Hipster? Dinosaur?

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George the original one
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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by George the original one » Tue Nov 26, 2019 2:20 pm

jennypenny wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:40 am
Most of the lanes in my store are self-serve and most of them are CC/Debit only.
Really? Wow, I'm not looking forward to that trend making it out here to the boondocks.

Jason
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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Jason » Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:43 pm

I'm not sure this applies to the thread but I do think old ladies pulling out change purses and/or check books in supermarkets two days before Thanksgiving should be euthanized. I believe they are already doing it in China.

Mister Imperceptible
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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Mister Imperceptible » Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:52 pm

Jason wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:43 pm
I'm not sure this applies to the thread but I do think old ladies pulling out change purses and/or check books in supermarkets two days before Thanksgiving should be euthanized. I believe they are already doing it in China.
Do you think the organs of these old ladies can still be harvested?

Having everything centrally controlled by a technocracy sure sounds great, doesn’t it?

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by flying_pan » Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:07 pm

jacob wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:20 pm
To give an example of some dinosaur behavior on my part, in the spring of 2019, I went to Denmark for the first time since 2009 ... and I had to do some things, specifically some banking and using public transport (trains and buses), which I hadn't done since 1999. I'm also notorious for being the last person I know (or anyone knows?) not to get a smartphone.

...

=> A twenty year difference as a dinosaur creates some inconveniences, but workarounds were entirely possible.
2 things here:

1. you know what smartphone is and in general know modern technology (you said you were interested in Linux administration) and can figure it out
2. time span is not that big, let's say you did not keep up last 10 years.

Now let's make it harder, we fast-forward 30 years _and_ there will be completely different technology. It might be simply too overwhelming. I actually think nowadays in some situations you might be in trouble as well, it is just not as common to hear about it.

jacob wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:05 am
My point is that people still do the same things online in 2019 as they did offline in 1969; they just do them differently. The difference between 2019 and 1969 is not nearly as radical in kind as the difference between 1919 and 1869: Airplanes, telephones, radio, cars, chemicals, electricity, indoor plumbing, WCs, ...

The difference in terms of operating a computer from 1994 and 2019 is simply that the latter is faster. That's it. Everything else, desktop, word processor, internet browser, music player, ... is and works the same.
Well, people in 1969 did not have a computer altogether, so learning curve won't be that flat. Life in general (what surrounds you) is indeed pretty similar to what we had before. But _participation_ in certain activities might be much harder. E.g. newspapers are not very useful anymore (I know, some people still use them. But let's be real, local ads are nowhere near craigslist or FB marketplace), or some available info can be available only online.

I don't see it as confusion (like not knowing where to go at all), rather just a lot of small inconveniences. Together they might create quite an annoying experience.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by unemployable » Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:42 pm

Jason wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:43 pm
I'm not sure this applies to the thread but I do think old ladies pulling out change purses and/or check books in supermarkets two days before Thanksgiving should be euthanized. I believe they are already doing it in China.
We could free up a bunch of rent-controlled apartments by doing this on the Upper East Side of NYC.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Wed Nov 27, 2019 7:15 am

On second thought, when I was in kindergarten in 1970, one of our favorite games was using the large cardboard bricks to construct a spaceship, so that we could play "Lost In Space." In one of the coolest episodes of the show, Will finds a machine which is kind of like a computerized television catalog which allows him to order anything he wants to be instantly transported. So, the process of ordering items on Amazon would not seem completely alien to 5 year old me. I would have thought "This is like Will's machine. Show me how to make it work!"

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by jennypenny » Wed Nov 27, 2019 8:07 am

I dunno ... some things feel fundamentally different. I notice it most wrt parenting. When I was growing up, we didn't have cell phones so our parents didn't really know where we were all day. Our house rule was to be home by the time the street lights came on. Nowadays parents know where their kids are 24/7 through phones, apps, and spy cams. I'm an old parent compared to other parents of my youngest's age, and the younger parents are aghast at the idea of not knowing where their kid is or not being able to contact them immediately if they need to. Kids also interact with other kids online now which has changed social dynamics completely. Those two changes have produced a real shift in parenting styles and childhood experience. Parents who didn't dive in and learn the online terrain their kids were navigating couldn't help or protect their kids from the unfamiliar challenges.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by bostonimproper » Wed Nov 27, 2019 8:29 am

I think the acceleration of cultural evolution-- sometimes positive, sometimes negative, often just polarizing-- is a huge side effect of the internet, and adaptation to the high rate of change is a key difference between the hipster and the dinosaur. Ability to grok new social norms (around gender, race, privilege), language tools (visual memes, novel slang, etc.), and assortive community building tools (social media, online dating etc.) have always been distinctions between generations, but I feel like it's all been put on hyperdrive without us realizing it.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Jason » Wed Nov 27, 2019 9:13 am

My call for the genocide of elderly people who still use coinage to conduct consumer transactions IMHO speaks to actual change, pardon the pun. In a day of PayPal, Venmo etc. (not to mention credit/debit cards) has it not become anachronistic for parents to teach their children how to count their change in an act of both mathematical and monetary pedagogy as it is has become more important to be able to use a financial App correctly, being that the financial and technology industries are militating against cash and coin use, their stated goal being to eradicate it from the earth. We are always operating in the overlapping of historical/technological eras but when I have to wait in line for Fannie Fucking Four Time Widowmaker to forage for a fucking penny like its 1954 and she's standing in a sparsely populated Piggly Wiggly I'm thinking its time to STFU about Happy Thanksgivings and start the pruning.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by chenda » Wed Nov 27, 2019 3:05 pm

@jason I believe the rationalisation for us learning the 12 X table rather than stopping at 10 was in case we ever went back to pre-decimile currency and had to divide 240 pence into shillings and pounds and such nonsense.

Jin+Guice
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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Jin+Guice » Thu Nov 28, 2019 12:28 am

I think the biggest determining factor on whether it matters if you keep up or not is actually self-confidence and the ability/ desire to learn somewhat quickly. Jacob has a very high IQ and also mastered (or at least became extremely competent in) physics, finance, woodworking, hockey and sailboating. I'm pretty sure he also replaced his own sink. I think he could figure out how to do most bullshit on a smartphone in under 15 minutes, even if he's ever heard of one.

Last weekend I set up Alexa with a smartphone using wifi for my great uncle. This is a dude who was running his own successful business in 1969 (and for many years after). What I did was basically impossible for him. Later he tried to text me and accidentally called me twice then texted me saying he deleted a much longer message and would send it to me "if he could find it." I've literally seen a baby that can't talk use a smartphone with greater skill. Your average first worlder is *not great* at learning new skills. If Jacob's 1969 guy similar to himself, or most of us or a lot of pretty savvy people, he'll have no problem. But if his 1969 guy is just an average guy...

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by sumac » Sat Nov 30, 2019 12:00 am

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:21 am
Does a 21st century 21 year old human who grew up in a rural village in China have to go through a phase where he owns a CB radio and a Harvest Orange refrigerator before he buys a cell phone? Although there is something that can happen in history or evolution that seems to be from our perspective something like return to earlier or primitive form, it is always the case that what is really happening is cognition with very real environment in the current moment.
Your question was probably rhetorical, but I can answer that the ~21 year olds I know who grew up in rural villages in China went from sharing one landline with a couple dozen people to having a basic cellphone that takes pictures.

Interestingly enough, there was actually a decline in complexity of technology in some facets of this village's life after the Cultural Revolution ended. People went from sharing a mechanical winnower between villages to using wide straw baskets to toss rice in the air when it's windy (probably how it was done before the winnower, and with little enough gap in between that there was no generational loss of knowledge).

Also, Cuba's reaction to sudden cutoff of energy and trade during the 90s was also reverting to many of the lifeways of ~50? years before with as little loss in quality of life as could be expected under the circumstances. The transition was probably more efficient than it would be in a country like the US (which isn't to say that all such transitions would work better under dictatorship - I imagine there's a mix of extremely terrible and surprisingly good outcomes).

@black_son_of_gray re: long descent -
Hmm, interesting reference. Maybe some of the factors that would affect a community/society/country's ability to glide down would include 1) existing information and social structures and how well they adapt to decreasing energy intensity (i.e. a place with strong oral, intergenerational, and face-to-face traditions might be better able to maintain productive cohesion than one that requires high-energy ways to socialize, remember, navigate, etc); 2) relatedly, how quickly the climb up happened - perhaps it's easier to skip back down if you skipped up; 3) global positioning, for as long as global systems remain active (i.e. are you in a position to extract, be extracted from, negotiate, back up your negotiations?)

It seems like a lot of places that have maneuvered themselves into a "good" place in global chess also have very low resiliency in their information, energy, movement, social structures. They are in turn destabilizing other places that have/had more "soft" resiliency (generally through taking over their resources or economy by insinuation or force) - thus maintaining their high-energy-throughput systems at overall cost to global stability.

A "successful descent" on a global level probably could be framed as some unfortunate game theory setup (does it have a Nash equilibrium?). Where the choices include whether to focus remaining energy toward reducing energy needed (hard, cooperative) or taking others' energy (relatively easy, antagonistic).

Will have to actually check out the book, since this is all thought-sketching on my part based on the title and your commentary.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by jacob » Sat Nov 30, 2019 9:20 am

sumac wrote:
Sat Nov 30, 2019 12:00 am
A "successful descent" on a global level probably could be framed as some unfortunate game theory setup (does it have a Nash equilibrium?). Where the choices include whether to focus remaining energy toward reducing energy needed (hard, cooperative) or taking others' energy (relatively easy, antagonistic).
David Holmgren's Future Scenarios.
The entire book is free online here: https://www.futurescenarios.org/

Another good one that dives into how different countries (Cuba, North Korea, ...) have handled crises is:
https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/future-n ... it-used-be

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Dec 02, 2019 7:51 am

@jacob:

I felt compelled to read the books by Holmgren and Friedrichs you linked above. Since I have already read a great deal on the topic of permaculture, including other books by Holmgren, and most of the authors Friedrichs referenced, I was familiar with most of the ground covered, but I found Holmgren's take on the nesting of the 4 possible futures and Friedrichs' take on post-normal science to be quite interesting.

This table breaks down Holmgren's 4 quadrant possible futures, based on assumption that peak oil and/or climate change will be major issues facing humanity over course of 21st century. Brown Tech = Delayed Peak Oil/Fast Climate Change, Green Tech = Delayed Peak Oil/Delayed Climate Change, Earth Steward= Fast Peak Oil/Delayed Climate Change, and Lifeboats = Fast Peak Oil/Fast Climate Change. I found his suggestion that many of us are already simultaneously living or working within more than one of these potential futures to be very reflective of my current reality.


Image


From "The Future is Not What It Used to Be" :
Thomas Kuhn (1962) famously understood normal science as a social enterprise where an epistemic paradigm is shared by a community of scientist in such a way as to enable incremental research. In normal science there is an agreed framework of what constitutes a problem , as well as what the relevant facts are and how to interpret them. Residual uncertainty is acknowledged but seen as temporary. Scientists do not need to engage in normative debate and advocacy for specific solutions because anything that is overtly political does not belong to the "value-free" sphere of science.

While many scientific fields such as mathematics, metallurgy or structural engineering are squarely within the remit of normal science, late modernity increasingly leads to situations where "facts are uncertain, values in dispute, stakes high and decisions urgent." (Ravetz 2004, 349). In such post-normal situations, debates over uncertainty go beyond mere technicalities and include radical doubt and ethical contestation (Funtowicz and Ravvets 1993.) Because there is serious dispute around the most fundamental values to be promoted or defended, the knowledge at stake seems too existential and too political to be left to the established experts practicing normal science. As a consequence of such fundamental contestation, normal science is challenged by what, for lack of better term, I call abnormal science.

I very much nod at the above, and I don't want to spin too far off on a tangent, but I think it is important and even relevant to note, that "abnormal science" does exist even in the field of mathematics. I am not enough of a mathematician to explain the matter, but the 20th century debate (often vicious) between the disciples of Fisher and Bayes in the realm of probability and statistics is obviously and deeply relevant to any attempt at modeling the future. I would go so far as to suggest that if another column entitled "Mathematics" was added to Holmgren's Table, Fisher would go in the Brown Tech box and Bayes would go in the Earth Steward box. This is reflected in the attempt by the IPCC to assign likelihoods to various outcomes. Most people don't understand why or how even modern mathematics is not a rock hard science, so they want numbers to feel secure in the face of uncertainty. Numbers can also provide basis for denial. As in, the reality is we have detected a cancerous tumor in your pancreas, and here is the range of possible realities related to your mortality, given this update to our knowledge about the complex system that is your human body; but this is not to say that you won't get hit by a semi-truck if you are overly distracted while crossing the street after this appointment and, obviously, within the likelihood of that event, your chance of dying from cancer will drop to zero. How many different ways can you possibly die before you die of pancreatic cancer? Clearly, an infinite number of ways..., so, really, it would be highly irrational to fret about this one possibility for your eventual death out of an infinite number of possibilities.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Mister Imperceptible » Mon Dec 02, 2019 12:57 pm

Steve Keen on Hidden Forces

“Monetary Misperceptions, Climate Economics, and the Limits to Growth”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=OJYLzserjls&t=1292s

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:45 am

@MI:

Yes. That's the sort of thing I meant. Especially the part where the host had no clue what Keen was talking about.

I assume you would consider yourself to be largely in the Lifeboats Scenario given your penchant for precious metals? As an ENTP (Little Orphan Annies of the Rational Set), I can't not be some flavor of Optimist Doomer, because it is the core nature of the ENTP to not believe in ultimately intractable problems. However, that is definitely not to say that I believe in the Neo-Classical Economical invention of magical innovation coefficient. It's more like, for example, I simply note that Benjamin Franklin was living a fairly jolly life in his memoirs (without use of slave labor, although Franklin himself was beaten by his older brother during youthful apprenticeship causing him to go runaway with few funds) during an era that Greenspan describes as "much worse than today for average person" because he applies the same sort of ridiculous math as Keen describes above in the realm of GDP per capita and then reflexively correlates directly with "happiness."

OTOH, Benjamin Franklin himself was in favor (obvious reason being he wanted the business for his little print shop) of the City of Philadelphia printing up some money to facilitate trade. He said the lack of liquidity made it difficult for people to conduct simple business transactions such as selling their homes to newcomers and this inhibited possibility of flourishing growth for the city.

Anyways, because my personality type dictates that I have to remain optimistic, one marginally hopeful note might be that if innovation depends on education, then depending on how you define education, the cost of education may have been reduced by recent technological inventions. IOW, if the only last hope for the survival of our species is some unknown unknown invention by somebody who is now age 10, the likelihood that child may receive education adequate enough to comprehend what Keen was trying to communicate in that video may have recently increased.

That's about all I've got...(sigh.)

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 7:24 am

Actually, I did want to note that I disagreed with Friedrichs' take on why it took so long for the American South to industrialize after the Civil War. One huge factor he is not taking into account is the needfulness of the invention of air conditioning consequent to the wide-spread adoption of electricity. During the early industrial era, the machines were powered by huge coal furnaces, and it was one level of hell to be working near one of those in Dickensian England winter and a whole 'nother level of hell to imagine working near one of those in post-Civil War Georgia summer. It's entirely possible that there was some level of cultural opposition to industrialization in the South, but it was just riding on top of pure thermodynamics combined with human physiology.

Coincidentally, this is another reason why the data point used by Nordhaus as described by Keen is ridiculous. Modern difference in GDP over space based on temperature are inclusive of use of air-conditioning and similar measures. Human musculature is much more efficient at reasonably low temperatures. Same logic that applies to largely latitudinal spread of food crops and beast of burden species. Humans have also to some extent adapted to variety of temperature and oxygen ranges (This is not to say that we differ very much in important ways or to promote the antiquated concept of race. For instance, there is more human genetic variety within Africa than between any given African and any other human on the planet, and our planetary common ancestor base is only 3500 years deep.) So, it's not just the case that humans tend towards migrating to realms where they can grow food crops with which they are familiar. They also tend towards migrating to realms where they can be physiologically comfortable through the seasons. So, if you project Lifeboats outcome forward through a goodly number of generations, some compromise between low sunlight affecting Vitamin D levels and high temperatures limiting ability to work in summer fields will possibly evolve.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by Mister Imperceptible » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:04 pm

I am an optimist too, albeit a dark one. I just do not think waging a war against math is optimistic, rather it is magical thinking.

Given the shrinking of the Overton Window, and the ostracizing and shaming of truth-speakers (truth-suppression and media disinformation and super-rationalist means of manufacturing consent) and the concomitant emergence of the Flat Earth Society (fundamentalist grasping at straws), it feels like Brown Tech is already here. Holmgren writes that Brown Tech is just a transition phase en route to Lifeboats.

I could have less of a carbon footprint if I quit my job but that would not be to my personal advantage. Golden handcuffs. Most everyone else is acting according to personal advantage. Individuals. Cabals, both the American banking-governmental and Mexican fentanyl-avocado alike. Democrats. Republicans. Putin. Xi. I don’t see how the kumbaya of Green Tech or Earth Stewards can happen because humans are gonna human. Tragedy of the Commons and Prisoner’s Dilemma. Even if I don’t want to human, I have to defend myself from other humans who are humaning. Human, all too human.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by jacob » Tue Dec 03, 2019 4:16 pm

@MI - Where does/did Holmgren write that Brown Tech is a transition to Lifeboats? (Maybe I missed it in the FS book---it's been a while). In terms of threading the needle on an individual basis, I also think that is the best strategy(**), that is, for any individual---definitely not the collective. It's unfortunate/ironic that the alternative quadrants are better for the collective but mostly worse(*) for the individuals. This confirms the Tragedy of the Commons problem.

(*) Of course that all depends ... mostly on familiarity. Like with all things, Brown Tech (and traditional FIRE is definitely a brown tech construction all the way) seems easier/better only because most of us are more familiar with it.

(**) But the tricky part here is not to be an early mover ... which I think you are... but I respect that. Doing both or everything (insofar we involve the other quadrants as well) is however often contradictory in nature, e.g. homestead vs nomad.

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Re: Hipster? Dinosaur?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 4:35 pm

MI wrote: Even if I don’t want to human, I have to defend myself from other humans who are humaning.
I agree that each individual striving to maintain strong, functionally flexible/responsive boundaries in alignment with self-aware self-care is best practice. However, it has been my observation (not excepting myself) that often humans err on the side of either constructing rigid barriers well in front of the border of self-aware self-care and/or fragile reactive shells too far within the border of self-aware self-care or swampy muddled moats, etc. etc. etc.

The math/science is pretty simple. If you are spending/burning more than approximately $8000/year* as a member of fossil fuel intensive society, then you are currently part of the growing problem which is dangerous depletion of CO2 sink. If you can't take very good care of yourself on $8000/year or less then that is indicative of another set of problems, likely inclusive of more or less needful competition with other humans. My spending is also still more than $8000/year, and my tree planting is not yet at compensatory level, so I'm certainly not judging, just attempting to keep it as real as possible.

*Given that you aren't spending this money on something like buying parking lots and planting them with trees.

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