Not (yet) forgotten

Don’t ask me how many classes I’ve taken in my life, or who my teachers were… but I like to think that I manage to keep something from every encounter, even if it’s not something directly related to the class.

For example, in my high school physical science class, our teacher liked to answer all kinds of questions, no matter how outlandish they might be. If he couldn’t answer he had a go-to phrase that I still use in a regular basis: “It’s possible, but not probable.” Maybe he thought he didn’t want to be the one person that stopped someone from developing a teleportation machine or flying car.

My first year in college is mostly a blur, but I’ll never forget this one maxim my Chemistry I teacher: “Two, four, six, eight — who do we appreciate? Valence electrons! I don’t remember why valence electrons are important, but I can’t help but cheer for them every now and again.

A Calculus professor explained many basics the first day, including the importance of zero when it’s used to measure distance, particularly when talking about two objects occupying the same space. After presenting a couple more “That being said, what is the shortest distance between two points?, to which many in the class mechanically answered “a straight line! More annoyed than disgusted he calmly replied, “what did we just learn about zero?”

While I quote some of these regularly, the one the comes up the most is one from the only newspaper design class I ever took (the only one offered during my time studying journalism): The first and probably only rule of newspaper design is “Beg, borrow and steal.” I apply this to many enterprises.

References

Posted September 10, 2022, under:
school 80s 90s

Best Parking in the West End

(By which I mean, “Cheapest parking in the West End.”) Parking around El Centro College is expensive. Some places charge $10 a morning or thereabouts, and getting a monthly subscription can be tricky if your timing isn’t right. If you don’t mind wallking about 1/3 of a mile, I recommend parking where I park. It’s a parking lot owned by the city, and it costs me $2 a day. NOTE: This price is good only for regular work hours — my parking times are usually 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

I also recommend the ParkMobile app. It works on all City of Dallas parking, including the parking meters. It allows you to set reminders and pay for additional parking time if needed (in most cases). You can pay with cash or credit card on-site and get a printed receipt and not have to pay convenience fees (35 cents or so for this lot, I think):

Posted August 22, 2022, under:
dallas,el centro,parking

Programming Proverbs

Specifically, I was looking for the handful of programming proverbs written by Henry F. Ledgard in his series of programming books from the 1970s. And although I could not find a blog post I remember from a few years back, I did run across this page, which quotes one of the proverbs, and a few other relevant thoughts:

"High thoughts must have high language."

– Aristophanes

"You can’t trust code that you did not totally create yourself. (Especially code from companies that employ people like me."

– Ken Thompson, 1983 ACM Turing Award Lecture

"Instead of this absurd division into sexes they ought to class people as static or dynamic."

– Evelyn Waugh

"Good as it is to inherit a library, it is better to collect one."

– Augustune Birrell

"In programming, it is not enough to be inventive and ingenious. One also needs to be disciplined and controlled in order not be become entangled in one's own complexities."

– Harlan D. Mills, Forward to Programming Proverbs by Henry Ledgard

"I have made this letter longer than usual, because I lack the time to make it short."

– Blaise Pascal

Posted August 21, 2022, under:
programming, quotes

The Daily Grind

Less an effort to save trees, an excuse to stop using the excuse “I can’t find paper.” Daily? I’m not sure, maybe it should just be “the grind.”

Posted September 27, 2021, under:
blog

And now for something completely Python

There’s been plenty of discussion in one of my classes about Python programming — what it is, where to learn it and what to use to get started. After suggesting several resources to some of my students, I remembered an old post in a previous blog where I listed several links to pertinent sites, and while some are still valuable, many of them are showing their age (this was back in the v2 days).

People to follow:

Other stuff:

Posted March 3, 2020, under:
python,programming