Alvin Alexander | Java, Scala, Unix, Perl, Mac OS X

Here’s a photo from the Fairbanks, Alaska, “arctic cam” on this day last year (September 25, 2015).

Fairbanks, Alaska, September 25, 2015

Today’s song of the day is, You Want It Darker, by 82-year-old Leonard Cohen:

As I get back into the book writing, it’s funny to find notes like this that I left for myself:

TODO: Edit this text ruthlessly when you’re feeling better.

I was so sick during the last few months, I have no memory of writing that.

“Everything changes once we identify with being the witness to the story, instead of the actor in it.”

Ram Dass

Identify with the witness to the story, not the actor in it

“I don’t know what love is, but I might love you. Probably love you.”

New England is now 14-5 without Tom Brady.

By contrast, Indianapolis went 2-14 with Peyton Manning’s backups.

“Our truest life is in our dreams awake.”

~ Thoreau

This song is called Dream Awake, and its by The Frames. You’re really cool if you know how I know of this song:

After a routine phone blood test I got an unexpected phone call from a doctor last night. You know, that phone call you never want to get from a doctor. That one.

“Mast cells tend to hang out at the body’s environmental interfaces (to best serve their defensive role).”

That’s a short but very important quote from the book, Never Bet Against Occam: Mast Cell Activation Disease and Chronic Illness.

Do you have dry, itchy, gritty eyes? Ever have a dry cough, where it feels like no matter how much or how hard you cough, you can’t get rid of the itchy feeling in your throat? Or how about itchy skin? All of these are your body’s “environmental interfaces,” where mast cells are trying to protect your body. (These are also symptoms of mast cell activation disease.)

Never Bet Against Occam - Mast cell activation disease

Doctor says I probably have a genetic mutation, like a Ninja Turtle or the X-Men, but with currently unknown, latent superpowers.

Also, “mutant” is not the preferred nomenclature. “Posthuman,” please.

A Facebook post from September 21, 2010: “I broke out my slide rule, cranked out some logarithms, and learned the 1964 earthquake was over 1,000,000 times more powerful than yesterday's 4.9. I can’t even fathom that number (no tsunami pun intended). Oh, and reporters quoting the use of the ‘Richter Scale’ are just using a convenient lie.” (See Moment Magnitude Scale.)

Moment Magnitude Scale

“The plural of anecdote is not data.”

Doctors have a good theory on why my body is throwing GoUnconscious exceptions. Debugging starts tomorrow. Hope to be writing again soon. :)

“How do we convince people that in programming, simplicity and clarity — in short, what mathematicians call “elegance” — are not a dispensable luxury, but a crucial matter that decides between success and failure?”

~ Edsger Dijkstra

Google released Android Studio 2.2 yesterday. Here’s a link to the announcement and details on the Android Developers Blog.

Android 2.2 released

Today’s song of the day is We Are The World, by USA for Africa:

From time to time Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon stresses mindfulness in sports. He may not refer to it as mindfulness, but he certainly refers to staying in the present moment, which is the same thing.

In terms of sports and winning, I like his quote at the end of the clip I’m showing: “It comes down to what team competes better in the moment.” It may not be as obvious in baseball as it is with sports like football, basketball, and tennis, but as I’ve gotten older it’s become very clear that a lot of close games are won and lost in just a few key plays.

Mindfulness in baseball (Joe Maddon, Cubs)

patient.info has some good information on triggers for mast cell diseases, including mastocytosis and mast cell activation syndrome (and histamine intolerance).

Triggers for mast cell diseases

histamine-intolerance.info has some good low-histamine diet information. If you suffer from allergies, mast cell disease (including mastocytosis and mast cell activation syndrome), and possibly other illnesses like chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia, this is worth learning about.

Low-histamine diet information

“Sometimes, the elegant implementation is just a function. Not a method. Not a class. Not a framework. Just a function.”

~ John Carmack