16 Mar 2023
Some years ago I came across a blog post that described programmers as being in one of three camps. It's a fun, short post, so I encourage you to go read that real quick, but the gist of it is that programmers generally fall into one of three categories according to what they primarily value:
Applied mathematicians, who appreciate elegant solutions to problems. Program execution on von Neumann machines is incidental.
21 Feb 2023
The story I once worked as a part of a company with four employees, all of us programmers. We formed a sort of daughter company with a bigger—though still modest-sized—company that handled our payroll and whatnot. Our work directly helped the parent company, but we were organizationally independent development-wise. I really liked working with that small team: we had a one-hour meeting each week to plan out our work, and a short, casual stand-up each morning to get things rolling.
19 Sep 2021
I feel uncomfortable with many symbols. I might have opinions about a subject, but there’s rarely a camp that has some symbol, flag, slogan, etc. that I’m comfortable with adopting because that camp does not accurately reflect my opinion. All too often, a slogan takes on more than its surface meaning, and that can make using that slogan tricky.
26 Aug 2020
In Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology, Neil Postman argues that our infatuation with technology has insidiously eroded our culture. We gain much through technology, but it comes at a price; all too often we are blind to that price. This book seeks to call attention to the costs of a technology-focused society. I felt this poignantly because I, as a technology worker, know what that infatuation feels like.
7 Jun 2020
Overview # The primary thrust of this book is that television has degraded our mode of public discourse. Our news, politics, education, and even religion are delivered to us primarily through television, where they were once delivered via the written word. This transformation of medium is not irrelevant: just as poetry doesn’t survive fully intact when translated from one language to another, likewise ideas do not survive translation of medium.
20 May 2020
Computers are funny things. At the lowest level they’re just a pile of ones and zeros that we assign meaning to. It’s something you can easily take for granted, but there’s a disconnect with how we talk about how things operate at the hardware level and then again at the software level.
Since writing a compiler, I’ve been able to bridge that gap in part. The fundamental idea is that we represent some meaning in a concrete, though still high-level form.
5 Jan 2019
Life is messy. We devote a lot of time and effort into managing that chaos. I thought of a little “theory”, if you will, that helps me.
The Home Theory # Everything needs a home. The class of things that need homes is broad. It includes:
School assignments Legal documents Pictures Recipies Ideas Projects Books Charging cables Tools etc. The home needs to suit the thing that goes there. I have found that getting this right is really tricky.