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Building Responsive Treemaps

By on Tuesday, August 5, 2014 in Code | 0 comments

Disabling Toast Notifications

By on Sunday, July 20, 2014 in Family, Social, Work | 0 comments

The Problem Software and social networking changed our lives a long time ago.  Ever felt chained to them, though?  Or, maybe worse, don’t know that you are?  I realised that I probably was a while ago, but like a few things, didn’t ever take the time to consider what I didn’t like, and how to change it.  Our recent holiday gave me plenty of time to reflect, and it was then that I finally decided, as a general rule: Software should be told what to do, it should not tell me what to do! I have been using RescueTime to capture information on what I actually do at work, and have been pleased to see my odd glance at social networks (mostly) limited to waiting for the compiler, or switching to a different setup for another project.  It’s well worth considering a subscription to see exactly how your attention is affected at certain times of the day, days of the month,...

Moving to Bitbucket from Github

By on Thursday, July 10, 2014 in Code, Versioning | 0 comments

Git is great.  I’ve explained why version control is so useful before, and loved how easy it was to get started with Github.  Now, however, having used Atlassian products as part of my daily workflow, I’m migrating to Bitbucket, its Git hosting solution. Why?  Three main reasons: Free private repos: demonstrating your work and contributing to open-source projects is great, but sensitive work, such as personal ventures and interview assignments, needs to be private.  Bitbucket provides free hosting of private repositories, whereas Github does not. Sourcetree: various Git User Interfaces — such as Git Extensions — do the job, and the Github Windows client works well for Github repos alone, but I much prefer Sourcetree.  It seems far more intuitive than any other Git UI I’ve used thus far, particularly for quickly branching, merging, then simultaneously committing and...

Testing Interesting Language Features

By on Monday, April 7, 2014 in Code | 0 comments

Have you looked at a snippet of code, given it a double-take, then thought “Woah, what is that?”  I’ve found this happens for languages I haven’t used at all or often, and those that I am familiar with. Rather than forget those useful or obscure features, I’ve begun to assemble them in a repository, DidYouKnow.  It started with some great examples from Python, like list comprehension, went onto Perl and regular expressions, and naturally, C++, easily the winner of an important code quality measurement.  Rather than hope that these examples actually do what they say, they are implemented as unit tests, and are (hopefully) as simple to run as possible.  This proved to be an excellent way of testing and growing my C# knowledge for the interview of my now new employer, too! This is intended to be a used a reference, hence the documentation comments for each...

Leaving London

By on Monday, March 24, 2014 in Family, Work | 1 comment

After 5.5 years of working in London, I’m relocating with my family; hopefully for many years, and probably forever, or until we retire and globe trot. This wasn’t an easy decision.  Doing so has meant I am leaving my current employer, my wife now permanently works from home, our son is starting at a new nursery, and we moved home!  Co-ordinating so many major changes, at times at once, was extremely challenging, but as I approach the end of my tenure in London, we are already seeing the benefits for which we’d hoped. The Dreaded Commute Why move, then?  Simple: having both my wife and I working in London simultaneously was interfering too much with our duties as parents.  A typical commute for the one travelling to the nursery and then to work was 1 hour and 45 minutes, as opposed to an hour straight to the office.  That meant enjoying about an hour of the morning with our little boy,...