Learning Something Every Day of 2016: November Report

Nailed it. It’s been a while since I managed to complete a month completely without missing a day (although I do allow myself to skip a day, usually Friday night, and then make it up the next day with two units of learn).

spreadsheet screenshot, things learned by date

The things I learned in November.

Previously:

Animation

It was a bit of a one-note month, but that’s totally ok. I’m working through the Animation Bootcamp course on CGCookie. It’s going well and I’m quite enjoying it.

Before I got into programming as a teenager, my life direction was headed towards animation. I drew all the time, made animations in zoetropes, and so on. I was motivated to learn programming in order to make animation on the computer, and got distracted for the next 20 years.

It has been a goal of mine for many years to become a character animator and just never got around to it. You know how it goes. But I’m actually getting on it now. I’ve made it as far as animating a ball character in the course, and up next is some real character animation, walk cycles with increasing levels of difficulty, and I’m really excited.

I look forward to honing the skills I need to construct my own game character animation assets for personal projects.

Character Ball

That Other Thing That Happened In November

November 2016. What can I say? I’m Canadian, not American, but the USA has a huge impact on Canada, our media, our economy, our politics. Not to mention the USA being a worldwide superpower and having a huge impact on basically everything.

The election of Trump as president hit me harder than I expected. Bit of a bubble burst there. With Bush you could just kind of shrug of and say what are you going to do, lol. politics right? But Trump is different. He’s a mean, petulant child, and he’s been handed control of one of the world’s most powerful nations.

I don’t know much about politics. I don’t know much about history. Not something I’m proud of, and honestly I kind of thought the world was stable enough that I wouldn’t really ever have to care. The bad things in the world happen to other people, far away and outside my sphere of influence. On that point, beginning to dip my toe into the subject, has been enlightening. I have to say historians and anthropologists do not have good things to say about the direction the western world may be turning at the moment.

Before I panic about the latest news doom and gloom, I think I do a pretty good job normally of being able to filter out things that probably just don’t matter that much in the big scheme of things. But there are a few big ticket items that definitely rank up there in being worth some panic. Climate change is one, and the alarm bells on that one basically just stuck on now. And I’m learning some new words, like kleptocracy. And some things I knew about, but never thought I’d actually have to deal with. Like fascism and white nationalism.

As a financially stable, white, straight, male, I am among the most insulated from these problems that anyone could be beyond the true rich of the world. And I’m beginning to slowly and unsteadily absorb information and viewpoints that exposes the lie that everything was basically ok before Trump, let alone now that he’s been elected President.

I have very little to contribute on this front right now, because I just don’t know enough about what to do. But I hope that I don’t become too accustomed to the “new normal”, and stay open to the viewpoints and issues of people who aren’t in the same protective bubble as me. I hope that I can walk the line between being angry enough at the state of the western world to have the energy to devote to learning about what I can do to help, and being positive enough that it doesn’t grind me down, or lead me to give up because it’s **“not worth worrying about”… because after all… it’s not me they’re coming for.

Checking The List

TL;DR

Everything is awesome. Everything is terrible.