Sweet, Story Jam New York got up on UNICEF's website! I still feel weird about seeing my name in places. It's like a "wait, people think that my existence is interesting enough to mention?" thing (another variant of the underestimation-of-self thing that I need to overcome). But I'm glad the Jam got coverage, because the things that happened there were wonderful - I love it when a project opens up to outside hackers, and I'll usually do almost anything I can to help a project that I think is good to do so. Several people have suggested that this ("open source opening-up project advocacy work") could eventually become an actual consultancy... I'm not sure what it is yet, though. Just that I love it. Whatever it is.

There's a provocative - but compelling - post by Wesley Fryer on the limited interpretation that some people have about what computers nowadays are supposed to do to be "good." While I think that web browsing is tremendously important and certainly one possible primary style of usage, I agree with Fryer that just because a computer isn't the best at that doesn't mean it's bad or useless. Just because a shoe is bad for rock climbing doesn't mean it's useless. Maybe it's a dancing shoe. Shoes can do a lot of things and go a lot of places. Sp can computers. Expand and challenge your conceptions of what things "should" be used for. You might make a breakthrough.

Also, one thing that frustrates me a lot: people who (I perceive) aren't open to the possibility that they could be wrong and that there are other potentially valid ways of seeing the world and operating within it. I don't hate them or anything - I want to understand why they don't try to understand - and my inability to grok that frustrates me tremendously. I also get frustrated when people self-declare authority without prefixing it with a claim that their authority is mutable and that others can counter-propose things at their statements. Many people won't think to question (not because they're spineless or stupid, but maybe they were taught to be respectful of authority, or maybe they're quiet or more shy by nature, or...) and their thoughts - valuable things - get lost as a result, or never voiced at all.

I need to learn how to deal with this. I'm not sure "deal with" is the right word here. However, "accept" isn't quite what I want either.

And I hope that I never block anybody else from speaking, although I'm sure I inadvertently and unconsciously do. One reason (I use to justify why) I continually sell myself short is to "cut myself down" so as to never be intimidating - to be a "hey, I'm not particularly amazing, I started out a lot like you - and yet... I've done cool stuff - and so can you!" example. I try to not say "pshaw, oh, that was easy" in a dismissive voice - I often struggle - hard - to do seemingly simple things (and say so often), and feel completely idiotic, and drop the balls I'm juggling (metaphorically and literally) and hunt all day to find a less-than sign that should be greater-then and renders all my code inoperable as a result.

I don't want people to worship me because I want them to think that they can be like me (at least the aspects that they like; I'd highly recommend not copying me on most things) and I would rather have friends and colleagues than admirers. I adhere to the principles that one should hire (and work with) people better than they are at all times, and that the job of a teacher is to make her students surpass her and not need her as soon as possible.

I wonder why many people feel so compelled to put things into what seems like a fixed hierarchy? It is a familiar model, and easy for us to process mentally... but that doesn't mean it is the optimal one for all cases.