Weeknotes #008: So close

What I did in the 44th week of 2020

Work

We got so close to launching this week, but then did not. Recently I’ve heard a number of SpaceX and ULA rocket launches have been scrubbed.

A US official was quoted as saying:

We see that as a success… Falcon 9 and Delta 4 stopped within seconds of launch? This is good stuff,”

I think I feel a bit like that now. It’s disappointing to not get something out the door, but we rigorously test what we make before it goes before users. We want to make sure it’s clear, easy to use and accessible to everyone. This time round those tests turned up a last few snags, and so that’s what we’ll spend next week finishing up.

Otherwise

Had another short week with a Friday off. Doing something on a Friday evening always feels like getting a free weekend day. Doing something on a Thursday evening and having Friday off feels like double weekend.

Read

I’m about half way through “The City We Became”. The premise is like nothing I’ve come across before, It’s fantastic!

Also still reading Peter Scott’s essays. So many of them are from over 80 years ago - things that are the same appear as timeless (both the challenges and what remains!). But then I think that the challenge of environmental concern is that what you grow up with always appears normal. Kids who grow up in a world without large mammals, or with a much changed sea will still marvel at what delights remain. It’s difficult to know what you’re missing.

Listened to

Radiolab - What If? - October 23, 2020. A fantastic episode, may it never prove relevant. This takes a thought experiment around US constitutional rules and political norms, and subjects it to a war game around how this coming election day might go. If parties wanted to, what moves could they make? How much can you push things in deeply polarised political environments? The results are illuminating.

I think these sort of games should be run frequently, in a variety of arenas. We should use their results to fix and strengthen institutions whilst the sun is shining, even as we hope to never see rain.

Thinking about

| Huw ·