Honest Metaphors in User Interface Design

Abstractions and metaphors are hugely important in computing. They allow an "ordinary person" (e.g. somebody's grandma) to use a computer without first learning, say, binary numbers or machine code. But as previously noted, abstractions can also be destructive when used incorrectly. In human-computer interface design, an overly opaque (though …

Read | Comment

Winter Halftime Introspection

This farming off-season (October thru April) I'm attempting a lifestyle experiment of sorts by not seeking formal employment. For the first month I looked for a job (begrudgingly) until I realized guilt was my only motivation to work - guilt over having the freedom not to work. Because guilt is never …

Read | Comment

The Breath of God

All creatures look to you
to give them their food at the proper time.
When you give it to them,
they gather it up;
when you open your hand,
they are satisfied with good things.
When you hide your face,
they are terrified;
when you take away their breath,
they …
Read | Comment

The Danger of Dreams

Desires wither the heart.

—The Tao Te Ching, ch. 12

Last summer I worked my butt off (on an organic vegetable farm) for very little money, and was grateful for the chance to do so. This is in keeping with my life philosophy: "Work for nothing. Take all that you …

Read | Comment

Sins, Innocent Mistakes, and Christlike Non-Judgment

In Christian life there often exists a tension between Jesus' command "Do not judge", and the call to do right by yourself and others. It's easiest to take an extreme path, to either judge the hell out of everyone (publicly or secretly), or on the contrary avoid all moral considerations …

Read | Comment