I wanted to try to put into words part of what I appreciate about community, through a description of one of the more unique communities I’ve visited: Slab City.
I’m getting back this week after spending most of the last month Bicycling from Pakistan to China on the Karakoram highway. It was a great trip, full of friendly people, breathtaking mountains, and delicious food.
I was fortunate enough to graduate from the University of Washington’s Computer Science and Engineering PhD program this spring. It has been an amazing five years, due in large part to an amazing group of colleagues.
Last spring after visiting Turkey I spent a week on vacation in Cyprus. I’ve written up some thoughts on the politics at play and the experience of visiting that border. Really a fascinating place.
A bit of background: I spoke on my research at ICOPUST2, the previous instance of this conference held two years ago, and my first time visiting the university. The conference by design is a multi-track affair covering the full breadth of academics (from computer science to agriculture) taught at the university.
This year, I acted as the session chair for the computer science track of the conference, which proved to be quite rewarding. I’m encouraged by the continued academic engagement present at the conference and occurring at the university as a whole.
Having spent the last few days at CCCamp, I am incredibly jealous of the community that exists in Germany. cbase, the physical center of the community, has existed for 20 years, and has created a really powerful movement. One of the aspects of the berlin free software community is the tight connection between technologists and artists that exists there. From this event my take away is that tech can and does create culture, and that one of the most important things we can do is foster that community and make it ours.
I spent the last couple weeks bicycling through northern India. It was a great trip with spectacular scenery, good food, and a fascinating culture.
With Ravi, a friend from the networks lab at UW, I arrived in Leh, a city at 11,500 feet in the far north of India. We chose the Himalayas to avoid the stifling heat that otherwise covers the region in the summer. After altitude adjustment, we took a 4 day bike ride over the 240km road to Kargil. The area was really cool – new, very ragged mountains and high plains. The shift in culture that we experienced on the ride, from a Buddhist dominant culture in Leh to a more Islamic influenced Kashmir / Central Asian culture in Kargil.
The video of my talk last month on scanning the Internet using Node.js has been published by Cascadia Fest.
Wrote up a long-form post about visiting DaTong, China in 2009.