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

I was having a bear of a time trying to understand how to set the default indentation when editing Scala files using Microsoft Visual Studio (VS) Code, but I finally found the solution. The short story is that you want to edit the settings.json file, and add the code that I’ve made bold here:

Traditionally I’ve spent a number of Aprils in Virginia Beach.

#MeepMeep

Virginia Beach or bust?

I think I only have one of these cards left, and I’m not sure if I should give it to the niece who’s graduating in May or the niece who’s getting married in June.

You are sweeter than bee vomit

Several times when I’ve told people in Colorado that I have mast cell disease, they’ve replied, “Have you tried marijuana for that?”

In what might be a related story, one time I went to the ER and a young man there was vomiting extremely loudly and repeatedly into a large bucket. I initially didn’t know what was going on and sat down near him, but once he started vomiting I got up and moved away from him, as everyone else had already done. I recall hearing someone say that he had been there before for the same problem.

I say that it might be related because a few days ago I read that consuming edible marijuana products can lead to “repeated and severe bouts of vomiting,” a condition known as cannabinoid hyperemesis. From what I know, people consume edible products, don’t feel anything immediately, so then they consume some more, etc. Apparently it takes time for consumables to kick in, so when they do, people find out the hard way that they’ve consumed too much. I was just reminded of all that when reading this UCHealth story.

Mac batch image conversion FAQ: How can I “batch convert” images from one image format to another on a Mac, such as BMP to JPG, or PNG to JPG?

As I mentioned in my earlier Mac batch image resizing tutorial, the Mac OS X Automator application is my new best friend. Besides letting you easily batch resize images very easily, the Automator also lets you easily batch create thumbnails for images, and also lets you convert images from one image format to another (BMP to JPG, PNG to JPG, etc.).

Here’s a quick look at how to use the Mac Automator to “batch convert” images from one file format to another, including image file formats like BMP, GIF, JPEG, and PNG.

This scala-lang.org documentation page shares a good reason to use “sealed” traits and classes: When you created sealed traits, the compiler can easily tell all of the subtypes of your class or trait, and as just one benefit, you don’t need to add a default, “catch-all” case in your Scala match expressions.

Scala sealed traits - No need for a default, catch-all case in match expression

Here are two moose that I came across one day in Alaska.

A couple of moose in Alaska

The image shows how Scala 3 (Dotty) enums expand into other Scala code. I thought that was interesting, and you can learn more at this URL.

How Scala 3 (Dotty) enums expand (the under the covers source code)

I recently had my blood drawn by a man with a lot of tattoos and piercings, and while we were talking he asked what my favorite band was. I answered Guns n' Roses, and then asked what his was, and he said, Tool.

I totally forgot about that band. I think back in the day (the 1990s), Schism was my favorite song from them, but I’m still trying to recall them all. I had never seen that video before, but parts of it reminded me of Justin Kamerer and AngryBlue.com.

Dr. Foreman: The kid was just taking his calculus exam when all of a sudden he got nauseous and disoriented.

Dr. House: That’s the way calculus presents.

The following is a (long) discussion of some things you might run into during deep meditation.

Fake Absolute Silence

These days in meditation I spend a lot of time in a place I call “Fake Absolute Silence.” In this state you might be fooled into thinking that you’re in the real state of Absolute Silence, but that’s part of the problem — you’re still thinking. Things are definitely quiet in this state; there aren’t many thoughts, and your concentration is focused on your breathing without distraction. However, I find that I’m still very aware of my body and outside noises. But despite that, it’s generally a mentally quiet place.

“The only Zen you find on the tops of mountains is the Zen you bring up there.”

~ Robert Pirsig

I drove up to Alaska twice, and if you happen to go at the right time of the year you can see a lot of bears in both Canada and Alaska, or at least you could before the roads were paved. Most of the bears just watch you drive by, but this one was not a happy camper.

An angry black bear, somewhere in Canada

It’s funny, I never expected that I’d ever write about the tv series, The Greatest American Hero, but I watched an episode last night that was pretty good, especially when you consider it was made in 1981.

Season 1, Episode 6 of The Greatest American Hero is titled, “My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys,” and for me it’s the most touching episode yet. Bill (the FBI agent) learns that his personal hero is involved in something illegal, and it’s a real blow to him. He’s hurt, and then down in the dumps.

Meanwhile, Ralph, The Greatest American Hero, has two incidents where innocent bystanders are almost hurt while he’s attempting to go after the bad guys. One group is a busload of tourists, and the second one is an elderly woman. This affects him to the point that he doesn’t want to put the suit on any more, because he’s afraid he’ll hurt innocent people.

The image shows the beginning of this Scala 3 SIP `main` method proposal that was just added yesterday, March 25, 2019. See that link for more details and an interesting discussion.

Scala 3 SIP `main` method proposal

This won’t mean anything to anyone else, but while cleaning stuff off of my phone just now I ran across this photo of a house I once called home.

A house I once called home

The Native American woman I met last week had an aneurysm and brain surgery last year. (She showed me the scar, and she’s fine now.) Before the aneurysm was discovered, she went to a shaman who’s well-known among Natives here. He lit something, made some smoke, did whatever else he does, then looked at her, put his finger on her forehead and said, “You are blocked here.”

Unfortunately she assumed he was referring to a mental blockage, and thought, “No, I’m an open person, he’s wrong.” Shortly after this, doctors discovered the aneurysm right where he pointed.

This is the story she told me.

Back in March, 2010, I drove up to Alaska. This is the office of a little motel in Canada ... at the moment I can’t remember the name of the town, but I could find it again. :)

Cute motel in Canada in the winter

A moose at a coffee shop in Alaska. "I'd like a moo-latte please."