Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

10 Tips for Not Giving a Sales Pitch at a Meetup

How do you give a sales pitch at a developer meetup? Don’t.
Developer meetups are technical, so it can’t seem like a sales pitch. Even if you paid for the pizza and beer and everyone knows you are there to pitch them on something with commercial upside for you, they want to feel like it is [...]

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Toddler Science and Big Data

I’ve been spending a lot of time following my son Patrick around watching him explore the world. I’ve shared a few of his important discoveries with Twitter and with friends, under the tag “Toddler Science”. Key discoveries include that tissue boxes contain a finite supply of tissue and that cat magnets do not stick to [...]

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2010 The Year in Bookmarks

As you may have heard, Delicious is going away, or at least being sold off, or otherwise being destroyed by Yahoo. In the last 72 hours, I’ve tried out the two leading alternatives, Diigo and pinboard. Along the way, I got to wondering why I keep all these bookmarks around. I do often search back [...]

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Yes Virginia, You Can Work on Great Technology at Startups

You can work on great technology at startups. You wouldn’t think that would be a controversial statement. But it is if you believe Ted Tso’s defense of Google, “Google has a problem retaining great engineers? Bullcrap.” Ted dismisses the engineering that goes on in a startup, saying:
Similarly, you don’t work on great technology at a startup.  Startups, [...]

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Three Months Without Cable

As was widely reported in the media, the second and third quarter of 2010 show a steady decline in cable subscriptions. This is earth-shaking for the cable companies, who have seen growth in US subscribers over their entire history. It’s a key indicator of not only consumers being more careful with their spending, but the [...]

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Captchas: The Bear Proof Trash Can Problem

Lately I’ve been selling a lot of things on Craigslist. Along with adventures in capitalism, every post to Craigslist requires filling out a CAPTCHA, specifically a reCAPTCHA. I’ve noticed that they have gotten quite difficult. In fact, at least one of the captchas I got recently was in Greek.
Captchas area a really clever idea, but [...]

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Proactive Assumption Violation: Avoiding Bugs By Behaving Badly

Bugs are a fact of life in software, and probably always will be. Some bugs are probably unavoidable, but a lot of bugs can be avoided through good architecture, defensive programming, immutability, and other techniques. One major source of bugs, especially frustrating bugs, is non-deterministic behavior. Every programmer has experienced bugs which don’t reproduce, which [...]

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Apple is a Luxury Brand, Android Will Never Be

Recently I’ve had several good conversations about exactly what business Apple is in. They have clearly transcended their traditional role as a computer maker. Some people think that Apple has become a media company, or a telecommunications company. What they have really done is to become a luxury brand. As a luxury brand they are [...]

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Non-Destructive Process Inspection on OSX: Blog Post Recovery

Moments ago I was writing a different blog post, about home renovation. Unfortunately just as I posted it a bug in ecto, the aging client I still use to edit blog posts, caused the complete loss of the text with no backup copies. Because messing about with system tools is more fun than rewriting that [...]

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Platonic Browser Session Management

Firefox just crashed, and when I restarted it I was informed that it had some trouble reopening my 115 tabs. Understandable, but I went ahead and clicked the button that encouraged it to try harder. The result, after consuming what would have been several thousand dollars of computer time back when they charged for it, [...]

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