Monthly Archives: August 2011

Thank you CmdrTaco and Slashdot

Rob Malda and Slashdot have done more to establish working, successful patterns for others to follow in online communities on the Web that few others (Metafilter, IndyMedia, and Salon.com come immediately to mind), can match, and are recognized for. Everyone keeps re-inventing elements of what they established, and missing lessons they learned the hard way.

A huge thank you to them all, and a good luck on your next endeavors Rob “CmdrTaco” Malda. Slashdot the community, and Slashdot the idea, has been a huge influence in my life and helped to show the world that online communities on the Web can work and help people connect.

Related:

Wired.com: Slashdot’s CmdrTaco Looks Back at 10 Years of ‘News for Nerds’

A few thoughts on Steve Jobs stepping down as Apple’s CEO

Apple is far more than the creation of one man. A casual scan of Folklore.org, a site focused on its history, will tell you that.

But so would Steve Jobs.

He’s created a culture at Apple that is going to go on long with out him.

A few reads about Jobs stood out for me today and I’d thought I’d share them here:

WSJ: Steve Jobs’s Best Quotes – as someone said on Twitter, you could avoid reading a few business/programming/design tomes and just absorb these and be better off.

His Stanford University commencement speech: ‘You’ve got to find what you love,’ Jobs says. He ties in his life history as an adopted child of working class parents, into his pursuit of his dream, the failures he encountered, and the lessons that he absorbed that made him stronger. There’s a bit about life, death, perspective and mission. It is worth reading in full. There are reasons it went viral. You can watch it on YouTube as well. But the text is best.

Anil Dash on “What they are ‘protecting’ us from” connecting Jobs liberal, working class background, with his success, and wondering why some are fighting the policies that enabled stories like Job’s to be possible.

You won’t find much Apple fandom here and I’m not going to wax poetic about Apple products, but in a way, for programmers of a certain age like myself, one of the leaders of the personal computing revolution is now walking off his most visible stage and we have much to be thankful for.

So thank you everyone at Apple, Pixar, and NeXT, and thank you Steve Jobs for providing inspiration, and the foundation for so many careers reflecting creativity, communication, and passion.

Java on… Heroku!!!!

Heroku adds suport for Java: Heroku for Java.

Take note of how simple a basic Java web app can be. Sure it’s not Sinatra or Flask, but it is still mighty simple.

Folks who claim that ‘Java is dead’ or that it should die, aren’t facing up to where it shines and what it provides. It has a place alongside Python and increasingly JavaScript in my tool belt.

I’m a happy polygot programmer and have used Groovy, and custom DSLs in Java to help speed application development by enabling those who are closest to change, to be able to harness it.

“Right Now”: On the present, being present, and practice (TEDXPhilly related)

1. Breathe.

2. Remind yourself: Whatever you are doing – right now – you are practicing.

3. Remind yourself: Whatever you practice – you are improving, you are building, you are growing.

4. Ask yourself: Is this what you want to improve, build or grow?

Do this a few times a day and I’m betting it will re-center you.

Things that compete for our attention are everywhere, I get distracted too easily myself, and I am doing this to retrain my focus when it drifts.

“Right Now” was the theme of last year’s TEDXPhilly. For some terrific thoughts on the theme see TEDXPhilly’s organizer (and so much more in the Philly region), Roz Duffy, and her post “here and now”.

This year’s theme is “The City”. It will be fantastic.

For more thoughts on “Right Now”, see Rahul Bijlani’s great essay, “You are not running out of time” and Umair Haque’s “The Builders’ Manifesto”.