Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Current Activities - 2/12/2012

I'm currently reading Resilience by Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy and Towards a New Socialism by W. Paul Cockshott and Allin Cotrell. I've also read descriptions on the P2P Foundation concerning Wolfgang Hoeschele, Roberto Verzola, Raoul Viktor, and Mark Joob. Perhaps you can separate things in two classes: what is going on, and what to do about it. I'll have to write more once I know more. The model presented here is just a proposal, and the ontologies are likely the hardest part. People must implement them, and it is difficult to get them to do that. See for example John Wilbanks talk titled, "Second-Generation Open Access: Building an Open Content".

Am I Doing the Right Thing?

A question I deal with almost daily is, "Am I doing the right thing?". I may want to go back to school, but I am horribly afraid of debt, and somewhat dysfunctional while focusing on anything but this. I have a Master's in Chemical Engineering with a focus on Polymer Processing, with a focus on Melt Blowing (an area that most have never heard of). I am studying Additive Manufacturing (Additive Manufacturing Technologies: Rapid Prototyping to Direct Digital Manufacturing by Ian Gibson et. al.

In an e-mail I said, "It is difficult for me to say what my computer skills are. I've built websites with html, Flash, GIMP, InkScape, Drupal, and freebie JavaScript. I've touched PHP, Python, and Java, and a very small amount of JavaScript (I've seen it a couple of times). I've looked at Bash scripting (and maybe Perl?), but I'm still not that much. Except for a few stints with Basic and a confusing course in C++ before entering college, some attempts at C in undergrad, I didn't start challenging myself religiously with programming until around 2007 to 2008 with Fortran. I find I spend most of my time trying to connect things in books, in journals, online, and through experience, to figure what is most important. I know right now I decided that it would be a good idea to study computer networks, network security, logic, Dr. Jeffrey Ullman's Introductory C.S. book in conjunction with MIT Scheme, perhaps study Dr. Ullman's Coursera course on automata, a book on Intelligent Databases by Parsaye et. al etc. I spent over a year with professional hackers at a hackerspace, but found myself to be a newbie because it was another person who used things like grep, sed, and awk, and regexp to help me set up a Hiawatha webserver to run Friendica. Some interactions on the public-lod mailing list have also led me to the concept of resilience, which I'm told has something to do with my blog (adistributedeconomy.blogspot.com). I've read Dr. Liyang Yu's A Developer's Guide to the Semantic Web, played around a little with the visualization tools, ontology engineering tools, etc, but still found myself confused (thinking I should just study, code and definitely interact more). ....

My LinkedIN profile gives some idea of what I've done otherwise (http://www.linkedin.com/pub/brent-shambaugh/9/125/9b9). ....

Currently, I'm teaching one chemistry lecture right now in a part-time temporary position."