Author Topic: The Scrapyard --or-- CNO's brain dump  (Read 5659 times)

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
The Scrapyard --or-- CNO's brain dump
« on: August 26, 2019, 12:20:11 am »
This thread is for me to dump half-baked, disjointed, or otherwise unsatisfactory ideas or fragments that I don't think deserve their own thread, and don't want to leave in the open bar, but which I need to get out of my head anyway, before they are lost like tears in the rain or some shit.

I don't expect more than a 10-15% yield rate.  You don't need to tell me if something is crap; I already know.  I'm going to try not to spend too much time editing, either.

Maybe I'll post here regularly.  I probably won't.  But, I've got three to start with.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Summer
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2019, 12:20:37 am »
Have you ever tried
to take a picture
of a butterfly
in the wind?
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Patriotism
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2019, 12:21:35 am »
You say you love your country, are willing to kill for it, even die for it.
I don't know what you mean.
The idea of "country" is abstract, and maps to a number of different realities.

Do you love your government?  Because, speaking as a foreigner, your government is the most visible manifestation of your country, and.. uuh... that's incredibly stupid of you.

Do you love the lines on the map?  Is this patch of sand worthy, but the one on the other side of the fence of less value, somehow?  Seems arbitrary.

Do you love the geography, the countryside, the trees, the grass, the sky?  That I get, but that isn't really what most people think of, when you say "country."  Say you love nature, or something.

Do you love the people, the culture?  Well, I get that too, but you shouldn't confuse that with the idea of the country as a whole.  If you join the military, you're just signing yourself up as a particular type of government employee.  I can see how you might like it as a job, but don't get the idea that there's some greater good involved.  "Boots on the ground" do make a difference, but unless you're fighting WW3, your efforts are best spent locally, not halfway across the globe.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
The Meaning of Life
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2019, 12:22:51 am »
In spring, I clear the garden, and plant the seeds.  I protect the seedlings, fertilize them, water them, kill the weeds.
I mourn those who die, eaten by bugs or shredded by hail or dug up by cats, and treasure the survivors.
If they crowd each other, I thin them out with regret, but without mercy.
As the season continues, I watch them blossom.  I clear away the dead and the diseased.
When the time comes, I harvest them.

And when winter approaches, I rip them all up and toss them in a pile to rot.

What is the meaning of my life, or yours?  Probably about the same as one of my garden plants.  Let's not overcomplicate things.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

altered

  • Reluctant Mad Prophet of Mushussu Qudmu
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 2122
  • Beggar-Knight of Eris Militant
    • View Profile
Re: The Scrapyard --or-- CNO's brain dump
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2019, 01:20:57 am »
You vastly oversold these. I expected garbage, not new Holy Nonsense material.

Okay, Summer is kinda average. But the rest is quality. Refund please.
“I am that worst of all type of criminal...I cannot bring myself to do what you tell me, because you told me.”

“Ever watch that famous war movie? That’s how it’ll be.”
“Which one?”
“The one where everybody dies.”
— Blood Standard, Laird Barron

Remember the fall of Yin Tu.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Now we're all sons of bitches
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2019, 04:26:41 am »

A.

In 1945, The United States was presented with the necessity of invading Japan in order to end the war.  Such an invasion would cost hundreds of thousands of lives on both sides, and would leave Japan in ruins.  The Japanese people were prepared to fight to the death, with even schoolgirls being trained to fight with bamboo spears.  Having little choice, the Americans dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima on August 6th, and, when the Japanese failed to surrender, dropped a second on Nagasaki on August 9th.
Faced with the overwhelming destructive force of this new weapon, Emperor Hirohito surrendered to the Allies a few days later.


B.

In 1945, the Japanese navy was in tatters, and despite publicly declaring they would fight to the end, were quietly attempting to negotiate with the Soviet Union.

At the same time, the Americans, eager to bring a quick end to a war that had already dragged on too long, and wishing to make a show of strength to establish their position in the post-war world (especially, to demonstrate their technical superiority to the U.S.S.R.) dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.  This also served as a field test of their new weapon, which had only been detonated once before.
Despite the devastation, this was not enough to cause Japan's surrender; the earlier fire-bombing of Tokyo had been even more destructive, and the Japanese believed (correctly) that the Americans only had a few of these bombs.

The situation changed abruptly with the Soviet invasion of Manchuria on August 9th.  Outnumbered, outgunned, facing imminent defeat on the Asian mainland, and having little standing left to negotiate from, the Japanese surrendered on August 15th.

The first deployment of a doomsday weapon was not only unnecessary, but unsuccessful in achieving its stated objective.



(A) is the official story, or how I remember it, anyway.  (B) is paraphrased from Oliver Stone's "Untold History of the United States."

Why do I find it easier to believe the version that paints humanity in a worse light?
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

Doktor Howl

  • Hostile Technology Geek
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36013
  • si autem non vis tribulationis et angustiae, non
    • View Profile
Re: Now we're all sons of bitches
« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2019, 03:25:42 pm »

A.

In 1945, The United States was presented with the necessity of invading Japan in order to end the war.  Such an invasion would cost hundreds of thousands of lives on both sides, and would leave Japan in ruins.  The Japanese people were prepared to fight to the death, with even schoolgirls being trained to fight with bamboo spears.  Having little choice, the Americans dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima on August 6th, and, when the Japanese failed to surrender, dropped a second on Nagasaki on August 9th.
Faced with the overwhelming destructive force of this new weapon, Emperor Hirohito surrendered to the Allies a few days later.


B.

In 1945, the Japanese navy was in tatters, and despite publicly declaring they would fight to the end, were quietly attempting to negotiate with the Soviet Union.

At the same time, the Americans, eager to bring a quick end to a war that had already dragged on too long, and wishing to make a show of strength to establish their position in the post-war world (especially, to demonstrate their technical superiority to the U.S.S.R.) dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.  This also served as a field test of their new weapon, which had only been detonated once before.
Despite the devastation, this was not enough to cause Japan's surrender; the earlier fire-bombing of Tokyo had been even more destructive, and the Japanese believed (correctly) that the Americans only had a few of these bombs.

The situation changed abruptly with the Soviet invasion of Manchuria on August 9th.  Outnumbered, outgunned, facing imminent defeat on the Asian mainland, and having little standing left to negotiate from, the Japanese surrendered on August 15th.

The first deployment of a doomsday weapon was not only unnecessary, but unsuccessful in achieving its stated objective.


It was perfectly successful in achieving its actual objectives.  All 3 of them.
"It's how we roll,
Dunning-Krueger out of control
(Girl, look at that gross margin)"
- TGRR

Evil doesn't work without good people. Good people will do the most repugnant, nasty shit for what they think are "the right reasons"

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Re: Now we're all sons of bitches
« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2019, 03:39:11 pm »

The first deployment of a doomsday weapon was not only unnecessary, but unsuccessful in achieving its stated objective.


It was perfectly successful in achieving its actual objectives.  All 3 of them.

It was the first detonation of a uranium-based device (Trinity was plutonium), which doubtless provided lots of data on the effects of dropping a bomb on a populated city.  It also got a lot of international attention, which helped to set the stage for the Pax Americana.  But what was the third objective?  I'm drawing a blank.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

Doktor Howl

  • Hostile Technology Geek
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36013
  • si autem non vis tribulationis et angustiae, non
    • View Profile
Re: Now we're all sons of bitches
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2019, 04:35:22 pm »

The first deployment of a doomsday weapon was not only unnecessary, but unsuccessful in achieving its stated objective.


It was perfectly successful in achieving its actual objectives.  All 3 of them.

It was the first detonation of a uranium-based device (Trinity was plutonium), which doubtless provided lots of data on the effects of dropping a bomb on a populated city.  It also got a lot of international attention, which helped to set the stage for the Pax Americana.  But what was the third objective?  I'm drawing a blank.

The three objectives:

1.  Imply that the idea of global conflict as a tool of statecraft is dead.
2.  Get everyone's (by which I mean "Russia") attention.
3.  This is what you get WHEN YOU FUCK WITH US.

All three of these are valid reasons, though not sufficient to warrant the use of the bomb, even collectively.

But then again, it was that kind of war.
"It's how we roll,
Dunning-Krueger out of control
(Girl, look at that gross margin)"
- TGRR

Evil doesn't work without good people. Good people will do the most repugnant, nasty shit for what they think are "the right reasons"

Doktor Howl

  • Hostile Technology Geek
  • One-Armed Jizz Moppers
  • Deserved It
  • **
  • Posts: 36013
  • si autem non vis tribulationis et angustiae, non
    • View Profile
Re: Patriotism
« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2019, 04:37:29 pm »
You say you love your country, are willing to kill for it, even die for it.
I don't know what you mean.
The idea of "country" is abstract, and maps to a number of different realities.

Do you love your government?  Because, speaking as a foreigner, your government is the most visible manifestation of your country, and.. uuh... that's incredibly stupid of you.

Do you love the lines on the map?  Is this patch of sand worthy, but the one on the other side of the fence of less value, somehow?  Seems arbitrary.

Do you love the geography, the countryside, the trees, the grass, the sky?  That I get, but that isn't really what most people think of, when you say "country."  Say you love nature, or something.

Do you love the people, the culture?  Well, I get that too, but you shouldn't confuse that with the idea of the country as a whole.  If you join the military, you're just signing yourself up as a particular type of government employee.  I can see how you might like it as a job, but don't get the idea that there's some greater good involved.  "Boots on the ground" do make a difference, but unless you're fighting WW3, your efforts are best spent locally, not halfway across the globe.

I stated this very same concept here back in 2005 or so.

"When you say 'your country' do you mean the constitution nobody pays attention to, the real estate, or 312,000,000 dysfunctional primates?"
"It's how we roll,
Dunning-Krueger out of control
(Girl, look at that gross margin)"
- TGRR

Evil doesn't work without good people. Good people will do the most repugnant, nasty shit for what they think are "the right reasons"

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Revelation
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2019, 07:17:14 pm »
And then I prayed, saying "I am lost, and know not the path to take.  Oh Lord!  Send me a sign!"

And as I set forth, lo!  A sign appeared, and it read "PERMIT HOLDERS ONLY."
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Re: Revelation
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2019, 02:14:35 pm »
And then I prayed, saying "I am lost, and know not the path to take.  Oh Lord!  Send me a sign!"

And as I set forth, lo!  A sign appeared, and it read "PERMIT HOLDERS ONLY."
*Inspired by actual events.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Math blah blah blah
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2019, 03:13:38 am »
On May 30th, 1832, 20-year-old Evariste Galois was fatally wounded in a duel.  He died the next day.  The reason for the duel is still unknown.

During his life, Galois was an activist, a revolutionary, a soldier, and a mathematician; he spent time in prison; he was expelled from one school for his politics, and failed admission to another because the examiner was too stupid to understand what the hell he was talking about.

Galois left behind a number of significant mathematical manuscripts, including one that developed the concept of "finite fields", which are often called "Galois fields" in his honour.

Mathematical fields are an extension of "rings".  A ring is a set of numbers which is closed under addition (and multiplication).  That is, if you add two numbers in a ring together, the result is another number in that ring.  The set also contains an identity element (zero), which, if added to any element of the set, produces the original element.  Integers are an obvious example of a ring; adding two integers together always produces another integer.

A field is a ring which is also closed under division.  Rational numbers (anything of the form x/y) form a field, since dividing one rational number by another always produces a third rational number. (The exception is division by zero; if you do that, then the Math Police will appear and Fuck Up your Shit.)  In addition to zero, a field adds another "special" element, the multiplicative identity, one.

Integers do not form a field; if you try to divide an integer by another, you don't necessarily get another integer.  (Divide one by two and everybody dies.)

Both the ring of integers and the field of rational numbers are unlimited in size (you can always make a bigger number by adding to it).

A finite field, as its name implies, has a finite number of elements.  But how can you allow for arbitrary addition, if there is a "largest" element?  The answer is to perform addition modulo the field size.

For example, let's take a field of size 7 (named GF(7), or Galois field 7), which contains the elements {0 1 2 3 4 5 6}.  In the field of rational numbers, 5+6 = 11, but 11 lies outside of GF(7), which clearly won't do.  But (5+6) mod 7 = 4, and 4 is one of our "allowed" elements.  Similarly, any other modulo-7 addition using the elements {0..6} produces an answer in the range {0..6}.  Multiplication is simply repeating addition some number of times.

Division is a matter of finding a multiplicative inverse for each element in the field (other than zero).  Let's say we want to compute 1/3 in GF(7).  By brute force, 3+3=6, 3+3+3=2, 3+3+3+3=5, 3+3+3+3+3=1 (finally).  So, 3*5=1, or 1/3 = 5.

Because reasons, the modulus addition approach only works for creating finite fields which have a prime number of elements.  However, we can use field extensions to construct fields that are a prime power in size.  A useful field size is 2^8, since we can now treat a byte (or octet, if you're a Frenchman) as an element in GF(256).

Here's a link, if you want to get an introduction to field extension: https://johnkerl.org/doc/ffcomp.pdf

The horror begins when we discover that Galois fields aren't just a mathematical curiosity, but that they have Practical Uses.

In digital communications, forward error correction is the process of adding redundant information to a transmitted signal so that if part of the signal is damaged in transit, it can be repaired at the receiver (up to some limit).  This is why DVDs can tolerate a small amount of surface scratches, and why your phone doesn't drop the signal everytime a bird poops on the cell tower.

You could accomplish the same effect by cranking up the power, or sending the message repeatedly, but adding 10-25% redundant data (and shuffling the data around a bit) is more efficient.

It turns out that Galois field arithmetic provides us with the tools to perform some types of forward error correction.

The Reed-Solomon and BCH error correction codes both take a sequence of bytes (or bits), treat the sequence as a polynomial in a GF field, and divide that polynomial by a special "generator" polynomial.  The remainder of this division is appended to the original message before it is transmitted.

As long as the message doesn't accumulate too many errors in transit, the receiver of the message can perform a further sequence of finite field operations to determine if the message was received properly, and repair the damage.  In general, the number of errors that can be corrected depends on how much redundancy is added.

I'm starting to ramble, let's cut this short.

Further reading:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%89variste_Galois
https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Galois_field
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reed%E2%80%93Solomon_error_correction
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BCH_code
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berlekamp%E2%80%93Massey_algorithm
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chien_search
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

chaotic neutral observer

  • Groucho Marxist
  • Outlandish
  • ***
  • Posts: 999
  • I saw what you did and I'm okay with it
    • View Profile
Wolf!
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2019, 04:17:49 am »
Once upon a time, there was a boy whose job it was to watch over the village's sheep.

One evening, they heard him yelling out, "Wolf!  Wolf!"

The villagers rushed out to the pasture, and discovered a large wolf menacing the flock.  They dispatched it quickly, and thanked the boy for his efforts.

A few days later, the cry went up again:  "Wolf! Wolf!"  Once again, the villagers rushed to the rescue, slaying the wolf before he could do any harm.

This state of affairs continued for some time.

One night, a merchant from out-of-town was showing his wares in the tavern, when they heard the boy yelling again.  The villagers showed no interest, preferring to continuing perusing the merchant's goods.
"Shouldn't you see what that's all about?"  The merchant wondered.
"Nah," said one of the villagers, "that boy yells that all the time."

Moral:  Even when it's the truth, people eventually get tired of having warnings yelled at them.
Desine fata deum flecti sperare precando.

altered

  • Reluctant Mad Prophet of Mushussu Qudmu
  • Deserved It
  • ****
  • Posts: 2122
  • Beggar-Knight of Eris Militant
    • View Profile
Re: The Scrapyard --or-- CNO's brain dump
« Reply #14 on: October 05, 2019, 05:51:03 am »
:mittens:

That’s really fucking good.
“I am that worst of all type of criminal...I cannot bring myself to do what you tell me, because you told me.”

“Ever watch that famous war movie? That’s how it’ll be.”
“Which one?”
“The one where everybody dies.”
— Blood Standard, Laird Barron

Remember the fall of Yin Tu.