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How Is Critical 'Life or Death' Software Tested? | Motherboard
"Your average scripter likely isn't writing a whole lot of proofs or going through the rigors of formal program verification, generally. Which is fine because your average scripter also isn't writing software for jet airliners or nuclear power plants or robotic surgeons. But somebody is—and the odds are pretty good that your life has been in their hands very recently. How do you know they're not a complete hack?"
software  testing  formal  proof  method  avionics 
8 weeks ago
A Pixel Artist Renounces Pixel Art |
"Working in high resolution doesn’t prevent us from making great game art. The things that made pixel art great are the same things that make “HD” art great. Artists must make the decisions, not computers. Instead of hand-placing squares, hand-place curves. Good art is good art, and nothing beats the real deal. Embracing the medium simply ensures that everybody else knows it."
animation  art  drawing  pixel  pixelart  auro  game  retina  hd  ios 
10 weeks ago
What Passes for Excellence — Medium
If you’re looking for housing in Silicon Valley, you may have come across the following listing for spots in a startup house/community of excellence outside of Stanford. Others have expressed thoughts about it, but what I think it’s really missing is a between-the lines interpretation of the requirements, which, according to at least one member of the house, are simply an amalgamation of the qualities “good” people in pursuit of “excellence” happen to have.

So to clear up any confusion about what infuriatingly vague words like “good” and “excellent” mean in this context, I have helpfully annotated the listing. Good luck, potential renter! Let me know if you get in!
elizabethspiers  siliconvalley  horriblepeople  housing  criteria  community 
11 weeks ago
I tried Polyphasic sleep for a week and it felt like LSD — Hopes&Fears — flow "Experiment"
"Polyphasic sleep works for a small, privileged, percentage, but for the rest of us, it seems like smart sleep, as opposed to less sleep, is how to get more out of your day. And after spending a week trying to be one of them, I’ve decided that most Polyphasics are probably unemployed or self-employed, social recluses, surviving on Solyent, not getting laid, or a little crazy."
science  sleep  polyphasic  two  rem  nap  multiple  exhaustion  tiredness  alert  awake  theanine 
may 2015
Dan McKinley :: Choose Boring Technology
"Let's say every company gets about three innovation tokens. You can spend these however you want, but the supply is fixed for a long while. You might get a few more after you achieve a certain level of stability and maturity, but the general tendency is to overestimate the contents of your wallet. Clearly this model is approximate, but I think it helps.

"If you choose to write your website in NodeJS, you just spent one of your innovation tokens. If you choose to use MongoDB, you just spent one of your innovation tokens. If you choose to use service discovery tech that's existed for a year or less, you just spent one of your innovation tokens. If you choose to write your own database, oh god, you're in trouble."
tech  boring  technology  devweb  programming  tools  software  business  innovation 
may 2015
On Learning and Comprehension
"We often see blog posts about optimizing our images or HTML, or even our team's work flow. But what about optimizing our comprehension? In an ever-changing industry where tools, ideas, and opinions grow exponentially, how can we keep up? This is a topic very close to my heart as somebody who is both stubbornly ambitious and also has a really terrible memory.

"Front end developers are often bombarded with so many tasks, options, and stimuli, that we end up being overwhelmed by choices, causing a complete paralysis and block to getting anything done at all. This is called option paralysis or analysis paralysis (that's a real thing). And it doesn't help that we work on the internet, where opening a new tab is like walking into a new room, causing us to forget what we were just focused on doing, and starting on a new stimuli instead."
memory  stimulation  distraction  cognition  neuroscience  senses  learning  understanding  doodle  listen 
april 2015
An Old Fogey’s Analysis of a Teenager’s View on Social Media — The Message — Medium
"I don’t for a second fault Andrew for not having a perspective beyond his peer group. But I do fault both the tech elite and journalists for not thinking critically through what he posted and presuming that a single person’s experience can speak on behalf of an entire generation. There’s a reason why researchers and organizations like Pew Research are doing the work that they do — they do so to make sure that we don’t forget about the populations that aren’t already in our networks. The fact that professionals prefer anecdotes from people like us over concerted efforts to understand a demographic as a whole is shameful. More importantly, it’s downright dangerous. It shapes what the tech industry builds and invests in, what gets promoted by journalists, and what gets legitimized by institutions of power. This is precisely why and how the tech industry is complicit in the increasing structural inequality that is plaguing our society."
culture  social  twitter  media  facebook  writing  medium  tech  technology  danahboyd  research  pew 
march 2015
How To Roast A Chicken, And Become A Grownup At Last
"Not that roasting a chicken is all that hard, mind you. Quite the opposite, actually. It's straightforward, easy, and—so long as you hew to the instructions—pretty much foolproof. In fact, this is precisely what makes it a rite of passage. What bars the teens (and the overgrown teens) from doing it well is their adolescent preference for showier, more extravagant shit, for being impressive, for proving themselves. The grownup cares not for impressing you buncha jerks! The grownup cares only for getting some good damn food on the table and not having to do two loads of dishes before bed. This is the inner clarity of mind which one must have, to accomplish a well-roasted chicken. This is what it means to be a grownup. To recognize the real threat: dishwashing."
chicken  food  cooking  cookery  roast  oven 
march 2015
A Baseline for Front-End [JS] Developers: 2015 - Adventures in JavaScript Development
"It’s been almost three years since I wrote A Baseline for Front-End Developers, probably my most popular post ever. Three years later, I still get Twitter mentions from people who are discovering it for the first time.

"In some ways, my words have aged well: there is, shockingly, nothing from that 2012 post that has me hanging my head in shame. Still, though: three years is a long time, and a whole lot has changed. In 2012 I encouraged people to learn browser dev tools and get on the module bandwagon; CSS pre-processors and client-side templating were still worthy of mention as new-ish things that people might not be sold on; and JSHint was a welcome relief from the #getoffmylawn admonitions – accurate though they may have been – of JSLint."
javascript  pocket  bestpractices  js  rmurphey  rebeccamurphey  bocoup  rooster  frontend  webdev  baseline  tools  testing  library  module  es 
march 2015
Let’s Write Fast JavaScript — The JavaScript Collection — Medium
"That’s it, seven tips and eleven benchmarks to help you write faster JavaScript. It’s not all about performance tricks, it’s about understanding how things work in JavaScript to take your programming skills a level further."
development  javascript  js  performance  webdev  frontend  perf 
march 2015
How to find the third-parties on your site | WebPerf Ninja
"The request map runs a test in Chrome on public WebPageTest and uses the initiator, referer and redirect data to work out where every request comes from."
third  party  script  js  javascript  frontend  webdev  webper  performance  http  call 
march 2015
Contiguous Time Periods
"It is always better, and more efficient, to maintain referential integrity by using constraints rather than triggers. Sometimes it is not at all obvious how to do this, and the history table, and other temporal data tables, presented problems for checking data that were difficult to solve with constraints. Suddenly, Alex Kuznetsov came up with a good solution, and so now history tables can benefit from more effective integrity checking. Joe explains."
tsql  sql  time  period  temporal  table  db  database 
march 2015
How to get Database Design Horribly Wrong
"Database Design is one of those tasks where you have to carefully get all the major aspects right. If you mess-up just one of these, it can all go horribly wrong. So what are these aspects that can ruin database design, and how can you get them right? Robert Sheldon explains."
db  design  database  failure  patterns 
march 2015
Notes on watching "Aliens" for the first time again, with a bunch of kids | MZS | Roger Ebert
"We watched "Aliens" anyway. It went over well. The biggest challenge was dissuading kids from trying to predict every single thing that was going to happen. This is a generation of talkers. They have to comment on everything. No thought can go unexpressed. Maybe this was true when I was a kid as well (I honestly don't remember), but rather than endlessly correct them I decided to just roll with it, exercising my slumber party guardian veto power during scenes that I felt pretty sure would enthrall them if they would just shut up for five minutes (I was rarely proved wrong in my guesses). But it was a sharp crowd, and for the most part the movie went over quite well, for an analog-era science fiction spectacular that's turning 30 next year. "
aliens  film  movies  parenting  mattzollerseitz  rogerebert 
march 2015
A JS framework on every table - Allen Pike
"Neck deep in frameworks, choosing one we’re actually happy with becomes virtually impossible. The Paradox of Choice means that knowing you’re probably not using the right framework causes endless cognitive dissonance. Ironically, this dissatisfaction drives even more people to create their own frameworks."
development  opinion  webdesign  javascript  js  framework  angular  fatigue 
march 2015
Why We Banished the Hamburger Menu From Our iPhone App | Redbooth Blog
"When we started working on a new chat feature for Redbooth’s iPhone app, our Product & Design team had some ulterior motives. Yes, we were excited about giving our customers a way to connect instantly with their co-workers, even away from their desks and on the go. But we also saw an opportunity to rid the app of one of our biggest pet peeves: the dreaded hamburger menu."
hamburger  design  ios  mobile  ux  ui  menu 
march 2015
The Quest For Virality Is Making Everything Shitty
"It’s not that wanting to be noticed is a bad thing. I like it when people make movies people want to watch and write things people want to read. That’s fine by me and always will be. But I don’t want everything I fucking see to be a stream of deliberately random shit pre-programmed to go viral. The whole of something is almost beside the point now. It’s more important that an ad or a sporting event or an award show have some tiny particle of it that will garner the proper amount of attention, good or bad. Anything created on one platform (God, I hate that word) must have something in it that can thrive on other platforms. The dancing shark itself in an inert thing, but now it has an industry of bullshit built on top of it. I can’t trust the dancing shark to just be a dancing shark. There is now the lingering possibility that the shark was planted there as a viral agent for SeaWorld or something."
deadspin  virality  viral  marketing  guerilla  left  shark  nfl 
february 2015
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