The current world situations have at least had one good effect; I've pretty much stopped looking at the news.

(I don't need to know details of train wrecks in progress and I am mentally better off not absorbing them.)

covid 

In my hour and a half walk through side streets, I saw almost no one wearing a mask. Many of the people I saw masked were professionals (eg delivery people), possibly all of them.

I'm not feeling very optimistic about Toronto staying as open as we are now. Hopefully I'm being too pessimistic.

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I just went on an hour and a half walk outside for the first time since February. In related news, I now have a blister.

(I've been biking since then, but not for as long and anyway pedaling doesn't rub my feet in the way that walking does.)

One surprising drawback of having virtual screens instead of dual monitors is that it's much easier to forget about something I had in progress on another virtual screen than if it was on the other monitor.

Blog post: The practical people problem with instance diversity in the Fediverse utcc.utoronto.ca/~cks/space/bl

tl;dr: Most people don't care (they just want to join the Fediverse) and even if they care, they mostly don't know enough to make good choices, at least the first time around.

spiders 

I appreciate the presence of spiders in my home but please, not dangling in front of my face between me and the computer display. Sorry, spider, that's going a little bit too far in the making yourself at home department.

I will say that it’s convenient that I have the work laptop at home these days, since laptops come with their own little built in UPSes.

(I’d be tempted by a real UPS, except it wouldn’t really have helped here; this outage is too long to keep my desktop up. Perhaps keeping the DSL modem up is worthwhile, though, since DSL sync always takes a chunk of time to come back.)

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An extended power outage in my modern world feels weird. On the one hand there’s a bunch of stuff that I can still do, like toot. On the other hand, I’m cut off from a lot of my normal activities (and I don’t have the battery lights I’d need to read a book, well, a physical book).

Blog post: A Go time package gotcha with parsing time strings that use named time zones utcc.utoronto.ca/~cks/space/bl

tl;dr: if you parse a time that uses a named time zone like 'EST' and you aren't in Eastern time (or the applicable time zone), Go actually gives you a time in UTC that claims it's in 'EST'. There are many problems here.

Surprise drawback of working from home since early March, with no bike commuting: I am pasty, pasty white. I'm going to have to slather on the sunscreen when I start doing significant biking.

As usual, I am agonizing more over the comments explaining my new feature than the Exim configuration bits that implement the feature itself.

Today I learned that you should have SPF records for your HELO names, not just for your MAIL FROM domains. I guess I have some DNS records to add now.

The dulcet sounds of Toronto in the spring evening are now genuinely dulcet. I can make out someone distantly playing the drums, or at least something with a bunch of melodic bass. It's pleasant to hear drifting in through the open window.

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Ah, the dulcet sounds of Toronto in the spring. Is that the mating call of a circular saw that I hear in the distance?

The current situation in Toronto definitely has me out of great biking shape. I need to motivate myself to do some real riding (on the fun bike, no errands allowed).

(Part of the problem is figuring out where to go where I won't run into too many people or too much density of people. Also, ideally it will have some hills, however much I dislike them.)

The geese are returning to the picnic grounds; nature is... doing the same thing it always has, because those geese did not give a single fuck before and they're not going to start now.

Toronto's weather forecast for Sunday is 19C and at least partially sunny. That sounds like bicycling weather at last to me, although I have no idea of where to ride.

(My usual ride routes in parks are likely to be jammed, so I should plot some sort of on street route. And not too long, given the lack of useful places to take breaks or get snacks, water refills, etc.)

Today I learned: 'aptitude why <package>' gives you an explanation for why an Ubuntu or Debian package is installed. Not necessarily a complete one, but one dependency path for it.

Also, wow do a lot of things want yelp in Ubuntu 20.04, which winds up dragging in gdm3.

Fedora 31 has updated to a 5.6 kernel with WireGuard built in. It feels like I should take advantage of this on my (work) laptop somehow, but that would need a WireGuard VPN server/touchdown point at work.

(I have a personal WG tunnel between the home desktop and the work desktop, but it's a complicated setup and far from ideal for the laptop.)

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