Summer trip 2015 is in the books!

Lusty Battery

I was throwing a used set of AA batteries into the battery recycling bin at work. I always look into bins like this to see if there is anything interesting. Normally there isn’t.

This time there was.

Yep. A “LUSTY” battery.

I’m just wondering what sex toy drained that cell at work. I mean, what else would you put this battery in, right?

Well, at least I’m not dead

Driving to work this morning looked like this. Vaguely… It was overcast and kind of drizzly.

I was driving down 5th under the monorail when some idiot decided to cut over both of the solid white lines almost into me.

I honked my horn, very un-Seattle of me I know. He honked back. I therefore flipped him the bird.

My office is the next right (and right again).

He followed.

“I didn’t see you.”

“You almost killed me. You crossed two solid white lines.”

He mumbled something unintelligible. Maybe drunk.


I drove off and into my parking garage.

If you don’t know how to drive and are doing things that are blatantly illegal — because they might kill someone — you might want to stand down.

Just saying.

Tool Time

I was talking to a friend of mine today and I made a realization about me and my love of tools.

Now, I’m talking about tools in the broader sense and not simply hand tools. Things like computers, storage, cameras, and the lot count as tools by that definition.

The realization I made as I was riding back from the office was it’s not the quantity of the tools (though I love having more tools!). It’s that I don’t want to be held back by my tools. I want my tools to be better than me so if I can’t get something to work the way I want it’s simply my own fault.

My own fault due to error or simple lack of understanding of the problem.

The tool, even if it’s a craptacular Harbor Freight tool, as long as it’s better than me, is good enough.

That’s why my camera kit winds up being what it is: I fancy myself a fairly decent photographer. I don’t want my gear to be the limitation. Limitations that I impose on myself are another thing entirely though.

A W is a W

Today’s game was a mess.

But we came out on top anyway.

I’ll take it.  :-)  Even if it was a messy victory.

I’m just so used to being on the other side of the ball it’s always fun seeing something go our way.


Merch by Amazon!

Another team I was kind of on launched a product last week: Merch by Amazon.

I was involved on the payment side of the picture so I really wasn’t on the delivering the product, but I have to say it’s a cool idea.

The stated intent is to have real-world tie-ins to mobile apps — games mainly. But the real world use cases are way more broad. The idea that you can upload an image and have a t-shirt show up in a couple of days with no minimum order sizes is pretty damn cool. Even for just one shirt.

And you can sell it on Amazon as well — and you get most of the profits. So wether you have a band or a charity, or an app you want to promote, it’s worth checking out as another way of making some money.

We had the shirts for both the Underground  launch and the Merch launch printed by the same back-end processing system and I have to say the quality really is there.

You can guess that a one-off print isn’t going to be conventionally screen printed since that relies on scale to get it working well. The magic behind the scenes is something that I’ve never seen, but it’s cool from what I’ve been told.

In any case, if you have an idea for a shirt, or a brand you want to promote, check it out and give it a whirl.

At worst, you get an inexpensive (but high quality) T-shirt out of the bargain.  :-)

Little Si Hike

Just a little hike up Little Si. With some photographs for fun.

A Name: PressMate!

My mobile blogging app (which is still being written) has a name!


I like it.

It started off life as BlogMobile. The problem is that it’s hard to monetize something just like blogging. But once I opened up what I was thinking to something more akin to traditional new reporting, I think I might have a winner on my hands. It also keeps the “Press” from WordPress to try to keep things back at where I started.

Domain name: Purchased. Ok, this is cheap… but regardless, I have something to rightly aim at.

Now, to get V1 out the door. Ok, step one: get V1 out of bed, have it take a shower, get dressed, then get out the door.

There’s a long way to go.

Team Trust

Something that we all struggle with as developers is trusting people in our code. There’s many things that can go wrong. There are also things than can go right as well.

The thing that we have to keep in mind — especially in cases where everyone is in the same company — is that you’re all really on the same team. It’s easy to go overboard on things like approval workflows and permissions on who can commit what code where.

Some of it makes sense — like perhaps requiring that code that goes into the system needs to be reviewed by someone who knows the code better. But once you have the review done, it would be awfully nice to just check that code in yourself. Or locking down test systems such that no one outside the team can even access things.

As you grow more defensive with your codebase, one thing that you’ll have to accept is that you’ll be held responsible more and more for the code that you have. If you make it hard for people to help you, the chance that people will help you tends to go down.

It’s all about balance.

Why does every programmer want to make a new language?

It seems a common occurrence that a programmer wants to create a new domain-specific language. Well, perhaps not domain-specific. More general purpose.

It’s a strange thing when you look around and see so many existing languages that might do the job just as well.

At Amazon I seem to run into it even more often. We hire bunches of people that have a good and traditional computer science background — a lot of them straight of of college. You take your compiler design classes and whatnot and you want to put your training to use.


You might want to look around first.

So, you want to create a functional language? Look at Scheme, Erlang, or F# to see if they can fit the bill.

Dynamic language pique your interests? Python or Ruby might be what the doctor ordered.

Scripting? Why not Perl, or perhaps TCL?

Unless you have the wherewithal to go and make an IDE, debugger, and the rest of the toolchain awesome… yeah, you might want to stand on the shoulders of giants.

Of course you might actually have a deep need for something new. Each of the languages I listed above started from scratch too. Before you create your baby, think some deep thoughts about how it’ll grow and how you’ll nurture the community that’ll hopefully build around it.

But think hard again, is writing a new language how I’m going to win?

You had one job, Songza

For some reason I glanced at Sonos app while Johnny B Goode was coming out of the speakers.

Up there. That’s what I saw.

Maybe this is the cheap Chinese rip-off version of Chuck Berry — Chuch Berry. I wonder what other off-label songs they have.

Maybe that’s a way for them to save some dough.

%d bloggers like this: