Software Development as a Christmas Story

Oh Tanenbaum We decorated the house for Christmas. A smaller project than most of the software I’ve worked on, but a useful reflection. The Cost of context switching Sometimes, in the middle of one task, you need to do another. Either because you were interrupted, or because you weren’t prepared. Consider the tree, a tall … More Software Development as a Christmas Story

Embrace bored

Be bored. Be at peace with your thoughts, and let them consume you. Put down your phone, disconnect from social networks. Don’t seek stimulation just for the sake of it  Think about your problems. But don’t dwell on them. Boredom makes you brilliant.  Boredom makes you more creative  Procrastinate. It’s good for you.  Not working … More Embrace bored

I’d rather be proved wrong than miss the chance to improve

One of my favourite books is Nightfall by Isaac Asimov and Robert Silverberg. The setup for the sorry is an old astronomy professor who has won his planet’s equivalent of the Nobel Prize for proving that the six suns in his solar system would never set on his planet at the same time. And night … More I’d rather be proved wrong than miss the chance to improve

NMandelbrot : running arbitrary code on client

As part of my grand plan for map-reduce in JavaScript and zero-install distributed computing, I had to think about how to gain user trust in a security context where we don’t trust the server. I couldn’t come up with a good answer. Since then, we’ve seen stories of malicious JavaScript installed to mine cryptocurrencies , we … More NMandelbrot : running arbitrary code on client

User Experience : A quick introduction for developers

The following is an internal summary I wrote for a team that no longer exists, summarising a number of references from UXScotland, various book and blog posts. It extends the thoughts from my Pecha Kucha talk. For more details, please refer to the links throughout and the references at the bottom. The context here is … More User Experience : A quick introduction for developers

Clockwise : suggestions for managing your time

Plan ahead (with contingency) Whatever works for you – personal JIRA, Trello, stacked sticky notes, dead tree notebook Stay focussed Specify windows to check your email (e.g. first thing in AM and after lunch) and ignore emails until that window Rather than letting new tasks distract you, write them down, then continue on your current … More Clockwise : suggestions for managing your time