Articles

A collection of longer, more in-depth posts representing some of my better writing

Year in Review — 2022

Compared to the year-long economic celebration of cheap capital in 2021, the contrast to 2022 is stark: raising interest rates, high inflation, a battered stock market, mass layoffs—and this is with a strong US economy with persistently low…

Asking an AI the Right Questions

It feels like 2022 is the year of democratizing AI. GPT-3 made headlines back in 2020 when it launched to a limited audience and its new users played around with the tool, but it took a little over a year until its API was made generally available…

The Kinesis Advantage360

It took about 10 months, but Drop and Kinesis finally shipped their new Kinesis Advantage360 Professional keyboard over late September. Coincidentally, at about the same time, I started messing around with mechanical keyboards and had just built a…

The Startup Flywheel

The PayPal Mafia is stuff of legend around Silicon Valley—at least, for the first 2 decades of the 21st century. Counted in this group of early employees are a number of entrepreneurs and investors for some major companies during that time:…

Textbook Answers

One of the first interview questions I learned to give, as a new grad engineer a couple months out of college, was asking candidates how to detect a cycle in a linked list. I was taught that the “right solution” was essentially…

Where Engineers End Up

Often, I end up relating my own experiences in industry to other software engineers and managers to help them in their careers. At times, it’s someone on the same team at work, one of my direct or skip-level reports. I also tend to segue…

Year in Review — 2021

It’s close to the end of another year, which makes for a good excuse to take stock of these last 12 months, take a deep breath, before charging forward into 2022. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still very much a part of our lives and some ways…

Career Advancement in Large Teams

I had a chance to chat with someone who recently joined one of the major tech companies as an engineering manager. Upon settling into their team, they were disappointed to learn that the actual work environment, plus the work itself, is much less…