I’ve been lacking the motivation to go outside the last few weeks—little surprise, as the seasons change and our bodies only gradually adapt. And as I write that, it starts snowing! Alas. Promising myself to get out, a little and often if that’s what it takes, will get me through it.
The last week or so has been full of lovely family time. It also had a fair bit of screen time (though less than if I’d been working, I suppose), eyes glued to the rapid decline of Twitter, mind thinking about the possibilities of Mastodon and elsewhere. I promised myself I’d take a break this weekend, but between working on a side project and playing Flight Simulator, thus far that hasn’t worked out.
Promises, eh? Perhaps the only promise to self we can truly, fairly make is to give ourselves grace for the times we inevitably fall short of our hopes or expectations.
- As a bunch of people learn about (intuitively or explicitly) the limits and possibilities of the ActivityPub protocol (which Darius Kazemi helpfully explains how to learn) that underpins Mastodon, Bookwyrm, and other fediverse services, it’s neat to read Robin Sloan’s reflections on specifying a protocol—especially the call to imagine.
- Brexit has caused a host of pressures for the UK civil service. An interesting one is a commitment to (immediately? eventually?) replace EU laws having effect in the UK. This is, it turns out, very hard to do: the laws cover 1973 to 2016 (or 2019), and “nobody ever thought the whole thing would need to disentangled, and so nobody thought to keep any track of it”.
- Kudos to folks writing at the Globe for digging into bureaucracy. Two notable pieces from this week: Shannon Proudfoot on the federal government’s recent struggles with service delivery; Tom Cardoso on the apparent (though questioned) barriers to the proactive release of completed access to information requests. (On the latter, a reply by Tim Sayle points out that Library and Archives does, sometimes, proactively release packages for its records; though there’s a whole other rabbit hole to go down about why we need to access historical records through an access to information request.)
Kinda neat, the first two buckets of links are also about promises, in their own ways. Maybe the third, too, if we consider bureaucracy a state’s promise to be able to serve its citizenry. Anywho, time to try to keep one of those promises to self and get outside! All the best for the week ahead.