User:Eighty5cacao/misc/Random thoughts

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This page was created by moving content from User:Eighty5cacao/TODO (mostly the "Unknown" section).

Aspie thoughts


NB: Issues relating to TTM go in that section

I chose not to put this under User:Eighty5cacao/TODO#Personal name due to the lack of real-world precedents: Consider the possibility of an intelligent race using a personal-naming system based on challenge-response authentication; this means that between any two members of a community, there are sufficiently many possible challenge–response pairs that no given challenge or response is repeated often enough to qualify as a "name" in the traditional human sense. This might require intelligence slightly above the human average (say 9–10 phonological loop and 250–300 Dunbar number), but it's marginally plausible that a brain like that of a bottlenose dolphin could manage this.

Toki Pona

  • Somewhere on the old version of, there was a sample phrase <nasin mani li ike> with translation given as "capitalism is negative." This doesn't seem neutral enough. I personally would have gone with radix malorum est cupiditas; another, more accurate translation might be "consumerism is bad."
    (If Toki Pona was designed specifically as anti-capitalist, please cite.)
  • How would the line "I want to be a human being, not a human doing" from the song "Scatman's World" translate?
    Ordinarily, "human being" = "human" = <jan>, so how would we express this distinction? If "being" is close enough to "thinking," then presumably <jan sona> and <jan pali> (or at least <sona> and <pali>) would appear somewhere in the translation. But how do we emphasize that the intended sense is "relaxed (meditative) thinking" as opposed to "busy (frenzied) thinking"? I expect that the sentence conforms sufficiently to the Toki Pona philosophy to make this question valid.

Selkie (webcomic)

This is not relevant to the article Selkie, as Tepples explains in this edit.

The first official word on the protagonist's physiology is here. (Yes, I noticed the reference to 867-5309/Jenny here, but I digress.)

More physiology information can be found in the sketch linked from this post, directly above the comments (possibly NSFW).

My observations:

  • The symptoms of the peanut allergy don't quite match with those of human anaphylaxis. (But are any fish species known to be allergic to peanuts? What about aquatic mammals?)
  • "Vocal cords adapted for use in and out of water" — but what would the use be in water? Compare bottlenose dolphins, which do not have (?) vocal cords. (NB: See official explanation)
  • The overall design seems too human-like and poorly hydrodynamic

The Time Machine

Yes, I'm aware the IMDb forums are shutting down. No, I don't want help fixing or removing the links (yet).


Subpages not within project scope

Subpages within project scope

Subpages, status uncertain

  • User:Eighty5cacao/misc/Libre-without-gratis games – Artists need to get paid. So how does one make a game that is Free software but not free of charge? (In other words: Gratis-without-libre is easy; libre-without-gratis is hard. This is especially a problem for those who are interested in developing video games; see Genres of non-free software § Video games.)
    How would a developer protect against users who would rather spend the time to build from source than the money to purchase a precompiled binary package? Keep in mind that a truly Free project would have no nonfree assets that need to be excluded from the source distribution. To sidestep this question, a more complex business model is needed. Or is our economy fundamentally broken?
    The GNU Project acknowledges the need for discretionary non-gratis distribution of libre software, but my point is that game developers naturally object to gratis sharing of a product they are also selling for money.
    The purpose of the page is not solely to list examples of existing games, but rather to give suggestions for business models, development strategies, and genres.
    Any such essay should explain why game developers should care about Free software in the first place.
    • Related: The problem with the video-game industry is that as the capabilities of computing hardware grow, so do the financial and manpower resources needed to achieve high production values suitable for a commercially-successful game. This may justify certain "retro" gaming trends; the problem with that is that many casual gamers don't understand why faux-retro games should cost more than used copies of true-retro games. Therefore, developers and publishers are left with doubt how to design and market such faux-retro games.
    • As a broad philosophical question: Why do video games exist at all, if there are few or no economic arguments for their continued development and use in a world where a libre-content movement exists? What about tabletop games, which like video games tend to have more copyrightable assets than the kind of playground games that have value as exercise? (The answer has something to do with eustress vs. distress vs. relaxation; TODO.)
  • User:Eighty5cacao/misc/Economic implications of neurodiversity
    • Introversion and the autism spectrum make it harder to get a good-paying job, even though geeks like technical fields (find or suggest research about jobs tailored to the autism spectrum and training of hiring managers about neurodiversity; also, to what extent do extroversion and allism correlate with wealth?)
  • User:Eighty5cacao/misc/Importance of free software – How much does it really matter? A writing prompt, which is admittedly a bit of a strawman, inspired by Bruce Schneier's movie-plot threat contests: Devise a plot in which a global adversary can choose a person at random and have him/her heavily fined, imprisoned, tortured, executed, ..., or otherwise harshly sanctioned for matters related directly to his/her use of non-free software. To make this interesting, you should avoid focusing solely on issues of hidden surveillance code in said non-free software; the adversary should interpret the mere use of some software to be a punishable offense.
    More practically: Free software ultimately requires free hardware, to avoid dependence on proprietary drivers. The problem is that the ideal free-soft/hardware world that includes free CPU architectures is unachievable because it will never be affordable for a hobbyist to design and fabricate his/her own chips, and the existing fabs will never be independently auditable enough to satisfy the paranoid people. (Existing FPGAs don't solve this problem because they are proprietary designs produced on proprietary fabs, and programmability results in some sacrifice in performance/power/cost tradeoffs.)
    In other words, taking the definition of "libre" to the extreme would imply that every nontrivial computer program is Java-trapped by nonfree hardware.
  • User:Eighty5cacao/misc/Global economy and technology – more specifically "Observations on the global economy and technology"; supertopic for all the above (except perhaps the autism-spectrum stuff)


  1. From Wikipedia: "The music video ... [starts] off with a snippet from the Porter Wagoner show from the 1970s ... The video was recorded on videotape to keep with the theme of the video"