://hillelwayne.com/talks/what-we-know-we-dont-know/)  about empirical software engineering. Here's the summary I put in the FoC Slack this morning:

> Is global state really bad? I sure think so but where's the empirical evidence?! If it were so clearly bad, then that badness we detect must somehow show up in reality and can be measured empirically. Is the issue that it's too costly to perform the test? Or that it's actually not as bad as we thing... (Reminds me of the debate I have with my mom about alternative medicine.)

The Dark Launch Party went really well! It seemed like there were at least ~200 people. My talk seemed pretty well-received. I got a nice laugh at a comment about subtracting minus 1 in JavaScript. It was so fun to meet people who listen to the podcast in person!

#### Personal Updates 2019

On a personal note, my engagement party in NY happened on Saturday, my two-year anniversary with my fiance. It was very fun. Glen came in from Boston to be there - thanks Glen! - as he's the only person who was there that reads this log. 

In addition to spending 2.5 hours per week learning French for my fiance birthday this year, I also started taking dance lessons to be able to keep up with her on the dance floor. For her part, she decided to enroll the online computer science class I took as a kid, IMACS, where she learned the basics of Scheme. She flew through a semester-long college course in a month and is now embarking on the second course in Python and Haskell. Very fun!

I completed the first part of Quantum Computing for the Very Curious by Michael and Andy. SO GOOD! I'm now supporting them on Patreon and looking forward to more goodies. Love this innovation on mediums.

Speaking of new mediums, I am excited to be a part of the beta for Ink & Switch's Muse app for iPad. Maybe I can get some of that content embedded here.

While I was planning to attend SPLASH and LIVE 2019 in Athens this year, all the recent conferences have made me a bit conferenced-out. I really want to have more to show of my own work before going to another one, so I'm not sure I'll make it out to Athens this year. Hopefully I can deputize someone to film LIVE for us!

### Last two weeks of Sept, 2019

I want to go deep back into research very soon, but first I have a few loose ends to tie up. I have 4 podcasts waiting for editing  (Jonathan Aldrich, Jenn Jacobs, Amjad, Dark) that I'd like to move forward, if not publish/schedule them all.

I also need to add Dark to the Catalog, now that they are public. I might have to wait on this till they squash a handful more bugs from version two ("fluid") of their editor.

Finally, I have been sending hundreds of todo's (some of which are important and others which can be ignored for likely forever) to Workflowy so that deserves at least a couple hours of love. I must also remember to my Github Projects [here](https://github.com/stevekrouse/futureofcoding.org/projects/2) and [here](https://github.com/stevekrouse/futureofcoding.org/projects/3) that have a number of research ideas and tasks that could use some organizing.
    
### Research Deep Work, Fall 2019  

#### Deep work meta-plan

After a vacation- and consulting- heavy summer, I am eager to dive into deep work over the coming months. Here's the meta-plan:

1. I need to set up the ground rules and structure for this time. I'm currently thinking between 4-12 weeks, which means Oct or Oct-Dec. I think Oct 1 2019 is a good target start date.
2. Review the plan with JE, possibly finding a venue to publish this work in
3. Do an initial pre-deep work podcast where I recap the last year and also give the deep work plan
4. Turn on an email responder and deputize someone to be minding the Slack in my absence. Tweet that I'm taking a break and delete twitter from my phone. Find a way to block HN and hckrnews.com.  Print out a number of papers ahead of time. (In part inspired by Feynman's deliberate ignoring of logistical responsibilities.)
5. Do the actual research
 6. Do a post-mortem podcast. Ivan Reece suggested that I do one of my recap podcasts as an interview, so maybe this will be in that format.
 7. Update /about from /drafts/statement and ULF Meeting Google Doc
 
#### Research topics, Fall 2019 

I don't have the time or energy now to flesh out these sections so I will simply sorta-organize my bullets below to be fleshed out in the coming weeks. The first section below is where my heart and mind is mostly at these days.

##### End-User & End-Community Computing Vision

* Create BV-style talk and interactive vision for end user and end community programming, pulling from [my recent statement](/drafts/statement) and the [recent ULF meeting](/drafts/ulf-2019)
* inspired by geoffrey litt convo
* mockups and maybe animations
* day in the life
* todos, calendar, email, web browser, mobile too
* removing the idea of an email client and instead email functionality throughout a UI? Ability to list messages embedded, ability to send a draft composed in another tool, etc...
* Uses
	* Steal from habitica
	* Steal from Coda / workflow techniques
	* Steal from amazing marvin
	* Steal from Webstrates
	* Taxes: make a story of what I did when based on the time of it, embedded with all sorts of rich media, even audio from calls, emails, full webpage archives, etc. This goes for any long-term project with gaps in between or when contextual information is key to preserve for posterity or a team.
	* Personal finances tracking
	* Webstrates ideas
	* Move-able color picker
	* Steal from [Ubiquity](https://vimeo.com/1561578) from Aza Raskin
	
##### Distributed FRP (inspired by physics) 

* Adriaan's paper
* Speaking with Conal and Paul 
* Paul Borrill's videos and papers
* Think up some powerful metaphors for distributed FRP web etc operating system
* wacky idea from my notes: the t of a remote behavior or event is a behavior itself. So my 3 is a 1 over there, for example. I can only sample remote behaviors by their own t, samples by my t. It's like "a strange virtual world where time stops and speeds up relative to me"

##### Clarify dream Haskell-ish system vision open problems

* encryption combined with denotational and hash-based definitions, and sharing
* Specifying when to start accumulating (problem in CycleJS and kinda solved with FRPNow and Hareactive)
* Editing an immutable system as it's running
* Controlling permissions of editing and reading of an immutable but kinda mutable structure
* Coupling things and making them definitional seems good, but also decoupling things seems good to to make a more composable system. Contrast this with the approach of hyperfiddle/datomic answer's to no io monad.

##### Vague intuitions from earlier in this log:

[From here](https://futureofcoding.org/log#research-excitement-is-building):

> -   Logic vs FP and what is a specification and executable math and black box optimizers vs bit manipulation. Unleaky abstraction. Real math that’s fast. Really really abstract code so I don’t have to worry about being stuck or have to rewrite…  
> -   Something about an open standard a la emacscrpt that’s super denoational and mathematical that allowed for many implementions. And it’s a super broad open framework that allows for all sorts of ad hoc extensibility. One key question still is what is computation, what is computable, what is doing vs being, and most centrally are the questions of time and space.
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Steve Krouse
Steve Krouse committed Sep 16, 2019
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