Wednesday, October 01, 2014

OctoJam 2014: A game jam for the 1970s

From the OctoJam page:
Chip8 is a language that let programmers write portable games for 8-bit home computers in the 1970s. Today, Chip8 lives on in the form of emulators. 
Octo is a tool that makes it easy to write and share Chip8 programs. Roll up your sleeves and join us for a retro game-jam celebrating Chip8!
And the gamejam rans through October. I love me a long-running gamejam, because I don't have time to devote an entire weekend to these things. What will you build using this (emulated) old hardware?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Future Programming Manifesto

The programming language researcher Jonathan Edwards is, honestly, one of my heroes. He published his Future Programming Manifesto which outlines principles guiding his work, and I've re-read it a few times. I want to post it here just because I believe in these points so much but you absolutely must read the full guidelines at length and let them sink in.
  • Inessential complexity is the root of all evil
  • Complexity is cumulative cognitive load
  • Our institutions, culture, and psychology all foster complexity
  • Think outside the box
  • Programming for the people
  • Simplicity first; performance last
  • Disciplined design evaluation
and just for a teaser of the full thing:
We are not doing Science. We are doing Design

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Oh Captain, My Captain

I know of you, but can I say I know you?
Every time I see you, you wear a mask.
Every time I see you, there is a new mask.
I think you wore those masks so skillfully,
But I have come to notice them slightly askew.
I see with each mask a glimpse of the hidden face,
And I see among all the masks similarities.
You have taught me much in my life.
As a child you taught me fun and carefree joy.
When coming of age, you taught me of identity.
As an adult, you taught me of freeful dignity.
I mourned your loss with those who shared sorrow,
And my pain is not unique but it shouldn’t be,
Because the difference you have made is vast.
The world may mourn your loss in sorrow,
But we will always remember your name with joy.

In memory of Robin Williams

Thanks to Apple, this is now my iTunes library

I write here about programming, how to program better, things I think are neat and are related to programming. I might write other things at my personal website.

I am happily employed by the excellent Caktus Group, located in beautiful and friendly Carrboro, NC, where I work with Python, Django, and Javascript.