Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Blog Update... again.

Okay, so it's been over a year...  closer to a year and a half since I last wrote anything on this blog.  That doesn't mean it's dead -- rather, it's been in hibernation due to a number of other things going on in life that have been major blockers on getting things done.  That meant that in that time, I`ve had to take a break from this blog, but now I`m intending to get back in the saddle.  It`ll still be slow to start, but it will happen.

Before I do, though, I should at least point to a few things that have happened in the abode of The Grumpy Anti-Theist this past year and a half.

So the biggest change of all is that there`s another likely anti-theist walking about.  Yes, I'm a dad, now.  At this point, she's only about 19 months old, so she's hardly equipped to have any positions on religion and epistemology...  but time will tell.  Recently, she walked into a church, and immediately walked out, so...  maybe?

Let's see...  in other news...  I completed two Master's degrees in the time since this blog went silent.  Yes, it set me back quite a bit, and it meant being extremely busy considering that my daughter during that time.  Hmmm...  two degrees while working full time and having an infant, and later toddler in the house?  Not fun.  So it follows that I've not exactly have an abundance of free time to work on things like blogging.  At least I get to say now that I`m Ivy League educated, if that actually meant something.  Oh, but that's just the two biggest events.  That's still leaving out the rest of the stuff going on.

Among other things, I'd also filed another patent recently.  I'd been working at Lucasfilm for a while in the middle of all this, and that was a bit of a mixed bag.  While it was enjoyable on some levels, and working on VFX that got an Academy Award nomination, setting an industry first ever realtime shots that went into final production is pretty cool and all...  it took a toll having to deal with school, a child, and a 5 hour long multimodal commute routine that involved driving, train, and bicycle that made every day a 15-hour day.  End result, I couldn't last very long there.  Especially not when I had other matters to try and work on and I wanted to make time for that.

Speaking of Academy Awards, when I worked at Dreamworks, I also worked on ramping up and backend support for an in-house shading language which also presented this year for a SciTech.  Of course, for those types of awards, what counts is not so much how technically significant the work is, but how much impact it had on the industry.  Since DWA's language only affected DWA's movies, that's not exactly much of an impact.  The shading language that did actually get the award was Open Shading Language, and that actually makes sense.  And indeed, when the Academy contacted me, I did state pretty frankly that even our work took some influence from OSL -- specifically the closure emission concept.

So there's been a lot going on in the world in the time of my absence from the blogosphere indeed.  The final bit of news I have to throw in on my end relates to some of that.  Aahhh, Trump.  There is so much I could say about Trump.  I was in D.C. on election night playing a game of Go, and there was a striking metaphor in the board state -- a noticeable, but simultaneously tenuous advantage for white and the numerous life-or-death risks for several black groups...  and that was the state it was in when it was clear that Trump had it in the bag.  During that election, countless people blew a lot of smoke that they'd leave the country and emigrate to Canada if Trump won.  I was one of them, too.

...except I actually did it.  Seriously.

Yeah.  Well, the process took a while; I'm getting paid less than before, and paying more in taxes;  But, I had other options that would have worked out a lot better on paper.  What wouldn't have worked out better is the real reason I came.  More free time.  More opportunity to work on all my stuff on the side, including this blog.  And that's why The Grumpy Anti-theist has risen from the ashes.

Well, okay, I'm still in the middle of the transition and all, so I may have risen, but still groggy.  But you will see some more activity on these pages to come.