bash: Cryptocurrency Price From the Linux Terminal

#!/bin/bash
printf -v coin '%s' -1    
curl -X 'GET' 'https://api.coingecko.com/api/v3/simple/price?ids='"$1"'&vs_currencies=usd' \
  -H 'accept: application/json' 2> /dev/null | 
sed  's/.*usd"://' |   
sed 's/..$//' |        
sed 's/^/\$/'          
echo ""                

h/t Techstructive for the basic idea. I simplified their code by cutting out the I/O and putting the coin as a variable when calling the script, e.g. crypto.sh bitcoin, and formatting it by piping it through sed. Have I mentioned how much I love sed?

Fiasco

“THINGS CAN GO WRONG, FAST…

…Maybe some dude from youth group talked you into boosting a case of motor oil, but now your cousin is dead in a swamp and you killed him. Maybe you and your girlfriend figured you could scare your wife into a divorce, but things went pear-shaped and now a gang of cranked-up Mexicans with latex gloves and a pit bull are looking for you.

It seemed like such a good idea at the time.

Fiasco is inspired by cinematic tales of small time capers gone disastrously wrong – inspired by films like Blood Simple, Fargo, The Way of the Gun, Burn After Reading, and A Simple Plan. You’ll play ordinary people with powerful ambition and poor impulse control. There will be big dreams and flawed execution. It won’t go well for them, to put it mildly, and in the end it will probably all go south in a glorious heap of jealousy, murder, and recrimination. Lives and reputations will be lost, painful wisdom will be gained, and if you are really lucky, your guy just might end up back where he started.

Fiasco is a GM-less game for 3-5 players, designed to be played in a few hours with six-sided dice and no preparation. During a game you will engineer and play out stupid, disastrous situations, usually at the intersection of greed, fear, and lust. It’s like making your own Coen brothers movie, in about the same amount of time it’d take to watch one.”

Fiasco

I’ve never played this game, but I wanted to bookmark it for future reference.

The Power and Perils of Incrementalism

Start small. When starting something new, it makes sense to cut it down into easily manageable chunks, from anywhere to 5 minutes to an hour, that can be completed with relative ease. It doesn’t matter whether you are trying to build up your exercise capacity, writing computer code, reading a textbook, learning some new skill, or whatever. Everything, in the beginning, benefits from making the task small and fun. Completing it gives you a sense of accomplishment, that you are capable of fulfilling the task that previously you did not think you could do.

And, once started, there’s momentum. In a piece of code, you may start off doing something badly, but it works. Then, you’ll see some small way to improve it. Then, another, and another. Eventually, you get to the point where it looks like you know what you were doing all along, and the task helped you to learn your way there.

But, there is another side of this kind of incrementalism. Invariably, your learn enough that your initial ideas and effort weren’t the best place to start. Or, your goals change. Something tends to happen that makes you want to completely refactor what you have been doing into something new. You’ll want to rewrite the code or essay. You’ll decide, now that you can run, perhaps you should run a marathon, as a challenge.

Partly, incrementalism gets us to the point where we have a skill, and we want to challenge ourselves, to do something bigger than what we could have imagined before we started. This is great, when it happens.

But, another thing sometimes happens too. We get complacent. Rewriting the code is a lot of work, and incrementalism is all about work, but in small size chunks. But, getting yourself in a mental mindset to redo your incremental work is the same as when you start out trying to learn something you didn’t know before. Except, now you have a better understanding of how much work is required, and it will be harder to just want to do incremental changes. You’ll want to do more, because you have the capability to do more. However, this desire also has a tendency to cut into our enthusiasm.

Why refactor the code, when what we have is “good enough” for most of our purposes? The calculus of benefit tends to run this way. Further, the more people are involved, the more inertia will set-in. This is why revolutions always require vanguards because its at the vanguard that the enthusiasm for wholesale change is nurtured in acted upon.

Tildeverse & Rawtext.club

I was checking out Lagrange, which is a web browser for the Project Gemini Internet protocol. The Gemini protocol is a text based, privacy focused communications protocol, and Lagrange renders the text beautifully.

But, during the course of checking it out, I was reminded of the Tildeverse. In short, tilde communities are playgrounds for people interested in multi-user *nix systems. It’s a kind of return to old *nix and BBS systems that you, if you are old enough, used to connect to with telnet or a modem, and features tools like IRC, which I haven’t used for years. There are a variety to choose from, e.g,, tilde.team, envs.net, tilde.club, ctrl-c.club, rw.rs, sdf.org, etc. Personally, I found the thinking behind rawtext.club in line with my attitudes about working from the command line, text, and the problems with social media. Their values include: off the web, DIY, resource minimalism, non-profit, and asynchronous. Here’s a bit from their social contract:

“People in democratic countries might be saying, “but don’t we have a government and legal system to protect us?”. In theory yes – but as history shows, these legal systems are often distorted to encourage those abuses. The corporations and wealthy individuals responsible are either good friends with governments, or hard at work “convincing” them. They are funding intense lobbying efforts to influence politicians, and entire media campaigns to erase public awareness of their work (or, similarly, to manufacture consent). The end result is that public service and regulations are being systematically dismantled and neutralized as an obstacle to reckless, short-sighted profiteering. The institutions that are nominally for the people, by the people, and designed to protect the people, turn out to be none of those, and we are being broken apart into a bickering sea of lonely individuals.”

https://rawtext.club/social-contract.html

Hal Higdon’s Running Programs

“[Hal Higdon]’s all about the democratization of running,” his daughter, Laura Sandall, said. “He was all about making sure that anyone who wanted to get out and run could have a training program at their fingertips.”

At their fingertips, and at the top of Google search results. His free training plans have remained some of the most frequently used — a rarity in a world where most plans and coaches cater to runners who are willing to shell out hundreds of dollars for personalized schedules.

-Talya Minsberg, “The 90-Year-Old King of Training Plans.” The New York Times: Running Newsletter. July 19, 2021

The Hal Higdon website has a variety of plans for various distances. I simply looked at the base plan for intermediate runners, which as you can see below, is a perfectly sane running program. Bookmarking for future reference.

Deflationary Individualism

“My considerations of inflation have been limited to discussions on index components, labor/wage dynamics, and menu pricing. I liked the exercise of placing preferences surrounding good, services, and activities on the inflation/deflation spectrum.

What are other examples of inflationary/deflationary preferences? And what happens if you place inflation/deflation towards the center of your personal aesthetics? And if you do, which way on the spectrum should you optimize towards?”

-Thomas Frank, “Creating Your Own Deflation.” FranklyThinking.net. July 15, 2021.

Open question: What things are we wasting time, money or energy on that would be better to either do less of or not at all?

This is an aesthetic I have developed over the years. It first started with books, when I realized that I could go to a second-hand book shop and the library to get certain items, where you only have to buy retail when it is something other people in your community truly do not want. Over the years, it turned into a trend, where I look for ways to not buy anything retail. I buy and use computers and cell phones that are decades old and bought second-hand for <20% of their price new. I buy last year’s model of running shoes and buy many clothes second-hand..

But, the true deflation is to go without. How many things are you buying that you don’t really need at all? What things are you paying attention to that you shouldn’t pay any attention to? Questions in this space are among the most useful in life.

LongTrailsMap.net

Welcome to LongTrailsMap.net: Interactive 3D maps of long distance nature trails from around the world!

The purposes of the site are:

* To help members of the community find their next destination.

* To increase awareness of the long trails, especially the newer and lesser known long trails.

* To motivate the responsible development of new long trails, especially efforts to connect existing trails.

LongTrailsMap.net

I always liked the idea of a several month walk. I’ve spent a week on the Appalachian Trail as a child, and I think spending some time on a long trail would likely be good for most people with the ability. I didn’t see it on this map, but The Trans Canada Trail is the current one that is top of mind.