Year in Review – 2014

I’ve never tried to write end-of-the-year posts; they tend to be biased towards recent events, and I find it disingenuous to summarize a year’s worth of events meaningfully into a small, overarching set of themes. This year however, I have an additional tool to organize my thoughts and make the task more tenable: I have […]

checkemail

Slack and Email and the Lowest Common Denominator

a16z is a well-known venture capital firm in the valley. I recently discovered that they produce a weekly podcast, and after a few episodes, have been impressed with the range of topics they’re covering. While they have some obvious bias and promotion towards their own portfolio companies, they make an honest effort to talk with […]

js-framework

When to Not Use a JavaScript Framework

I’ve been an advocate of JavaScript client-side frameworks for some time. Their true value is in managing complexity: as an application grows more complex and incorporates more functionality, frameworks provide a level of guidance and consistency across the codebase. They enforce the right abstractions, encapsulate reusable and generalizable components, which ultimately serve to keep the […]

interstellar2

Review: The Science of Interstellar

I enjoyed Interstellar. Despite a few plot holes and questionable motives in the overall story, I was impressed by the grand spectacle of space, mixed with the relatable human elements embodied by its main characters. The film does an excellent job in reminding us that great stories are about people. The Science of Interstellar is […]

Skimming More and Reading Less

I’m used to reading a fair amount. Back in grade school, I carried these giant fantasy novels around the house, and re-read the series on a regular basis. When my family got AOL, I was regularly lurking on a number of the forums, across any number of topics spanning video games and religion and (surprisingly) […]

The-Start-Up-of-You

Review: The Startup of You

The Startup of You is all about mapping the strategies and tactics that make startups – in theory – successful, and apply them to careers. The central tenets revolve around taking moderate amounts of risk, having backup plans, and not being afraid of hard work. Put together, they combine to form a playbook that aspires […]

Go to College

There is a curious rebellion against higher education. I get the sense that it’s an overreaction, a correction to the unquestioned emphasis placed onto college over the past few decades. The millennial generation is no longer seeing the gains enjoyed by previous generations[1], and education itself has moved away from teaching critical thinking and evaluation, […]

Solving Human vs. Natural Problems

Sam Altman wrote a short post which questions a premise: Why aren’t today’s startups more innovative? He notes that society has benefited from the consumer-centric technological focus in the last decade; starting with the smartphone and a persistent data connection, we have enabled communication and transportation, while disrupting industries from hospitality to media – which […]

my-nba-2k15-season

White Label Gaming

I’ve been slogging through My NBA 2k15 on my phone. The game is based on collecting cards to battle other players offline, and its core is identical to that of another game, WWE SuperCard. In fact, they simply reused their game engine, likely built for white-label collectable card games, and release new games by licensing […]

whatif

What If?

xkcd is one of a kind: the popular stick-figure webcomic for nerds and geeks seems to offer relevant commentary for pretty much any occasion. Its blend of computing, physics, math, and insights on life works well at a time when – as adults, anyway – it’s much more culturally acceptable to get excited about the […]

Full Stack Development Interview

I recently did an interview with Talentbuddy. They’re a mentorship program that looks to get people started on full-stack web development in about three months time, and wanted me to speak to our front-end technologies at Square, specifically on our decision to use the Ember.js framework and our lessons learned. I was happy to oblige. […]