Labnotes

Weekend Reading — 238 Years Later

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The Story Behind This Incredible Photo Of A Monkey Using An iPhone

Design Objective

Interface Moss:

When software in a particular category stops rapidly evolving and its interface begins to develop along a set of accepted patterns, designers begin to decorate. … Prolonged times of slow evolution lead to decorative excess. Unable to differentiate software on the level of how it works, developers try to push it ahead on the level of how it looks.

5 design problems we solved building the new GoSquared "The challenges of designing an analytics platform the whole team wants to use"

Mark DiMarco: User Interface Algorithms Using Voronoi diagrams to design better drop down menus and bar graphs.

Pen Type-A A minimal pen and ruler sleeve, over-engineered to last for generations, designed to take Hi-Tec-C ink cartridges.


Tools of the Trade

@zspencer:

Recipe for a productive software team:

  1. No “set start time”
  2. Limit to 4~6 hours “focused” work per day
  3. Encourage diverse work styles

Introducing Tessera, a Graphite Frontend This could well be the killer Graphite dashboard:

So Tessera starts by separating the queries from the presentations. Each query is a named object in the dashboard, which can be referenced by any number of visualizations. Then we add a rich array of presentations to choose from, including a variety of text-based visualizations which allow for highlighting key summary data.

Chart.js Simple API, great looking charts, uses Canvas so works in older IE, recently updated.

Passwordless Token-based authentication middleware for Express & Node.js. And here's how to use it with SMS.

Shrink-Wrap HTML containers with content-width What you need to know about width: max-content.

husky An easy way for Node.js projects to include Git hooks (pre-commit, pre-push, etc).

gulp-cheatsheet

Frisby.js – A REST API testing framework built on Node.js and Jasmine. (Where REST = hypeRtExt tranSfer proTocol)

Cohort Visualizer A handy tool for browsing cohort datasets.

BOOTSTRA.386 A Bootstrap theme to make webpages look like they are from the 1980s.


Lines of Code

Technical debt 101 A primer about technical debt, legacy code, big rewrites and ancient wisdom for non technical managers.

JavaScript Modules Handy. Shows you what a Node.js require would look like in the new ECMAScript 6 syntax.


Locked Doors

The Internet’s Own Boy The story of Aaron Swartz, social justice and the criminal bullying system that ended his life. A captivating documentary about an important Amertican story.

Facebook's Experiment On Emotions Sounds Creepier Than It Was For the benefit of people who don't ralize how the sausage is made:

  1. Websites do routinely capture what you type so they can analyze it. It is not "private until I hit the Post button", rather it's "their data as long as I'm typing into a web page".

  2. Websites routinely filter the content they show you, to elicit a particular reaction or behavior. And from time to time, will test different algorithms and measure how you react.

Or as Scott Adams says, The Internet is a psychology experiment.

NSA targets the privacy-conscious Everything you need to know about XKeyscore, and how the NSA is targeting you for simply downloading a privacy tool, or merely reading the Linux Journal.


None of the Above

BBC Institutes Changes to Prevent "False Balance" in Science Reporting That's a start!

10 Tricks to Appear Smart During Meetings This one is a guaranteed stamp of smartness:

Ask “Will this scale?” no matter what it is

It’s getting harder to tell what’s a real Silicon Valley startup and what’s a parody Don't let the title fool you, this is an important read about the questionable ethics of recent startups:

why not have a system where people hold a place in the line at the emergency department, and then people could pay to get quicker access to medical care?

What A Fireworks Show Looks Like When You Fly A Drone Through It Amazing.

Why mosquitoes bite some people and not others Or to quote God's unofficial Twitter acount:

Mosquitos are My way of telling you you’re delicious.

The Critical Mass for Safer Intersections University of Colorado-Denver study finds the minimum number of cyclists needed to boost safety.

Billy Beane’s Ascendant A’s Are Playing a Brand-New Brand of Moneyball This is about baseball, but also about startups and about hiring.

Freedom, 238 Years Later