On Recruiting

I’ll have more to say about this later, but I want to get this quote out there now so that technical leads, engineering managers, engineering directors, and vice-presidents of software engineering can have it embroidered on a pillow, printed on a t-shirt, and taped to their bathroom mirrors: The quality of your company’s software will …

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Conway’s Game of Life in JavaScript

I realized yesterday that I had never implemented Conway’s Game of Life, which is something of a rite of passage for young computer-science students. As I opted for a more non-traditional path to the software profession, I somehow missed that fun, even though I’ve made a point of implementing other computer-sciency things like it. Here …

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Becoming a Developer Overnight, In Only Five Years

“Do you think hard work can make you talented?” “Yes. I do.” This post was inspired by an article on Cal Newport’s site entitled, “The Pre-Med and Ira Glass: Complicated Career Advice from Compelling People”. That article caused me to reflect on my path to my current career. By most people’s standards, I accidentally backed …

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Fix it. Bolt it down. Forget it.

Setting up your environment to be the same all the time, everywhere, can make it easier to focus on the task at hand. From the age of about 14 I’ve been sitting in front of a computer with a guitar in my lap. It’s been a cheap steel-string guitar, a cheap classical guitar, a cheap …

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Dragsens version 1.4

UPDATE: Download the latest version from the main project page. There is also a version of this utility with a graphical interface that’s easier to use. It’s time for a new version of the command-line version of the dragsens utility, which allows one to change the mouse sensitivity for detecting mouse drag actions in Windows. …

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Windows Version of Dragsens

UPDATE: Download the latest version from the main project page. There is also a console-based version of this utility that’s more suitable for system administrators. In response to a comment on the previous version of the drag sensitivity utility, I’ve created a new version of the utility that includes a graphical interface and a means …

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Updated Version of Dragsens

UPDATE: Download the latest version from the main project page. There is also a version of this utility with a graphical interface that’s easier to use. I have built a new version of the dragsens utility, which allows one to change the mouse sensitivity for detecting mouse drag actions in Windows. This new version fulfills …

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My Life With Programming Languages

A language that doesn’t affect the way you think about programming, is not worth knowing. — Alan Perlis My first programming language was Basic on a TI-99/4A. Contra Dijkstra, I don’t think it did me too much harm. Of course, I did eventually “outgrow” that language. Just now I was pondering my progression through various …

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George Orwell and Effective Coding

I spend a lot of time and effort trying to get better at the craft of software development. My goal every day is to fall asleep as a better programmer than the one that awoke that morning. While this involves a lot of reading and practice within the field, I usually learn more by studying …

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You Might Be an Old Hacker If…

It occurred to me recently that I’ve been using the Internet for almost 18 years now. That doesn’t put me into any particularly elite category since there were a lot of users way before I came along, but it does make me feel old to know that there are students in college now who were …

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