Readings To Review

"A person is praised for his insight, but a warped mind leads to contempt." – Proverbs 12:8 (Common English Bible)

Well, things appear to be getting a bit screwy. This is a list of things that need to still be read.

Bird, S., Segall, I., & Lopatka, M. (2020). Replication: Why We Still Can’t Browse in Peace: On the Uniqueness and Reidentifiability of Web Browsing Histories. Sixteenth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2020), 489–503.

Brookbank, M. (2020, September 2). Uptick in COVID-19 patients under 19 in Medina Co. Caused by social gatherings, health officials say. WEWS.

Carter, J. (2020, August 30). The metamorphosis of Loopy Loop. Jonathan Carter.

Cimpanu, C. (2020, August 31). Mozilla research: Browsing histories are unique enough to reliably identify users. ZDNet.

Collins, E. M. (2020, September 3). IT Modernization – The IRS’s Reliance on Antiquated Technology Poses a Continuing Risk to Tax Administration. NTA Blog.

Feldmann, A., Gasser, O., Lichtblau, F., Pujol, E., Poese, I., Dietzel, C., Wagner, D., Wichtlhuber, M., Tapiador, J., Vallina-Rodriguez, N., Hohlfeld, O., & Smaragdakis, G. (2020). The Lockdown Effect: Implications of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Internet Traffic. ArXiv:2008.10959 [Cs].

Ford, D., Storey, M.-A., Zimmermann, T., Bird, C., Jaffe, S., Maddila, C., Butler, J. L., Houck, B., & Nagappan, N. (2020). A Tale of Two Cities: Software Developers Working from Home During the COVID-19 Pandemic. ArXiv:2008.11147 [Cs].

Frenkel, S. (2020, September 1). Russians Again Targeting Americans With Disinformation, Facebook Says. The New York Times.

Giorgi, S., Guntuku, S. C., Rahman, M., Himelein-Wachowiak, M., Kwarteng, A., & Curtis, B. (2020). Twitter Corpus of the #BlackLivesMatter Movement And Counter Protests: 2013 to 2020. ArXiv:2009.00596 [Cs].

Goul, M. (2020, August 26). Mayfield football team sidelined after two positive coronavirus test results. Cleveland.Com.

Himes, L. (2020a). Director’s Order for Facial Coverings throughout the State of Ohio [Director’s Order].

Himes, L. (2020b). Director’s Order that Provides Mandatory Requirements for Entertainment Venues [Director’s Order].

Himes, L. (2020c). Director’s First Amended Order that Provides Mandatory Requirements for Youth, Collegiate, Amateur, Club and Professional Sports [Director’s Order].

Kaiser, B., Wei, J., Lucherini, E., Lee, K., Matias, J. N., & Mayer, J. (2020). Adapting Security Warnings to Counter Misinformation. ArXiv:2008.10772 [Cs].

Kosich, J. (2020, September 2). Gov. Mike DeWine focusing on Ohio’s economy, not on calls for impeachment. WEWS.

Kruspe, A., Häberle, M., Kuhn, I., & Zhu, X. X. (2020). Cross-language sentiment analysis of European Twitter messages duringthe COVID-19 pandemic. ArXiv:2008.12172 [Cs, Stat].

Laakso, M., Matthias, L., & Jahn, N. (2020). Open is not forever: A study of vanished open access journals. ArXiv:2008.11933 [Cs].

Lai, K., & Yanushkevich, S. N. (2020). Machine Reasoning to Assess Pandemics Risks: Case of USS Theodore Roosevelt. ArXiv:2008.11040 [Cs].

Nelson, M. L., & Van de Sompel, H. (2020). A 25 Year Retrospective on D-Lib Magazine. ArXiv:2008.11680 [Cs].

Olejnik, L., Castelluccia, C., & Janc, A. (2012, July 13). Why Johnny Can’t Browse in Peace: On the Uniqueness of Web Browsing History Patterns. 5th Workshop on Hot Topics in Privacy Enhancing Technologies (HotPETs 2012).

Olejnik, L., Castelluccia, C., & Janc, A. (2013). On the Uniqueness of Web Browsing History Patterns. Annals of Telecommunications - Annales Des Télécommunications.

Patel, K., Caragea, C., Phillips, M., & Fox, N. (2020). Identifying Documents In-Scope of a Collection from Web Archives. Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE Joint Conference on Digital Libraries in 2020, 167–176.

Paul, A. M., & SusanThomas, S. (2020). Multifaceted COVID-19 Outbreak. ArXiv:2008.12127 [Cs].

Pelzer, J. (2020, September 1). Ohio lawmakers pass bill limiting Gov. Mike DeWine’s power to change elections, close houses of worship. Cleveland.Com.

Richardson, S. A. (2020, September 1). Donald Trump leads Joe Biden in tracking poll of Ohio likely voters. Cleveland.Com.

Riddell, A., & Bassett, T. J. (2020). What Library Digitization Leaves Out: Predicting the Availability of Digital Surrogates of English Novels. ArXiv:2009.00513 [Cs].

Sandrick, B. (2020, September 1). All 80 North Royalton High School band members quarantined after one reports COVID-19 symptoms. Cleveland.Com.

Sharma, K., Ferrara, E., & Liu, Y. (2020). Identifying Coordinated Accounts in Disinformation Campaigns. ArXiv:2008.11308 [Cs].

Zahrah, F., Nurse, J. R. C., & Goldsmith, M. (2020). #ISIS vs #ActionCountersTerrorism: A Computational Analysis of Extremist and Counter-extremist Twitter Narratives. ArXiv:2008.11808 [Cs].

Second Novelette Done And Posted

Back in March the first novelette went up on Amazon in both print and Kindle formats. Six months later the second novelette is up on Amazon in both formats as well. The print versions of both were typeset using the novel class from the Comprehensive TeX Archive Network. The Kindle versions were manually converted.

I'm not sure what the third story will be about. A goal is to get that done before the National Novel Writing Month. At that point I might write an actual novel of some sort. At a minimum of one thousand words per day in November and ignoring the chaos of the aftermath of the election I presumably could have a proper novella per SFWA length standards written.

Why write? It is therapeutic at this point in these bizarre times.

Middle of September 2020 Notes

"A person is praised for his insight, but a warped mind leads to contempt." – Proverbs 12:8 (Common English Bible)

It has been a while since I have written anything that might appear on Planet Ubuntu. Specifically the last time was June 26th. That's not necessarily a good thing.

I have been busy writing. What have I been writing? I knocked out a new novelette in Visual Studio Code. The print version was typeset using the novel class using LuaLaTeX. It is a bit of a sci-fi police procedural. It is up on Amazon for people to acquire though I do note that Amazon's print-on-demand costs have gone up a wee bit since the start of the planet-wide coronavirus crisis.

I also have taken time to test the Groovy Gorilla ISOs for Xubuntu. I encourage everybody out there to visit the testing tracker to test disc images for Xubuntu and other flavours as we head towards the release of 20.10 next month. Every release needs as much testing as possible.

Based upon an article from The Register it appears that the Community Council is being brought back to life. Nominations are being sought per a post on the main Discourse instance but readers of this are reminded that you need to be a current member either directly or indirectly of the 609 Ubuntu Members shown on Launchpad. Those 609 persons are the electors for the Community Council and the Community Council is drawn from that group. The size and composition of the Ubuntu Members group on Launchpad can change based upon published procedures and the initiative of individual to be part of such changes.

I will highlight an article at Yahoo Finance concerning financial distress among the fifty states. Here in Ohio we are seemingly in the middle of the pack. In Ashtabula County we have plenty of good opportunities in the age of coronavirus especially with our low transmission rates and very good access to medical facilities. With some investment in broadband backhaul an encampment for coders could be built who did not want to stick with city living. There is enough empty commercial real estate available to provide opportunities for film and television production if the wildfires and coronavirus issues out in California are not brought under control any time soon.

As a closing note, a federal trial judge ruled that the current coronavirus response actions in Pennsylvania happen to be unconstitutional. A similar lawsuit is pending before a trial judge here in Ohio about coronavirus response actions in this particular state. This year has been abnormal in so many ways and this legal news is just another facet of the abnormality.

Brief Hits

In no particular order:

  • In roughly one week I have to face a meeting of the county broadband task force to discuss the proposal for a virtual television station. Stakeholder participation at this early stage is elusive.

  • Coronavirus case counts are increasing to a small degree for Ashtabula County. This was bound to happen. The dashboards provide all sorts of nasty data.

  • The county by county dashboard as to demographic breakdown of coronavirus cases in Ohio is disturbing insofar that the numbers do not match the rhetoric. At least in northeast Ohio the biggest confounding factors are Cleveland Clinic and University Health Hospital System.

  • How to avoid possible Chronic Kidney Disease problems? Lose weight. How to avoid possible complications of coronavirus if unlucky enough to get infected? Lose weight. How to cut down on snoring? Lose weight. Going into 2021 what needs to be an overriding project? Hmm. I'm pretty sure that's not going to be answered correctly by many people even though that non-surgical intervention is being pushed by the United Kingdom and other countries at the population level. Getting the country's average Body Mass Index back within the healthy range would certainly reduce the lethality of coronavirus as well as other maladies.

  • I need to break down and do some fiction writing. The story is started but I am stalled.

  • Church has been weird. Governor Mike DeWine's press conference for September 22nd had a nice discussion of indoor air quality and coronavirus risk as we head into the colder months here in Ohio. The church building is relatively old. The leadership are coronavirus denialists even after a member of the congregation was afflicted by it and had to be quarantined. After the enactment of House Bill 272 churches cannot be closed for any reason in Ohio by public officials without further legislation being passed by the General Assembly. While we never closed the churches in this state most churches had enough sense to not hold services when things were getting out of hand initially in terms of spread. If things get that way again as we head through autumn into winter it'll be interesting to see what the leadership at church does if anything.

  • Sample ballots are up on the board of elections website. I need to ask the board office if I get to be a precinct elections worker or not. According to the data presented by Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose they're merely 350 short.

Innumerate Fools

We are well past the two hundred thousand mark for coronavirus fatalities in the United States of America. Ashtabula County finally advanced from Yellow to Orange on the alerting system due to a rise in non-congregate case counts as well as a rise in outpatient visits related to coronavirus issues. Things are starting to get bad again.

This is why I find it sickening to see people parrot the line that coronavirus is nothing to worry about since it has a survival rate purportedly exceeding ninety-nine percent. Heck, I can get that in the Sunday sermon at church! USA Today has an initial explanatory piece up as to why that view is incredibly deceptive. For the most part it is very wrong.

The better way to look at it is in the context of war casualties. USA Today talked about that too. It took four years during the Civil War of brutal warfare for the forces on the Union side to suffer 140,000 deaths. Again, that was four years. The coronavirus has caused 200,000 deaths in the United States in only six months. We may have lost just under a total of 300,000 troops and sailors in World War II but that took four years instead of the six months it has taken in the coronavirus crisis to lose 200,000.

Big numbers are hard for human beings to grasp. Ashtabula County's entire human population is estimated at roughly 100,000. We've lost the equivalent of Ashtabula County's population twice over in just six months. That's more death happening in a short time than we've seen from any war or natural disaster in the history of the United States of America.

Perhaps the systems collapse on the part of Google Thursday reported by the New York Times isn't such a bad thing if more services join them in downtime. Connecting the human population so closely so frequently can be a bad thing at times.

Free Ebook Giveaway September 29th

As it is written in another place:

In honor of the first presidential debate there is a free giveaway of Stephen Kellat's two ebooks on Tuesday, September 29th. It will run from 12:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time until 11:59 PM Pacific Daylight Time. Find the two books on Amazon's Kindle platform, which doesn't require one of their reader devices even, here:

After the dumpster fire the debate will likely be you will probably want any sort of escapism you can find. I can at least provide something in that respect.