Save time by focusing on the result - using Prometheus' textfile collector to avoid writing an exporter

My friend Frew, as well as others, have said that our job as developers is not to write code, but rather to solve problems. I had a win in this regard relatively recently where I saved myself a good chunk of time by leveraging a Prometheus component for a purpose it may not have been designed for, but is remarkably well suited to.

Posted on 2020-09-07

Surprising Logic in the Firefox Codebase

Recently, I was curious about how Firefox's reader view implements its estimated reading time, so I spent a little time looking through the Firefox codebase. It turns out that it uses the readability package to extract the content of a page. Once it has that, it gets the length of that content and divides it by an estimated reading speed - and it was this part that surprised me:

Posted on 2020-08-25

Making Slack go slack-jawed: reducing the mental load around Slack notifications

As I mentioned in a previous post, I use Slack at work, and I find it to be a constant source of distraction. I have taken to shutting it off for much of the day, which has the obvious disadvantage that if people need to reach me, they can't! In that post, I admit my weakness of needing to acknowledge unread badges and proposed a sort of "narrowing" features for Slack. I wanted to follow up on that and discuss some of the solutions I thought of, as well as the one I'm currently using.

Posted on 2020-08-11

A little mistake I made in Go

I was working on a little Go project last night a few nights ago last weekend (boy it takes me way longer to finish blog posts these days!), and I wrote something like the following code, which has a bug in it:

Posted on 2020-07-26

Using udev to disable my infrared camera on Linux

My work laptop has two cameras - one of the cameras is a regular, run-of-the-mill camera, and since I'm remote (well, due to COVID-19, I guess almost everyone is these days!), I use it for video meetings a lot. The other camera is an infrared camera, and to be honest, I'm not sure what it's for. All I know is that because it's /dev/video0, most applications treat the infrared camera as the default.

Posted on 2020-04-30