Lady reading her book in what must be eventually pretty uncomfortable, but at least she has a nice cactus. From Open Doodles.
Lady reading her book in what must be eventually pretty uncomfortable, but at least she has a nice cactus. From Open Doodles.

My CHIP-8 emulator took a back seat last month. I haven’t made any progress on it since late May. I hope to return to it, but right now my interests have shifted to different projects.

I’m working on a small site re-build right now. I didn’t understand how my site’s template worked — specifically the Gatsby stuff — and wanted to gain a greater understanding. This seemed like a good opportunity to start from zero and build up to where I was, which isn’t all that complicated. The difference being I was doing it my way and could introduce parts gradually, and learn how everything works. Like learning how the engine of a car works, or what’s “under the hood”. I’d say the only major difference I’m planning on doing is using Tailwind CSS instead of the Typography library. I feel like I understand it better and can grok how to build my site the way I want it. I feel like my typography settings are a little too hacky.

I finished the JustJavascript course (as it is), although I think a new module is on its way in a few weeks. I really enjoyed the course and re-evaluating my mental model for JavaScript.

As I alluded to in my previous post, I started painting my old Warhammer miniatures again. I ended up having to buy Citadel paints after all, as I could not get the red I wanted (it’s called Mephiston Red). I’m painting some Space Marines using the Blood Angels scheme. I discovered that I missed that hobby and had so much fun painting again. I’m trying so hard to resist the temptation to buy more miniatures and paints, and try to work within the constraints I have.

My biggest project in the last few days has been my music collection. I have had a few days off and have decided that once-and-for-all I’m gonna organize this thing. Furthermore, I wanted to move off of Apple Music. As mentioned before I have been growing dissatisfied of Apple Music and would rather take control back. It took some time to figure out which music of mine was something I had added myself (using iTunes Match before switching over to Apple Music), and which was music I added to my library using just Apple Music. I plan to get into more detail about how I accomplished this in another post, but Smart Playlists is the secret sauce. I’ve got everything going on a Plex server at home, and then using the Prism app to play my music on my phone. Works both locally and remotely.

Reading wise, I’ve taken a break from my usual reading list and introduced some new material. With everything going on in the world — especially tied to George Floyd’s murder — I’ve taken a step back to listen and try to educate myself. We Canadians like to think that our “crazy neighbours to the south” are the ones having racism problems and we’ve “pretty much solved it”, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. We have our own problems to solve here at home. Here is a sampling of some works I found enlightening (and usually shocking).

Starlight Tours

In January 2000, the bodies of two First Nations men were found frozen in a remote area of Saskatoon, Canada. It was a place where nobody walked, especially in the winter. And then, a man named Darrell Night came forward and said he had been dropped off by police on the outskirts of town, but he had made it back alive.

We speak with former police officer Ernie Louttit and reporter Dan Zakreski about the deaths of Neil Stonechild, Lawrence Wegner, and Rodney Naistus, and “starlight tours” within the Saskatoon Police Service.

What We Inherit: A Brief History of American Racism

The national and international protests over the death of George Floyd have generated larger and more widespread conversations about systemic racism in the United States. We hope to use our platform to help provide context and understanding around our shared moment in history, to show how our past creates our present, and to help illuminate how anti-Black racism has been passed on through our culture and politics, changing with each generation but also very much staying the same.

The Hate U Give

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

How To Be An Antiracist

Ibram X. Kendi's concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America--but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. Instead of working with the policies and system we have in place, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.

The Skin We’re In

A bracing, provocative, and perspective-shifting book from one of Canada's most celebrated and uncompromising writers, Desmond Cole. The Skin We're In will spark a national conversation, influence policy, and inspire activists.

I used to think that I “never saw race”, but I know now that’s bullshit. The best thing we can do though is learn from our mistakes and do better in the future. This’ll be something I’ll have to work on continually, and I plan to do that.

Be kind to each other, and be safe.

Image from Open Doodles.