Jun 27 2020

Bring Back Webrings

The current outlets for consuming content is very poor. It seems that right now we rely on social media and Google to quench our thirst for information. Unfortunately, this information feels more like loading up on donuts instead of some fresh vegetables. How can we rediscover high quality content?

Jun 13 2020

Name That Algorithm #4

One project that I have been working on recently is gathering property tax information. While the reason isn’t particularly interesting, what is interesting is my recent optimization. Previously, I had been archiving the raw html files. To get the information in a human readable CSV format, I ran a Node.js parser which utilized cheerio. I was only concerned with a couple of the fields, so I just plucked those out and plopped them in a CSV.

Jun 06 2020

From Vimwiki to One Big File

I was laying in my hammock on one sunny day and began to think about text files. If you’re someone that knows me, you are probably well aware that I am a hardcore text file user and advocator. Anyways, I became bored and Googled “Hacker News text files” to feed myself with some confirmation bias. While reading the comments I realized that I either practice what is preached, or have refined it.

May 30 2020

Maintaining Blog Cadence

These last couple of months, I’ve been able to hold a steady blog release schedule. Three things have helped me release a steady stream of content. First, I am a part of a mastermind group that holds me accountable to making releases. Next, I keep a backlog of posts so that I don’t feel pressured to write, edit, and release on a single day. Finally, I follow a pipeline to iron out the kinks between stages of publishing. Maintaining these three habits guarantee a steady flow of content.

May 23 2020

Name That Algorithm #3

Tony Hoare, the inventor of null, claimed later in his career that null was his “billion dollar mistake.” Languages like Rust and Haskell address the issue of null very directly through the forced handling of Some and None. As for others, it’s up to the programmer to check for null values.

May 16 2020

Fastmail domain is too new, temporarily blacklisted

The other day I setup a mail server for a new business venture. We require a fair number of addresses, so I decided against a cloud solution. Typically cloud solutions start around $5 per user/month – making it a tad too expensive for an entity that doesn’t generate any revenue yet.

May 09 2020

An Open Source Utopia

The software industry is a bit of an anomaly: we as programmers are the makers of our own tools. Most of these tools exist with open source licensing, making it easier than ever to contribute. It’s with good reason that most of these tools exist on the command line: it’s more efficient. Nevertheless, it is important to recognize the slew of industries that suffer from not being able to make use of these tools. In short, software engineers are blessed with efficiency constrained by their own imagination and ability to use the command line, while many other areas lack this privilege.