Where’d the year go?

There hasn’t been much tech-wise that’s interested me. I’ve gotten better as a coder, and finally built my own data app that helped me find and track people that follow and unfollow using bots on Instagram. It’s closed source, but I just might get to sell it to an adtech company. We’ll see.

I first got paid for coding back in 1993. 24 years of coding, and I’m not a manager. I was for awhile in New York and Los Angeles, but in San Francisco where genius IQs are common, I’m just a coder. Now, I don’t have a genius IQ, and don’t take much stock in it, but I test around 125 to 129. My last IQ test I was 129 – 3 points away from Mensa.

Anyway, if you go here you can see what I’ve made public that I’ve worked on.

I’m most proud of my Django-screenshots code, which takes a screenshot based on a URL you’ve given the code.

What’s next? Well, I love coffee. If you’re in San Francisco, I’d love to grab coffee with you.

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What happened in the last 12 months?

I’ve been spending most of my free time working on my photography. You can see see some of it at Bracket This, and a ton of it on my Instagram account. Right now though, I’m starting to focus on tech again. I’ve been learning Swift to make an iOS app while working with a really awesome designer, Andi Galpern.

Anyways, expect to see more posts about Swift and mobile app development.


Check Out My New Video Project:

Hey Folks,

Please check out my new video project called “GeekySF.” I highlight cool events to check out for geeks.

Episode 1 is available exclusively on

Cheers, Barce


Traffic Has Been Phenomenal! Thank you!

Traffic has been phenomenal! Thank you!

Awesome Traffic

Stick around for details, because I would love to thank my readers with a Tweetup / Drinkup.

Got any tips for a breaking tech story? Email me or reply to me on twitter: @barce!

PS I’ve listened to the suggestions on Hacker News and have removed the pictures of the cuties to make things less confusing. In future pieces, the author’s pic will clearly accompany the post.


Ride a bicycle and save the planet!

I so wish that folks would ride bicycles more.

Liffy Hatchet aka Liffy Hatchet on a bicycle.
photo by Lisa Valdez — model Liffy Hatchet

Maybe if more hotties rode bicycles, then more regular folks would ride bicycles.

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Where are the people that hack together in meatspace?

I’ve got a flu and am hopped up on ibuprofen and Nyquil.

This year I’ve been telecommuting and co-working. I’ve made a few friends, but we don’t hang out much. I’ve actually been blown off by a few people to, but you know what? You’re hardly worth the thought.

This rant is addressed to those of you I haven’t met or haven’t hung out with this year, but I truly feel you can do something awesome for the tech scene that’s more than just about your career. Actually if we do this shit that I’ll mention later, you’ll see that it’ll enhance our careers.

I’ve seen you folks in cafes: the guy with the latest Apple laptop tailing server logs with an ev-do card, or the woman compiling drizzle on some beater Lenovo laptop converted to Linux. I’ve seen the creepy and utterly lame pick-up that you engineer dudes do at co-working places. Life’s more than eating where you shit.

Next year, let’s do something awesome. Let’s fucking hang out in meatspace and build something awesome. Let’s have awesome discussions and turn a particular cafe as the place to talk tech.

Let’s meet on some night during the week and actually build and learn shit, and actually help each other. San Francisco has about 17,000 people per square mile in some places. Why aren’t these folks hanging out and making there lives more awesome. Insert Matrix Quote Here.

I know some of you hackers are one pay check away from disaster (if you’re not already there), or some of you are doing okay. Let’s all combine forces and create an awesome network and see if we can actually build something.

You’re the kind of person who knows there’s gotta be better than Facebook or Google. Technology wasn’t meant to pigeonhole and objectify people as consumers but in some weird way liberate their human potential. Ya, it’s pretty hard to buy this BS given what a rough year it was, but if you are reading this here’s my proposal to you:

We meet each week at some common space and work on technology together.

This might sound too simple, but ask yourself this question: What community do you belong to?

Having a hard time answering? Working on a tech project? Then the community I’m proposing might be the one for you.

Maybe there’s already a group out there. If you’re out there, I’d like to talk to you. We have to stop isolating ourselves and unite in a really powerful way.

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Lone Coder in a Sea of Power Users?

Hey folks, I might expand this into a larger article for either or .

I was wondering if you folks who are coders feel that you’ve been put in a situation where you are the lone coder in a sea of power users?

If so, is this situation ideal for you? Not ideal?

How do you deal with job queues?

How do you deal with working with power users with conflicting interests?

I’m really interested in war stories where you feel you’re the lone expert.

Cheers, Barce

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A Cross Platform Browser, Windows 2003 EC2 AMI

I recently created a cross platform browser, Windows 2003 EC2 AMI: ami-69739500

It has the following pre-installed:

  • gvim
  • IE 7
  • Firefox 3 with Web Developer, yslow & Firebug
  • opera
  • Putty SSH
  • Putty SCP

Pretty much with that list you’re all set to do troubleshooting for cross platform browser issues.

There’s IIS 6.0 and SQL Server, too.

I’ve linked the password to this ami at . It’s a short-coming of Windows AMIs on EC2 that I have to link the password, so please change it once you get into the instance.


2008 Favorites

These things were just my absolute favorite in 2008.

  • Github – Do you want to see nice graphs about your current coding project? Do you want to invite friends to code with you? As a consultant, there wasn’t a major client that I didn’t use Github for this year.
  • The iPhone 3G – Thank you, thank you, Michael Parekh for saying that it’s the computer of the future and that you shouldn’t be developing for the web without it in mind.
  • Grokking what Gearman is about.
  • The SxSW gloves schwag. Ya, it was warm and rainy when passed these out but it was so good in the fall and winter!
  • Katy Perry’s song “Hot N Cold

Katy Perry on the Warped Tour

What were your favorites of 2008?

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Another Hackday Update: PHP unserialize doesn’t quite do it

Wow, I had to use someone’s custom unserialize code because PHP’s unserialize doesn’t quite work multi-byte strings. 🙁 Time wasted: 3 hours.

Here’s the function:

function mb_unserialize($serial_str) {
$out = preg_replace(‘!s:(\d+):”(.*?)”;!se’, ‘”s:”.strlen(“$2″).”:\”$2\”;”‘, $serial_str);
return unserialize($out);