Weekend Reading — Rime of the Ancient Mariner

This week we water houseplants using a dehumidifier, listen to tales of woe, build in public, and interpretive dance to hydraulic press.

Weekend Reading — Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Gary Legum “What if we're all misreading this photo and the lobsterwoman is so powerful that she's actually summoning a lobster out of the ocean into the boat.” Maybe she is … fascinating story

🪑 Design Objective

20 ideas for better data visualization

A decade and a half of instability: The history of Google messaging apps What … a … mess:

Because no single company has ever failed at something this badly, for this long, with this many different products (and because it has barely been a month since the rollout of Google Chat), the time has come to outline the history of Google messaging. Prepare yourselves, dear readers, for a non-stop rollercoaster of new product launches, neglected established products, unexpected shut-downs, and legions of confused, frustrated, and exiled users.

marvel-or-font Marvel character or typeface?

🧰 Tools of the Trade

PostHog If Amplitude and Segment had a baby: full-featured product analytics platform with usage funnels, cohorts, user timelines, KPIs, etc. Also includes feature flags, and can ingest from and export data to other systems. Self-hosted or cloud-based, and free up to 1M monthly events.


johnkerl/miller Miller is like awk, sed, cut, join, and sort for name-indexed data such as CSV, TSV, and tabular JSON.

Bytebase Self-hosted, web-based, database schema change and version control management tool for MySQL. Turn your boring ordinary visuals into captivating creative "hand-drawn" like illustrations.


Prelo Simple lead generation for those of us selling to startups.

Switch to iPad A blog for people going iPad only.

Nathan W. Pyle 👇 This thread perfectly captures what software engineers do:

is it possible to get my dehumidifier to water my houseplants

I do not have a firm grasp on physics but have sketched what I have in my mind, with it strapped to a ceiling fan

🕸️ Web-end

To Jeremy’s point, the onus should not be on web developers to keep track of older APIs in danger of deprecation. substr is an API that’s been in browser since, well, as far back as tracks browser support. alert, confirm, and prompt are the same. Green boxes back to the year 2002.

FFMPEG.WASM Run ffmpeg in the browser (also Node.js).

📓 Lines of Code

Ivor McTin I don’t get why more people don’t do this 🤷

multiple times I've had people be amazed you can just go and open up your web framework and look inside it, and it's sort of fun to see this revelation but also kind of sad that the boundary existed to begin with

David Smith ⛵️

Senior engineers are basically just the mariner from the Rime of the Ancient Mariner, telling anyone who will listen their tales of woe to try to get them to stop making the same mistakes again

🧑‍🤝‍🧑 Teamwork

Remote Managers Are Having Trust Issues Not everyone is enjoying the forced WFH experiment:

About 40% of the 215 supervisors and managers in our study expressed low self-confidence in their ability to manage workers remotely.

A similar proportion of managers had negative views about remote workers’ performance. Thirty-eight percent of managers agreed that remote workers usually perform worse than those who work in an office, with 22% being unsure (see the chart below).

It seems though these trust issues trickle down from the top:

First, for those managers who reported that their organization provides little support for flexible working, the level of self-efficacy for managing remote workers was lower.

Second, managers who reported lower job autonomy in their own work, close monitoring from their own boss, and a high degree of mistrust from their own boss had more negative beliefs about remote working, and greater mistrust of their workers.

John Cutler 👇 When your backlog gets overwhelming, and you don’t think you can afford any delay, is exactly the time to take a breather:

Met a CTO recently who did the right (but so hard) thing.

He walked into work and sent out an email:

“Today, we are deleting all jira tickets. Stop working. Please use this time for personal education. You have my full support”

Why?… (1/n)

#buildinpublic Share what you’re building in public by tweeting with the hashtag #buildinpublic.

📈 Business Side

Warby Parker: People staring at screens is great for our business Wait until they hear about VR goggles …

“The rising usage of smartphones, tablets, computers, and other devices has contributed significantly to increased vision correction needs and consistent new customer growth within the eyewear market,” the company said. Warby Parker added that 79% of Americans increased screen time over the past five years.

Sweetheart Deals and Plastic Knives The Verge sifted through 4.5 gigabytes and collected the best emails from the Apple vs. Epic trial.

🔒 Locked Doors

T-Mobile Hacker Who Stole Data on 50 Million Customers: ‘Their Security Is Awful’ At least hackers are giving you honest feedback.

⭐ None of the Above

Foxes In Love Delightful comic, check their Instagram for more.

Vinny Thomas

White people of a certain age love to tell you they are unfollowing you bc they view every interaction through the lens of customer service

HydraulicPress Series compilation A compilation of hydraulic press squashing things, split screen with interpretive dance.

Shreyas Doshi

“I am too busy with tactical stuff” is a lie we tell ourselves & others to avoid working on the truly important stuff.

In reality, you’re avoiding it because you:

  1. don’t think it’s important
  2. are addicted to quick wins
  3. don’t find flow in it

#3 is the elephant in the room

Rob N Roll “LMAO this is the best glassdoor review ever”

mark belan “NEW PIECE: Visualizing the Biomass of Life 🐂🐬🐝🐠🦩🦨🐢🐄”

matt “are u straight or are u logistically difficult”

Paul Bronks “alright, drama queen, we're nearly home”

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