Category: Society

Racism in the Office

Today I was at an office party and the conversation turned to race, specifically the incidence of unarmed Afro-American men and boys who are shot by police. Apparently the idea that white people (even in other countries) might treat non-white people badly offends some people, so we had a man try to explain that Afro-Americans […]

Society

Logic of Zombies

Most zombie movies feature shuffling hordes which prefer to eat brains but also generally eat any human flesh available. Because in most movies (pretty much everything but the 28 Days Later series [1]) zombies move slowly they rely on flocking to be dangerous. Generally the main way of killing zombies is severe head injury, so […]

Society

Anarchy in the Office

Some of the best examples I’ve seen of anarchy working have been in corporate environments. This doesn’t mean that they were perfect or even as good as a theoretical system in which a competent manager controlled everything, but they often worked reasonably well. In a well functioning team members will encourage others to do their […]

Society

Sociological Images 2015

The above sign was at the Melbourne Docks in December 2014 when I was returning from a cruise. I have no idea why there are 3 men and 1 woman on the sign (and a dock worker was also surprised when I explained why I was photographing it). I wonder whether a sign that had […]

Society

The Purpose of a Code of Conduct

On a private mailing list there have been some recent discussions about a Code of Conduct which demonstrate some great misunderstandings. The misunderstandings don’t seem particular to that list so it’s worthy of a blog post. Also people tend to think more about what they do when their actions will be exposed to a wider […]

Society

Anti-Systemd People

For the Technical People This post isn’t really about technology, I’ll cover the technology briefly skip to the next section if you aren’t interested in Linux programming or system administration. I’ve been using the Systemd init system for a long time, I first tested it in 2010 [1]. I use Systemd on most of my […]

Society

Conference Suggestions

LCA 2015 is next week so it seems like a good time to offer some suggestions for other delegates based on observations of past LCAs. There’s nothing LCA specific about the advice, but everything is based on events that happened at past LCAs. Don’t Oppose a Lecture Question time at the end of a lecture […]

Society

A Linux Conference as a Ritual

Sociological Images has an interesting post by Jay Livingston PhD about a tennis final as a ritual [1]. The main point is that you can get a much better view of the match on your TV at home with more comfort and less inconvenience, so what you get for the price of the ticket (and […]

Linux.conf.au Society

Expectations of Skill and Time

On many occasions I’ve seen discussions about the background knowledge that people are expected to have to contribute to FOSS projects. Often the background knowledge is quite different from the core skills related to their contributions (EG documentation mark-up skills required for coding work or knowledge of code required for writing documentation). One argument in […]

Society

Autism and the Treatment of Women Again

Background I’ve previously written about the claim that people use Autism as an excuse for bad behavior [1]. In summary it doesn’t and such claims instead lead to people not being assessed for Autism. I’ve also previously written about empathy and Autism in the context of discussions about conference sexual harassment [2]. The main point […]

Asperger Society