Stories about Software


DaedTech Digest: Android Development, Unit Test Case Studies, and Ramblin’

The digital nomad lifestyle continues this week, as does my unbroken streak of digest Fridays.  Today, we packed up our existence from San Diego, where we’d lived the last few months, put everything in the car, drove to Phoenix, and unpacked it all.  just like that, in the span of a day, we went from living in a little ocean-side condo to living in a much larger place in the Arizona desert.

Of course, this has been pretty tiring.  I’m typing this at about 2:30 AM Mountain Standard or Pacific Daylight or whatever timezone I’m in.  That makes it probably rise-and-shine time for some of you on the East Coast.  Today has been a long day and tomorrow figures to be a tired one.

No complaints, though.  I love this lifestyle and wouldn’t it trade it for the world (or avoiding a hectic “moving” week every now and then).  It’s also going to be fun to have this view out my front door for a month: orange tree and pool.

So enough about my meandering around the southwest United States.  Let’s do some picks.


  • Someone read my post about remote programming jobs and sent me a note about a variety of things.  One of them was this conference, Running Remote 2018, which is my pick (in spite of not having attended).  It’s got a pretty awesome-looking speaker and it’s a great cause, IMO.
  • I haven’t yet had a chance to try it (will do that in the next week or so), but check this out.  It’s a quickstart guide for using the Google Sheets API in .NET.  The guide looks pretty well done, thorough, and approachable.  Looking forward to giving it a try.
  • If you ever find yourself in San Diego (Ocean Beach, specifically) and you have office needs, I highly recommend the OB Business Center.  They’ll do basically anything that those of us lacking an office need (scanning, printing, mailing, faxing, etc), and the customer service is absolutely second to none.
  • Lastly, a plug for somewhere near my new location.  We got settled around 10 PM and were starving, but figured our food options would be slim.  We found this place in walking distance, Postino, and had a great meal.  Their main attraction is a kind of tapas-style bruschetta, and it was as good as it sounds like that might be.  If you’re ever in Phoenix, they have a few locations.  Check it out.

The Digest


DaedTech Digest: Migrating East, LCOM, Regex, and Legacy Code

Another end to another week.  At least, depending on your penchant for wrapping up weeks early or working weekends or something non-traditional.  But however traditional you may be or not, you’re still getting a DaedTech digest right on time.

For those of you that don’t yet know the drill, here’s how this works.  Each Friday, I talk about random stuff a bit.  Then I treat you to some picks of mine, plus five or six blog posts I’ve written at some point for other blogs.  Because I’m so chatty via the spoken word that not only do I post three times per week here, but I also do a bunch of posts for Hit Subscribe clients besides.

As I type this, I have about a week left in San Diego, for those of you interested in our nomadic traipsing around the country.  For the last couple of months, I’ve looked out my back window at this every night as the sun sets.

Seriously, this is the view we have of the sun setting over the Pacific every night, from our couch.

But we’ve only got about 6 of those left before we pack up and head for Phoenix.  What’s in Phoenix, you might ask, besides cactus and desert?  Nothing but… Cubs Spring Training, that’s what!  We’re going to spend a couple of weeks watching baseball games live most nights, which makes me very happy.

So that’s all I’ve got for now on the nomad front.  Let’s do some picks.


  • If you have any interest in lifestyle businesses, entrepreneurship, side hustles, and location independence, give the Tropical MBA a subscribe.  It’s a really interesting podcast.
  • This seems maybe a little lame, but I’d like to throw one out there for the Fifth Third Bank mobile app.  Sticking with the nomad theme, I’m on the road a lot, running finances for multiple businesses, which gives me a lot of occasions to deposit checks with the phone app.  And Fifth Third’s app is next level for its check deposit feature.  I just point the phone vaguely at the check and it somehow automatically centers it, zooms in properly, and uses flash or not, as needed.
  • I’ve been reading something called the Broken Empire trilogy, which starts with this book, Prince of Thorns.  It’s a little… over the top at first.  But if you stick with it for several chapters it becomes this sort of gritty, surreal page turner.
  • Finally, I pick blood oranges.  I absolutely love their abundance here in Southern California and will really miss them when we go.

The Digest

Have a good weekend, all, and thanks for reading!


DaedTech Digest: Muscle Cars, Dark Launches and Logging Basics

Welcome to yet another edition of DaedTech Digest Friday.  I bring this edition to you from a hotel in Detroit instead of an ocean-front condo in San Diego because, as it turns out, I’m insane.

Actually, I’m just doing a quick consultation and codebase assessment for the week.  And coming to Detroit to do that may or may not make me insane.

If you were a reader of this blog last spring and summer, you might remember that I’d left this lifestyle.  Instead of spending 5+ nights per week in hotels and doing high-touch management consulting, I built location independent businesses.  Well, that’s still true, but the consultative end of that does involve occasional and focused travel.

So here I am, having flown for the first time in 9 months (wow), dusting off the traveling lifestyle.  The Marriott I’m staying in has a revamped bathroom with in-shower shampoo dispenses.  But besides that, same old stuff.


  • Going with the travel theme, I’m going to offer a dual pick of Hertz and the Dodge Charger.  Apparently, I still have pretty good status with Hertz because I reserved the cheapest rate for the week and they pointed me out at a group of cars in the “President’s Circle” and said, “go nuts, buddy.”  So I picked out a V8 Dodge Challenger.  Not only is it fast and muscle-car-y, but it handles really well in the snow.
  • Someone I’m working with this week showed me this awesome thing: “ag, the silver searcher.”  It’s like issuing a recursive grep with a regex from the Bash command line, but without the need for any flags, and it’s an order of magnitude faster.  You won’t be sorry.
  • And, finally, a former Google engineer named Michael Lynch posted this, explaining why he quit.  It’s a pretty eye-opening read about how even supposed destination employers have their own Dilbert-esque piles of bureaucratic facepalm.


Have a good weekend, and thanks for reading.


DaedTech Digest: Facebook, Dev Tools Bundles and Culture

Happy Digest Friday, readers!  As the US lurches toward an inflection point on the “I can’t believe this is necessary” subject of how not to regularly gun down its own children, I’ve been heads down dealing with logistics.  My own issues seem downright petty next to that one, but nevertheless they’re mine, and I’ve had to deal with them.

As mentioned last Friday, I’ve navigated the back end of the site migration which, hopefully, is resulting in a much better browsing experience for all of you.  Traffic is way up and Moz is reporting no more 5xx errors, so something must be going well.  Besides that, I’ve booked some short term travel (Rosarito this weekend and possibly Detroit next week) as well as our next extended stay after San Diego: Phoenix, AZ.  Oh, and also, you know, the regular business of running businesses.

But even with a lot going on and several 12+ hour workdays this week, we did manage to sneak in another opportunity to enjoy the incredible San Diego scenery.  Here’s the view from only partway up Cowles Mountain.  You can see the downtown area off to the right and Mexico to the left.

The digital nomad life certainly has its perks.  Anyway, let’s do some picks and posts.


  • First up, I threw together a small update to our codebase assessment business’s site.  It’s very much a work in progress, but it’s coming along thanks, in part, to Librestock, which is my pick.  If you need free, no strings attached photos, they’re pretty awesome.
  • For Hit Subscribe, I’ve been working on a little application to manage gathering performance metrics for blogs and to manage posts.  As part of this, I need to make use of the Trello API from a C# codebase.  If you need to do this, give Manatee.Trello a look.  It wraps the Trello API in a discoverable domain model that’ll make you think “Linq to Trello.”
  • My final pick is the professional and talented crew of authors we’ve assembled at Hit Subscribe.  I’m writing only a fraction of the client blog posts now, and focusing on building the business, because they’re doing as well as or better than I could do myself.  If you’re looking for good reading material, give them a follow!

The Digest

Have a good weekend, all!


DaedTech Digest: Hosting Woes and Unit Testing Studies

Happy Friday, folks.  Time for another installment of the DaedTech digest, wherein I link out to a bunch of technical posts I’ve written for other sites.

This week, I don’t have any specific personal narrative to relay, per se.  That’s largely because I’ve been working like a dog as we onboard additional clients to Hit Subscribe.  Oh, speaking of which…  we’re opening up the author rolls again, but looking for certain specific column types and topics.  If you think you might be interested, here’s the page where you can get started.

The only other item of note is that I have now successfully switched hosts.  My old hosting provider, Hostmonster, had my site on a server that must have become overloaded several weeks ago.  After seemingly endless support tickets and runaround from their tech support, they settled on three rotating and competing verdicts:

  1. You’re right, our server is overloaded and we’ll fix it.
  2. Actually, no, it’s probably WordPress or plugins or internet or something, whatevs, good luck, %#$& you.
  3. Ah, actually, it is our server, but that’s life and you need to pay more if you want us to fix it.

I got tired of pleading my case for them to listen to the techs that said it was (1), so I gave them an ultimatum: migrate me to a new server, or buh-bye.  They made their choice, and so did I.  I’ll get to the new provider in a second in my picks, but suffice it to say that I’ve measured page load times on GTMetrix, and my identical, migrated site now performs substantially better than it even did on Hostmonster, even before they overloaded the server.  And I’m paying less!

I’ve installed no new plugins on my site or changed its configuration in months. But you’re probably right Hostmonster, this massive uptick in intermittent server errors and timeouts… probably because I wrote a long blog post or something. Couldn’t possibly be a resource issue on your server.

I’m planning to migrate a couple of my other sites as well in the coming weeks.


  • On that note, my first pick is the new hosting company, Siteground.  It’s too early for me to speak to their long term performance or even support quality.  But, for someone who is too busy to deal with the mundanities of website administration, they are perfect.  I just had to give them my login credentials to Hostmonster, and they took care of everything — not just migrating the site over in its entirety, but taking care of the SSL cert, redirection, moving my DNS, and even taking over supporting my email.  I didn’t see any downtime, and I expended almost zero effort.
  • Also related to this saga, I want to throw a nod out to isup.me, which is a great way to see if a website is down for everyone or if you’re just having a problem.  I took advantage of the “check my site for malware” option (to throw it at Hostmonster support, if they tried that excuse) and wound up chatting with the site owner.  He’s getting into hosting recommendations and other value-adds, so bookmark it and keep your eye on what they do.
  • Speaking of things that abstract ugh IT issues away from me, I also pick LastPass.  I’ve used them for years now and it’s incredibly convenient.

The Digest

And, on that note, have a great weekend!