The End of the Before-Times

Amused by this Guardian article, which draws from this tweet, which is inspired by this BBC piece, here is the last picture on my phone that represents normal life, or as we’ll soon know it: the before-time. This is sunrise in Joshua Tree, California on March 8. We had met some friends for a one-nighter camping trip. The virus was in the news a lot by then, and we greeted each other by kicking boots.

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100 Days Offload: Time For An Adjustment

This is day 17 of the 100DaysToOffload challenge for me. I have to say it’s been taxing. While I am very happy that I got this far, and I am happy with the posts I cranked out, I can tell it’s time to make an adjustment. This pace of posting is too demanding for me and my family, and it’s also limiting to some extent how much I’m getting out of the challenge.

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Deno Saved My Side-Project

My main side-project is a server that runs personal web-based applications. The idea is that web apps could be built and distributed more like the smartphone ecosystem than the current model of “everything online is a service”. I’ll talk more about this project some other time, but for now suffice it to say that for the idea to work, a user should be able to install a web-app without putting themselves at risk.

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Thoughts on Hugo

This blog is generated using Hugo. A documentation site I’m rebuilding is also made with Hugo. These two projects have given me a chance to get to know the tool, to appreciate it at times, and to curse it otherwise. Some of my complaints are inherent to static site generators, others are more specific to Hugo. Your Directory Tree Is Configuration Code In its simplest form, a static site generator takes a directory tree full of markdown files, and cranks out an identically structured directory tree full of HTML files.

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Laravel Temptations

I need to modernize an old PHP web-app. I am facing down many hours of sifting through old messy code (written by me over many years) to figure out the essence and transform it into something more robust. This is going to be painful, and I’m looking for anything that can help ease the burden. One such helpful thing that comes up over and over in modern PHP chatter is Laravel.

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Web Of OK People

I’m terribly frustrated with common social networks, and by extension the spread of misinformation and the spread of hate. This is a great time to be an a-hole, or a blowhard, or to have a desire to spread a viral idea to the world if you have no scruples. We are in the golden age of BS. Social Media Social media companies love to say they are bringing the whole world together.

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Google Services I'm Stuck With (For Now)

I used to merrily sign up to any new service that Google created. The company still espoused its “Don’t be evil” motto, and the concept of privacy had yet to feel like something we had taken for granted. Things are different now. We’ve become more aware of how much of our private lives are floating from server to server, trading between data brokers to make a whole bunch of people – but not us – rich.

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Wfh Tip: Get Outdoors and Exercise

Los Angeles is starting to lift its stay-at-home restrictions, and hiking and cycling trails are among the things reopening. Whew, just in the nick of time. I haven’t really exercised since March (I don’t count doing a few pullups as “real exercise”), and my irritability is getting bad. I need to get out and exhaust myself in some way at least once a week or I am prone to moments of anger and a general sense of angst.

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To Draft Or Not To Draft

I wrote my first nine posts for #100DaysToOffload in one day without starting from a draft. Many bloggers leverage a well stocked drafts folder, and the really rich ones might be sitting on 30 post drafts and ideas! I also have a folder full of partially written posts, and you would think I’d leverage that to get me through this nerdy take on Century Club. But that’s not how I’ve been doing it.

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Mojave Planes From My XCOR Cubicle (Circa 2003)

A tweet about an Antonov heavy lift aircraft at LAX reminded me that one such beast had landed in Mojave when I was working there. I set off to find pictures of the event in my old files, but we’re talking about early 2000s here, and I came up empty. It’s very possible I didn’t have a camera with me the day they let us look around the inside of the beast.

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Olivier Forget

Los Angeles, USA
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Aerospace Engineer turned sofware developer and bootstrappin' entrepreneur.