A Brief Introduction to Blockchain

A Brief Introduction to Blockchain

At its simplest, a blockchain is a distributed database of transactions that are cryptographically linked to form an incorruptible chain. Transactions are grouped together at intervals to create a ‘block.’ Every new block depends on its ancestor block being unaltered. This is the chain, and it allows anyone to start at the first block and ‘walk’ the chain, verifying the correctness of each subsequent block. In the most famous case, Bitcoin, the blockchain is used to keep a record of Bitcoin transactions all the way back to the very first one. Anyone can examine the blockchain to find any particular transaction and verify that nothing has been altered. (more…)

Zen and the Art of Working with Internal Teams

Zen and the Art of Working with Internal Teams

I’ve had the pleasure of working with many internal development teams in my career in software development. For our company, working in partnership with internal development teams is, in fact, a common project type. Clients call on our particular services for any number of reasons but the most common are to a) increase development traction or b) supplement core internal skills with outside development expertise.

We’ve worked with internal teams comprised of a single developer as well as internal development teams for vast, multinational tech companies with internal departments that dwarf our entire company. (more…)

Digital Disruption and the Menswear Renaissance

Digital Disruption and the Menswear Renaissance

Disruption has been the buzzword in tech for the last half a decade or so, and I thought it might be interesting to detail how disruption has personally changed my life as it simultaneously changed the fashion industry.

First, let’s define a few terms:

    1. Ready to wear (RTW) – These are clothes sold “off the rack” in standardized sizes. You can have these clothes altered to fit you more precisely, but all clothes in one size are made to the same standard from the same pattern. You can go to Dillards and be wearing the suit you purchase within a week (assuming you have it altered). The price range is generally somewhere between $300 and $1,500, excluding outliers.

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Music and AI (Artificial Intelligence)

Music and AI (Artificial Intelligence)

Prior to the release of The Jazz Singer in 1927, live musicians accompanied motion pictures in movie theaters. After the integration of synchronized sound, live musicians were no longer necessary. Protesting this technological advancement that took away their jobs, the Music Defense League spent $500,000 (quite a sum of money in the 1930s!) on an ad campaign featuring a maniacal robot. (more…)

Maintaining Your Application — It’s Like Owning A Cat

Maintaining Your Application — It’s Like Owning A Cat

I may live to regret this analogy.

But let’s consider this a PSA for the purpose of maintaining your software application . . . perhaps co-sponsored by your local ASPCA or Animal Rescue.

I frequently find that clients think of their applications like a very heavy piece of furniture — one of those uber-plushy, leather recliners. You buy it, you stick it in the corner, and, there it sits, comfy and dependable, aging gracefully in place for years until a spouse puts a foot down and insists that it be updated for a newer model. The chair is dragged to the corner or sold at a yard sale or hauled to the transfer station. (more…)