Notes for August 18th 2023

Slightly late this week as a result of work travel!

  • Dublin seems to be in the grips of a scandal around tourists being beaten up. It's a national news story and is likely to cause political pressure points on our government right now; up-to and including a likely resignation. And while, as a Dub, I do know there's a shitty underbelly of scum looking for trouble in the city, it's not that bad. If you travel anywhere, to larger or similarly sized (~2m metro population), Dublin is remarkably safe. Genuinely, incredibly safe. By the numbers, almost 1 million tourists pass through Dublin every month during peak summer (right now). 4 reported assaults have hit the headlines since June. In 2 separate attacks (1 American tourist a few weeks ago, and 3 Brits this week in a single incident). That represents a lot less than 1% of all tourists in the city in the summer months, in total. It is statistically insignificant.
    • I'm not downplaying the individual assaults at all. It's horrific to hear about. But the national news should be focused on far greater things right now.
  • I'm a terrible guitarist because I never spend a consistent few months just practising or noodling. I did piano when I was a young kid through school and could read musical notation to a reasonable degree. Weirdly for most, in Irish; because I went to a gaelscoil as a kid. But guitar is my preferred noise-making weapon of choice. This weekend felt a bit different because my 3 year old son got super into the noises and shapes of sound we could make. I have a few VST plugins for Logic that can do fun stuff (particular shoutout to the NeuralDSP Rabea plugin, which has very fun synth features). My 18 month old has always loved making music, albeit poorly. But to see both of them have fun with a synth, guitar and the drumkit+ukelele their musician uncle bought them was just a good time. Granted, the tune we produced would force the music industry to shut down to avoid a repeat performance!

  • My wife was busy last week directing a short film that she wrote. So I was a bit of a lone parent for much of the time, which was a lot of fun and not particularly out-of-the-ordinary routine-wise as they're both in crèche. But it meant that I spent more time than usual cooking. And folks in work had commented that I seem to have a device for every dish. I think they may be right. Some of those devices are absolutely unnecessary for what I've done, though. Like the sausage sambo I made for myself on a Big Green Egg. Which takes about 15 mins to heat up, get going and setup. I feel like this is the same thing as when I make overly elaborate coffee at home. Pods would probably do, but there's a therapeutic nature to producing it properly.
    • I also spent time making dough to have pizza on the pizza oven. Yet another very weirdly specific single-agenda device!

  • I've all-but abandoned Reddit save for visiting for r/Ireland, r/Dublin and r/DevelEire (as a friend pointed out, the holy trinity of moaning). I spotted that they replaced the already-odd 'coins' system with, you guessed it, crypto. Thankfully I've basically migrated myself (a non-contributor, granted) to Lemmy & federated stuff.

Dear Kevin, as you heard from my 20 prior messages that you didn't reply to, other leaders in your space have gotten enormous value from the product/service that doesn't even remotely solve any of the problems your team has. So, click this link to book time with me so I can continue to completely waste your time and the carbon spent on these messages.

  • Anyone else absolutely sick of the above? It's most of what I get on LinkedIn, and I don't want to spend any amount of time curating the list of people I'm connected to. Not least because it doesn't matter, pay LinkedIn enough money and they can slide into your DMs anyway. I'm not entirely sure what the upside of LinkedIn is these days, bar being a data mining exercise for Microsoft Dynamics customers or recruiters.
  • I was in Copenhagen this week for some work. Successful trip and all that. But it always strikes me in CPH that the city, while rich with history and features and a great modern success story with public transport & cycling on top of the agenda, feels a bit listless. It doesn't have a vibe. Berlin, London and even Dublin have a "vibe." CPH doesn't. It's probably down to Danes being so ultra-conservative in their approach to life (how they dress, express themselves, etc.).