Messy moments in dadding

My daughter is three.

She’s my only child so I’ve been lucky enough to be extremely involved. Or rather, I’ve been lucky that she’s cool enough to become extremely involved in my life. She does everything with me. We watch baseball together, she sits on my knee while I write code and we go everywhere together.

Taking her out in public has created some troubling situations in bathrooms. I can’t count how many times she has needed a change, I’ve taken her into the men’s room and discovered there is no place to change her. If I’m lucky, I’ll get 25 cm of wet-with-who-knows-what counter space between a urinal and a sink, but a frustrating amount of the time, I’m stuck choosing between taking her home early, balancing her on my lap, or changing her on the floor.

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What the block? A simple primer on blockchains and their uses

In an industry that thrives on hyping buzzwords, blockchain has been one of the biggest, most hyped buzzwords of them all. Despite this amount of hype, few killer blockchain applications (outside of cryptocurrency) have emerged. Perhaps, this is because few people have a deep enough understanding of what blockchain is to dream about the problems it could solve for them? In that case, hopefully this article, which attempts to explain blockchains to a non-technical audience, will spur on discussion about solid applications built upon blockchains.

(Please note – this discussion will gloss over implementation details in favour of big picture design considerations. It is not intended to serve as a quote, or a guide to technical complexity – just a high level primer into what the technology is capable of.)

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Public Relations For Startups

Years ago, my friend Stacey and I published a magazine. It never got huge, but it got big enough that we started attracting inbound interest and press releases. Through learning how to handle those and talking with real journalists to learn how they handled those, I developed a sense of how to work with the media when you’re new and don’t have a track record.

For me, it always comes down to story. Journalists do not exist to be your personal marketing force – they exist to find truth in compelling stories. This implies a couple of things. The first is that they likely won’t print any finely crafted marketing speak or sales pitches. The second is that they will seek balance – they will interview your competitors or print quotes that are critical of you and your business. They will also comb through your social media accounts and read what other people say about you. Just because you don’t give them a quote or access to a source, it doesn’t mean that they won’t seek out other quotes or sources. The entire finished piece may be extremely critical of you and your business and if so, it is the mark of an incredibly good journalist, not an asshole. Got it?

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Towards happier developers

(Subtitled – This is not another mental health/diversity post)

While I acknowledge how important mental health and diversity are, I am not going to talk about either. Instead, I’m going to talk about ways that we can make all developers on our teams feel more comfortable and productive. While developer happiness and mental health/diversity are directly related, this post will be about the business case behind truly happy developers.

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