Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

24 Sep 2014, 18:59 p.m.

Miscellaneous Links, Nothing To See Here

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2014 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

Things that have crossed my screen recently and I find worth sharing. Hum de dum.

Mel Chua on a single microcosm of the experience of being deaf. Sarah Sharp, very sensibly, suggesting we speed up code review by breaking it up into a few logical phases.

Oh what's this? An introduction, by Leonard and me, in Strange Horizons, to a reprint of Kim Stanley Robinson's head-rockin' short story "The Lucky Strike"? WHY YES IT IS. We're grateful to Strange Horizons for asking us to choose a story to reprint. We chose "The Lucky Strike" for a few reasons. It's gripping and memorable, sure. And Robinson finds a new take on the alt-history WWII story. But "The Lucky Strike" is also one of the best stories we've ever read about complicity, and that's because of how it gets you into the protagonist's head, and what it does to you once you're there. I hope you'll check it out (and, if you can, also find and read the author's associated essay, "A Sensitive Dependence on Initial Conditions").

Well, certainly there won't be anything else my household had a particular hand in. Just more links, a potpourri, you know.

On depression: On understanding high-functioning depression. "Let's talk." How terrible it feels to feel useless. Another person's experience. You can get a mental health speaker at your event, such as Ed Finkler. (Edited 25 September to add: an explanation of the Beck Depression Inventory and what kinds of questions you say "yes" or "no" to if you are or are not depressed.)

Mallory Ortberg's "two monks inventing things" series makes me laugh very hard but also makes me saw "awww" at how the monks teach each other (wrong) things. This Grantland article about a swimmer celebrates human awesomeness in a pretty infernokrusher way, and in case you're into that level of exuberance, you might also run into it in music criticism by or linked to by Matthew Perpetua, and in this old John Darnielle blog post.

I'm thinking a lot about change-making, about how it's worked at Wikimedia in the past and what we need to do in the future, and about leadership and the people who are going in the direction opposite me (that is, I'm going from management to individual contribution, and others are moving the other way). I'm thinking about the responsibility mentors have to interns, about which learning styles the tech industry and open source specifically accommodate more than others, and how that fits in to the learning environments we make, and which of those biases are essential versus inessential weirdnesses.

(Will anyone notice that a few of those are links to my own work? Very few. I move on, furtively, an attention cat burglar.)

In the world of sexism: "So this is the face of harassment. The faces of the men you know, and the faces of the men you respect. How do we create space to talk about that?" What happens when the content at a conference is great but the conduct pushes you away. And the uneven distribution of fun.

And here is a punch-the-air-good Wonder Woman fanvid, and I'm not even a WW fan, or wasn't before I saw this.