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Last Visit 2012-11-09 18:06:58 |Start Date 2005-09-01 15:28:14 |Comments 1,246 |Entries 866 |Images 935 |Sounds 4 |Videos 95 |Mobl 173 |

Category: internets

10/23/08 08:40 - 38ºF - ID#46268

Feed Reader Slaughter

I have been trying to follow the principle of 'inbox 0' (background: ). Basically, you get to zero messages in your inbox at least once per day. Ruthlessly, if need be. It forces you to decide if you're really going to need to respond to something, to really think about how you're going to spend your communication time.

For a few months I've been using that system, and found it incredibly useful. Then a week ago I realized that the tyranny of my mail has always paled in comparison to the beast that is my feed reader.

So, I went through my feed reader and deleted all the feeds that update daily or that are only momentarily useful. I'm down to 60 feeds from over 200. The 60 that are left are the ones that update occasionally, and have a very high signal to noise ratio.

It was taking about an hour or two every night to sift through them all and get to 0 unread. It feels nice to be able to do that in 5 or 10 minutes today. I am missing out on some really awesome random information, but the good stuff that I really need to know still finds its way to me.

The downside is fewer random interesting links to post into the (e:strip) chat.

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Permalink: Feed_Reader_Slaughter.html
Words: 221
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: internets

10/21/08 08:22 - 47ºF - ID#46224


Don't ever dress your daughter up as Gallagher :)


Read all about it:
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Permalink: CHILD_ABUSE.html
Words: 26
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: work

10/20/08 09:49 - 58ºF - ID#46219

Pair Programming Starts Tomorrow

More work stuff - I need to fill my daily journal quota!

We've got our automated testing down pretty well at work, so on to the next step. We start pair programming every single day in the afternoons tomorrow. It will be interesting to see how this goes, if we can make a habit of it. It's the best way to learn.

( - pair programming )

We aren't going to do it full time, as the linked page suggests, but even part time should be very, very useful. I've learned to hate silo-style development. Everyone on a team should share ownership of every single line of code. There should not be anywhere that a developer fears to tread.

It's a little bit scary to work so closely with someone, the times that I've paired in the past - you have to fumble around and show your inadequacies, but it's worth it when you teach each other new things and hash out designs before they're halfway done. Code is easy to change as you're speaking about it and hard to change later.

The alternative - well, it is very nice to work alone and polish your work before you show it to other people, but it's just not as communicative in the end. I totally go off in the weeds when working alone.

We're going to rotate the pairs - most of the time it will be one Ruby expert paired with one former Fox Pro programmer who is learning Ruby, but is a domain expert in the software. It should be a good match. Everyone will work with everyone though, just to make sure we can all talk together.

Code reviews are coming, probably next month, too.

So the arc looks like -

Phase I - automated test suite: TDD and feature stories.

Phase II - pair programming.

Phase III - weekly team code reviews.

I love my job so much. I love love love it.
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Permalink: Pair_Programming_Starts_Tomorrow.html
Words: 332
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: estrip

10/19/08 09:51 - 36ºF - ID#46188

Close Your Eyes and Do It For England

I donated $40 last night to the campaign to defeat Proposition 8 in California (Prop 8 will remove the constitutional gender-indiscriminant right to marry, and nullify existing same sex marriages in CA). I'm hoping that James and I can go there next year and get married. Either there, or Connecticut.

We are upstanding citizens, we pay our taxes, don't hurt anyone, and just want to be able to rely on the legal system to acknowledge that we can make decisions for each other in times of crisis. We're not trying to undermine other families. I don't know how we could.

Someone linked to this on Twitter, and it convinced me to donate:

Yikes. is the link, if you're interested in donating, too.

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Permalink: Close_Your_Eyes_and_Do_It_For_England.html
Words: 132
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: work

10/18/08 08:04 - 49ºF - ID#46182


I am now the head of Rails development at my work, so I'm coordinating 6 developers. Three new to Rails, and two who are new to the company, and myself. It's actually pretty awesome to be running the projects. I get to be the face of our development team to all the executives and our parent company in Boston.

It's not really a promotion in the sense of title change, more of a coordinator role (still spend 80% of my own time writing code), but it's going to be nice when I have my yearly review next April to be able to claim credit for how nice things are going.

The best part of the job? Saying no to stupid things before they are forced upon us.


We're digging into a ground-up rewrite of one of our core products, an evaluation tool for Physical Therapy students. It's going much smoother then I had anticipated, although two of the guys we thought we'd have had on the project months ago are only now able to lay down Visual Studio and Fox Pro and join us.

There are two other ongoing projects too, so 3 things to keep tabs on and moving forward, plus all the training. Training devs is nice - another way to shape the company culture and make sure that we're doing things the same way. They really like Ruby over Fox Pro - big surprise :)

Thank God for the ADD drugs. I'd be hanging myself otherwise.
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Permalink: Pseudo_Promotion.html
Words: 247
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: starwars

10/16/08 10:21 - 50ºF - ID#46148

Episode 7?


(source / more in the series: )
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Permalink: Episode_7_.html
Words: 11
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: politics

10/16/08 09:15 - 54ºF - ID#46139

McCain - Last Debate

What McCain said is not going to play well among independents. Virtually everyone thinks that there should always be exceptions for the mother's health. McCain was very dismissive and used air quotes.

Liberals say that a majority of Americans support abortion rights, and conservatives that a majority don't. The fine print in all that is that a majority support early abortions and oppose late abortions - so it's just how you phrase it in your campaign spots, I suppose.

Personally that's me, pretty much, I am OK with first trimester abortions, and progressively less at ease after that, and by the third trimester I think it's OK to heavily restrict abortions, as long as there are exceptions for rape/health. Which is pretty much what the Supreme Court has decided, right?

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Permalink: McCain_Last_Debate.html
Words: 138
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: internets

10/14/08 07:16 - 67ºF - ID#46116


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Permalink: POWERTHIRST.html
Words: 7
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: apple

10/14/08 09:16 - 68ºF - ID#46104




I'm hoping there is progresses towards my dream laptop, for purchase in 2010(?):

MacBook Air, 4gb RAM, 256gb SSD, Dual-DVI out - or better on any of those features.
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Permalink: HAPPY_APPLE_DAY.html
Words: 42
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: politics

10/13/08 02:56 - 71ºF - ID#46094

Response to Joshua

I have personally been accosted on the street in at least 5 occasions by conservatives. In Buffalo, NY, Salt Lake City, UT, and Portland, OR. In addition, protestors have been at events that I've attended an additional dozens of times.

So: conservatives never shout down liberals? You've never seen protestors yelling at a gay pride parade? You've never seen conservative marches on Washington that vilify and call for the destruction of the left? You can't dismiss them as not being conservative, because the religious right and the hawks are a core constituency of conservative power.

What you're doing would be like me condemning all conservatives just because the conservatives who go to the effort to show up at a Palin rally call Obama a terrorist. Just because conservatives attack me in the street.

If I were to judge conservatives by the most outspoken among them, I would be forced to conclude that they are incapable of making an argument that wasn't based on emotions, hated anyone who wasn't just like themselves, and that all conservatives think you're unpatriotic and a terrorist sympathizer or faggot if you disagree with them.

Luckily, I don't judge conservatives by the worse among them.

The right is getting angrier and angrier, now that they're out of power. McCain-Palin rallies demonstrate this. Who do you think is going to be protesting in the streets these next 8 years? It's going to swing as the pendulum of power swings. You're just used to seeing the left out of power, not in it.

I do accuse you of cherry picking and painting with too broad a brush. You can't see any incident without taking it as confirmation about what you already believe and are predisposed to think about groups of people. It drives me crazy.



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Permalink: Response_to_Joshua.html
Words: 319
Location: Buffalo, NY



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