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Notes from 24 Pull Requests event

See notes and further research prompts below in relation to yesterday’s 24 Pull Requests event. It was organised by Codebar, Ladies Who Code, and Your First PR, sponsored by Gitter, Shutl, and Twitter. I left Twitter HQ with my brain fizzing, always a good thing.

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Blender reference links

Black and white rendering of an 8 page gate fold leaflet done with the Blender Internal engine by Piper Haywood

Render of 8pp gate fold, done with Blender Internal engine

Been experimenting with Blender these past few months, pretty incredible free/open source 3D software. Definitely a bit of a learning curve, but very addictive and satisfying once you get the hang of it.

Links to some of the more helpful tutorials and info I’ve found are listed below. I switched from the Blender Internal engine to Cycles recently for improved results w/ architectural rendering, so some of these links are specific to Cycles.

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Dal tadka recipe

This is the recipe I follow for dal/dhal/dahl/daal tadka/tarka. “Tadka” is a tempered spice-and-oil topping that you add before serving to enhance the flavours of the dal. The ingredients and method are based on one of the dal tadka recipes on the excellent site Vegetable Recipes of India (see recipe). It would be best to use arhar or tuvar dal, but I use red lentils generally since they’re the easiest to find and still taste great. This serves 4 people and is excellent with jeera rice.

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Cobbler’s work on Loake chelsea boots

Work slip from Daniel, the cobbler on Francis Road

The cobbler on Francis Road did great work fixing up a second-hand pair of Loake chelsea boots recently. The uppers were in pretty good condition except for some salt damage. The elastic was perfect, surprisingly. The leather soles on the other hand were nearly shot, the right one in particular. The stitches were worn through.

Daniel pinned the leather sole to the welt, slightly built up the nose, built up the super-thin area under the ball of the foot, and then he glued and pinned a thin, black rubber sole to the leather outsole. The rubber sole says “Longlife Indiana”. He write “High-life sole” in thin silver pen on the left shoe near the heel, and “Francis Cobb” on the right. Though the heel didn’t need replacing, he did pin it down to make sure there’s no way it’ll peel away. Really, really pleased with the results.

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The Peter Principle in management theory

I had a spectacularly inarticulate moment recently trying to recall a management concept I read about a while back. By chance, I came across it today, so note to self: the Peter Principle is the theory you’re looking for. “Managers rise to the level of their incompetence”, or “anything that works will be used in progressively more challenging applications until it fails”.

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Snippet for LazyLoad + Spin.js

/**
 * Identify images by class. For each image, add 
 * [Spin.js](http://fgnass.github.io/spin.js/) to parent, [LazyLoad](http://verlok.github.io/lazyload/) image, stop spinner 
 * when image is loaded.
 */

var imgClass = "lazy";

var spinOpts = {
  // [Spin.js options](http://fgnass.github.io/spin.js/#usage)
};

var spinners = [];
var elems = document.getElementsByClassName( imgClass );
for ( var i = 0; i < elems.length; i++ ) {
  var pId = "lazy-" + ( i + 1 );
  var parent = elems[i].parentElement;
  parent.id = pId;
  spinners[pId] = new Spinner( spinOpts ).spin( parent );
}

var lazyLoad = new LazyLoad( {
  elements_selector: "." + imgClass,
  callback_load: function( element ) {
    var spinner = spinners[element.parentElement.id];
    if ( spinner ) {
      spinner.stop();
    }
  }
} );

For use with LazyLoad by Andrea Verlicchi and Spin.js by Felix Gnass. SB and I have both checked out a few different lazyloading plugins, we’re pleased with how this one works with srcset.

Since the default positioning of Spin.js centres the spinner in the element, it’s best for the image to be the only child of the parent element. The code above assumes that this is the case. If I didn’t have control over the markup or needed to individually wrap each image for any other reason, would probably implement something similar to the above w/ jQuery (see the Spin.js jQuery plugin).

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Semi-recent frequency illusion: Hannah Arendt

Hannah Arendt has been the subject of a months-long frequency illusion.

  1. A new friend described her research on biopolitics w/ a focus on Hannah Arendt’s work, was surprised when she realised I haven’t heard of The Human Condition and said I should check it out. Wanted to, but of course it slipped to the back of my mind.
  2. Months later, started reading essays and books by Joan Didion. Was reminded to read Arendt while reading Didion’s Miami where she dissects the language used by U.S. politicians and media during the Cuban Revolution.

    When someone speaks of Orlando Letelier as “murdered by his own masters,” […] that person is not arguing a case, but counting instead on the willingness of the listener to enter what Hannah Arendt called, in a discussion of propaganda, “the gruesome quiet of an entirely imaginary world.”

    Managed to at least purchase The Human Condition, got sidetracked again.

  3. Started reading Walter Benjamin’s Illuminations after coming across Carol Bove’s contribution to AKADEMIE X. The introduction to my edition is excellent. Lo and behold, it’s written by Arendt.
  4. Sam came across the origin of Life of the Mind as a name earlier this week, then this morning he mentioned a ditigized Arendt collection amassed by Bard College and currently making the rounds online.

Time to devote some time to her work.