Island in the Net

A personal blog by Khürt Williams, full of imagery, and inchoate ramblings on coffee, and geekery.

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Tag: book

Language and Communication, Cameras, Street Photography, and Envy

The desire to affirm that women are equal has made some scholars reluctant to show they are different, because differences can be used to justify unequal treatment and opportunity. Much as I understand and am in sympathy with those who wish there were no differences between women and men—only reparable social injustice—my research, others’ research, and my own and others’ experience tell me it simply isn’t so. There are gender differences in ways of speaking, and we need to identify and understand them. Without such understanding, we are doomed to blame others or ourselves—or the relationship)—for the otherwise mystifying and damaging effects of our contrasting conversational styles.

Excerpt from a book I am currently reading in iBooks Store. The book, “You Just Don’t Understand.”, is by Deborah Tannen.

Remember that the camera itself is only half of what makes a camera good. How dedicated you are, how hard you work, and how many good and great pictures you get out of it are the other half. How much you use it is just as important as whatever it is.What makes a camera good

As humans we are naturally wired to focus on important things and filter out all the rest. Although such an approach has served us well over the ages, in creative seeing it’s a major obstacle. In addition, our education system and our daily routine push us to see and react in a certain way. Have you noticed when walking around the city how your brain filters out the noise and visuals? We usually stroll around town without challenging what we see or how we see it. In order to find “something interesting in an ordinary place,” you need to break your seeing patterns and go for something new, uncomfortable and different.A personal rant about street photography

Avoid letting yourself fall into the all-too-common kinds of comparative thinking that breed envy, self-doubt and other kinds of unproductive energy. Nip that shiz in the bud if you do feel yourself going down that road. Snuff it out before it take take root and steal your energy – and instead, use the power of comparative thinking to your advantage– turn it into positive energy and critical thinking about craft– that will fuel your progression as a creative professional. Compare your work to that of the best, and do it with unflinching honesty. Rinse and repeat.Chase Jarvis

Reading List – Populism, Votes for Women, and Resetting Trumps Counter

  • Aperture—ƒ/4
  • Camera—NIKON D5100
  • Taken—11 November, 2014
  • Copyright—Creative Commons Attrubution Non-Commercial
  • Focal length—35mm
  • ISO—200
  • Shutter speed—1/160s

James Shelly:

Ramadan’s talk was titled Creating Thriving Societies in Troubling Times. His thesis: embedded in the core of every ideology, philosophy, culture, and religion is a single, underlying ambition: peace. This animating, common principle is the hope of living in peace with one’s self and with the outside world. Ramadan calls it the ‘intimate universal.’ The idea here is that Tariq Ramadan (a Muslim) and myself (a person who can’t make any sense of beliefs in unfalsifiable deities) still share something essential in common. At the end of our respective logic trails, we end up aiming the same destination: a desire for peace within ourselves and our world. What gets us into trouble is ‘othering’: failing to recognize the common humanity — the ‘intimate universal’ — in one another. When a population fails to acknowledge the humanity of another population, the certain result is victimhood: they took our jobs; they are changing our society; they don’t follow our customs; they, them, those people… At scale, like a virus, this attitude snowballs into populism. “Populism is victimhood,” says Ramadan. And such mass victimhood manifests itself in a agenda to oppress, silence, and control someone else — specifically another group of someones. Popularism is victimhood

Andy Ihnatko:

And when I say VOTES FOR WOMEN, I’m also thinking Votes for people with non-European ancestors Votes for naturalized citizens and people with immigrant parents Votes for people whose ancestors were already here before any of the above came along Votes for people with disabilities Votes for LGTBQ people (and any letters I might have left out, in my ignorance) Votes for non-Christians Votes for people who’ve been personally affected (i.e., themselves or someone close to them) by poverty or homelessness Votes for people who’ve been personally affected by mental illness Votes for people who’ve been personally affected by chronic or terminal illness Votes for people who’ve been personally affected by chemical dependency Votes for people who are, were, or are family members of: teachers, police officers, firefighters, military, and any other career that involves giving much to society and receiving too little in return Really young people, especially if they want to join Congress because of the healthcare benefits Really old people, assuming that they weren’t in there already; same reason Vote for Women

Daniel Miessler:

Trump is coming in and the liberals seem committed to try and convict him before he starts on Monday. Indeed it would be reciprocal, so there’s a pleasant symmetry in that. But thermonuclear war has a similar symmetry as well, and similar outcomes. It’s clear that Trump deserves any opposition he receives. The tones of racism, sexism, and disregard for truth were consistent throughout his ascendancy. But as the holders of these pitchforks we have options, and we’d be well-served to evaluate them before the chants and fires begin. Could we prosecute his previous offenses at every turn? Yes. Would we be justified in this? Probably. But those aren’t the right questions. The right questions center around what anyone gets out of the approach. The counter for Trump’s previous infractions sits at 3,278. I kept track. And in some world the best thing to do would be to make him pay for every single one. But we don’t live in that world. We gain nothing by emulating the GOP in a commitment to oppose his every move. At least not yet. What I propose is very simple. We reset the counter. On Monday it drops to zero. Reset Trump’s Counter

Writers Write

I admit I have a hard time thinking of myself as a writer. But I write daily – a habit I developed 6 months ago while evaluating what I knew/didn’t know about blogging. And what I know is that if being a writer means having total mastery of the language (unlike me, where I start sentences like this one with “and”), I’m not one.Chris Lema

I may not have mastery of prose but … I consider myself a writer, albeit an untalented one.