Category Archives: Technology

Dream a Little Dream

A wonderful bouquet of flowers.Bitwise Industries: “In downtown alone, hundreds of lofts will become thousands. Eateries will line the streets. Nightlife will spring up. And on Sunday mornings, the thirty-somethings will sit outside sipping coffee from that shop on Fulton Street and tell tales of how people used to scoff at the notion of downtown revitalization.”

I love this vision. I’ve been dreaming of a vibrant Fresno downtown since we moved back from Seattle in 1997. I loved stepping outside the office and having everything within walking distance. Restaurants and shops, so many to choose from. Scores of people going about their business. It was a beautiful experience and I miss it.

If you’re looking to relocate or build you should consider downtown Fresno. There are amazing old buildings everywhere waiting for someone to show them a little TLC and make them wonderful again. If you need someone to show you, drop me a line, I’ll show you some of my favorites.

Oh, Bitwise has also gone a long way toward fixing this issue. The valley is now very different because of their efforts.

Thank you Irma and Jake — and everyone else involved behind the scenes – you’ve given me hope for a revitalized downtown.

P.S. – Can you guys try to convince Alamo Drafthouse to add a location downtown? I know the perfect space for it! Thanks!

Parse: It was good while it lasted

AHHHHHH!Parse: “Some of the world’s best brands trust us with their entire mobile presence, and a growing number of the world’s brightest independent developers trust us with their next big thing. We couldn’t be happier.”

Parse is one of those companies I was really excited about. Our connected world is about services, not websites or mobile, but services. The backend; the logic and data it contains are the important bits of the puzzle. They’re also the most difficult to create and maintain. Parse built something that allowed developers to create small scale services without the need to build the backend. It was a genius idea and one that opened the doors for indie developers to create great services.

How much trust will the “world’s brightest independent developers” have in Parse now that it’s part of one of the most untrustworthy companies in the world?

I guess I can’t bag on these guys too much. If Facebook offered me a pile of cash for my product, I’d take the money and run.

Just a little dramatic

A wonderful boquet of flowers.Joe Hewitt: “The Web will be just another app that you use when you want to find some information, like Wikipedia, but it will no longer be your primary window. The Web will no longer be the place for social networks, games, forums, photo sharing, music players, video players, word processors, calendaring, or anything interactive. Newspapers and blogs will be replaced by Facebook and Twitter and you will access them only through native apps. HTTP will live on as the data backbone used by native applications, but it will no longer serve those applications through HTML. Freedom of information may be restricted to whatever our information overlords see fit to feature on their App Market Stores.”

I’m mostly ok with most of what Mr. Hewitt has to say in this post. Native clients are still provide the best shot at a great User Experience, in my humble opinion. The web in all its glory is just a network, why not use it? I don’t care if the browser is my default window, why would I? It provides a lowest common denominator experience, not the best experience.

It sounds like he wants a web browser with the power of a desktop application. Why not just write desktop applications? Is it because he wants a common host? Maybe, maybe not?

It also seems like Mr. Hewitt is a glass half empty sort of fella. Most of his recent posts seem, at least to me, to be all gloom and doom. It’s not that bad, really, it’s not.

Regarding Web Evangelists

AHHHHHH!Joe Hewitt: “I can easily see a world in which Web usage falls to insignificant levels compared to Android, iOS, and Windows, and becomes a footnote in history. That thing we used to use in the early days of the Internet.”

Ah, yes, computing, and more specifically software, just shifts and changes like the tide.

I do believe in web services but I also firmly believe those services are best consumed by platform native clients. It’s all about the User Experience and in my opinion the browser still isn’t there.

My Invisibility Cloak

Harry Potter, boy wizardTechnology Review [hat tip Ben King]: “A new printing method makes it possible to produce large sheets of metamaterials, a new class of materials designed to interact with light in ways no natural materials can. For several years, researchers working on these materials have promised invisibility cloaks, ultrahigh-resolution “superlenses,” and other exotic optical devices straight from the pages of science fiction. But the materials were confined to small lab demonstrations because there was no way to make them in large enough quantities to demonstrate a practical device.”

Harry Potter has nothing on us Muggles.

He’s Independent Now

Joe Hewitt: “And so, I’m independent now, and I’m going to pour myself into understanding the needs of modern developers and designers, and creating software to fill those needs. There are so many opportunities that I can’t even predict what I will end up building, but I am pretty sure I know where I am going to start. I can’t wait.”

Good luck.

Instagram, Scaling for Success

InstagramMashable: “Day two for Instagram was an exciting one. Krieger called his dedicated server representative to inquire about getting a new machine — he was quoted a two day turnaround. Instagram, already fast-approaching 40,000 users, would need something much sooner to meet the weekend demand. “We needed to be on a platform where we could adjust in minutes, not days,” says Krieger.”

Amazon EC2 to the rescue! I hear story after story like this. With Amazon EC2, Rackspace, and Microsoft Azure I’m not sure why you’d want to deal with hosting your own mess. Let them do it for you.

The Computer Pharmacist

Jerry Fahrni: “Perhaps pharmacy could take advantage of the Watson technology to help pharmacists move away from nearly universal prospective order review (NUPOR), i.e pharmacists stuck at a computer terminal looking at every order written. There has been a movement in recent years to eliminate the need for NUPOR and move toward a system that allows drug orders with “imperceptible harm” to be automatically verified and activated for use on a patient. Some think it’s a crazy idea, but it makes sense to me. There are several medication orders that come to mind that would fall into an auto-verification category.”

I know he’s my brother, but when this guy talks about pharmacy technology, you should probably listen. He has a very forward thinking view of his profession, he’s a Clinical Pharmacist with many years in the trenches, and he lives, eats, and breathes technology. Some would probably call him a heretic for his outside the box thinking; a radical, a nut, extreme, but you can’t ignore what he has to say.

I have no doubt his ideas will change the way Pharmacists in a hospital setting operate.