Ciro Durán A Live Archive

The Future of Programming, by Bret Victor

This is a talk that Bret Victor gave 7 years ago, and I’ve mentioned this talk in my Spanish-written gamedev blog, but it’s completely worth it to see it again.

“The most dangerous thought that you can have as a creative person is to think that you know what you’re doing. Because once you’re thinking you know what you’re doing, you stop looking around for other ways of doing things. And you stop being able to see other ways of doing things. You become blind.”

Bret Victor - The Future of Programming from Bret Victor on Vimeo.

Making Music in Lockdown in 2020

Hey, it’s been a while since I’ve written anything in this blog. Sometimes life happens and you just don’t allocate time to write. 2020 is no exception for me, even in the circumstances that we are now in.

Many good things happened to me on 2020, nonetheless. One good thing that came out of lockdown was getting online together on Tuesdays with some fine folks and set one hour to make some musical piece based on a theme decided at the beggining. A jam, for those who don’t need extra words. After many years wishing to learn how to make music on the computer, I got Ableton Live and started making these. There were 37 jams, and I participated in 34 of those jams.

As 2020 closes, I would like to share with you my results. All for good fun and having a hobby, in its most essential meaning. I’ve been also playing some stuff over my Instagram @chiguire, just to reach out to friends, acquaintances and curious folks.

I hope you enjoy this, and that your 2021 will be the best possible.

Check out all the music I did in 2020 in the Music section!

An Introduction to HaxeFlixel with HTML5: London Haxe Meetup 2017 talk slides

You can find the slides in here.

Our Own Icons

I’m a bit shocked on how many people think that today’s world is incapable of producing their own icons, given the amount of recent celebrity death news.

I think this may be related to the amount and quality (specifically production values) of the media we’re exposed to. It’s great we have this quality around, but I believe this creates at the same time an implicit message that you may not ever be able to reach that quality, no matter how much you do. And don’t even think about it if you don’t make it your main trade.

However, I believe in the entertainment oriented to the people that are physically and emotionally close to you. From that point of view, we have in our society hundreds of entertainers that with their talent and charisma are able to touch us beyond what a TV celebrity might reach. If you allow it so. Big screen celebrities will keep existing, but they are not able to dictate your immediate environment, nor your future.

In short: don’t justify yourself with crappy music or bad shows as an excuse to say that yesterday’s things were so much better. Don’t age prematurely.

Short posts: Time to go back to blogging?

After 8 years writing short messages on Twitter, I’ve noticed something. It’s not a sudden observation, but rather an accumulation of these years. Maybe what I’m noticing is tiredness. I love Twitter to share information, and with Reddit and other websites these are my link sources; I like also to share back what I read. However, I see that it’s tiring to use Twitter to discuss and create a community.

I’ve always compared my timeline (that comprises more than 2000 accounts) as trying to drink from a fire hose. It’s not in my interest to have a carefully curated timeline, but rather a fountain of serendipity. But this goes against talking to, you know, real people.

I usually encourage anyone, with whom I don’t have a previous relationship and that writes me through a DM or a Facebook chat, to write me to my email (ciro.duran@gmail.com, just so you know). Email as a way to communicate that I can read when I want, with no notifications, with the length I want, and with no restrictions beyond my available time, is still for me the best way to communicate between peers (group conversations are another subject, much more complex). I like to read your email, and I like to answer you, though I confess that sometimes I don’t do it, rather because of distractions (and real life priorities) than because of malice.

On the other hand, Twitter restrictions impede expressing about things that are larger than an SMS. This already happened when we moved from SMSs to mobile instant messaging (i.e. iMessage or Whatsapp). But the perspective of Twitter increasing their limits to 10k characters is ridiculous to me; it’s a huge bait and switch, and Twitter passed that no return point a long time ago. It would change its nature to something completely new, and I’m not sure I’d like it.

I like to keep my writings as mine. If I write on Twitter or in Facebook is because I value more being able to communicate to other people rather than keeping what I write. But companies rise and fall, as it has happened before (e.g. Geocities). And what you write might be in danger of going away with the company. With that in mind, I prefer to make myself responsible of taking care of my writings and have the capacity to copy them and store them where I want to, with data formats that make it easy, and not hidden inside some configuration screen.

Having said this, I’d like to store my impressions in a much more trustworthy place. And then figure out how to communicate it to other people. This is the first writing.