Daily Head Voices for week 4 of 2024

Monday 2024-01-22

  • As GOU#1 and GOU#2 were busy leaving for school, #3 came in to #2 for a hug but #2 was a bit too focused on getting all of her things ready to go in the car. Good Charl, in his only appearance of the day, spontaneously interjected with: “When you’re in a hug, for that moment, you put your full attention into that hug. For that moment, nothing else exists but the hug.”. I could really see the message hitting home with #2, and she vocalised as much. Monday: BIG SUCCESS!
  • At work, managed to spill black coffee all over meself as I was just doing step 1 of living the one cable dream (read: attaching usb-c cable to my macbook). Clumsy Charl clearly at the wheel…
  • Short but really nice streamlit demo during a work meeting. I knew about streamlit, but I’ve never actually played with it.
  • Spent the rest of the day fighting trying, without success, to update the webcola d3 adapter to the latest version of d3.
    • In bed that night, had light-bulb that React was probably a better solution for this visualization in any case…
    • … and then realised that few years back I built something similar for work, and had a similar evolution of ideas which ended up with react + webcola.

Tuesday 2024-01-23

  • At the office nice and early (7:30).
  • Chatted with colleague about the abovementioned React + webcola thing we worked on together, at which point he pointed me at react-flow and comfyui
    • react-flow looks like it could work pretty well for this new project. Also: SO SHINY!
  • streamlit app life cycle: script re-runs every time user interacts, see https://docs.streamlit.io/get-started/fundamentals/summary
    • it does have caching mechanisms to make this go faster
    • marimo, although much newer, approaches this issue with its reactive cell pattern
  • Idea: We should write focused technical memos at work. This is now howto, but rather “things I learned” formulated to teach not just to document.
  • Upgaded phone to iOS 17.3 and MacBook to macOS 14.3. Apparently there’s a zero day vulnerability in previous versions that can be exploited via malicious websites.

Wednesday 2024-01-24

  • 8km run at just after 7 AM before it really got hot
  • dip in the pool (friend LM says we must but pool is probably not cold enough due to +30℃ temps), then started to work
  • right after dip in pool, partially pulled back muscle. Partial, because two warning spasms, but not complete lock like many previous times. PHEW!
    • Remember kids: Our spine’s vertical operation is a major evolutionary hack job and a mechanical disaster just waiting to happen. My advice: Spend more time horizontally.
    • This is also the reason why I’m still searching for a long enough reclining chair.
  • Lovely working lunch with friend S at No Way José
  • Some random ideas that popped into my head as I was trying to work:
    • idea: make github so that people can pipx install marimo-turbo to get install with pandas, altair, matplotlib, and so on.
    • idea: figure out way to publish marimo dashboard to HTTPS url somewhere, for really really cheap
      • sounds like AWS API gateway + lambdas can do something complicated to host streamlit, which also uses websockets
      • in the end, probably better to do this on my own VPS
    • idea: (which has been active for a bit longer) A reliable pattern to lazy start upstream processes only when the first request comes in, and to stop them when no-one is connected. Client -> nginx -> supervisord -> tornado
  • ran into dude who built kubernetes thing for Hetzner using Crystal, a programming language of which I remembered that it just had a release, so quickly lost some more time on “crystal vs nim-lang” googling

TIL: mastodon embeds are not as durable as twitter embeds

As I pasted the above embed, I saw to my disappointment that it’s just pulling in the mastodon post URL via iframe.

With twitter, you get more self-contained HTML which will render even when twitter or just the original tweet don’t exist anymore.

This is probably just another reason to figure out how I can get more low-friction microblogging going on my own websites so that the embedding implementations of other microblogging sites become irrelevant.

Thursday 2024-01-25

  • Took a look at cloudflare tunnels to expose marimo and other dashboards to the internet
    • great that I can use my existing domains for this, and I can route between multiple domains to multiple locally running services
    • some more steps to setup, but it did not take more than about 5 minutes, and gives me even more options than tailscale funnels. OPTIONS MAN!
  • At work, quickly got react-flow… flowing. SHINY!
  • In the evening, found https://www.macstories.net/stories/generating-markdown-links-to-mail-messages-with-shortcuts-and-applescript/ which is the new Shortcuts based way, based on the old AppleScript way, of getting a message:// link onto the clipboard.
    • You might recall from this blog that message:// are the most durable and cross-platform way to link to emails from your notes (or anywhere else)

Friday 2024-01-26

  • Woke up to cool, overcast weather, a big change from a series of 30℃ + days. Really had to resist going out for a run (normal run day + that amazing coolness), because of Wednesday’s partially pulled back muscle not being 100% yet.
  • Worked on mystery visualization project (react-flow)
  • Lovely and energising lunch with previous colleague and friend. Happy that I reached out on Thursday although they have a packed schedule because only in country for limited time. I guess this is quite related to calling up your friends, with a ping of serendipity salt.
  • I was shocked by how well and fast ollama worked on my MacBook. See embedded tweet below.
  • Almost at the end of the afternoon, friend S and I went to some more friends for the first Weiss-off, that is, a Weiss beer tasting contest. It was huge fun blind-tasting 10 different Weiss beers, ranking them, trying to identify them (so much harder than I thought!), and then having them revealed at the end.
    • Between the experts there (read: us), Stangen Weiss Bier came out on top, followed by Weisbier No5 and Jack Black Atlantic Weiss. The fourth place was shared by Erdinger and CBC Amber Weiss.
    • My favourite, Stellenbrau Jonkersweiss, is glaringly absent from the top. I’ll live, probably consoled by just such a Jonkersweiss. Super happy that Amber Weiss and Atlantic are both present!
    • There was a trophy (for the taster who could blind-identify the most beers in the Weiss-off), which we have christened the David Weisselhoff wisseltrofee.

Saturday 2024-01-27

  • Yesterday’s Wonderful Weiss-off also had some, thankfully quite minor, effect the next morning, but I went out for a careful weekday distance run, which fortunately went without a hitch. Just very hot thanks.
  • Went to Buco and then to Apple Tool and Gas to find the rest of the screws I needed to repair the shower door. Friendly gentleman at Apple even sawed some of my screws to size! Shower door back in operation.
  • Updated my “old” M1 MBA to macOS 14.3 and then reset to transfer to GOU#1’s iCloud. Say what you want about Apple, but that part of their stuff works really well.
  • Left for Betty’s Bay at about 16:00 with GOUs #1 and #2. The rest of the family already there.

Sunday 2024-01-28

  • Woke up in Betty’s Bay after a longer than normal night of sleep, but Garmin body battery was still not completely happy.
  • In spite of having run yesterday and still feeling a bit tired (see body battery above), I had the best run of the month so far in Betty’s. Go figure.
  • Spent some time with Canva – what a great resource for doing nice designs, even flow charts – but not sure where I could use this.
  • Background thought through the past weeks, and mentioned on Tuesday: I would really like to do (and promite) more TIL-style writing at work and at home. See Simon Willison’s amazing TIL collection for inspiration.
  • Ran into https://github.com/outlines-dev/outlines a Python library that can guarantee structured text generation from many LLMs, e.g. 100% valid JSON according to a specified schema. What makes it different from similar libraries? “Unlike other libraries, regex-guided generation in Outlines is almost as fast as non-guided generation.”
  • I already had AutoGen on my list for experimenting with multi-agent LLM applications, but now it has been joined by crewAI which I have also just ran into (thanks reddit!) and which seems to have significant support online.