Monday, August 30, 2010

Sharing Light

I walked to Quaker meeting on Sunday with the express purpose of attending early morning adult discussion, which exceeded my expectations. The theme was "pride" and was clerked by this new guy.

Like any congregation (we usually don't use that word), there's welcome turnover, a small trickle of newcomers checking us out. This brand of Quaker stays esoteric in that it doesn't proselytize or otherwise try to make itself especially understandable. There's a library, lots of lore on the Web.

My 81 year old mother also walked the 2/3 mile each way.

Then I met up with clerk of Property Management (a committee) to discuss a pilot test we'd like to run. No amplified music this time, nor much use of the piano. This was a proposal I originally dispatched through Oversight, then subsequently sought to involve Peace and Social Concerns.

We're gearing up for Djangocon in Portland, which is close to sold out. Django is one of the flagship web application frameworks, written in Python. Its design encourages best practices and is consistent with many emerging industry standards, in how it dispatches HttpRequests to view managers, which in turn consult any databases in the picture (model-view-controller). That's all kind of technical, but then lots of my readers are software engineers, other brands of geek.

Another example of a web application framework is the popular Ruby on Rails, which was used for this Urban Edibles web site. A proposal to migrate this site to Django resulted in Rick, Laura, Lindsey and I attending some sprints. Although the spirit of socially responsible coding was present, we were not the right permutation of cards to form a winning hand (luck of the draw) and so we made not much headway as unpaid volunteers. At least Backspace appreciated our business.

Rick has recently been by the Blue House on a work project with Lindsey. Wanderer Consoletti has been a campus guest, also of Portland Energy Strategies (I dispute many of Nick's views, have not used him as my emissary or anything, he does his own thinking).

I've been reading Saying No To Power by William Mandel, which is making the rounds through Friends. I'll have more to say about this illuminating autobiography in future blog posts. He says some entertaining things about Quakers.

The recent back yard party with school teachers was just in time, as the weather turned cold and rainy almost immediately thereafter. I had some Martian Math toyz in tow. Our company included a Fulbright scholar, plus a full time teacher from Beaverton getting ready for a stint in Finland, as a student of that country's education system.

Greater Portland benefits from having such a cosmopolitan teacher cast, is partly what attracts families to work in this area.