Committing code - best practices

example output from a git diff commandSource control management, or SCM, is used to track changes in files over time. Software source code evolves as new features are added and tracking the history makes it easy to go back (revert) to an earlier version of the code. SCM enables several people to update different areas of the code at the same time and have reasonable confidence that their changes will be compatible with each other. When you've finished your task you "check in" your changes which makes them available to everyone else. Since your changes can affect many other people working on the same project, including your future self (when you come back to update the code again later), paying extra attention to what you're publishing can make a big difference in keeping things stable, simple and readable.

How to Merge into Traffic - the Right Way

the "mystified disbelief" face - furrowed eyebrows & open mouthAs I was driving my son to daycare this morning, I was passed by a driver merging onto the highway. She was well past the on-ramp and was driving on the shoulder. I looked to my right as she passed and gave her a "what are you doing?" look, and saw that she was giving me the same look! In that instant, I realized that we don't all share the same understanding of how to merge traffic together. In an effort to resolve this matter once and for all, we will be geeking out today on how to merge traffic.


My Body Developed a New Sense

seated man thinks of a clipboard iconMy use of computers over the past 20+ years has given me a new sense. When it activates, it feels like a little lightbulb is turned on in my brain, and I'm aware that there's something there that wasn't there before. It's like my own geeky version of Spiderman's "spidey sense."

My first github project!

screen capture from the current pacworld program - shows several pink rectangles (rooms) and a triangle (player) next to a swirling spiral (art piece)Wow, it's been almost a year since I posted anything! I guess having a new baby tends to change up your priorities a bit. I've had 2 people mention blogging to me today AND I have a really geeky accomplishment to announce, so here goes...

I created my first open-source repository today on github!

Website mashups using Yahoo! Pipes

screenshot from Yahoo PipesIn the same way that audio software enables DJs to remix music, combining several songs together to create a new one, modern web technologies allow programmers to mash-up data from websites with relative ease.

When I went looking for a map of ATM locations for my local credit union, I was disappointed to find only an HTML table with a bunch of addresses. Now, I can tell that those are all addresses, and if I were to copy & paste any of them into Google Maps, it would have no problem finding that location on the map. But getting all of them to show up on the same map? A little trickier.