Airplane Propellers as a Nearly Perfect Version One

Posted by on Apr 13, 2014 in Nerdery | No Comments
Airplane Propellers as a Nearly Perfect Version One

I recently wrote about the strange comfort I find in ships and the fact that on a basic level they’ve remained largely the same for thousands of years. Airplane propellers are similar. The propeller as a mechanical device has been used in aquatic applications for a long time, beginning with Archimedes’ Screw (in the 3rd century […]

Quick Takes: Mini Weather Stations

Posted by on Apr 13, 2014 in Quick Takes | No Comments
Quick Takes: Mini Weather Stations

Recently I had a job placement meeting with a student named Todd. He’s in his late 40s. The beginning of class was a bit rough, and at a few points I think he questioned whether he was going to make it. Low and behold, weeks later he had more than persevered: his final project consisted […]

Quick Takes: In Good Company with Smashing Boxes

Posted by on Apr 10, 2014 in Quick Takes | No Comments
Quick Takes: In Good Company with Smashing Boxes

I’m in Durham for a few days laughing our first code school in North Carolina. We are partnered with a company called Smashing Boxes, and getting to know them has been a privilege. Walking through their office the other day, I overheard a developer and a designer discussing a project. One if them said, “look, […]

Ships as Thousand-Year-Old Tools

Posted by on Mar 31, 2014 in Life | No Comments
Ships as Thousand-Year-Old Tools

I’m in Charleston helping launch the first round of Academy classes. Amidst the craziness of last minute preparations, my wife and I stole a few moments to run out to Sullivan’s Island for a walk by the waves. As we arrived a huge barge was entering the harbor, and when we left another was leaving. […]

User Experience Fail: No Ice Cream for You

Posted by on Mar 26, 2014 in Nerdery | No Comments
User Experience Fail: No Ice Cream for You

It’s hard to call any machine that gives you ice cream a failure, but this one is about as close as they come. (Your product shouldn’t need Sharpie scrawled all over it just to be useable). What’s truly remarkable is that the machine is simple: it only has one lever that goes up and down. […]

Letters to the Company: Sales, Storytelling and The Iron Yard

Posted by on Mar 26, 2014 in Work | 2 Comments

When I have the opportunity, I write letters to our company. They are generally attempts to either encapsulate our collective philosophy on a certain subject or remind our team why we do what we do (and why we are who we are). Recently everyone on the team sprinted (successfully) through an intense marketing push as […]

Happy 92nd, Papa

Posted by on Mar 24, 2014 in Life, Photos | 2 Comments

Today we made a trip to the mountains to wish my grandfather a happy 92nd birthday. Here he is walking out of his shop after finding a tool my dad and I needed to borrow from him: The last living member of a 397-man troop, time spent with him is always inspiring. He recounts war […]

Making it Count: Values, Beliefs and Precious Hours

Posted by on Mar 21, 2014 in Life, Work | 12 Comments

This is the second post in a series answering the question, “How do you get everything done?“ I have the opportunity to talk with people starting new careers every day. They are at different points in their journey: some are looking to attending our code school as a way to pivot their life on to […]

Making it Count: Introduction

Posted by on Jan 20, 2014 in Life, Work | No Comments

In the last few weeks I’ve had the privilege of rubbing shoulders with a handful of new people on a daily basis. They are students and instructors we’ve brought into the fold of the intensive code school I run at work. My interactions with them have produced the same question enough times for me to […]

A Shared Calendar for Political Elections

Posted by on Jan 4, 2014 in Nerdery | No Comments

Lately I’ve been taking dedicated time to think through different areas of my life—family, finances, spirtuality, etc. One area where I’m much less proactive than I’d like to admit is civic duty (a fancy way of saying I don’t research my representatives or prepare for elections well). Many people my age (late 20s) are burned […]

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