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Chris Mills Posts

Lifelong Kindergarten

I recently finished Lifelong Kindergarten, by Mitchel Resnick and I’m surprised how good it was. I didn’t have any idea what it was going to be about, but the subtitle “Cultivating Creativity through Projects, Passion, Peers, and Play” was enough for me to pick it up. Much of it is him talking about how two of his creations, the Scratch programming language and the Computer Clubhouse inspire children to make amazing things. There are two lists of 10 tips each that resonated with me. For Learners: Start simple Work on things that you like If you have no clue what…

Feature Spectrum Analysis

I’m sure what I’m going to show exists under a different name but I call it Feature Spectrum Analysis. You take a feature and evaluate it across as many spectrums as you wish. This process helps me identify what features are the most important to my users and achievable by me. How this works List all the features you’re thinking of implementing. List all the measure categories you’d like to evaluate against. Fill in the grid. Honesty is critical. (I use a 1-10 scale, but that’s arbitrary) Reassess your numbers. Do they make sense when you compare them? Is feature…

Reading List

My current reading list. The Dictators Handbook is pretty darn good so far.  Lessons learned: bayonet my commander and ensure I have control of the treasury to assist with loyalty. Not sure how I’m going to apply this to my job, but we’ll see. 

Thank you ACLU

The ACLU does such amazing work and I’m so glad they’re taking on this fight. If you care about what they do be sure to support them.

AGDQ

Best part of my week has been watching Awesome Games Done Quick. The culmination was the final run of Undertale. While hugging the goat, they hit $2.2 million.  Such as an amazing event and for a really great cause; humbling to see the gaming community come out and give so much. During the last run by TGH gave a shoutout to one of his friends who couldn’t make it to the event. It was revealed during an announcement that the could not make it as he was being screened for possible tumors. Seems thanks to early detection (yay cancer prevention!) Kaizen is doing…

Walkability as Technology

https://janejacobsjapan.com/2016/11/27/walkability-as-technology/   Walkability is a huge factor for me when looking for places to live. Very happy with Eugene and where my workplace is located with respect to it.

Pointers in Swift 3

Let’s reverse a null-terminated string in Swift. First, the code.

This example is a bit contrived, if you wanted to reverse a string in Swift it would be much easier to use the String(reverse.characters.reversed()) method. First thing, when working with pointers in Swift, is to allocated memory for them. Here I’m using ptrCapacity to allocate space for the array of CChar that will represent the string we are going to reverse. ptrCapacity in this case will be the same size of reverse.characters.count, however I wanted to have a reminder there of MemoryLayout. MemoryLayout helps describe the memory layout of…

Custom Operators with Generics in Swift

This weekend I decided to sit back a play with Swift. About two weeks ago I took some time off from work and while relaxing I started watching Swift Talk. Swift Talk is a weekly video series by Chris Eidhof and Florian Kugler who during the show do a bit a pair programming and refactoring. Rather than go over a solution, they walk you through the thought process, live coding as they discuss the topic of the week. Even if you are not interested in Swift, as a coder I strongly suggest watching some of the free episodes to get…

XCode Provisioning Woes

Lately I’ve been pretty busy with work that I haven’t had much time to write my own code. Having made some time, I decided this weekend would be a perfect time to update my Math Ref app. As an added bonus, I was going to setup my new iPad Pro for development. This was the start to losing almost an entire day to provisioning profiles and what I found out was an Xcode 7.3 bug.  The problem started when I connected my new iPad to test a bug from a user about restoring purchases. When I went to run the…

Back to Meditation

For most my life I have had an on-again, off-again relationship with meditation. It began sometime around middle school I think, I was fascinated by Japanese and Chinese cultures and in kung-fu movies, someone was always meditating. Even Vader dug meditation from time to time. As you can imagine though, a young kid trying to sit calmly and relax is not really a thing that will last. There was something about it though that kept me coming back. Off and one over the years I continue to find myself wanting that space, wanting to have my brain let go of…