Friday, August 31, 2012

Read Counter, an Idea

Originally posted to my new website, where all of this content will eventually go.

Just a thought. We have so many tools for, essentially, ranking content.

We vote on Reddit, like on facebook, plus one on Google. We pretend this stuff is (relatively) new, but aren't they all just non-passive hit counters? Maybe a return to the beginnings would be nice. But, simply loading a page isn't enough.

My proposal: the Read Counter.

At the end of a page, the Read Counter would trigger simply by scrolling into view. It would be a rough measurement of traffic, and as a simple bonus would avoid counting people who opened the page but don't seem to have actually read the content.

Simple, but useful. Passive, but meaningful.

Friday, August 24, 2012

PyCon 2013 Posts I want to see

PyCon 2013 will be my third PyCon, and I'm walking into it with a better idea what I'm hoping for than my first two. Here is my shortlist for talk hopes.

  • Python inside Government
    Are any federal, state, or local governments using Python internally? In any important or large ways? Maybe at the national archives or the library of congress? I want to know about these things! Does the IRS crunch my taxes with Python?

  • Python and Big Data
    Working with large datasets fascinates me, probably because I don't get the opportunity to do so. I'd love to see where Python is being used to crunch big datasets. I wonder if gets used in any pipelines in processing results from CERN? Or maybe diagnosing medical tests?
  • Python close to the wire, embedded or working with wire protocols
    Using Python in mobile devices, embedded devices, or implementing binary protocols on the wire that need to work fast and with low latency? These are things people often don't think Python does well, so prove them wrong.
  • Python in movies
    Pixar, Disney, I know you guys are out there! Is python used in stages of the pipeline to make all those 3D movies I take my kids to see?
  • Community-centric talks, please!
    These are personally interesting to me, because I want to build community. I want to learn from more people who are great at it.
If you can give any of these talks, or any talk at all, submit your proposal for PyCon 2013!
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.