Getting Started with AppleScript

As a consultant, I do my best to be as efficient as possible. I want to provide the greatest value I can, and one of the ways of doing this is by cutting down the repetition in my workflow. If I find myself doing a task frequently, I try to shorten the time it takes to do it, or to automate it completely. Recently, I have been exploring AppleScript, which is a very powerful tool available to anyone running OS X.
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Tech Debt Isn’t What You Think It Is

Technical debt isn’t what you think it is.

Kellan Elliott-McCrea wrote up an excellent commentary on tech debt back in January ’16. He makes some fantastic points that help clarify what tech debt is and isn’t, but I’ve still been feeling like something is missing in his definition. I think I’m starting to get a handle on it.
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Simplify Your Storage in Xamarin with SimpleStorage

While developing a mobile application, it’s important to consider the data storage architecture that best suits the needs of the app. In many cases, especially if the app is data-intensive, a database is the best option. I have had a great experience using the SQLite.NET package for Xamarin, in particular. However, there are some cases where a database is not the best option for data storage. For example, a simple key-value store is often a great solution for small pieces of data, such as user preferences and app settings, that can be easily retrieved by a unique key. Read more on Simplify Your Storage in Xamarin with SimpleStorage…

Life After Text Mode: How I Learned to Stop Typing So Much and Love the GUI Again

The command line is a powerful abstraction in the developer’s toolbox—a succinct line of communication directly into the heart of the operating system. A skilled developer can take a small window filled with nothing but a blinking cursor and turn it into a productive environment for building websites, apps, and experiences that delight, amaze, and inspire. But sometimes, we developers get so caught up in the productive asceticism of the command line that we forget about the world outside and all it has to offer. Three apps have me rethinking my Text Mode lifestyle. Read more on Life After Text Mode: How I Learned to Stop Typing So Much and Love the GUI Again…

Exporting Server-Side Types and Endpoints to Ember

Keeping the client and server in sync can be difficult while developing a web app. That’s particularly true if you are using text-based data such as JSON in your API calls (though the flexibility and readability of JSON over binary data should not be disregarded).
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Technology and Computer Science Resources for Kids in West Michigan

Photo Credit: The Midwest Tech Project

 

Earlier this month, I represented Atomic Object as part of a panel at The Second Annual Power Up Technology Fair put on by The Midwest Tech Project and held at Baxter Community Center. There, I spoke with parents who had variations of the same question: How can I expose my son or daughter to the opportunities afforded by a career in technology?
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Help Your Fellow Developers with Well-Worded Error Messages

When something goes wrong in my code, I usually try to throw an error with a message telling me what went wrong. I don’t think too much about what the error message is. It’s usually just enough to give me an idea about why the code raised an exception.

Recently, one of my co-workers pointed out an improvement I could make: Write error messages that won’t make him think. A good error message should not only point out a problem in your code. It should also indicate that a solution is available. Read more on Help Your Fellow Developers with Well-Worded Error Messages…

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