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Ralsina.Me — Roberto Alsina's website

La Importancia de los Dedos en el Pensamiento Informático

Pen­sar con cosas que no sean el cere­bro es descal­i­fi­ca­to­ri­o: vos pen­sás con el cu­lo, vos pen­sás con el pene. Es una vari­ante de hac­er cualquier cosa con la parte in­cor­rec­ta del cuer­po, porque yo es­cri­bo con los co­dos, el­la pro­gra­ma con las patas, etc. Tal vez por eso me sien­to in­có­mo­do cuan­do em­piezo un proyec­to nuevo, porque sien­to una pi­cazón in­de­cente de em­pezar a pe­gar­le a las teclas con las yemas, co­mo si las ideas de co­mo im­ple­men­tar cosas no salier­an de mi cabeza, co­mo si bro­taran de mis de­dos, co­mo si fluy­er­an por mis bra­zos, co­mo Pal­pa­tine elec­tro­cu­tan­do a Darth Vader, con esa pre­po­ten­cia Arl­tiana de no poder con­ver­sar sino ti­pear en orgul­losa soledad pro­gra­mas que encier­ren la vi­o­len­cia de un cross a la mandíbu­la, y "que los eu­nucos bufen".

Y no, no es la man­era ide­al de hac­er las cosas, sospe­cho, en el mis­mo sen­ti­do que cha­par en la primera ci­ta o to­car ese cu­lo con­sen­ti­do en el primer lento de Air Sup­ply fueron de­ci­siones que parecieron bue­nas en el mo­men­to pero mu­chos hemos vivi­do para lamen­tar, pen­sar de­masi­a­do con los de­dos pro­duce códi­go de mier­da, co­mo era de mier­da el novi­az­go que em­pezó en aquel asalto, pero es real­mente códi­go de mier­da si es códi­go que ex­iste com­para­do con el teóri­co novi­az­go con la chi­ca que no quiso bailar con un­o? No, es códi­go co­pado, es códi­go gau­chi­to, es códi­go con savoir faire.

Pen­sar de­masi­a­do es some­terse al wa­ter­fall in­te­ri­or, que es el pe­or wa­ter­fal­l, y sí, a ve­ces he pen­sa­do un pro­gra­ma muy lenta­mente du­rante cin­co años, de­ján­do­lo madu­rar en mi in­te­ri­or co­mo una Tahi­na spectabilis que flo­rece ca­da cien años, pero re­cuer­den que la flor que pro­duce huele co­mo un cadáver y la plan­ta muere in­medi­ata­mente. Los proyec­tos maduros son proyec­tos pu­drién­dose, es un equi­lib­rio fi­no que no cualquiera puede cam­i­nar, no so­mos to­dos Philippe Pe­tit, no sabe­mos cruzar de una torre a la otra so­bre una so­ga, nos cae­mos co­mo King Kong, trepa­dos a una torre que no en­ten­de­mos pen­san­do en Jes­si­ca Lange.

La pro­gra­mación no es prog rock, no es Lark Tongues in As­pic, pro­gra­mar es, el 90% del tiem­po, los mis­mos cu­a­tro acordes de Sheena is a Punk Rock­er, cam­bi­a­dos de lu­gar, más rápi­do o más lento, mien­tras hacés temas de dos min­u­tos porque tu pa­pá no te quiso cuan­do eras chico, es recor­dar que el primero se tira, co­mo el mate, que el primero te lo re­galan el se­gun­do te lo venden, que por eso el primero lo re­galás, el se­gun­do lo hacés boni­to y lo re­galás tam­bién, que cara­jo.

Y mien­tras tan­to, es­cuchen "Co­mo sal­va­jes" de At­taque 77, que du­ra tres min­u­tos, te da ganas de salir a patear bol­sas de ba­sura por la calle, y es un cuen­to de sci­fi me­di­ana­mente de­cen­te, no per­fec­to, pero mu­cho mejor que el que no es­cribiste.

Changes in this blog

I have made a few changes in how this blog is gen­er­at­ed and what fea­tures are en­abled.

Similarity Plugin

I have en­abled the sim­i­lar­i­ty plug­in and dis­abled the equiv­a­lent fea­ture pro­vid­ed by Dis­qus. In gen­er­al, it seems this plug­in pro­duces more whim­si­cal con­nec­tions which is a big plus. It may lead you to dis­cov­er very ran­dom things I wrote. I know it re­mind­ed me of things I did not re­mem­ber writ­ing!

Continuous Import

I have en­abled the con­tin­u­ous im­port plug­in which will au­to­mat­i­cal­ly merge some oth­er as­pects of my on­line pres­ence with this blog. Cur­rent­ly it has sup­port for goodreads (which I al­ready men­tioned be­fore) and youtube (which I have not), so you will see short book re­views and ran­dom videos I make.

Ex­am­ples: goodreads and youtube

This plug­in can the­o­ret­i­cal­ly sup­port any­thing that pro­vides a RSS/Atom feed and lets you ap­ply cus­tom tem­plates to the con­tent so you end up with pret­ty posts in all cas­es. If you are in­ter­est­ed in us­ing it for some oth­er ser­vice, feel free to ask me about it.

Front Page

For the first time ev­er, the front page of this site is no longer the blog, but a land­ing page.


At some point in the fu­ture I may switch to a more cus­tom­ized the­me, but that's not in any spe­cif­ic roadmap, it will hap­pen when it hap­pen­s. In the mean­time, this is now us­ing the Lu­men bootswatch and am ex­per­i­ment­ing with us­ing Flow­Type for a more read­able au­to­mat­ic font size.

I am now using almost an IDE

I have long been a pro­po­nent of sim­ple text ed­i­tors.

Not for me was emac­s, with its mul­ti­tude of modes and mag­i­cal elisp code to do ev­ery­thing.

Not even vim with its mul­ti­tude of ex­ten­sions achiev­ing mag­i­cal pro­duc­tiv­i­ty with three key­strokes.

Not even would I use the ubiq­ui­tous jet­brains IDE with mag­ic refac­tor­ing that writes code on its own.

No, for twen­ty years or so I have writ­ten my code us­ing a plain text ed­i­tor. Un­til re­cent­ly, that meant kwrite. Not even kate. Kwrite, the one that is slight­ly more pow­er­ful than notepad.

But then I got a new job, and ev­ery­one us­es an IDE so I start­ed think­ing... I must be miss­ing some­thing.

Be­cause if ev­ery­one is do­ing it dif­fer­ent­ly from you, then one of the fol­low­ing things is like­ly to be true:

  • ev­ery­one is wrong
  • it's pure­ly an opin­ion thing and it does­n't mat­ter much
  • you are miss­ing out

You know you are old once you as­sume the first. Since I am go­ing through some sort of weird mid life cri­sis I am forc­ing my­self to choose the last op­tion most of the time. So, I start­ed try­ing out stuff. Which is why I no longer use bash. Or uni­ty. Or KDE. But those are sto­ries for some oth­er bon­fire, this one is about my text ed­i­tor midlife cri­sis.


It's huge. And slow. Like, re­al­ly slow. And the ex­ten­sion qual­i­ty is very un­even. For ex­am­ple, all the ter­mi­nals felt wrong.

Once it start­ed drag­ging af­ter be­ing open for a cou­ple of days... well, I re­moved it and smug­ly went back to my old work­flow.

And then I tried...


The ex­ten­sion qual­i­ty was soooo much bet­ter! And some are just awe­some. The way you can choose a vir­tualenv in­ter­preter for a project is awe­some.

Com­pared to Atom it's down­right snap­py!

The on­ly things I did not like were:

  • So much mag­ic in place, some­times things on­ly worked in the IDE.
  • Too slow to start, so I still had to use a plain text ed­i­tor for ca­su­al ed­it­s.
  • At one point, things start­ed to rot, and func­tions that had been work­ing fine start­ed to mis­be­have.

So then I had my goldie­locks mo­men­t...


I was ex­pect­ing to hate it. It's called Vis­ual Stu­dio! It comes from Mi­crosoft! It's elec­tron-based like Atom!

Yet, I loved it at first sight.

Not go­ing to go over many de­tails be­cause I am not in the busi­ness of con­vinc­ing peo­ple of things but here are some of the high­light­s:

  • Good python sup­port, in­clud­ing vir­tualen­vs, for­mat­ting, au­to­com­plete, refac­tor­ing, de­bug­ger, etc.
  • Good Go sup­port.
  • Nice ter­mi­nal gad­get! Ctr­l+click to open files men­tioned in the ter­mi­nal!
  • Good mark­down/reSt sup­port in­clud­ing pre­views
  • The "com­pared to work­ing tree" view is ge­nious
  • If you run "vs­code some­file" in the ter­mi­nal, it opens in the cur­rent vs­code.
  • The set­tings mech­a­nism and UX are a great idea.
  • It's fast enough
  • The UI is fair­ly min­i­mal, so most of the time it will look like my pre­vi­ous work­flow used to look: two text files open side by side.
  • Test run­ner in­te­gra­tion is neat.
  • In Ubuntu you can install it as snap install vscode --classic ... takes all of 30 seconds. And it's updated forever.
  • Lots and lots and lots of de­cent qual­i­ty ex­ten­sion­s.

So, all in all it does all the things I liked from the IDE side of the uni­verse while not mak­ing the things I liked from text ed­i­tors less con­ve­nien­t. And that's why I use it now.


Cover for Cumulus


So, Al­pha­bet owns Uber and they are ac­tu­al­ly Way­mos. And Al­pha­bet is owned by this daugh­ter of chi­nese im­mi­grants that likes bas­ket­bal­l, and Steph Cur­ry is a druglo­rd. More or less that's the idea. Not re­al­ly my cup of tea, but not hor­ri­ble by any mean­s.

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