Diary of a B+ Grade Polymath (tcpip) wrote,
Diary of a B+ Grade Polymath

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A Google Post, New Russian Friends

Whilst [personal profile] caseopaya is overseas in bonny Scotland (and we're spending our anniversary apart!) we've had the opportunity to converse a couple of times via Google Hangout, which has been acceptable - at least it seems the Blade Runner promise of video phones has come true. It seems that they've picked up more than a few ideas from Access Grid in terms of general scope and scalability. Of course the big issue (apart from the appalling name) is how Hangouts lines up against Skype. There's a couple of popular tech articles available, such as DailyCal's, and UnifiedComms, both of which emphasise an important point - Google has made the effective entry point free, which has certainly helped attract users. Whilst one may note how this is very typical of Google, it is also very important for them to do so as a relative newcomer to the market against a very big established player. It is also a little surprising that Skype didn't predict that this would happen in the first place. I have also taken the opportunity to make some install notes for Google Talk Plugin on Slackware 14. Least this sounds like an entirely pro-Google post, I should quickly add that I am increasingly of the opinion that Google+ is an absolutely awful social media tool, with an astoundingly slow and surprisingly dull interface that is even - and it pains me to say this - worse than Facebook. Also Google recently announced that they're in league with SkyNet; in the end you know the machines will win.

Привет меня новых российских друзей! Apparently my journal is now being recommended and translated among the Russian livejournal community, resulting in a small influx of native Russian 'bloggers to this journal. Alas, I know very little Russian and have even less familiarity with the cyrillic character set. Nevertheless, in honour of these newcomers I promise to make an effort in the coming year to learn at least some basic Russian, which will be a fairly radical departure from the languages which I have some familiarity with (i.e., Tetum, Esperanto, French, Indonesian). I will also admit to some Russian influences in my political outlook. In my teenaged years I was involved in Trotskyist political groups. Whilst their activism was impressive, their cultic approach disturbing, and their politics - like orthodox Marxism in general - is "insufficiently correct". I was impressed with Gorbachev's social-democratic reforms, although they were strangled in the crib by the Stalinists behind the failed August 1991 coup and the subsequent destructive capitalism through Yeltsin's opportunism. It is worth remembering that under Gorbachev real GDP per capita in Russia was the highest it ever had been, and it was rising further. I admit some sympathy to Tolstoy's Christian anarchism, and even more to his Georgist economics (How Much Land Does A Man Need? is possibly the best short-story ever written). More recently I've been exploring the ideas of Alexander Bogdanov; a radical polymath if there ever was one and whose emphasis on systems theorist which is increasingly important in a technologically mediated society. This entry was originally posted at https://tcpip.dreamwidth.org/167753.html.
Tags: caseopaya, google, russia

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