The geometry of a perfect parallel park

I came across this little parallel parking video on Twitter and thought it was a great example for showing future students how to park:

When trying to find the actual formula I came across this article on NPR which outlines the formula with examples.

gr-parallel-formula-300

I’m logging this so in 10 years I’ll be able to use this example for my kids. I really like the lines in the video as a visual representation for what to look for.

First impressions of the iPad Pro

I did it. I bought a new iPad Pro, pencil, and keyboard and it arrived today. This is my first impressions after using it for a few hours.

I know you are probably thinking, you’ve only owned it for a few hours how can you possibly review something in that short amount of time? You would be right but my theory is if I wait to write about it later then I will not be able to remember my first impressions. So it’s best to write about it now before I sleep.

Continue reading “First impressions of the iPad Pro”

Just three minutes

For ordinary moments of life three minutes feels like it goes by in an instant. This changes when it’s a physical activity and three minutes becomes a lifetime.

For yesterday’s workout, I was designated as the lead and had to come up with a routine that would be both challenging and fun, and last 45 minutes. I had the genius idea to do three-minute intervals with thirty-second breaks in between.

Continue reading “Just three minutes”

Good Intentions

I meet you through an acquaintance and that first meeting was so inspiring.

Just as I started to get to know you, an urgent task was handed to me. I thought I could finish it really quick and come back just where we left off.

A few hours passed and you waited so patiently. Of course, I hadn’t forgotten about you, but it’s working hours and fires have to be put out. I left you hanging and I’m sorry.

At the end of the day, I saved your info with every intention of looking you up again. But the next day I was too busy, and the next, and the next. I was selfish and I’m sorry.

Years later as I was cleaning out my Pocket I found your info again. I had no memory of that first meeting or the friend that introduced us. All I could do is trash it and I’m sorry.

Happy Valentines day to all the links I’ve promised to read and never did.

Developers – Have a Backup Plan

As developers, we know that backups are important. We backup our computers, databases, servers, and use version control. Everything is backed up for that “awe crap” moment that is inevitable.

This mindset is so engrained into our workflow we don’t give it much thought. It’s just the way it’s done.

Backups shouldn’t end at work. This same methodology should be applied to your money. Having an emergency fund, with money you only use in a true emergency, is vital to life. Just as we plan for failure for our code, life is going to have hard times and it should be planned for.  Continue reading “Developers – Have a Backup Plan”

Work Ethic from the Wright Brothers

In our ever-connected world unplugging is hard. It seems like we are trained to amuse ourselves every waking hour. We have lost the ability to be bored and let our minds wonder.

The Wright brothers, who pioneered flight, at the turn of the century have an inspirational story. When they started dreaming about flying they weren’t the only ones. One of their competitors had government funding and resources available that the brothers couldn’t compete with.

In today’s time, it would be a bootstrapper against a VC backed company. A huge underdog. This didn’t deter the brothers and they kept true to their goals throughout the whole process and didn’t pay any attention to what this other company was doing.

One area of their story that stood out to me is their work ethic. Throughout their whole career, they never worked on Sunday. Always using it as a day of rest and rejuvenation.

Another example is during a showing in France the flyer arrived all torn up from shipping and it had to be rebuilt. A wealthy man allowed the brother to use a big room in his business as a workshop and even gave him men to help with the rebuild. These men could barely understand English and was more of a hindrance, yet, Mr. Wright kept the same work schedule as the other workers. When the lunch whistle blew he took lunch. When the end of day whistle blew he went home. Neither brother ever worked on Sunday and it seemed like they knew all the pieces would come together at the right time.

If the Wright brothers facing the monumental task of being the first to fly can take a break, don’t you think we should too?

These stories adapted from The Wright Brothers by David McCullough.

Buy many books at once

One of my new years goals this year is to read more, specifically 20 pages a day. I’m happy to report that I’ve only missed two or three days so far this year.

I’ve already read six books since I started and well on my way to finishing three more.

During my research for this goal, I came across a simple tip that I wanted to share. Buy many books at one time. If something sounds interesting, buy it. A friend mentioned a book, buy it. Heard someone mention one on Twitter, buy it. Don’t even read the reviews.

I took this advice and it has been wonderful. Previously I’d buy one at a time and doing many hours of research reading reviews, second guessing myself, finding others I might like better. Then finally ordering one. If it ended up being a slow read, boring, or just not interesting I was stuck until I either lost interest, chugged through it, or bought another. Typically this meant me losing interest and stopping reading completely.

Now if I pick one up that is boring, I have others sitting there ready to go. I even switch around depending on my mood for the day.

If this is not something you are doing I recommend trying it. It’s helped me tremendously.

Apple Music

I’m not a music aficionado, I like music playing while I’m working just for the background noise. So switching music streaming services shouldn’t be a big deal.

A few years ago I became a Spotify subscriber and although I tried other services I always came back to it. The user-curated playlists and the ability to easily find music was always nice, but one lacking feature was the ability to listen on more than one computer on the same network.

Every day, it seemed like someone in my family would start playing music on another device kicking me off. I finally had enough and decided to add a family plan but with a family of four, I didn’t like the pricing. $5 for each additional member would push my bill to $30 a month and I am unwilling to pay that. Continue reading “Apple Music”

Book Dust Jackets

I’ve been a digital reader most of my adult life but for the past year I’ve been trying to reduce my screen time and started buying real books. I started out with paperbacks but now I’ve moved into wanting hardcovers because they seem more sturdy and will stay in better condition longer.

The one drawback I experience is with the book jackets or sleeves. They always seem to shift and move and get wrinkled or creased. I decided enough was enough and I now remove them when I start reading, then put them back on to place on the shelve.

I thought I’m surely not only that finds these annoying and went out to research why these jackets are still included and the history behind it. According to Wikipedia:

After 1900, fashions in, and the economics of, publishing caused book bindings to become less decorative, and it was cheaper for publishers to make the jackets more attractive. By around 1920, most of the artwork and decoration had migrated from the binding to the dust jacket, and jackets were routinely printed with multiple colors, extensive advertising and blurbs; even the underside of the jacket was now sometimes used for advertising.

As dust jackets became more attractive than the bindings, more people began to keep the jackets on their books, at least until they became soiled, torn, or worn out. One bit of evidence that indicates when jackets became saved objects is the movement of the printed price from the spine of the jacket to a corner of one of the flaps. This also occurred in the 1910s and early 1920s. When jackets were routinely discarded at point of purchase, it didn’t matter where the price was printed (and many early jackets were not printed with any price), but now if book buyers of the 1910s and 1920s wanted to save the jacket and give a book as a gift, they could clip off the price without ruining the jacket.

Now that the jackets hold most of the design it’s as much a part of the book as the pages themselves and I feel like they shouldn’t be tossed away.

I looked into what others are doing with their jackets and came across a few different ideas:

  • Use them as bookmarks (front flap for the first half, back flap for the second half)
  • Throw them away
  • Remove while reading
  • Keep and frame them to hang in their study or library

I would rather the design be printed on the covers but also understand the economics of doing this would raise the price.

When reading books with a dust jacket what do you do with it? Do you find them annoying?