Apps don’t Magically Increase Reach

Apps are supposed to be magical. Well, not so much magical as they are a supposedly a requirement for most businesses, the main way to get in front of users whose time is increasingly dominated by mobile. Admittedly, I feel a little schadenfreude whenever evidence points to the contrary, a big part of it coming […]

Retina is Driving PC Hardware

Nope, couldn’t do it. I took the new Macbook “upgrade” that I bought a few weeks ago back to the Apple store and told them that I’d stick with my 4-year-old battleship for now. Quick aside – Apple’s hardware return policies are a blast from the past. Most products can be returned, with no restocking […]

What Happens when Houses are too Expensive to Afford?

I get notifications from Redfin every day on the houses for sale in the neighborhood. Like Louis Gray, I’m often astounded by how much the cost of real estate has been raising in the Bay Area, going from merely “really expensive” to completely out of reach in a matter of 4-5 years. Increased housing prices […]

Progressive Web Apps

I read an interesting article a few days ago on the idea of building web apps “progressively”, in that they take on more characteristics of native apps but still retain the flexibility and reach of the web. The key differentiation is that these “native features” – notification support, home screen icons, going from a window […]

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The Chronicles of E-Sports History

E-sports aren’t quite mainstream yet. Despite ESPN airing tournaments on one of its major channels (though not without controversy), virtual sports are very far removed in scope and mindshare compared to physical sports, most of which have had centuries – if not millennia – to mature. One aspect that’s currently lacking is the chronicling of […]

The Complexity of Mobile Software

Like most folks who work in technology, I get roped into helping non-technical friends and family out with their software woes. Though once in a while this would be a legitimately technical task (e.g., trying to remove spyware from my parents’ PCs), more often than not it’s really just teaching them how to use their […]

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How to Read

I think it has been years since I’ve picked up and read a physical book – for better or worse, my reading habit has gone completely digital, and I prefer my Kindle and its backlight over the printed word, or the iPad and Instapaper/Safari. Beyond acknowledging the reality that there’s really just too much to […]

Not Adjusting Expectations

I typically spend a few minutes every Sunday to go through my finances. This means checking up on credit card statements, ensuring I have enough money in bank accounts to pay for upcoming bills, and estimating whether I should put money in or take money out of the stock market. As far as financial hygiene […]

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Unlearning Keyboard Shortcuts

Muscle memory is a powerful tool. I’m currently typing on a Kinesis Advantage keyboard. It’s yet another ergonomic keyboard, one those major difference – which contributes to its steeper learning curve – is in its emphasis on using the thumb for keys over the pinkie fingers. The keys are designed for finger comfort; the shape […]

Software Eating Software Engineering

A few days ago, a question was asked on Hacker News: What is the future of the programmer? I had briefly agonized about this before, in context of contrasting how I came into computing in my childhood and what analog I can offer to my own children for their eventual careers. There is nothing special […]

4 Years Later, a Slower MacBook Upgrade

I went out and got the new MacBook to try for a week or two. It is quite a wonder of hardware and industrial design: thin and light, cools completely passively (so no noisy fans), with a fairly good retina display and a good 5-6 hours of battery life under my normal usage patterns. The […]