Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Software links worth remembering

I tend to quote software trivia  - starting a list for my future reference:

Igor's Laws Of Programming

1. No duplicate code
2. Trust Tests not experts
3. Create Issue then whine

Design Patterns

  • Bugs solved by using a static type system 15%.
  • Bugs per  KLOC is a language independent constant @ 15-50/1000 .
Reading to be a great programmer
  • Pragmatic Programmer - How to be a great programmer

Reading to make great software: 

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Optimaling vs Maximizing

Copied from Seth Godin as I've always tried to articulate this, but was never able to so I'll copy swaths of his post:

I can run a comfortable 6 miles per hour, but I can also run 10 miles an hour at full speed.  But, turns out I can only run 10 miles an hour for 5 minutes, while I can run 6 miles per hour for hours.

Ten miles an hour is maximum speed, but it isn't optimum.

Systems have an optimum level of performance. It's the output that permits the elements (including the humans) to do their best work, to persist at it, to avoid disasters, bad decisions and burnout.

One definition of maximization is: A short-term output level of high stress, where parts degrade but short-term performance is high.

Capitalism sometimes seeks competitive maximization instead. Who cares if you burn out, I'll just replace the part...

That's not a good way to treat people we care about, or systems that we rely on.

As a valuable contributor seeking to build a career, you benefit when you develop a unique asset, because that asset gives you the leverage to choose a niche in a system that respects optimization instead.

It's all about the 43" 4K Monitor

You might say I have a monitor obsession. I'd not disagree, but I would argue I spend 8 hours a day on my monitor, so having the best monitor I can is worth it. I'd also argue, monitors last forever, so you might as well get them as soon as they meet your needs.

Speaking of, I now have a 43" 3840x2160 monitor.  It lows my 34" ultra wide out of the water, and I'm now getting rid of my 27" and 30" monitors.  There's a few things you'll need to know when getting this monitor.

1) The left and rightmost 1/2" are in shadow when you're close. 

This is a weird effect, described here. According to the author of the review it happens on all the current 43" monitors. When you move your head to see the left most edge, you can't see the right edge because it's in shadow, and vice versa.  Most windows have a margin so you won't notice. The place I have noticed it is in terminals (conemu and iterm).

2) Not everything can drive the 4K resolution @ 60 HZ.

At 30 HZ, I get headaches, so I need to get up to 60 HZ. You can see the resolution you're running at here.

For my desktop, I had to buy a new HDMI 2.0 video card,
For my 2015 Macbook Pro I needed to buy res-x and use special settings.
For my Surface Pro 3  - install updated intel drivers manually and then add a custom resolution to get to 50 hz.

3)  When using a monitor arm, you need a beefy one with a VESA 200x200 mount.
Or, you can use a not beefy one, and reinforce it with coke cans.

Even with these issue, I still highly recommend it.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

StartupVille: Not a unicorn? Consider being a zebra!

When I worked on Smile, I struggled because I wasn't interested in profit, but interested in making the world a better place. To achieve this, I'd need a sustainable business, not an exponential one. However, investors want exponential, not sustainable businesses.  This table comparnies unicorns and Zebras is from a great article on the topic.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

I love my 34" ultra wide monitor

I love monitors. I already have a 27" monitor and a 30" monitors, and now I've added the dell 34". It's huge, elegant, and has all the ports a geek could dream of. 

Ultra wide are sold as being amazing for productivity and movie watching.   I don't disagree, but there are a few gotchas you should know about. 

For productivity ultra wides are extolled as the equivalent of two monitors side by side.  For me, the width of the ultra wide is a bit shy of what I'd like for two windows side by side.   Don't get me wrong, it's doable, but with my old eyes and jacked up font sized, half a 34" monitor wide is too skinny a window.     I usually end up make one window take up 2/3s of the screen and another window take up 1/3.  It's too bad the windows snap feature doesn't allow you to do this automatically. If you have a good software solution for this holler. 

For movies, especially ones available in 21:9 the 34" ultra wide monitor is INCREDIBLE. The only problem with watching movies on the monitor is it's so big, you need to actually back away from the screen.    There is one gotchya on 21:9 content it's hard to find. Most of you tube is 16x9, and netflix only encodes in 16x10. 

Luckily for Netflix there is a browser extension you can get called called ultrawide display aspect ratio which removes the letter boxing. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Emotional Intelligence, Strategy, and how Igor Ticks @ idvorkin.github.io

If you're interested in learning more about How Igor ticks,  Emotional Intelligence and Strategy, check out my alpha "blog" @


It's currently very rough but has a few interesting properties:

From a content perspective, it's focused on less technical topics - book reviews, strategy, emotional intelligence, and my own self discovery.

From a technical perspective, it's a jekyll static  markdown blog, something I've always wanted to try because I can use powerful editing tools, keep the content under source control, and never need to worry about being at the mercy of my service provider.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Cool Tools: Remote Tech Support

We all have to support our friends and families on their broken computers. Recently I was introduced to teamviewer. It's a remote support application that free for non commercial use, and works perfectly.   May your next "mom's computer doesn't work" incident be less stressful.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Monitor Sizes And Ratios

Computer folks spend LOTS of time on monitors, so getting the right ones matters.  Monitor dimensions are incredibly important, so here's the dimension table for the high resolution monitors

Diagonal Ratio Size
27" (2560x1440) 1.77 (13.2, 23.4)
30" (2560x1600) 1.6 (15.8, 23.7)
34" (3440x1440) 2.3 (13.5, 31.1)

In case I need to do this again, here's the computation in R