Feed URL: http://feeds.thecommandline.net/cmdln-enhanced
Site URL: http://thecommandline.net/

§Description

Thomas describes himself (from his About page):

I am a thinker, a speaker, a maker and a leader.

Someone once called me a hacker philosopher. I kind of like that. Others have criticized my discussions of programming as being too abstract or not practical enough. I am OK with that too. You cannot swing a search engine without hitting a post about some technology, tool or practice. There are some excellent communities that are all about discussions of those exact topics. I don’t think I have a lot to add in those areas but do think that a broader contemplation of principles and concepts becomes necessary at a certain point in one’s progress as a programmer. If that makes me too contemplative for some, so be it. I’d rather think too much about software as a practice, as a craft, than not enough. The same holds for all of the rest of the topics I delve into on this site.

He also has a great endorsement from Cory Doctorow:

“[T]houghtful, informative, and deep, a real plunge into the geeky end of the news-pool. There’s great analysis and rumination, as well as detailed explanations of important security issues with common OSes and so on.” – Cory Doctorow

§My Take

If you enjoy discussions about technology, software, leadership, communities, and more - this is a great podcast for you. Even if this isn’t exactly your wheelhouse, listen in and you’ll probably find something you like. I’ve been listening since 2009-ish (if I remember right) and enjoyed the variety of topics as well as his take on them. He also talks about tabletop gaming and other non-technical subjects.

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§…or, How Do I Pass the Time During My Long Commute?

I’ve been listening to podcasts since late 2006 when I got my first mp3 player (it was an early iPod Nano with 2 whole GB). Since then my playlist has changed quite a bit along with pretty much all of the process. Below is a quicker list of the current podcasts I’m listening to, or at least following for some that haven’t updated in a while. At some point I’ll post more about each one, especially the ones I’ve been listening to for a long time.

In alphabetical order by name, with a direct link to the feed:

§The Current List

§Newer (to my playlist)

§Less (or In-) Active

§What’s Next?

I still have so much to catch up on with these, even with my commute. Suggestions are welcome - that’s where most of this list came from, either by way of friends making recommendations or through other podcasts mentioning it.

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§…or, Why Didn’t I Start This When I Wasn’t Doing So Much Already?

(the original title reads better anyway)

It’s been a weird and rough few weeks - at work, I’ve gone from a team of two to a team of one. On top of my current role as Supervisor, I’m also doing the day-to-day work of the person who was working under me[1]. Oh, and backfilling the position, meaning that I’m reviewing resumes and interviewing people. Put all that together and my work day isn’t as inviting as it used to be, which could be why I want to speed up the hiring process. Yes, I know that it’s better to take my time and get the right person and not have to go through this again in three (or six or 12) months.

At home it’s also busy. We’ve been taking the past several months to reduce the stuff all around the house. Anything that didn’t make the cut was moved down into the garage… and once the garage was pretty full we had a big yard sale, and donated a bunch of other stuff. It felt good to get rid of a lot, just time-consuming to get to that point. Since all the stuff is out of the way maybe I can start getting the lingering projects finished and start on the other stuff that needs attention. blech.

I was really hoping I would have more time so I could write for here as well as on some personal projects. It feels like I need at least four more hours a day to get that done (factoring in time to actually get the stuff I need to get done finished). The summer feels like it’s slipping away and there’s still so much to try and cram in before winter hits.

Could I just win the lottery and have someone else do some (ok most) of the less fun junk for me?

§To Do

  • Theme
  • Layout tweaks
  • More plugins
  • Write, write, write
  • Build out project git repos

  1. Good friend, went to another place for good reasons

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§Early Days

This month, July of 2017, will mark ten years of having a beard. That’s the last time I shaved my face, the last time my cheeks and chin saw direct sunlight, and the last time I had razor burn. I had grown out facial hair a few times in my late teens and twenties, but never for more than a few months before shaving it all off.

My oldest kid is the only one to remember me beardless - my middle was only six months old when I stopped shaving. After a couple of years my wife told me, “I was looking at our wedding pictures and you look weird without the beard, you have to keep it…” (thanks?)

§Then and Now

It’s weird, back when I first grew it out, there weren’t a lot of people with full beards. Yes, there were plenty of people with facial hair - mustaches, goatees, fu manchu, soul patch, etc. etc. - but not a lot of full-on beards. My wife noticed it too, it’s almost a movement with tons more people involved.

Now it’s not uncommon to have a longer beard in the office (at least in my office it’s the case). I like that.

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Laying it Out

§…or, architecting the site before I know better

I like Hexo so far. It’s easy to work with, I’m learning a lot along the way, and almost have it set up on all of my systems (GitLab makes it easy).

Next I need to find some best practice info on Hexo, related to folder structure. It’s great that I can do whatever I want; it’s tough that I can do whatever I want.

§The What

A lot of what I’m doing will fall under the “blog” but I have other content that I want to post. Lists of Android Apps, Windows Apps, Linux apps, Podcasts, and more - across several categories for each area. There’s also writing that I’ve done and the Spark File (ok, files) I have.

Maybe the more generalized version of the breakdown is: braindump into the post entries, more organized stuff into pages. I’ll probably change my mind about a dozen times before I get much further…

§To Do

  • Theme
  • Layout
  • Plugins
  • Write, write, write

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Over the years I’ve wondered how long it takes to build a following, almost entirely related to the Internet. Early on, it was just getting anyone to read what I wrote, then getting any kind of comment or reply. One of the better experiences I had was on xanga, even if I got there through a bizarre marketing ploy[1]. This was back in 2001, before social media was really a thing. Looking back, I don’t know why I actually checked it out, but still…

I had people who I talked to regularly, and even got to know some of the more popular people on there beyond just being a subscriber. The appeal is getting that hit when someone likes something you wrote, and then to get a comment? Whoa, that was great. If the person asked a question or otherwise invited discussion, I’d ride that high.

Yes, it wasn’t necessarily “real” but I was able to talk to and find more people like me than anything physically local. Even some of the people who weren’t like me were part of great discussions, both on and off that site. It’s one of the reasons that starting in a community-driven site can get you a stronger starting point than having a site just out on the Internet. Today it would just be joining a social network and work from there, linking to your full site if you do the longer-form thing.


  1. Fake message from a “person” who said that I should check out xanga to start a blog.

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In the Middle

§It’s Not the Beginning

I can’t count how many times I’ve “started over” this site since it began in May of 2003. I’m sure that if I looked hard enough I could pull up the archived version of everything from the Greymatter, Drupal, and Dokuwiki versions, along with the little one-off pages. I don’t plan on it though; at least not any time in the near future. Maube instead of the middle this is more of a rebirth.

Now? I’m right in the middle. The middle of the year, middle of projects at work and home, hell I’m even middle aged(ish). Middle-age isn’t too bad so far - no plans for a fast car or big changes, I have enough to work on as it is. Still learning and trying apply what I’m learning to life. Sometimes that’s easy; a lot of the time it isn’t.

I’m even in the middle of designing this site, again. Definitely not giving up, just slowly building back up to being visible again.

Luckily I’ve found an SSG (Static Site Generator) that I like, called Hexo. No crazy setup, javascript based, and plays nice with GitLab and GitHub - along with plenty of other options. Posts are written in Markdown so they’re readable by people and machines, no fancy editor needed.

I might backfill some of the posts from other places, or just link to them at some point. It’s really just filling out more of the middle stuff until I can find the edges.

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Author's picture

dropcase

Family man, big geek, awesome beard.


Application Support, ISIT


NH, US