Introduction to this blog and who I am

Welcome to my blog!

To understand where this blog will be going, you have to get to know me first. Let me introduce myself briefly. I’m a poly-faceted and multi-interest person.

Here is a short list of my top interests:

  • Science in general. I have a variety of interests in Science and Technology, including Astronomy, Geology, Climatology, Nanotechnologies, 3D printing, and many others.  Along with the philosophical aspects that come with science, which are getting trickier every day (AI – Singularity, anyone? Trans Humanism, Genetic Tampering etc.).
  • Computer Science in particular. I’m a Computer Engineer, so Computer Science is definitely on my top list. As a child, I was always attracted to computers and especially how they can be programmed to do an endless number of things. My main area of interest, though, is Artificial Intelligence. I made a PhD in the 1990’s in that domain, and I’ve always kept myself up-to-date since then. In the recent years, we’ve seen quite a number of breakthroughs in that area. So for sure, this blog will contain a lot of articles about technology. One other area of interest is storage of data and how to keep it safe, which is a topic most people disregard too often until some irreparable damage happens. Not only should your data be safe, but also kept private. On this topic, I have been introduced to Cryptography at an early age by my father, who was giving me coded messages to decipher, so I know the technology and its thrilling history.
  • Libre Money. Blockchain technology can free us from the limitations and flaws of the current banking system. Not with Bitcoin or many other cryptocurrencies, but with a unique type of currencies called “Libre Currencies”. In fact, one such currency already exists, it is called Ğ1 and is powered by Duniter. I’m participating in the effort to translate some of the material there, including the Relative Theory of Money, which is the underlying theory for Libre Currencies. I have also written a program to help animators of the game Ğeconomicus (which is a good introduction to Libre Money).
  • Board Games. I have been playing Chess since age 5, and I’m a big fan of board games. The main point here is to never keep the brain still, and always learn from playing. I know a large variety of games, from Shogi to Checkers and from Go to Hex. You can see me regularly at littlegolem and I sometimes play Arimaa as well. I used to play RPG games (and was leading big teams in some) but I’m past that now. 🙂
  • Foreign Languages. I’m French and I’ve been in a bilingual school at an early age. I speak French (obviously), English (obviously again!), Spanish and German quite good, and I’ve studied a number of other languages to various degrees. These include Japanese, Italian, Portuguese, Esperanto, Russian, Turkish, Danish, Arabic, Chinese, and some Irish, which I find the most difficult of all. You can find me on duolingo. I’ve started an effort to help English speakers to learn French.
  • Cultures and Geography. Learning other languages is opening doors to other cultures. So I love to learn about different cultures all around the world.
  • History. Knowing a culture (including the one that came to me at birth) needs some knowledge about history. I love to learn about the history of the world.
  • Genealogy. Knowing your history comes with the search for your roots. I have worked on my genealogy tree, it goes back to the 18th century in many branches, and one branch goes as far as the 15th century.
  • Music. Cultures and history are filled with music. I love music, especially classical European music, but also folk music from all over the world, Ireland and Scotland, Flamenco (¡Olé!), Indian Ragas, South American music, Chinese Traditional (Guzheng and Ehru), and many more. As an amateur pianist I play mostly music from the Classical and Romantic eras but as a harpsichordist I focus on Baroque music. I do have recordings on the Internet, ask me where to find them! I’ve also recently started composing. I also know how to play a number of other instruments but I don’t practice much.
  • Movies. My wife and I watch a lot of movies. We don’t watch TV, but we do sometimes watch a couple of selected TV series. It’s always interesting to see how stories are designed.
  • Reading. Of course, I also read books, both fiction and non-fiction. I’ll probably post here some summaries of my readings along with my impressions.
  • This leads to a long lasting passion: writing. Actually I don’t understand why I didn’t start this blog earlier. I have written several (unpublished) novels during my teenage years and more in my 20’s, which I’m currently publishing on Wattpad (under a pen name). I have gone back recently to writing and am a published author (also under a pen name).
  • Rubik’s Cube. I have a strange history with this thing. 🙂 I’ll write about it later.
  • Psychology. I’m not a psychologist, but I’ve been learning a lot about it from my wife. It’s a fascinating subject.
  • Health. I’m definitely not a doctor, but I also gained quite some knowledge from my wife in that area.  Pesticides and GMOs vs Permaculture is something I know quite a lot about, even though I can’t call myself a specialist. I have a feeling that these subjects will be at the heart of public debate in the years or decades to come.
  • Ecology. We have to take care of our planet. If not for the planet itself, at least for the sake of our species. I try to reduce my environmental impact as much as I can, but I’m no extremist either.
  • This brings me to one of my life’s motto : extremes are always bad, whatever they are. It is never black and white. It’s not gray either. It’s a rainbow.
  • Self Improvement. Although there is a common hoax that tells us that when we’re past our 20’s we start decaying (I’m exaggerating a little, but not that much), I believe we can always improve ourselves. This comes with a deep understanding of who we currently are, and that life is always changing. Accepting change and embracing change is at the core of my life. This is why I like meditation and the Buddhist philosophy. I also use tools to enhance my memory. Back in the 1990’s, I invented for myself a spaced-repetition learning program to learn vocabulary in other languages, although I had no idea that it was actually called a spaced-repetition learning program! Then Anki appeared and I’ve been using it since then. I strongly believe that tools like Anki and others such as the Loki Memory Palace (to memorize series of words) or the Major System (to memorize numbers) should be taught in school at an early age. As an advanced species, we should also get rid of the “Qwerty” keyboard (or “Azerty” in France), especially on touch screen devices, I’ll write an article about this.
  • Teaching. Sharing my knowledge with others has always been a passion. In my University years, I spent a lot of time teaching to children who had problems in school. I was also a teacher during my PhD. This blog is definitely about sharing knowledge with you.
  • Many more subjects that I would like to develop. I have found out that every subject becomes more and more interesting as soon as you learn more about it. Even football teams or cars can get interesting, but I still try to keep some priorities and those are not in my list. 🙂

As you can understand, my main problem in life is that days only have 24 hours and I get to do only what I can do within that limited time frame. 🙂

Finally, you can find me on Diaspora, Mastodon, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter but I’m rarely active there.

Enjoy!