Category Archives: General

Welcome to the New Look!

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted here and a lot has happened. The world has changed.

Some things are better and many things are much, much worse, but still the world marches forward. I hope all of my readers are doing as well as possible in the pandemic era. My heart goes out to all of you that have experience heartbreak and loss.

It’s been nearly two decades since this blog was launched and the Internet is a vastly different place than it used to be so I hope you’ll appreciate the changes made here.

The biggest improvement is that it’s finally usable on mobile devices, which was nearly impossible on the old platform without all sorts of pinching and zooming that I expect exactly nobody could be bothered to deal with.

All the original content has been migrated into the new system and I’ve had quite the nostalgic fun going through some of it to fix some issues. There’s a bit more to do to fix old links and some formatting but for the most part it should all be good to go.

As for me… well… I’m still here and life is good.

Welcome to new NotWeasel!

Don’t Worry. Be Happy.

Most people will never be “successful” in any definition that means people outside your immediate circle will ever talk about you.

Nobody is ever going to write a magazine article about me. Nobody is ever going to write a magazine article about a list of people that even remotely includes me in the most superficial way.

I just recently learned that some people make hundreds of thousands of dollars a MONTH playing video games on Twitch.

I’m content with how my life is going but that sure puts my level of success in perspective.

There’s a LOT of people out there making a TON of money through a lot less effort than most of us put out. That’s awesome for them.

There are WAY MORE people that are working a lot harder than I am and not doing nearly as well. In the overall scheme of things, I’m pretty darned successful.

But nobody will ever write an article about me. And that’s fine.

If you’re not satisfied with where you are in life, then take steps to change it. If you’re NEVER satisfied with where you are in life (and aren’t struggling with real issues like poor health or poverty) then I suggest you re-think your definition of success.

It’s normal to want more and to strive to do better. If you’re not happy with where you are along the way though… well… what’s the point? The more you get the more you’ll want and before you know it you’ll be facing down the end game and can’t go back.

Did You Lie Or Were You Lied To?

I want to start a movement.

Critical thinkers have long been aware of all the fake news and outright lies being spread on social media and elsewhere in support of just about any argument under the sun.

More recently, it's become a more mainstream news item and people, including major social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter are looking for ways to combat the phenomenon.

This is how I'm trying to do my part.

I'm starting with the premise that people don't want to be lied to and that they don't want to spread lies. In light of the facts behind how this became an issue in the first place, you might think this premise is ridiculous but I don't think it is. I just don't think people realize how much they're being lied to and how much of what they think they know is the direct result of that.

So my plan is to create an easy way of pointing them out with the hope that once people are aware of just how much this is happening, they'll realize how important it is to be critical of everything they're told and will learn some very basic research skills to try to validate things before they propagate them.

Here's how it will work.

I'm going to create a meme that you will post whenever you see an obvious and verifiable untruth. The meme will simply say:

DID YOU LIE OR WERE YOU LIED TO?

People will then respond to that meme with a few canned choices. These will be:

I LIED. YOU CAUGHT ME.

Some people ARE unashamed liars. If you encounter this sort of person, there's nothing further to be done other than to question their moral character. If someone is known to be a liar, then nothing they say is of any argumentative value and there's no point in furthering a discussion with them.

I WAS LIED TO. THIS IS WHO LIED TO ME.

I expect most people aren't willingly liars. If they realize they lied, hopefully they'll take some conviction in calling out their source so both they and you can know not to ever rely on that source again.

I WAS MISTAKEN. I HAVE NOW SEEN THE LIGHT. HERE IS THE TRUTH.

Sometimes people just make mistakes. I have a feeling this is going to be a very popular option because people don't like to be wrong and like to make excuses as to why the lie shouldn't impact your opinion of their moral character. Hopefully after a few of these, people will learn how easy it is to verify facts before they post them and will make that minimal effort in the future. Imploring people to post the truth may even open them up to opposing viewpoints and change their world view. One can hope, right?

If someone refuses to post the truth of the matter because it opposes whatever argument they're trying to make, then the idea of them having been mistaken can be considered a lie in itself. In this case, they'd actually lied but just don't have the moral character to admit it.

Note that if people find themselves posting this one a lot, I would hope they realize that it will make them appear to be stupid. Everyone makes mistakes now and then but if you're constantly making these mistakes in your postings, it's proving that you're either stupid or very gullible or both. Nobody wants to look stupid and the solution is to verify stuff before you repeat it.

I DIDN'T LIE. HERE IS THE EVIDENCE.

Before posting the meme in the first place, you're supposed verify that what they said was demonstrably untrue. There's nothing wrong with healthy debate and with giving opinions. Opinions aren't lies. If you call someone out as a liar and they prove you wrong, then you should suck it up and post one of these responses yourself in defense or apology for your initial finger-pointing.

It's that simple.

Before I set up the graphics and try to get this thing started, I'll open it here for comments. My social media reach is rather limited but you never know. Maybe it'll take off and maybe something good will come of it.

If you have ideas for additional appropriate responses, please explain them as well so I have as complete a set as could be expected when I get it started.

World… Meet Snowfie!

Here's the newest member of our little family. She's a lot of work, and it can be heart-breaking trying to get her to work into our schedules while still getting all the care she needs, but so far it's going well and she doesn't seem to hate us.

Amanda Lang can go to hell.

A story has just come up talking about how she tried to squash the big CBC story on RBC's outsourcing last year. From reading this, it's hard to tell whether she really did or didn't, so I found it hard to form an opinion of her actions based on that alone. What I DID do though was look up a story she did for the Globe and Mail on the subject. Here it is: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/lets-worry-about-skills-not-outsourcing/article11084876/

This is such a massive load of corporate shilling it hurts my head to even read it. I worked at RBC for 15 years and saw first hand what their outsourcing is all about, and I expect it's the same for all the other companies doing it. There wasn't even a tiny bit of it that had anything to do with finding people who were more qualified than those here in Canada. It was 100% about getting people cheaper. There were a few good people but most of them were woefully unqualified and needed to be spoon fed copious amounts of training just to get useful work out of them. But they were cheap.

This here is the most telling quote in her whole article:

"Information technology workers displaced in Canada are being replaced not by cheap Indian workers but by better ones. India has emerged as a centre of excellence in applications development, for instance, and so a business needing the very best in that field will seek it out."

That's not just vaguely untrue. That's a bold-faced lie that's easily verifiable by talking to ANYONE that's had to integrate outsourced workers into their projects.

She's not a journalist. She's a tool, and should be ashamed of herself.

Crime

I'm drinking this stuff tonight.

http://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/147/65997/?ba=jasonmason

Poor Michelle. She tried the first sip before I'd had any. She said it was like drinking pepper sauce. She wasn't really wrong.

After the first few sips, the pepper isn't quite so potent anymore, though it's nearly 10% alcohol, so that might help.

Beer Advocate basically hates it. If not for the fact that I've never had anything like it before, I'd probably agree with them. It's uniqueness sort of saves it for me though.

That and the fact that I'm not really familiar with the Lukcy Basartd Ale (not a spelling error) that it's based on, so the sense of shame at ruining it is lost on me.

I won't buy more, but I'm glad I had it.

Times Are Changing

For my entire adult life I've been working full time for the same company. Today they gave me my gift to celebrate 15 years of service. It's a juicer. Hopefully I like home made juice.

Also, on Wednesday, I resigned. My last day will be May 7th.

*sigh*

It's the end of an era. On the 8th I'll start a new job with a new company. I'm confident that it will all go well, but it's a huge change in my life and, of course, it's a risk.

If I make it to Christmas, life will be good and next year should be one to celebrate. Wish me luck.

Ender's Game – The Movie

I fished the book and watched the movie. I really enjoyed the book and have started Ender's Shadow. I'm enjoying that as well so far.

That said, I really didn't think too highly of the movie but not because it was particularly bad or anything. I feel like they did a good job with what they had but that there just wasn't enough time to get into the details they needed. It's obviously difficult to condense the contents of a novel into a feature length film and some are more successful than others. In this case, they just weren't able to get enough content in to really give the feeling of the pressure put on Ender to push him right to the edge of his abilities.

They basically touched on each of the scenarios he went through to get to the end but without the serious conflicts faced in each. Without that, it all just seemed too straight forward.

I don't know whether it should have been split into multiple films or whether it just can't be filmed at all. I guess it just is what it is.

Back to the Classics

I finally finished reading the latest Game of Thrones novel so I'm back to the classics for my reading enjoyment.

I'm not sure how much of a "classic" this really is, as it came out in the 70's, but I'm now reading Ender's Game in anticipation of watching the movie when I'm done.

So far so good!

I'm only a few days into it, but it's gripping and surprisingly current. Knowing that it was written around the days of Pong, I'm impressed at the visions of technology that are so relevant today.

I mean, their desks seem to be 3D iPads and the interactivity of the video games fits right into the modern day.