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Effective issue reporting for non-technical people

When someone emails me or comes to me to say “The site is not working” or “The App stopped working” with no other information there is a part of me that gets a little disappointed. Not in the work that potentially needs to be done to fix the problem (when the problem is not a user error) but in the …

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Contributing to convert.js

Have you ever needed to convert a cup into ounces for a project? Or milliliters into tablespoons? No? Apparently not a lot of people have as there aren’t many open source JavaScript libraries that do these kinds of conversions. They aren’t built into Vanilla JS by default and it’s such an uncommon problem (not all websites are about recipes and …

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Designing new AI? Learn from humankind’s first new lifeform

Humankind has a long history of looking to outer space for the possibility of intelligent life forms. In movies humans pit wits and weapons against extraterrestrials with hard to understand motivations. But Xenomorphs and little grey men are not the only kind of intelligent aliens. We as a species have spent the last few centuries evolving our definition of life, …

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Make 100 Ideas in 2017

The Kickstarter Make 100 initiative is a really great challenge to focus on completing tasks around one central theme or idea. I think I would like to apply this movement to reinforce better habits and to flex my creativity beyond topics and technology that I normally operate. Sure, I love augmented reality, virtual reality, 3D printing, electronics, and tinkering in …

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Open Sourcing Tiny Tower Tracker

It has been a few years since I was thoroughly into the mobile game Tiny Tower. Thankfully I had the will power to break that addiction but not before I wrote an Adobe Cordova app that allowed me to keep track of my tenants living and working in my tower. The major complexity of the Tiny Tower game was in finding …

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Inexpensive load testing with AWS and Goad

Getting code that functions efficiently, is well documented, and elegantly solves problems is a large part of successfully solving development challenges. But where a fair number of tutorials, books, and courses leave off is where you need to deploy a solution and support all the traffic a web based solution will get should it become popular. A large part of …

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Gentle reminder about file naming conventions

One of the podcasts I enjoy is Code Breakers, specifically because of their approach to reporting on technology. They don’t shy away from the good or the bad, and frame the stories and conversations in interesting ways. Another really fun aspect of the show is that the entire season is already online and can downloaded if you can crack the codes …

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Lego Math

1581 Lego bricks are more than 100 Lego bricks.  Simple, but not something you would think you would need to consider unless you visited a Lego store. If you purchase the Lego brick bundles online you pay much, much more for the specific bricks you want compared to getting the “cup” deal that only seems to be available in a …

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Making a simple Duckling costume

Recently I helped a friend with planning out and making a very quick costume inspired by Mo Willems’ popular children’s book Duckling gets a cookie!?! for Halloween. It was very simple and fun costume that took less than 2 hours to execute. I want to share what we did in case you want something fun for a party or as a …

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Pug Template Form Field Mixins

Node.js has become my go to for making small dynamic websites and micro-services. It’s also a good platform to practice DRY. A few months ago I posted about pug social media mixins but this time I’m sharing another GIST containing forms mixins. What I’ve done is make it simple and much faster to create a form using the pug template engine. …