False Equivalencies

What do I mean by “False Equivalencies”? (In this post.)

I live in the Chicago area, so let’s use a sports metaphor (baseball teams): If I like/love the Cubs, I must hate the White Sox.

Which may be true for some, but not for me. That’s a false equivalency.

Stuff (yeah, nice bucket) has gotten so partisan lately; here’s my off-the-to-of-my-head list of stuff where false equivalency is implied (not for me, but in media reports/political spin):

  • Criticise anything Israel does that you disagree with – You’re an anti-Semite
  • Not riled up about the so-called Ground Zero Mosque – You’re with the terrorists
  • Agree with any gun-control issues – You’re against the 2nd Amendment
  • For Gay Marriage – You’re against the institution of marriage … which is???
  • For anything the Democrats are pushing – You’re a libtard
  • For anything the Republicans are pushing – Tea Party loon!

It’s sad, really.

There will be silos


Silo issues – lack of seamless interoperability between computer platforms/devices/services – will undoubtedly remain in the near- (possibly medium-) future, but that’s not a good thing.

In a 2011 post, I basically broke down the issue at that time into two buckets:

  • Devices: One eReader can’t support the other’s format; and why do I have to buy a game twice for my two devices – an iPhone and Android tablet? (Just an example)
  • Data: Why so hard to move MY data around? Export from one service to another is painful to impossible?

The wildcard – The Cloud

Both these problems still exist, and I’d argue that Point 2 (data portability) is getting worse, simply because more and more people are putting everything into The Cloud: “Blog posts” and pictures at Facebook or Tumblr; pictures at Instagram or Flickr.

Remember, Google just shuttered a social network – Orkut. Who’s to say another (former) heavyweight won’t be around forever? (Orkut was huge in South America, particularly Brazil, before succumbing to Facebook.)

We first put words (blogs, emails, forums, social networks) into the cloud that we expected to always be there.

Now we’re putting pictures and videos in the cloud, and we’re getting closer to putting a lot of date- and location-based info in the cloud: Think of doing an entire wedding on the web/via an app. Invites, RSVP list, registries etc all through one site. It probably exists; if not, it will.

But what happens when that wedding site/app shuts down a few months before your wedding? Is there a standard “eEvent” export “eEvent -wedding” that you can use to move your guest/church/restaurant/band/registries from the shuttered site to a new one?


And let’s say there was some sorta such export.

But – for directions to, say church and reception, the shuttered app only supported Google Maps. But the import tool only supports Bing or Yahoo! maps (and so on…..).

Lot of chaos going on re: silos right now.

Not getting a lot of attention, for two reasons:

  • There are – everyday – new ways to push/create new/existing data into the cloud via desktop or mobile apps. Remarkable. Let’s see even more!
  • Exporting data out of the cloud and/or re-importing it somewhere…not so sexy. (So few efforts [relatively], and little press).

This is a problem that’s going to get bigger still before it gets smaller, in my opinion.

Well, that was quite a day

The Art Institute Of Chicago

Last Thursday (7/3/2014), Romy and I took a day off of work to:

  1. Make the July 4th weekend a day longer, and
  2. Go into Chicago, where we haven’t been yet this year.

The weather prediction – up to the day before – had the weather, at best, as overcast. We ended up with a nice sunny day, light breeze, about 70°.

Yeah, we got lucky.

The plan was to hit the Art Institute to see the Magritte exhibition (and other stuff), hit my old neighborhood (Lakeview) and noodle around there, and then check out a place Romy’s been jonesing to go to, The Fish Bar.

We pretty much followed that script, and here’s how the day went….

Magritte exhibition

Magritte was, to both of us, kind of a yawner. The show contained only a few of Magritte’s well-known paintings, and was – to me – somewhat pretentious. I keep forgetting how artists fall into their own world, to a certain degree – where the change of a yellow is, to them, a significant commentary on [whatever]. That’s how the descriptions of Magritte’s works struck me. Something beyond what it was.

NOTE: This may have been the fault of the museum’s preparator, but the text quoted a lot of Magritte’s writings.

That said, we hit the photography room where there was a great exhibit of Edward Steichen’s commercial work for Conde Nast. I’d seen some of same, but it interesting to see more of his commercial work. His non-commercial work is way better than his Conde Nast work, but it was fun to see his pictures of the famous (Gretta Garbo) and the not-so-famous (who the hell is this that they have an article about them?) who graced the pages of Vanity Fair and Vogue.

Hopper – Nighthawks at the Diner

We noodled around a bit in the Art Institute, just hitting this or that (Hopper’s “Nighthawks at the Diner,” hand-held 1/3 second!) until we had our fill of art.

We went over to Millennium Park, where a band/chorus was practicing for what was obviously a homage to George M. Cohen (probably for the 4th). Fun to listen to.

We then hit my old neighborhood (Lakeview; lived there all of two years) and we just couldn’t get into just wandering around there. When I lived there, it was different: We didn’t have to worry about when the parking meters expired, when we have to get back home in the suburbs. We’re just not shoppers, so what else is there to do?

This neighborhood – to me – has changed quite a bit recently. We usually hit there at least every other year, if for no reason other than to hit The Coffee & Tea Exchange (awesome bean coffee – like bacon, the smell of roasted beans is intoxicating).

Lakeview currently has way more girls women than I remembered (yay!), fewer bookstores (boo!), and is – overall – both cleaner and more antiseptic than in the past, if you understand. Berlin is still there (is it still raunchy? I dunno), but other fringe places are gone, replaced by H&R Block or what have you. It’s a different neighborhood. More gentrified. Lots of nail spas.

Fish Bar
The Fish Bar

That said, there are still some interesting discoveries to make in the Lakeview area.

Romy stumbled across The Fish Bar some time ago, and we set our sights on having lunch there.

It wasn’t what I was expecting – I was expecting fish & chips, brass rails, kind of a dark low-ceiling bar/restaurant and all. But The Fish Bar is more open, more casual and the food more tapas-like.

For us, that’s perfect. We don’t need a 10-lbs bass with fourteen side dishes. We got food, it was good, we were full (I had blackened red fish tacos. AWE-some). Not overfilled.

As a bonus, when we got home, our sidewalk had been fixed. Long story, but let’s just say it’s been a decade of pain and crooked concrete, and it appears that our long local nightmare may well be over. Yippee.