On GitHub Achievements

GitHub recently announced GitHub achievements. It’s a great idea, but I’m really left scratching my head by what the achievements are. The “Pull Shark” is open pull requests that have been merged. I’ve got a “4x” version. 4x makes NO sense to me given the number of repos I’ve contributed to, but… ok. Maybe it just maxes out at 4x. That’s it, though, except for “Arctic Code Vault Contributor” which … is more chance than anything else.

How To Register an Internationalized Domain Name

( A guide for English speakers as of May, 2022) I’m going to assume that this isn’t terrible if you speak a language which doesn’t look anything like English. I’m going to assume that your domain name registrar’s don’t have their heads up their butts. Over here in the English speaking world they’re too anglocentric to notice anything that goes on in languages that have non-ascii characters. Since you’re reading this, you probably use a lot of software that was written by American companies.

What you need to know about Mastodon

The goal of this post is to give you the information you’ll need to start using Mastodon before Twitter becomes even more of a dumpster fire than it currently is. It assumes that you’re familiar with Twitter and that you’d like to see if you can continue your twitter-like postings over on Mastodon. I’m going to cover the following topics: what the deal is with all the different servers / instances instances as communities moderation choosing an instance how you use Mastodon what’s different Before that, I’d like to recommend you watch this 6 minute intro to Mastodon.

Splitting an org-roam collection

org-roam supports multiple directories and it should work fine if you start that way, but if you’ve already got an org-roam project that you need to split up, it’s a pain in the butt. Here’s how I managed to divide my org-roam project into multiple directories after much trial and error and googling. A note before continuing: If you’re googling around for this you’re going to find a bunch of old commands from when people were upgrading from v1 to v2.

You've been lied to about the newline character

You’ve been lied to about the Newline Character The humble newline character: \n. You’ve seen it in countless code examples. Usually something like foo\n bar\n \n You look at that and probably think, it represents the end of a line. Or maybe you think it represents the start of a line. If you believe either of those things, I’m sorry to inform you that you’re wrong. Fortunately, by the end of this post you’ll have a much better mental model of \n.


Once upon a time a group of friends gathered at a restaurant. We passed the time trying to devise the worst phonetic alphabet. One that, when heard, would do the best possible job of not successfully conveying the letters you were trying to communicate. This is what we came up with. A aye B bdellium (the b is silent) C cent D djin E eye F fore G gnu H heir

Some of us need bigger text

That sounds pretty obvious. It is pretty obvious. Anyone with any familiarity with older humans knows that they generally have trouble reading small text, or making out fine details. Every drug store has a rack of magnifying glasses. Everyone’s seen an older person doing the thing where they lift up their bifocals and start moving a thing closer and farther with their arm trying to find a spot where it both large enough to be readable but far away enough to be in focus.

Ubiquity Upgrade Fiasco

[⚠️ This is a blow-by-blow ranty post about what happened when Ubiquity screwed up a software upgrade ⚠️] This morning has been… a journey. Our Wifi coverage has been kinda 💩 at the new house because there’s way more space between us and the Access Point. So, let’s just run some ethernet across the floor for now! Should be quick! 🤦🏻‍♀️ We run it into my wife’s iMac. No problem. All good.

The Coin Game

The Coin Game is one of the tools I’ve come up with to help myself recognize when I do accomplish something of value. It also helps motivate me to do more. Boring tasks are hard, especially for ADHD brains. On top of this, when we do actually manage to accomplish something, we don’t give ourselves credit for it. Sometimes it feels like it shouldn’t count because of how long it takes.

First Principles & Scheme

(Or, The Value of Working at Lower Levels of Abstraction.) I’m loving working in Scheme because it forces me to work from First Principles. There’s a huge value in the convenience functions that most languages wrap around those first principles, but it’s like buying and using a car vs. building the car you’re using. The latter is more work but you’re going to really understand how that car works and you’re going to have the perfect car for your needs.