Aging is a curious thing. You don’t feel any older until one day someone tells you you’re too old for something and you think “What?! I’m not any older than I was last time I did that!” And of course you’re wrong, because you’re always older than you were at any other time you bothered to wonder about how old you were. We choose to confront our aging in one lump sum every year because the threat of a birthday is easier to cope with than the reality that we are slowly advancing towards death every day.

I Suck at Stickers

I’m really terrible at stickers. I tend to just amass them, saving them for some sort of theoretical perfect application. Like one-shot Final Fantasy items I’ll carefully preserve through 80 hours of gameplay until there’s no game left to use them in and all the fun is gone. I’m gonna try to do better. I have a personal conviction that collecting is a disease, and this is nearly the same thing.

100 MPH in the Wrong Direction

It’s easy to go 100 miles per hour in the wrong direction and think you’re accomplishing something by your efforts and when you arrive in a strange place and finally stop to ask where you are you wonder how you got so off-track when you tried so hard. But of course it’s the most basic principle of reality that, as Lao-Tse put it, if we don’t change where we’re going we’ll end up where we’re headed.

Buddhist Acceptance

I’ve probably written about Buddhism two dozen times but never published a word of it. I think that’s owing to the fact that I don’t feel a sense of expertise, only an acute interest. Perhaps that’s not the best approach since even the masters of Buddhism don’t claim mastery. I’ve never called myself a Buddhist because I’ve never been a disciple, but rather one fortunate enough to be warmed by simple proximity to its ideas.

Accept it, Ubiquitous Computing is Here to Stay

I have to admit I’m pretty excited about Google Glass. It’s a big step forward for lifelogging, for augmented reality, and for ubiquitous computing of all kinds. I haven’t gotten my hands on Glass personally, but it really feels like there’s good reason to be excited. Tech blogger Robert Scoble recently wrote: I will never live a day of my life from now on without it (or a competitor). It’s that significant.

Frictionless Project Organization for iOS

Originally posted on the OrgSync Dev Blog (, but that site no longer exists, so I’ve reposted it here. There comes a time in every MVC(-ish) app’s life when it starts to get a bit heavy. Sure, a few out-of-place lines of code here or there don’t hurt too much when the codebase is young and agile, but in a middle-aged app they start to be a concern. Slovenly habits beget more slovenly habits; refactorings don’t come as easily as they used to.

Big Ruby Presentation Round Up

Originally posted on the OrgSync Dev Blog (, but that site no longer exists, so I’ve reposted it here. Last week the OrgSync development team was out en masse at Big Ruby Conf in our own backyard of Dallas, TX. We had a great time and listened to so many fantastic talks that it’s hard to keep track of them all. To help with this problem I decided to put together a complete list of talks replete with links to slide decks.

The Beauty of Mathematics

Those who cannot appreciate the “cold and austere”1 beauty of mathematics are looking at the package and not the contents. One finds in the packaging a world of strict, formal symbols and fixed (non-creative) rules for manipulation. Non-creative arenas by definition resist the ultimate human act of creation (read: art). But it’s not in the results that we find the principal beauty of mathematics–it’s in the creation, the problem-solving, which requires the greatest human creativity the world has ever seen.

The Importance of Tiny Things

This weekend, as I was waiting at my doctor’s office for the results of my rapid strep test, I downloaded and started reading Kurzweil’s new book, How to Create a Mind. The first chapter relates the story of geologist Charles Lyell (1797–1875), his influential Principles of Geology, and the impact it had on Darwin’s work on natural selection. Particularly interesting to me is the idea that (apparently) one of the greatest contributions of Lyell—and one of the hardest to swallow—is the understanding that geologic change, such as the creation of canyons, results from the aggregation of tiny changes over long periods of time.

The Lean Write-Up?

Well, I’m planning to start using this blog again…I hate to make yet another “I’m doing this again” metapost only to follow it with silence, so here’s the rundown on what’s different this time: I actually do write quite a bit, it’s just a question of where, but deciding where to write something often stalls me on writing it at all, so a default, catch-all bucket will likely boost output (I switched to one “omninotebook” a couple years back rather than topical notebooks and that has definitely helped—I see this as the shared edition).