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Working from Home ... 88 Days Later

Follow on post to Working From Home … Here We Go! written in March. 88 Days ago in New York we all started working from home. 88 Days ago we stopped commuting, sat down for the first time at our fledgeling home workspaces, launched our first Zoom or Slack meetings and started figuring out how best to do our jobs from there. 88 Days later, we’re still doing it and will be for the foreseeable future.

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Working from Home ... here we go!

It’s been many years since I worked from home and much is different since I ran Noverse from here. First, my wife has taken over my workspace as hers, so the desk, good keyboard, mouse and monitor are her domain now. Secondly, it’s likely this is not a one-day disaster recovery test, so I need to find a way settle in instead of use the laptop on the dining table. And thirdly, Slack has changed the way we communicate internally, which makes it as easy to maintain contact as it does in our open plan office.

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The Theater was Empty

Johannesburg, 1977 It was a crisp, sunny Saturday morning and my grandmother was in town. As we always did when together, we went to the movies. The theater nearby was old, run down but comfortable and in walking distance. I’d go there later again many times on many Saturday mornings. For the first time, though, I was more excited about the movie than I was about going with grandmother. I was about to turn 10.

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An iPad and a Pencil

In 2018, I switched to using an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil when not using my computer, replacing notebooks, scraps of paper, Post-It notes, and ink-leaking pens. After a year of being digital, here are some of the processes and habits I have picked up. The Setup I have a late 2017 iPad Pro 10.5" 256GB Cellular model, with an Apple Smart Keyboard and the original Apple Pencil. It’s running the latest iOS 12.

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Testing C++17 Projects in Xcode with XCTest

The vast majority of development I perform is in C++17 on an Apple Mac Computer using Xcode. For a while now, I have been using Catch2 as my Unit Testing framework, and its absolutely excellent. But its not integrated into the Xcode IDE and I wanted the ability to use Xcode’s excellent testing and test debugging tools to improve my productivity and workflow. In this post I will show you how to set up a simple standard C++17 library project in Xcode 10 and then add XCTests to it.

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On Removing Comments

Today I removed the comments from hiltmon.com for one reason and one reason only — the comment service, Disqus, that I used — was tracking you across a multitude of sites and is selling your data to strangers without your (or my) permission. I no longer want hiltmon.com to be one of those collection points. I’m going to miss the comments though. Your comments had been insightful, gracious and a wonderful way to connect with my readers, and to allow my readers to connect with each other.

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Stop and Think

When I started out as a developer and designer, I know I was clever. When folks asked me to design and develop a software product, I would ask a few questions to confirm that I understood what was asked of me, listen to their answers, then set about making the product. Request, build, ship. Easy! My mentor, who was definitely smarter than me, used to yell at me to Stop and Think.

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Migrate Octopress / Jekyll Posts to Ulysses

I wanted to move my published writing stashed in my Octopress/Jekyll site into my current writing workflow environment, Ulysses. Dragging and dropping the files from the _posts folder was not an option, because: The file names were messy There is no title in the file, it’s in the Markdown metadata I wanted to keep the publication date on the imported files So, I wrote a horrible script to do it.

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Notification City

It is best for your technology stack to tell you what went wrong as soon as it goes wrong to get the right level of attention in the correct timespan. I run a massive technology stack at work, filled up with multiple servers, plenty of web applications, loads of C++ programs and massive numbers of scheduled and recurring tasks, and I do it with an insanely tiny team and no DevOps folks.

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Coding Style Standards in 2017

I’ve been writing software for well over 30 years, I’ve spent well over my 10,000 hours and gotten rather good at it. And I still write to a very rigorous coding style standard. You’re kidding right? Its 2017, code style guides are so passé. Nope. I’m deadly serious. Get off my lawn Some of us remember when coding styles were de rigeur. When you climbed off your commuter dinosaur and joined a coding team, the first document they gave you was the coding style guideline.

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