International Women's Day

I'm going to interrupt the regularly scheduled (ish) programming in order to talk about something topical. If you're reading this on the day it's published, today is International Women's Day. In the grander scheme of things, we shouldn't really need to explicitly devote a day to recognising people who make up a little over half of the world's population. Regretfully it very much seems that we do, however. That being the case, I'd like to talk about three women who've had a huge influence on my life. Which is to say: people who've had as big an influence on my

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Getting Back on the Exercise Horse

When I resolved to start training again, I had a problem: what sort of program should I follow? After a good eight or nine months of not going to the gym I was pretty damn out of shape. When I wrote my previous posts on workout programs I was following the Greyskull Linear Progression program. Linear progression programs are great for beginners because you can safely and quickly increase the amount you lift. As the naming suggests, you can increase it more or less linearly over time.

After a while these gains begin to tail off, and at the time

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Building My Shiny New Website Part 3: Tech Stack

This will be my last post on building the new implementation of this site. Having previously talked about the choice of platform and the theme, I’m now going on a quick dive into all of the other tech which keeps the site running the way I like it.

Excitingly (for me), this means I get to make diagrams. Let’s start with this monster, which covers every element in the tech stack (or at least every element I can think of):

Now that looks cool and all, and was a lot of fun1 to make, but it’s

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Goals for 2017

I don’t really do new years resolutions. They just don’t seem to work for me. I don’t see that there’s anything that special about January 1st. It isn’t even the first day of the year for a reasonable portion of the planet. Expecting to make sudden and positive life changes on that day just seems to silly and destined to fail. Especially given that I’m probably hungover. That said, setting goals for the year ahead does work for me, though I realise it’s a fairly arbitrary distinction.

Previously I’ve set vague goals,

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Building my Shiny New Website Part 2: Theme

I built the theme of the previous Jekyll based incarnation of this site myself. If I’m entirely honest I made a bit of hash of it. I just hacked the default Jekyll layout around a bit and slotted in some colours I though might look reasonable. They did not, in practice, look reasonable. Neither did the fonts, the vertical rhythm or just about any other part of it.

This time I resolved that if I was going to build my own theme I was going to start from scratch. If you’re going to fail, you might as well

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My Procedural Landscape Generation Project

A while ago I started working on a procedural landscape generation project and then... I stopped. I didn't stop because I was no longer interested in the subject (I assure you I very much am), but because a) my free time got a lot more limited; and b) I'd bitten off more than I could chew and didn't know where to go next.

Some of the ideas original ideas from that project have become an entirely new (and very non-obviously linked) side project. Which has actual clear goals. I plan on writing about it soon.

There are a couple of

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Building my Shiny New Website Part 1: Platform

This is a post which has been a long time coming. I’ve been planning it since I started building the new version of this site, which is coming up on over a year ago now. Step one was to choose the platform.

Having used Wordpress before, I knew I didn’t want to use it again. Whilst “old, popular and boring” is probably a pretty good metric for what you should use when it comes to any sort of backend technology, Wordpress feels like the past. At this point it’s an unfocussed and generic website engine, and a

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What's Changed?

Well, I went quiet again, didn't I? While I've been away it feels like the world changed quite a bit. For starters, from an entirely personal perspective, I moved flats and areas of London. A transaction which completed on the 24th of June, 2016. If this date sounds familiar, that's because it's also the date the results of the UK's "Brexit" referendum were released. Like I said: the world feels like it's changed quite a bit.

For the record, this is probably the worst possible day I could have completed such a transaction since the financial crash back in 2008.

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Apple Keynote Live(ish) Blog

Since I've never liveblogged anything before, I decided to give it a go with today's Apple WWDC keynote. The follow was written as I watched it. It has been edited for spelling and grammar (and to add a couple of links) but not for content. It might get edited for spelling again when I'm more awake.

We start with a nice tribute to the victims of Orlando. Short but heartfelt.

Next the usually positive stats. There are a lot of Apple platform developers now. Apple is investing more in new developers, especially those of the next generation, be that in

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Material Design and iOS

Disclaimer: the opinions expressed herein are my own, not those of my employer, and that’s what this post is: opinions.

One of the complaints about Google’s iOS apps is that they look like Android Apps. Somewhat obligingly, Jason Snell recently published an article along these lines over at MacWorld (I picked this up via Daring Fireball, where John Gruber is also a big fan of this line of thinking). That’s generally what the complainants say, but not (in my opinion) what they mean. What they mean is that the apps follow Google’s Material Design guidelines (though

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