EVEN AFTER THE IRISH government rolled out yet another plan to improve the prospects for getting on the property ladder, Ireland still lacks an adequate supply of family homes and the Central Bank still uses an unrealistic algorithm that stifles mortgage approvals.
THERE IS A LOT of cross-talk among some of my friends, some in the word cloud above, when they're put into Facebook jail or when friends of theirs are deplatformed. I wonder if you've ever fallen into any of those spaces? This is something I've been considering since 2008. 
FOR YEARS I've watched snippets from Dave Winer scroll through my feed readers and learned from them. I think it's important to be able to share quickly (like many do on Twitter or Instagram) while also saving important snippets inside your own space like I try to do with a 23 year old blog I have. So I am going to try to scrape and share daily snippets from my Zettelkasten and from my Flickr photostream. I've started saving screenshots of life, such as the reference to a Ryanair advertisement I spotted on the way into my local Tesco supermarket.
WE KEPT OUR CHRISTMAS lights turned off for several days during this Christmas season to honour two neighbours who died in their homes on our street. Their passing, along with continued COVID-19 restrictions, marked Christmas 2020 as the darkest in my lifetime.
IN A MAJOR case against Facebook, the US government is defining "harms" in a holistic way. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) alleges harm occurs if a company buys another company specifically to hinder its ability to compete.
Facebook's dominance in the market has degraded privacy, eroded user experience, increased the number of fake accounts, and facilitated misinformation. Each of these side effects is harmful. The FTC seems to be arguing that all of these harms would not have occurred if Facebook had to compete with the services it now owns. One of those services is Octazen, an exceptionally capable data scraping service that I wrote about 10 years ago.
I EXPECT TO CONTINUE teaching third level students in a hybrid fashion for the rest of my days. Looking at my current teaching methods, I realise I use six rather unique technologies while delivering course material to a mix of creative media, digital animation, and game art design students.
I HAVE BOOKS on my shelves that teach me lessons from generations ago. One of those books is written by Thucydides who explains how the citizens of Athens survived a major pandemic in the fifth century. The story is wonderfully told during a two part Ideas Podcast from the CBC. (Subscribe to Ideas from the CBC.)
I STARTED LISTENING to early exit polls from the 2020 US election and somehow transported myself back to 2002 when Ruth and I walked alongside the River Liffey. I can find only a few photos from November 2002 but it's easy to lose myself in the sound track of my life from those less stressful times.
I HAVE LOGGED SEVEN MONTHS in a remote teaching mode and need to ensure I have more than one way of producing content because my laptop's AC power adapter has failed. It will take more than a week to get a replacement part from my main campus 50 km away so I'm in a scavenger mode as I try to sort out a solution.