Ubuntu and the Sad Chrome Tab

Chrome has a reputation for being incredibly unstable on Linux. It’s been rock solid for me on other platforms, but on Linux (Arch, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, and Ubuntu 14.10), I run into the “sad tab” multiple times a day. Since I use Chrome as a mail client, music player, word processor, calendar, and television, it’d…
Read More

Setting Up SQL*Plus in emacs

Emacs is a delightfully complex editor and, for those who love it, the only way they want to interact with the world. I’m a convert. I also work with relational databases. I wanted to add more functionality to emacs – I wanted to query Oracle directly from my text editor. Install SQL*Plus To get SQL*Plus…
Read More

Are You Sure That’s a Benchmark?

What’s the Point of a Benchmark? Wikipedia alleges that a benchmark is meant to make it easier to compare different computer systems just by looking at a number. For a benchmark to be useful, it should be run independently. How can I compare my graphics card to your graphics card if we can’t run the…
Read More

What Use is an Average?

What’s the point of an average, anyway? Common knowledge (the 1967 Children’s World Book Encyclopedia) states that an average has something to do with an arithmetic mean and/or a “central tendency”. I’m pretty sure that a “central tendency” is a sly sexual reference, so we’ll go back over to mathematics being mean. What’s an Average?…
Read More

AWS Credential Watch

The email started with “Your AWS account is compromised”. That’s the kind of thing that makes you stop whatever you’re doing and sit bolt upright. Amazon Web Services emailed me because one of my secret account keys had been posted to a publicly accessible web page – in this case, it was a github repository…
Read More

Updating a Pull Request

Let’s say you’ve gone and contributed to a project that’s hosted on GitHub. The usual way to do this is to fork the repository, make some changes on a branch in your own repository, and then send a pull requestback to the original author. What if you need to change something after you’ve submitted a…
Read More

Getting Started with Git

Getting Git Head over to the main git website and download the appropriate git for your OS. Or you could do one of the following: Linux: sudo apt-get install git or sudo yum install git OS X: brew install git or just download the client. Windows: The easiest thing is to use Chocolatey and run…
Read More

Naming conventions are poison.

I’m not referring to sensible naming conventions like “table names are always [singular|plural]” or “method names should be short but descriptive.” Those naming conventions are fine. They’re safe. They protect us from the stupidity of future generations of us (or at least uncaffeinated versions of ourselves). Poisonous naming conventions are the naming conventions that assume…
Read More

Community Keynotes

I go to a lot of conferences. If you ask my co-workers, I probably go to too many conferences. Going to a lot of conferences, I get a chance to see a lot of keynotes, closing keynotes, and plenary discussions. Different conferences have different keynotes, but the one thing that sticks out in my head…
Read More
Menu