Wael wel


Aurelie spreekt alweer zeker een jaar. Inmiddels al heel wat, en lijkt ze ook al te weten dat er meerdere talen bestaan. Van laarzen weet ze dat het ook ‘buty’ zijn (Pools uitspreken), en van zalf dat je ook ‘kremek’ kunt zeggen. Het spelletje is dat we het oneens dienen te zijn over de juiste uitspraak, en als ik even Pools spreek, dan doet ze het ‘foute’ Nederlands even voor zodat we verder kunnen met het spel.

Maar zo heel Nederlands spreekt Aurelie eigenlijk niet, en toevallig struikel ik vandaag over een artikel waarin zo’n verschil wordt uitgelegd. [https://neerlandistiek.nl/2023/02/de-verwarrende-limburgse-a-e/](De Zuid-Limburgse ’e’) wordt meer als ‘ae’ uitgesproken. Soms wordt een verbod aangevochten met de kreet ‘wael’, wat niet gaat over een rivier, maar dus ‘wel’ betekent. Een andere Pool die Limburgs spreekt en niet zozeer Nederlands (dat helpt kennelijk meteen goed accent of dialect te spreken) sprak het precies zo uit, dus gelukkig snapte ik het wael. Ook leuk dat het artikel het verschil in dialect en accent toelicht: slechts 1 van de 2 heeft de verschuiving.

Star Wars Expanded Universe and Psychophysics

star wars, psychology

Two small items today: an article about the history of the Star Wars Expanded Universe and my word of the day: psychophysics: the quantitative investigation of the relationship between stimulus and response. Read Wikipedia, I’ve nothing to add.

Back to Star Wars: I have a little something to add. I devoured ’those books’ in my late teens, and I was always extremely happy to find new ones in my local library. The article shows my luck in discovering my interest in them at just the time: it turns out the 1990-2000’s was the time when those books were written (and translated to Dutch)! I know they were not all very good, but I’ve always cherished my copy (I decided to buy it) of the Thrawn trilogy. I never sought out a community around this hobby, so it’s my first time reading about it in this way, and as far as I’m concerned it was reading time well spent!

Segregatie in Netherland

society, segregation

Ha! Some proof for one of the first observations I did when I went to university: why doesn’t anyone know any non-students? My own high school friends all went to university, and this seemed to be true for nearly everyone else. I recall asking a (heterosexual male) friend, doing maths, how we could possibly get into contact with, for instance, policewomen, and break out our social circle a little. Nobody seemed interested in that idea, and nobody in my acquaintance circle has shown much interest in the observation since. It always seemed limiting to me. I’ve since married another national, lived abroad, so have some experience breaking through (I’ve been that immigrant, I observed the same in France). Now speaking with some former study mates, they seem very Dutch, and seem not to know anyone outside of largely the same circle as where they were 15 years ago, while I of course have been contaminated with all sorts of foreign habits, although still people I met through university and thus in the same ‘class’.

Fiddleware and QA

matrix, quality assurance

Last week a very familiar experience made it to the HN frontpage: The Matrix Trashfire. When I was looking into alternatives for Slack for the Arbor community, I ran basically into the same things. At the time, I just wanted to derive the quickest path to success so I could share it with my team mates. I wanted it to work after all, because, on paper, Matrix just seems like such a good idea. Somewhere in the comments a person describes Matrix as fiddleware, which I really like. We all ran into missing keys and non-working backups on Matrix I think!

The post puts the experience in a different perspective though, and indeed, it’s great that the Matrix people are in contact with the author to smooth out some of the experience. I guess I do QA a lot without calling it that: trialling some new tool comes down to the same, and I even frequently make notes about the most important gotchas. So, I’ll use this term now to describe some of my qualities and requests. We all know and use systems that could do with a similar write-up.


site, code

Hurray, this website has endured and survived another change in backend! This time, I’ve switched from Gostatic to Hugo. Initially a piece of PHP which I’ve forgotten the name of, later Wordpress, then Nanoc, Gostatic, Jekyll, Gostatic again and now Hugo. The hardest part is always my archive page, which lists all pages and tags and pages in each of those tags. For some reason most blog software wants to generate separate pages for tags… Yuk.

It was relatively simple, since there was no changed in templating language, but there was some getting acquinted with Hugo-isms. Why did I do this? I like Gostatic because it is quite simple and compact, and I’ve even submitted a PR in the past. I switched because I’m writing a new website and since I’m not very good at that, I like to steal themes to save some time. Tools with larger userbases tend to have large numbers of themes, tooling, examples, etc., and Hugo seems to have gotten quite big in the past few years. On Jamstack they’re number 1 (I wanted to stick to a tool written in Go or Python) and for that other website I could find a theme of my liking for Hugo. Setting that up was rather pleasant, so I thought I’d switch too!

In technical terms Hugo seems to be quite flexible and has every feature I wanted (and more). Also: available on pip, and therefore executable on Macos where admins have locked app exercution to notarized executables (Apple’s python obviously is greenlighted).

Another interesting thing I’ve discovered is that Netlify, the place I host my websites, now has drag’n’drop deploy. Wait! That sounds terrible, but it isn’t! You can just drop a single zip file of your website on the browser, and have it ‘deployed’. I only every used their git integration (which is still there) because I don’t want to use their own CLI. It’s nice to be able to generate a site locally and still be able to deploy without any special tools or complicated procedures. Executing Hugo, creating the zip can be scripted, and a nonexpert can be instructed to doubleclick that script and drag and drop the zip if they have updated something. Much better than going through git.

So, as of this post, this website is coming to you through a zipball!