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  1. Why write?

    April 15, 2011 by Prasanna

    We like to tell stories. We tell them all the time to friends, colleagues, kids, spouses, girl friends.

    The best stories are told many times over. Every time we say it, we get subtle feedback. Do they nod at the right places? Do they laugh at the right jokes? We adjust the story each time to make it a little better. More meaningful silence here. Change of pace there.

    To write the story, is to get it spot on. Every single word of it, every pause, and punctuation right, just that once.

  2. Mobile device OS upgrades: How hard can it be?

    April 14, 2011 by Prasanna

    It’s not just that the brightest at Microsoft or Nokia or Google can’t make an upgrade stick. It’s that the upgrade is not universally beneficial to the value chain. To remedy this, licensors have to resort to contractual obligations to ensure upgrades, but enforcement is non-trivial and can lead to aggravated relationships.

    via asymco.

    Phone makers (Nokia, HTC) are interested in making their phones better with upgrades. Phone OS vendors are interested in getting their latest OS on most eligible devices possible.

    Yet, the parties controlling these upgrades are phone carriers. Their interests lie in getting customers to buy into their next contract. Making the experience they have with their current phone better comes way down in that list.

    Slight conflict of interest.

  3. Success, and Farming vs. Mining

    April 4, 2011 by Prasanna

    What’s upsetting is the number of people who have come to me with the idea of becoming miners: “I know nothing about software, but I can see there’s gold in them thar’ hills, and so I want to start up a company and make my million dollars! I’ve got an idea and everything, just tell me what magic incantation you did to get rich and I’ll be on my way.”

    This doesn’t work. Your idea sucks. No, I’m not calling you stupid — my idea sucks, too. All ideas suck, because they are just ideas. They’re worth nothing.

    via Call Me Fishmeal.: Success, and Farming vs. Mining.

  4. Mail Tip – Finer Things in Mac

    February 17, 2011 by Prasanna

    Mail Tip: When using data detectors (introduced in 10.5 Leopard) to create iCal appointments from Mail messages, highlight some text first in order to have it automatically inserted as a note in your new event.

    via Finer Things in Mac.

  5. Coffee Shop Integrity on the Internet

    January 9, 2011 by Prasanna

    Put simply: if I wouldn’t chat about it with my friends in person, why in the world would I broadcast it to the whole TCP/IP universe?

    via Inventing a Planet

  6. Clean interface for an ugly implementation

    December 16, 2010 by Prasanna

    When your implementation is a total hack, put it behind a good interface. Then you can swap the implementation later without rethinking the design.

    via 37 Signals

  7. Things I Used to Know

    October 11, 2010 by Prasanna

    Now it’s common knowledge that your cell phone can bring down an airliner. But if that were true, the airlines would confiscate your phones, not just ask you to turn them off. And given the fact that at least one moron leaves his phone on during every flight, you’d expect at least one cell phone-related crash. I’m still waiting.

    via The Dilbert Blog

  8. How I Write an Article

    September 24, 2010 by Prasanna

    Shawn Blanc on his writing process

    It would be better to write 5,000 words and edit them down into a 2,000-word article than to write 500 words and force more in an attempt to build it up.

    Spot on.

    I really hope universities stop using number of words as a constraint for papers and essays. When in university, most of the time, I used to write what I wanted to, then paraphrase it to bring it to the prescribed number of words. This is the exact opposite of what students should be learning. They should learn to express what they want to, in the most concise and non-bullshit way possible.

  9. Rd’s?

    September 15, 2010 by Prasanna

  10. What is this life, if full of care

    September 7, 2010 by Prasanna

    This after noon I opened my Simplenote at work, and found this new entry that I hadn’t added.

    William Henry Davies
    What is this life if, full of care,
    We have no time to stand and stare.
    No time to stand beneath the boughs
    And stare as long as sheep or cows.
    No time to see, when woods we pass,
    Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
    No time to see, in broad daylight,
    Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
    No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
    And watch her feet, how they can dance.
    No time to wait till her mouth can
    Enrich that smile her eyes began
    A poor life this if, full of care,
    We have no time to stand and stare.

    This is mom’s favorite poem. I have come to expect her to recite the first line, every time I am too stressed or not seeing the big picture at times.

    And yesterday, she got my brother to search for it and save it for her to read fully. He saved it in my Simplenote.