Longer Content on a Variety of Topics:
Programmers can spend a lot of time worrying about, thinking about, and optimizing the way that the code they’re writing looks. Whether it’s language designers obsessing about the way that you’ll find the length of string or language-users sweating about whether the function should be called findClassById() or get_class(), all thinking about naming is arguably [...]
Widgets are a powerful part of WordPress, and they’re a great way to enhance your site’s sidebar. Or your footer. Or your homepage. Or another part of your site that your theme maker thinks would look really good with some widgets. For the uninitiated, a “widget” is just a WordPress word for a certain type Continue Reading
When I look around at people, one thing that I notice is that their dispositions — how generous they are to those around them, how short their tempers are, how patient they can be, how randomly careless toward others they are, how willing they are to help — have very little to do with their material […]
A bit of a neologism, I wondered if I should use the hyphenated “meta-work” instead. To explain: metawork is simply work about work. That is: rather than making widgets, metawork consists of conversations about making widgets. Meetings are the quintessential form of group metawork. And the popular disdain for meetings among white collar workers is mostly due to the […]
Compression algorithms are all around you in a modern digital life. But you may not actually know what they are, so let me explain: raw data taken from the world is rarely very efficiently packed. So to save file size and computational sanity, most data is compressed. JPEG is an image compression format — it takes […]
Optimism has a bit of a rap against it. Too many people, my former self included, cast aside optimism as a sane perspective on life because they’re making a simple and obvious mistake: conflating optimistic delusion with optimism itself. I raise this not to make the pedantic linguistic point — I assure you I refer to no dictionaries […]
Diving Deeper Into Object Orientation: Understanding Object-Creation and Inheritance for the WordPress Developer
Regular readers of WPShout, I’m sorry. I missed two important (and necessary) concepts when we last talked about object orientation. And I could pretend that it was intentional, but it wasn’t. I just didn’t realize we need to understand two (not one, as I was thinking) additional concepts of object oriented PHP to really get Continue Reading
I spend most of my professional effort these days working on and thinking about software and computer programming. I enjoy it, and it casts a whole interesting lens on lots of other things. One topic I recently discovered — I even wrote about it in the software context — is the difference between essential (or inherent) complexity, […]
Computers process information quite differently than humans do. Anyone who’s first learning to program understands this well. What’s hard about programming for a beginner isn’t so much big hard esoteric concepts, but that they’ve got to be so painfully exacting in how they describe everything that it can drive an average person insane. “Is it cold outside?” is [...]
The post The Psychology Underlying the Power of Rubber Duck Debugging appeared first on Press Up.
Sometime in the last decade — I don’t follow or care enough to tell you more exactly — America discovered and fell in love with the idea of hoarding. A “hoarder”, as you might expect, is a person who keeps stuff — everything from old newspapers, to packaging from old purchases, maybe metal scraps, collectable memorabilia, whatever — to great […]
Over at the ManageWP Blog Brenda Barron put together — after a plagiarism dust-up with me — a solid article about what it’s like to try to use the HHVM — an alternative PHP interpreter I recently explained — with WordPress today. The biggest point I hadn’t really considered is in this quote from Tomas Puig of WP Continue Reading
From Link Banana
Spurious correlations are a common and obvious problem that afflicts a lot of science. Tyler Vigen’s site is dedicated to collecting them. They’re pointless fun to see. Here’s how the divorce rate in Maine is driven by the consumption of margarine across the US:
At BuzzFeed, Ann Helen Petersen makes and elaborates a really interesting point: Angelina Jolie’s PR in the last 10 years has been amazingly good. Don’t believe it, consider Ann’s great hook:
What was Angelina Jolie best known for in 2004?
a.) Wearing a vial of Billy Bob Thornton’s blood around her neck.
b.) Making out with her brother on the red carpet.
c.) Being the offspring of ‘70s star Jon Voight.
Having studied them pretty casually over the last few years — did you know squirrels bark? — I wasn’t really shocked that a scientist has found that squirrels definitely are able to differentiate among human behaviors:
Squirrels “can tell if a human is looking at them,” or if a person behaves in an unusual way, Bateman found. Squirrels were 40 percent more likely to scoot if Bateman focused his attention on them. And 90 percent of the squirrels leapt away if the scientist left the sidewalk to stalk them across the grass. “They don’t get scared by humans all the time,” he explains. But they always seem to pay close attention to what people do. Bateman published his results June 12 in the Journal of Zoology.
(via Virginia Hughes’s Gray Matters Newsletter)