Introducing a faster BBC homepage

An overview of the front- and back-end technologies used to speed up the load time of the BBC homepage. Interesting but unsurprising to note that React in the browser was unacceptably slow for their use case.

April 24, 2017

Currying in JavaScript

Short and to-the-point tutorial on curried JS functions. Additional reading: an even simpler overview at Stack Overflow, the CS concept of arity, and the amusing history of the the term “currying.”

The Benefits of Server Side Rendering Over Client Side Rendering

An interesting article from the Walmart platform team. For what it’s worth, I still prefer the SSR approach to send the user a fully-functional base UX, with non-critical functionality wired up with JavaScript on the client side.

April 19, 2017

The invisible parts of CSS

A nice overview of the CSS box model and visual formatting model and what it all means.

April 17, 2017

An International Color Symbolism Chart

(PDF) Thing I learned: in Thailand, pink is the color of Tuesday. Via Six Degrees.

April 14, 2017

Watch this video of Morgan Freeman as a singing vegetarian vampire, brought to you by the letter “V”

A childhood memory, forever preserved on YouTube.

April 13, 2017

Study Confirms: The More You Use Facebook, the Worse You Feel

The study details are interesting, but you really only need to read the last paragraph:

Exposure to the carefully curated images from others’ lives leads to negative self-comparison, and the sheer quantity of social media interaction may detract from more meaningful real-life experiences. What seems quite clear, however, is that online social interactions are no substitute for the real thing.

You don’t say.

April 12, 2017

Kill Six Billion Demons (a webcomic)

I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of this. An adventure comic with an incredibly dense yet coherent mythology, with artwork that sits somewhere on the continuum between Moebius and Brandon Graham. See also this dedicated Wikia.

April 7, 2017

Relevant XKCD


April 6, 2017

Leaving social media feels like escaping a cult

I’ve never done social media very well, but I’m almost certain Twitter wasn’t a screeching technicolor firehose of seething panic and spittle-flecked rage when I first joined in 2006.

That’s bad enough, but here is the cumulative effect: the feeling that social media insists on telling me what to think, what to think about, and how often to think about it. Which is constantly. And often by people who are wholly unqualified to do so.

Maybe I’m just not built for it. I’m an introspective guy. I like to have long thinks about stuff. Social media insists that I shorten my thinks. Social media would rather I not have any thinks at all. It would prefer that I just react. And keep coming back.

And keep coming back. Social media is optimized for addiction and positioned as utterly indispensable.

I’ve been off most social media for the last few months. To me, leaving social media feels like escaping a cult. A cult strives to impair your ability to think independently. A cult gaslights you, makes you doubt your own judgment. It requires you to defer your thinking to the cult and to believe you can’t thrive outside it.

Lies. Turns out you can still think rationally about things that are happening in the world when not encapsulated in a tornado made of wet garbage and fire. Who knew?

See also: Social Media Is An Amoral Force Of Destruction.

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