This website is the personal knowledge base of @jakintosh. It is a collection of thinking, writing, work, and reflection. The goal is to communicate both knowledge and process, and so every page is composed of both a garden and a stream.

The Garden is the manicured, pruned, and always evolving "living document" for a given topic or project. The garden captures the current state of my knowledge, and is the primary content at the top of each page.

The Stream contains a reverse chronological action log that shows what has happened to get the garden to its current state. The stream captures the historical process of knowledge on the site, and can be found at the bottom of every page.

Highlighted Pages

  • /coalescence landing page for my philosophical work
  • /collect a little programming language I made to build this site

Recently Updated Pages

Recent Stream Updates

June 1, 2023

/stream /now /about

Wrote my first entry for the /now page, framed in the context between the Fall of 2022 and the end of Spring 2023. At the same time, I also wrote the first iteration of my /about page.

May 31, 2023

/stream /media /film /anime /ghibli /whisper-of-the-heart

Watched Whisper of the Heart, directed by Yoshifumi Kondō, written by Hayao Miyazaki, and based on a manga by Aoi Hiiragi. This was the second time I've seen it, the first time being while watching every Studio Ghibli film in order two years ago. I rated it highly after my first watch, and I enjoyed it just as much the second time.

The story follows a 14 year old girl as she navigates the people around her growing up, moving on, and taking risks, and then choosing to take her future into her own hands as well. I think it does a great job of capturing the combined emotional rollercoaster of both being a 14 year old navigating new social situations and trying to push yourself creatively for the first time. While Ghibli movies are more widely known for their fantasy elements, their films about normal people living normal lives are just as beautiful and engrossing

May 30, 2023

/stream /media /reading /merveilles /programming

I read Situated Software, by Clay Shirky which seemed to be bubbling up in conversation around Merveilles today. It elaborated on some of the ideas I've been playing with lately, specifically around offloading the social aspect of computing networks to the humans in the loop instead of strict algorithms. This note on payment in small scale networks was particularly in line with that:

The possibility of being shamed in front of the community became part of the application design, even though the community and the putative shame were outside the framework of the application itself.

May 29, 2023

/stream /merveilles

I joined in on the #theLogo community art project at Merveilles, where everyone was riffing on the logo.

I spent a few hours in Blender trying to bring my animated idea to life, and was able to get it to a really appealing place by leaning into some things that were beyond my skill set. Small adjustments to the model, framerate, and render settings let me find an aesthetic that fit my goal without having to push way beyond what I was actually capable of doing.

May 28, 2023

/stream /media /reading /philosophy

Read Superintelligence: The Idea that Eats Smart People. It helped me develop my own thoughts on intelligence and sentience, and connect some of my "emergent, complex systems" model of human cognition with my gut-level distrust in the hype narratives around "AI".

Specifically, as someone who grew up in an environment where religious beliefs were facilitated, and as someone who subsequently exited that faith, it helped show me that my distrust may have been stemming from the fact that the aura around AI is rooted in many of those same faith based arguments that I've learned to escape from. This quote sums it up pretty well:

It's a clever hack, because instead of believing in God at the outset, you imagine yourself building an entity that is functionally identical with God. This way even committed atheists can rationalize their way into the comforts of faith.

The AI has all the attributes of God: it's omnipotent, omniscient, and either benevolent (if you did your array bounds-checking right), or it is the Devil and you are at its mercy.

Like in any religion, there's even a feeling of urgency. You have to act now! The fate of the world is in the balance!

May 25, 2023

/stream /coalescence

Moved some writing from my old website to the new page for /coalescence. Re-reading it now, I think a lot of it will have to be rewritten, but I think it's a good idea to have a starting point that matches the old site.

May 24, 2023

/stream /technology /programming /collect /colophon

As I started fleshing out components of this site, I wanted to add some new features to /collect. I added the ability to reuse the name of a @map as a value using "$NAME", and it can also be interpolated in strings with "@name". I also exposed a list of the @group objects on a @map using the value "@groups" on a @map. The first change reduced redundancies when writing new stream events, and the second made it possible to render all of the groups for each stream event.

May 23, 2023

/stream /media /reading /colophon

Read The Garden and The Stream, by Mike Caulfield after seeing it linked in Maggie Appleton's digital garden post, and seeing it use the same metaphor I stumbled on for this site.

I appreciated the interpretation of the history of the "personal web" through the lense of "streams and gardens", with the early web going for a garden metaphor (open wikis), and getting eaten by the stream metaphor (blogs, RSS, social media). Mike suggested that the time may be right for the garden to return (this is from 2015), and this tracks for me with the rise of Roam, Obsidian, and the general movement around the smallweb and permacomputing.

/stream /media /reading /colophon

While trying to read more about digital gardens, I checked out this piece on the history of digital gardens by Maggie Appleton. It was in this piece that I saw the link to "The Garden and The Stream" by Mike Caulfield, and found some gems around thinking about "topologies", as well as providing "epistemic transparency".

/stream /technology /programming /colophon

Built out the rough framework for this website, settling on the complimentary "garden" and "stream" metaphors.

May 20, 2023

/stream /philosophy /coalescence /information

Explored the ideas of "pattern, information, and concepts" through drafting an essay. After some good conversations, I feel like I've developed some really strong connections between my definition of abstract concepts and the nature of information as "embodied" concepts.

Complete Stream →