Why you think you’re right — even if you’re wrong

Motivated Reasoning aka soldier mindset: This phenomenon in which our unconscious motivations (our desires and fears) shape the way we interpret information. So some information and ideas feel like our allies and we want them to win. We want to defend them. And other information and ideas are the enemy. We want to shoot them… Continue reading Why you think you’re right — even if you’re wrong

TED Talk: For argument’s sake

Daniel H. Cohen makes an interesting case that: We equate arguing to war; such that there are winners and losers. The loser is the one who makes a cognitive improvement, so losing gains the most. So, we should strive to lose. “It takes practice to be a become a good arguer from the perspective of benefitting… Continue reading TED Talk: For argument’s sake

Black Box Magic

With a black box system a person working with it sees what goes in and what comes out. The machine’s decision making process is obfuscated. Theories are made based on incomplete evidence on the behavior. More data points on more situations confirming the behavior is my way of being more comfortable the theory is correct. Sometimes… Continue reading Black Box Magic

Useful User Agents

Rather than depend on end users to accurately report the browser used, I look for the user-agent in the web server logs. (Yes, I know it can be spoofed. Power users would be trying different things to resolve their own issues not coming to us.) Followers of this blog may recall I changed the Weblogic… Continue reading Useful User Agents

Name Collisions

Blackboard has a conference they call BbWorld. I noticed there are some odd tweets with the same #bbworld hashtag lately. These appear to be about a Blackberry conference to be held next month. Collisions on names are common enough. For example, here are a couple names our clients use to brand their sites which other… Continue reading Name Collisions

Weblogic Diagnostics

I noticed one the nodes in a development cluster was down. So I started it again. The second start failed, so I ended up looking at logs to figure out why. The error in the WebCTServer.000000000.log said: weblogic.diagnostics.lifecycle.DiagnosticComponentLifecycleException: weblogic.store.PersistentStoreException: java.io.IOException: [Store:280036]Missing the file store file “WLS_DIAGNOSTICS000001.DAT” in the directory “$VISTAHOME/./servers/$NODENAME/data/store/diagnostics” So I looked to see… Continue reading Weblogic Diagnostics

The Ares Imperative

A friend of mine, Steve Ekstrom, is the writer of this comic which I enjoyed for the this first 8 pages. I’m looking forward to the next installments. Check out The Ares Imperative! (And vote for it if you like it. The winner gets published by DC Comics.) Interview: Synopsis: It’s the early 21st Century… Continue reading The Ares Imperative

Cosmological Constants

Guess I am pretty dense. As many books and TV shows as I have read or seen about Einstein, physics, and cosmology, I just understood something for the first time since it was extremely plainly laid out for me. An ever expanding universe requires one or more forces to push matter further apart: cosmological constant. Forces attract… Continue reading Cosmological Constants

Relative Truth

Found an interesting comment on an article the state of Georgia observing the Confederate Memorial Day…. The truth of history means very little to those who are dead set against learning anything from it. No matter what the history books used in our public school system say, most will never believe anything other than their… Continue reading Relative Truth

Flickr Uploadr Ordering Broke?

When sending more than five pictures to Flickr, many photographers want the last one or five sent to be their best one. The Contacts page can be set to show the last one or last five photos for each contact. Meaning, the last one should be the best one. I thought I was crazy at… Continue reading Flickr Uploadr Ordering Broke?