Using Docker to Learn a Programming Language

Using Docker to Learn Programming

Basic Use Case

Docker is a fantastic tool for use when learning any programming language. The ability to have a virtual, independent environment that can be manipulated a near infinite variety of ways is indispensable as you progress through learning a new language, especially if you are working on different versions. A Docker image can provide a clean environment on each use or be extended with volumes. It is easy to setup multiple environments using a minimum of space especially if you take the time to really plan, since Docker uses a system of layers when making images you can build up from a vanilla install to multiple package configurations without a separate virtual machine install for each case.
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A Basic Beginner Weight Lifting Routine – Part 1

A Basic Weightlifting Routine for Beginners – Part 1

This routine forms the basis for all my later routines and the exercises are the primary way that I measure progress. It consists of what I consider to be the most basic weight lifting exercise for each major body part. These exercises aren’t performed as just a part of this beginning routine, but form the basis of any subsequent workout that I do.  Continue reading “A Basic Beginner Weight Lifting Routine – Part 1”

Uploading Your Mind to the Cloud

Uploading the Mind

Read any futurism blog, listen to any trans-humanist podcast, watch some science fiction movies – hell it was even mentioned as an off handed joke on an episode of Friends – and you’re bound to come across the notion of uploading or transferring a person’s mind into the digital realm. I find this idea, along with cloning and transferring the mind to another body or android, to be very fruitful topics for speculating about consciousness and identity, both of which transcend body and mind (hence the category of Spirit)

I tend to refer to consciousness and identity as ‘the self’. Obviously, these are very deep topics that much has been written about by folks far smarter than I. But reflecting on the nature of the self, even in as superficially a manner as a simple blog post or 10, is an important, indeed it should a required, endeavor for any human.

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Basic Git Setup and Use

Basic Git Setup

I make extensive use of Git many times a day. I would say it is a very basic part of my work-flow, especially with note-taking, learning, and writing blog posts. I use it for keeping track of scripts that I am working on as part of my continuing educational process, so not only is it useful in terms of versioning, which to be honest I hardly if ever use, but also as a lightweight method of maintaining files across multiple machines. Cloud storage systems like Google Drive or Dropbox are too much in terms of bloat for such simple needs and not really easy to use on a headless Linux server accessed only via SSH. Also, being able to access previous versions is important when dealing with software.

These instructions assume a Debian/Ubuntu installation on both the local machine, or client, and the server – accessed via ssh – both with git installed. There is also Git for Windows that works well and from the bash shell utilizes the same commands.
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Don’t Wait – Look It Up!

This will be the first of many posts about my journey of ‘self-learning’. I have issues with the terminology, which is a post in itself, being that my study of programming, while without any formal education still depends on the work and instruction of others through books and and how-tos. In this post I explore the waning of interest that can follow ignoring even a slight confusion over basic concepts.

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The Self Made Man – a parable

I’ll begin this blog with an admission – I’ve written many first posts before.  So does this count as a first post?  I guess it’s a silly question – it’s the first post for this blog, for this iteration of the recording of my own thoughts.  I’ll save all the reasons for re-starting this process for the ‘About’ page, and instead start things off with a parable of sorts, a story I came up with the other day to express an idea I am often wrestling with.


There once were two men who were drawn into a simple competition.  Being just overgrown boys it wasn’t difficult for them to get swept up into such a thing, even though they lived very far from each other.  One man lived in the mountains in a small remote village, surrounded mainly by his relations.  It was a harsh environment and one had to be strong to survive there.
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