han2k's recent activity

  1. Comment on What charities/orgs are measurably effective in bringing people out of poverty and violence in US? in ~talk

    han2k
    Link Parent
    Hey thanks for the insight. I wonder if these Effective Altruist communities can be found online (e.g. as a Slack/Discord channel) or if they have to be joined in person. If you know of any online...

    Hey thanks for the insight. I wonder if these Effective Altruist communities can be found online (e.g. as a Slack/Discord channel) or if they have to be joined in person. If you know of any online ones, please do share.

    I don't think it's counterintuitive (or vulgar) to think that a top down approach is necessary -- I believe both top down and bottom up approaches are needed to solve systemic problems. It's just that I feel, given our current political climate, this issue may become yet another wedge to drive people apart if further politicized.

    I have never donated any money to any lobbyists in my life. If you know any specific avenues and/or causes you're supporting, please feel free to share so people can see.

    2 votes
  2. Comment on What charities/orgs are measurably effective in bringing people out of poverty and violence in US? in ~talk

    han2k
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    All we can do is try to start a ripple :)

    All we can do is try to start a ripple :)

    2 votes
  3. Comment on What charities/orgs are measurably effective in bringing people out of poverty and violence in US? in ~talk

    han2k
    Link Parent
    Thanks for the list. Donating to orgs that focus on feminism and/or sex workers is something I had not thought of at all until now. I will definitely evaluate them. Regarding joining an...

    Thanks for the list. Donating to orgs that focus on feminism and/or sex workers is something I had not thought of at all until now. I will definitely evaluate them. Regarding joining an organization myself, I do spend quite a bit of my time volunteering for causes I believe in. Unfortunately, they don't exactly cover this one particular area very much.

    2 votes
  4. What charities/orgs are measurably effective in bringing people out of poverty and violence in US?

    The recent rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans has been an emotional topic for me. The thing that makes me sad is, it seems the most I can do to de-escalate a violent situation I see on...

    The recent rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans has been an emotional topic for me. The thing that makes me sad is, it seems the most I can do to de-escalate a violent situation I see on the news without putting myself in clear danger is to basically distract the aggressor from afar and comfort the victim afterwards.

    What makes the matter more complicated is, if you look at the demographics of those who tend to commit these violent crimes against Asian people, they're often other minorities. It's so easy to fall into a trap of undermining the progress we've made in racial/social equality the moment we acknowledge that Asians are being targeted. For similar reasons, I view that our political system is entirely ill-equipped to handle this matter in a sustainable matter.

    But I'd still like to turn this into something positive. Because I live comfortably as an engineer in the Bay Area, I was thinking I can donate to charities and organizations that are effective at bringing an end to this violence every time I see news about an Asian American getting targeted on social media. I plan on doing my own research as well, but I hope you can also give some suggestions.

    19 votes
  5. Comment on What are you doing in your garden? in ~hobbies

    han2k
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    Our front yard is basically a sea of dandelions. This spring, we've been slowly replacing the dandelions with other drought friendly plants and succulents. In the process, we learned that the one...

    Our front yard is basically a sea of dandelions. This spring, we've been slowly replacing the dandelions with other drought friendly plants and succulents. In the process, we learned that the one tree in our front yard has its roots extending literally everywhere, so digging enough dirt to plant new flowers and bushes have been more difficult than i'd thought.

    Last weekend, we planted two lavender plants, put newspapers around the plants, poured mulch all over, and then watered the area. A couple days later, we found 3 dandelions poking through all the layers of newspaper and mulch. we're now thinking about using cardboard boxes instead of newspapers.

    1 vote
  6. Comment on Commercial "foodcycler" devices - do they do more harm than good? in ~enviro

    han2k
    Link Parent
    Great point! I view what's going to ultimately "solve" the climate problem at a fundamental level is a series of changes in our daily lives. Our worldview needs to change, along with our...

    Great point! I view what's going to ultimately "solve" the climate problem at a fundamental level is a series of changes in our daily lives. Our worldview needs to change, along with our lifestyle. Recycling food waste is EASY to do and easy to replicate, and it's a practical step toward achieving near-zero or total-zero waste lifestyle. In short, I see it as a good way to start a ripple where other people can join in, and it also helps with CO2 emissions (well, maybe not when people start buying expensive machines to recycle their food scraps, hence the post) as well as reducing plastic waste.

    2 votes
  7. Comment on Commercial "foodcycler" devices - do they do more harm than good? in ~enviro

    han2k
    Link Parent
    The way I do bokashi composting is, I chop up food scraps (manually or using a food processor), put them in a bottle (plastic or glass), add bokashi bran, shake, let sit for about a week, then mix...

    The way I do bokashi composting is, I chop up food scraps (manually or using a food processor), put them in a bottle (plastic or glass), add bokashi bran, shake, let sit for about a week, then mix in soil. It's been working amazingly well and I didn't have to buy anything but a bag of bokashi bran, which I hear can be made at home as well. I have yet to try with meat and bones because I've heard they're much more likely to attract bugs and animals, and apparently the smell could get unbearable for those who compost indoors. I will probably try it out in the near future, though, since I have a small backyard.

    I agree that it's probably not ideal or necessary for someone like us, but I'm wondering if my bougie engineer friends will find it in themselves to reuse their food waste if they can just dump it in the foodcycler. i can't go around recommending it if it causes more harm than good, though. I wish we have a proper framework with which to evaluate whether something will be a net positive for the environment or not.

    Thanks for your feedback :)

    1 vote
  8. Commercial "foodcycler" devices - do they do more harm than good?

    Hello Tildes, I've been doing bokashi composting for pretty much all my vegetable and fruit scraps since last year. Lately, I've been wanting to level up my game and recycle meat scraps and...

    Hello Tildes,

    I've been doing bokashi composting for pretty much all my vegetable and fruit scraps since last year. Lately, I've been wanting to level up my game and recycle meat scraps and chicken/fish bones as well. That's how I came across these "foodcycler" devices. They basically chop up and dry food scraps in a sealed container. I assume it works much like how industrial composting machines work, except it's scaled way down. At around 300-400 dollars, they're certainly not cheap, and probably generate a lot of greenhouse gasses during the manufacturing process. What's more is, every time you run a cycle, it has to run for 4-8 hours, though the manufacturer says the device is "energy conscious."

    I'm trying to assess whether I'll do more harm than good by buying one of these things to convert more of my food scraps. My ultimate goal is to try many different ways to recycle food waste and try to get my friends to try it out as well. Some of them have already shown interest in bokashi composting, but none has actually tried it out (too much work).

    Do you think commercial "foodcycler" devices do more harm than good? How should we go about evaluating this?

    Edit: I've asked this question on many different places, and it looks like the general consensus is there's no strong need for something like this unless you live in apartments, in a city/town that does not collect food waste. Some believe recycling food waste via the more traditional methods (e.g. bokashi, vermicomposting) would yield better results because the foodcycler would dry up and kill a lot of the bacterial presence, though I believe the dried up scraps can be somewhat "revived" by mixing them in wet soil. Nobody seems to be able to definitively tell whether using the foodcycler would be a net positive or negative, because there's no way to verify its manufacturing process. I may do an experiment on how much power it draws if I get my hands on one in the future.

    5 votes
  9. Comment on Who's on the fediverse? in ~talk

    han2k
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    Does fediverse just refer to Mastodon instances? Or is it just that Mastodon is the biggest player in the scene?

    Does fediverse just refer to Mastodon instances? Or is it just that Mastodon is the biggest player in the scene?

    5 votes
  10. Comment on What projects/orgs are you donating to? in ~talk

    han2k
    Link Parent
    Yeah, I agree that climate change would probably be a lost cause unless we bring fundamental changes to our civilization, but for what it's worth, ITIF apparently scores very highly on effective...

    Yeah, I agree that climate change would probably be a lost cause unless we bring fundamental changes to our civilization, but for what it's worth, ITIF apparently scores very highly on effective altruism metrics 1. That's what convinced me to donate to them (or was it just Bill Gates?).

    1 vote
  11. What projects/orgs are you donating to?

    Every year, I donate a modest sum to combat climate change. Since my employer matches my donations up to a certain amount, I try to maximize their contribution. This year, most of my donations...

    Every year, I donate a modest sum to combat climate change. Since my employer matches my donations up to a certain amount, I try to maximize their contribution.

    This year, most of my donations have gone to the following two orgs:

    • Information Technology and Innovation Foundation - a highly regarded US think tank focusing on clean energy research and advising policymakers
    • Eden Reforestation Projects - apparently $7 donated here offsets a year worth of personal carbon emissions

    Are there any projects/causes/orgs you are very keen on donating to? Are there any that we should look out for?

    Edit: Please feel free to list technical projects, Kickstarters, Patreons, etc.

    23 votes
  12. Comment on Bad arguments against teaching Chinese philosophy in ~humanities

    han2k
    Link Parent
    I think we agree for the most part. I view that any sense of superiority comes from ignorance. Clearly these academic people think otherwise :p

    I think we agree for the most part. I view that any sense of superiority comes from ignorance.

    I don't see why this should be regarded as an unusual viewpoint in any way

    Clearly these academic people think otherwise :p

    2 votes
  13. Comment on Bad arguments against teaching Chinese philosophy in ~humanities

    han2k
    Link Parent
    No, I have not, but I'll note the name for future reading. Thanks! Yeah I feel you. Western thinking is easy to categorize because it's the worldview that literally took over the world, but there...

    have you read any of Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan's work?

    No, I have not, but I'll note the name for future reading. Thanks!

    four VERY different philosophical schools of thought all get lumped together as "Eastern."

    Yeah I feel you. Western thinking is easy to categorize because it's the worldview that literally took over the world, but there isn't something as singularly dominant outside of it. I hope to make this clear when I try to explain some of the Eastern worldviews. I'm very ignorant when it comes to the thoughts coming out of Turkey/Arabia and Persia.

    2 votes
  14. Comment on Bad arguments against teaching Chinese philosophy in ~humanities

    han2k
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    I think the real reason people oppose teaching Eastern philosophy is that they don't know enough to teach it! This is such a shame because Eastern thinking excels in dealing with highly complex,...

    ME: Have you considered teaching Chinese philosophy in your department?
    COLLEAGUE: Philosophy is by definition the tradition that goes back to Greece.

    ME: What Chinese thinkers have you read that you believe are not really philosophers? Mozi? Zhuangzi? Mengzi? Xunzi? Han Feizi?
    COLLEAGUE: I haven’t read any of them.

    I think the real reason people oppose teaching Eastern philosophy is that they don't know enough to teach it! This is such a shame because Eastern thinking excels in dealing with highly complex, messy, and connected systems. There is no absolute "centers" in many Eastern philosophies as there usually is in Western thinking. There's no such thing as the ideal Form of manliness or apple-ness, just different people collectively agreeing on what's manly or apple-y in different contexts. I believe by balancing the Western and Eastern worldviews, we can solve a lot of problems we currently face in our world.

    I began making youtube videos to introduce Eastern thinking from the Western point of view. I shared my first one on Tildes some time ago. I'm hoping the next one will come in about a month.

    7 votes
  15. Comment on Why Facebook can't fix itself - The platform is overrun with hate speech and disinformation, but the company's strategy seems focused on managing perception of the problem instead of addressing it in ~tech

    han2k
    (edited )
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    I can't help but draw parallels between Facebook and our democracy in general. Today we see politicians only interested in reducing the complexities of the reality, making up fake enemies for...

    In retrospect, it seems that the company’s strategy has never been to manage the problem of dangerous content, but rather to manage the public’s perception of the problem.

    "Facebook right now is increasingly aligning with the rich and powerful, allowing them to play by different rules"

    "Why have we spent years pushing Facebook to adopt better policies if they’re just going to ignore those policies when they matter most?"

    I can't help but draw parallels between Facebook and our democracy in general. Today we see politicians only interested in reducing the complexities of the reality, making up fake enemies for people to hate, managing perceptions of change rather than actually tackling the hard problems. When was the last time people could actually use politics as a vehicle for change?

    This doesn't mean we should abandon democracy, but that we should take a hard look at what works and what doesn't work in our current systems. I believe part of the problem is our institutions were never built to function in such a messy, hyper-connected world. I imagine increasing the autonomy and transparency of local communities would be a great start, that way people can freely choose to join or leave communities as they wish.

    Edit: I believe we can also apply similar solutions to social media as well. I like that we have sites like Tildes.

    1 vote
  16. Comment on Post-politics and the future of the left in ~humanities

    han2k
    Link
    If you've enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy a documentary called HyperNormalisation (2016) on youtube. It talks about how politics turned from a vehicle for change into something that...

    If you've enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy a documentary called HyperNormalisation (2016) on youtube. It talks about how politics turned from a vehicle for change into something that creates fake realities to manage perceptions and risks. It also features many prominent figures very relevant to this date.

    Edit: forgot to say that it's completely free

    4 votes
  17. Comment on A crisis of meaning: Can we agree on anything anymore? in ~humanities

    han2k
    Link Parent
    Hey thanks for the kind words and thank you for the detailed feedback you gave via private message. It's exactly the kind of thing I needed.

    Hey thanks for the kind words and thank you for the detailed feedback you gave via private message. It's exactly the kind of thing I needed.

    4 votes
  18. Comment on A crisis of meaning: Can we agree on anything anymore? in ~humanities

    han2k
    (edited )
    Link
    Hello Tildes, this video means a lot to me because it's my first attempt at creating a real video. I didn't make this to become the next youtube star or to make a lot of money, but to record and...

    Hello Tildes, this video means a lot to me because it's my first attempt at creating a real video. I didn't make this to become the next youtube star or to make a lot of money, but to record and share my thoughts in a presentable format and to find others who may think like me. I'd never drawn anything, so the whole process was full of things to learn. I probably spent a few hours for every 10 seconds of the video, and it was difficult cutting out ~2 minutes of footage in the final edit.

    The central message of the video is that we should actively look for ways to find sustainable happiness instead of spending all our energy fighting "the other side." I view that we live in the middle of a major paradigm shift, and that there are ways we can find happiness without fighting others.

    I welcome any criticisms, comments, questions.

    12 votes
  19. Comment on Coinbase is a mission focused company in ~tech

    han2k
    Link Parent
    I find it interesting that all I've said can be summarized as "we can probably do better than the status quo" and already this idea is being called fundamentally unaccountable and illogical. I'm...

    I find it interesting that all I've said can be summarized as "we can probably do better than the status quo" and already this idea is being called fundamentally unaccountable and illogical. I'm not upset or anything, but I think it leaves very little room for any real discussion, which I'm always down to have. I never meant to criticize you so if you got that impression, I apologize.