At dawn came the pig truck, driving itself in from over the hills. By the time it reached the jail, the prisoners were lined up, resigned, watched by the armed guards in their towers. Cleaned and shaved, naked and divested of names, they were human no longer. Dust rose and fell as the long blank truck pulled up, the back springing open by itself, the ramp dropping to the ground. Read more…

She was a worker, that’s all. A courier. Pick it up here, carry it a long way, drop it off there. It was a dull job, but it meant she didn’t have to think much, which suited her. And everyone she knew worked the same job, so it was easy to share in-jokes and gossip and complain about the conditions. Her people had no vehicles, no roads, no pack animals. But they knew all the trails throughout the valley and the forest, kept them clear and well-marked. Read more…

Journaling is a style of blogging that’s gone out of style lately, for some reason, but it’s dear to my heart, and to many of my friends’. Journaling is exemplified by LiveJournal, which has a long proud history as the first social network and possibly the first turnkey blogging system (begun in 1999, it slightly predates Blogger.) LiveJournal still exists, but it’s a shadow of its former self. The UI and functionality are stuck in an early-2000s timewarp, and worse, most of the users are gone, having decamped to Twitter and Facebook. Read more…

I’m afraid of a lot of things. Or, I’m often afraid of things. I have some issues with anxiety. The anxieties aren’t constantly in my way; they’re more like electric fences that keep me in line. I can go through my everyday life without thinking of them, but when I venture outside what I’m comfortable with I start to get crackles of sparks down my spine and in the pit of my stomach, and then usually I back away. Read more…

They were easy enough to mistake for sheep at a distance — white, fluffy, contentedly grazing — especially in the pre-storm dimness. It was when he got closer to them and saw their body shapes and the way they were eating that Laurence began to regret coming to the farm. As he watched, the nearest animal sheared off a half-dozen dandelions with its mandibles, squirted some sort of digestive ichor on them, and began rhythmic movements of its mouthparts. Read more…

Well, it’s the same blog, I’ve just replaced Jekyll with Hugo. If I’ve succeeded, you won’t be able to tell anything’s changed. Every couple of years I go through this ritual of porting to a different blogging engine. This blog started out as handwritten HTML, then it went through Movable Type, Drupal, WordPress, Jekyll, and now Hugo. Each iteration is usually an improvement, but to be honest, the main reason is to have a chance to mess with Web Stuff for a while. Read more…

I’m at a computer lab [probably the one from college] and have written an entire email client app in a day. I’m excitedly showing it off to everyone. It’s kind of glitchy but I can pull up my real emails, including spam. The app is also, simultaneously, made out of a 2-liter soda bottle. It starts out crushed, and expands and fills with water as it launches. Unfortunately there are some cracks that water squirts out of. Read more…

Modeling a social networking system like LiveJournal or Facebook in a JSON-document-oriented database like Couchbase [Lite] or CouchDB isn’t hard. Here’s a basic schema that I’ve been playing with for a while.

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Here’s my most recent music mix, “Forest Wire”, all music from 2013. This mix is dedicated to my brother-in-law who builds guitars but nonetheless appreciates electronic music. It starts and ends ambient, but builds up into dub and K-pop and jungle and other styles.

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Couchbase Lite (Née TouchDB, née Couchbase Mobile) Mobile syncable NoSQL database for iOS. My work project in one way or another since I started at Couchbase in mid-2011. I’m still having fun working on it. Couchbase Sync Gateway The companion piece – the glue that lets Couchbase Lite sync with Couchbase Server. It’s been challenging and educational and boundary-stretching, and part of me is sick of working on it because the secret is I’m not a big-data guy. Read more…