Sunday, May 14, 2023
Saturday, March 04, 2023
In 2021, Indiana University law school student Purva Sethi was attempting to cross a street in downtown Bloomington. A driver attempting to make a right turn on red, apparently didn't look right before making the turn, struck and killed Sethi. In response, the Bloomington City Council sensibly authorized the banning of right turns on red on that and many other intersections.
Over the last year, the city of Bloomington has installed nearly 80 new "No Turn On Red" signs in the downtown area. Congratulations to the city for making this excellent improvement for the pedestrian safety! Next, the Indiana Department of Transportation needs to make similar improvements on the roads they control in the city. Trying to cross the 45/46 bypass is a particularly dangerous proposition.
Wednesday, December 14, 2022
The Bloomingtonian published a press release from New Leaf, New Life on the new jail being planned in Monroe County.
- A bigger jail is not required and will produce barriers to improving the criminal legal system.
- Historically, whenever a criminal legal system has access to a bigger jail, it finds people to fill it.
- Cheaper, immediately available solutions to jail overcrowding remain available by simply not incarcerating people for technical probation violations, low-level and non-violent crimes, and returning to use or substance use violations.
- The $70M price tag for a new jail is both fiscally and socially irresponsible.
I like the comment that bigger jails find people to fill them. An instance of induced demand, clearly.
Read the full press release here: https://bloomingtonian.com/2022/12/14/press-release-new-leaf-new-life-statement-on-a-new-jail/
Friday, December 09, 2022
Here's what happened: On September 18, 2022, Madelyn Howard, heavily intoxicated, came cruising in her Mercedes northbound on Walnut Street at 12th Street, near Domino's Pizza, at a high rate of speed with the passenger-side wheels on the sidewalk. Two people were on the sidewalk at the time. The first managed to jump out of her way, but the second did not. Up on the sidewalk, Howard plowed into Nathaniel Stratton, 22, and he later died from his injuries.
So here we are, two months later, and we find that scooter operating licenses are on hold, partly due to this incident, as reported in the screenshot above. I've heard that scooter operators are considering pulling out of smaller cities completely, and who can blame them with poor reporting like this? WFIU gets it completely wrong.
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
On this Giving Tuesday, I heard a plug for a donation from my local public radio station, WFIU. As I was getting out my wallet to send something in, I heard an announcer say, offhandedly, "Sales may have also been helped by free parking downtown during the holiday weekend." So instead of a donation, I'm writing this note to help to set the station straight on this topic.
No, local public radio station, sales were almost definitely not helped by free parking downtown. Setting aside the attraction for drivers of cruising the streets to find that one perfect parking space, and whatever parking meter revenue was given up by the city, there's no telling how many people took advantage of the free parking to let their cars sit and take up space for several hours, blocking access for people who may have wanted to come in and shop. Retail sales depend on customers coming in and out of the stores, not people coming in and browsing for hours at a time. And anyway, people who are going to balk at spending a dollar or two on a parking space are hardly going to be the kind of free spenders that will seriously boost the sales numbers.
So overall, I'd have to say it's unfortunate that the city decided to subsidize drivers and Big Oil in this way. It's revenue that the city has lost, and left shouldering the burden for no benefit are (1) taxpayers who may happen to live downtown, (2) poor people who lack access to a vehicle at all, and (3) people who may choose to ride bicycles or take the bus downtown. Maybe for next Black Friday, the city could offer free bus transit rather than encouraging drivers to bring their personal vehicles downtown.
Monday, March 29, 2021
After having trouble with the Singularity Pull command on a computing cluster, I decided it might be easier to download the image via Docker to my home machine and upload it from there. I tried it, but Docker turned out to be such a huge resource hog that it rendered my computer unusable. Okay, the thing to do is to limit the resources Docker is allowed; but a quick search seemed to indicate that, while plenty of people had the problem, the only thing to do was to not use virtual machines. Now that is great advice and I wholeheartedly endorse it; but sometimes it's inevitable. Eventually I got to an obscure SuperUser post that had an answer with zero upvotes that pointed to a blog post that explained what to do:
Summary: Limit the CPU's and memory available to WSL2 (Docker's underlying mechanism) via a config file. I'll want to remove those limitations pretty quickly as I use WSL pretty heavily, but until I get these few tasks completed at least this will allow me to keep using my machine.
Thursday, February 25, 2021
Rather than explicitly including a header file in every source file, I like to use gcc's -include flag to add a config.h file, a file holding global configuration options that every source file may or may not be using. For a long time I didn't think that Visual Studio had a similar option, but I finally dug it out here:
The flag is /FI and you can set it in Visual Studio by right-clicking the project, selecting Properties, then C/C++, Advanced, and setting the "Forced Include File" property. Convenient!