* Posts by Pat McGroin

4 posts • joined 1 May 2013

Scottish leader splurged £20k appealing disclosure of EU membership legal bungle

Pat McGroin

Re: Honest politicians are rare

OK, few Scots genuinely like Salmond... big deal!

The reality is that the Independence vote has got naethin' at a' tae dae wi' that.

If Scots get independence... and I hope we do... we're likely to vote in a government drastically to the left of Salmond, et al.

And I for one will welcome my new Scottish Workers' Republic overlords.


Techies with Asperger's? Yes, we are a little different...

Pat McGroin

Re: Noise pollution

Totally agree with that.

Yes, some of us specialise in focussed attention, ideal for technical and mechanical pursuits... others in a broad awareness, good for fuzzier processing as in social situations. As you say, this is a necessary spectrum of human traits - we need people at both ends for society to function.

My own experience is that I can be closer to either end of that spectrum on a given day. At times, when I've worked at the business/customer facing side of IT, my people skills were to the fore - easily and intuitively. On other occasions I've been doing pointer arithmetic 12 hours a day, and would have seemed like the most abject sociopath to the untrained. Can't be both on any given day: I'm able to concentrate when needed ... if that freaks out all the one-trick-ponies/empathic-airheads that the 21st century so favours - tough s**t! Concentration MEANS blocking out irrelevant information, and the more complex the task, the more blocking required.

... now, why do we currently medicalise the 'aspie' end of said spectrum? I don't believe it was always so. 19th century wives of professionals were diagnosed as hysteric for displaying 'symptoms' that would now be written down as a healthy response to sexual and social frustration. Every age sets its parameters of mental hygiene based on distance from its ideals. Then, the 'overly feminine' traits of emotionality were outrageous. Now, the 'excessively' male behaviours of the asperger's personality are considered disordered.

[I don't have time to give detailed medical science to back up that last paragraph - I'm on a half hour self-imposed furlough from coding - but one of Sapolsky's excellent Stanford Human Behavioural Biology lectures that can be got on youtube goes into how autistic traits are just exaggerated male ones. Zeitgeists, The Clinic, hegemony, blah, blah, blah... check out European Philosophy if you can be bovvered: Hegel, Foucault, Gramsci might be a good start.]

We live in a world where, compared to 80 or 100 years ago, form is favoured over substance, appearance over intellect, concensus over genius. The shift in emphasis has its roots in the rightful horror at what the patriarchies and ideologies of the past created - Nazis, Stalin etc - and should have been a good one: I'm all in favour of humanising and democratising things, and recognising that people ain't machines etc. ... but it's gone too far when an ability to focus coupled with a dislike of cocktail parties makes you disordered!

We need focussed thinkers more than we need a few billion more kardashian watching bubbleheaded gonks who only ever say safe and appropriate things... blubbering little slave sheeple norks that they are!

Say it loud, I'm Aspie/Sociopathic/otherwise IT and I'm proud!!!



Google slides its soft finger-fondling into any willing Android doodad

Pat McGroin

All of the products mentioned in the article - swype, swiftkey and google's one kind of miss the point that qwerty makes no sense on touchscreens.. . They're an improvement on the hunt and poke method of course: but to compose any more weighty piece of prose than a txt you need to be looking at the output, and not the keyboard.

There's a big prize up for grabs by whoever finds a way to enter text on a capacitive screen with the speed and intuitiveness of either handscrawling or a physical keyboard… to my mind the only promising candidates for that are minuum, or "tactile keyboard" by nscrybe. Although neither of them is perfect quite yet


Boffins KALQ-u-late the ultimate 'board for two-thumb tablet tappers

Pat McGroin

This is still stoopid....

Why the heck are we even attempting to use keyboards on flat touch-screens? You'll never be able to touch-type, especially when the keys are under your big bulky thumbs.

Definitely, using thumbs is best way to enter text on a tablet or phone: stable grip from both hands, thumbs are the fastest, most flexible digits, you can stand upright, so better for neck posture, etc.... but really, why bring back the RSI caused by the old nokia T9 keyboards?

The best solution I've found for typing on tablet is the 'tactile keyboard' ... it uses simplified letterforms, thumbed onto the screen as small swiping gestures. It takes a bit of perseverance to get maximum benefit from it, but honestly, I never want to 'hunt and peck' at a stupid qwerty keyboard icon on a sheet of gorilla glass again!




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