My daily readings 08/08/2009

  • tags: iPhone, appstore

    • During its short life of only one year so far, the AppStore – or more precisely, the approval policy of Apple – has been the target of criticism and numerous complaints coming from the press, the developers and even from the customers. While being unmistakenly the current most successful distribution network for mobile devices that is targeted at only one specific device, it is also the most curious if not politically influenced one.
  • tags: HR

    • What if you could tell, immediately, whether a given person is going to be a great addition to your team? You would be the greatest manager in the history of the world. Thats the promise held out by a careful reading of the book Blink, the Power of Thinking without Thinking, by Malcolm Gladwell.

      Hiring the right people is the single most important thing you can do to ensure the success of an IT project. Good people do the right thing, do it fast, and do itwith minimal management intervention. This is especially true in software development, where the good engineers are anecdotally reported to be ten times as productive as the average contributor. I believe this, and I have invested time in recruiting to makes sure Im working with the best people I can find.

    • Over the years I have tried a lot of different ways to qualify potential team members. I havedone interviews, puzzles, calls, chats, code reviews, trials, and reference checks. When I experimented with different methods of qualifying developers, and tracked the outcomes, I was surprised to find that most of these activities were useless. I want to ramp up my teams quickly, and many of these activities added a lot of delay to the process. Even simple Instant Messenger interview added about a week to the typical recruiting cycle. Some of these activities were worse than useless. For instance, if I did a phone or in-person interview, I often ended up liking a particular person, but hiring a bad developer.
  • tags: nosql, database

    • Schema-free document databases are in many ways a more natural fit for Web applications than the traditional RDBMS. With interfaces that are natural and convenient for rapid development, and a lack of object-relational mappers and other heavy middleware, applications can be both simpler and more powerful.
  • tags: LEP

    • It was built at CERN, a multi-national center for research in nuclear and particle physics near Geneva, Switzerland. LEP was a circular collider with a circumference of 27 kilometers built in a tunnel straddling the border of Switzerland and France. It was used from 1989 until 2000. To date, LEP is the most powerful accelerator of leptons ever built.
    • Rather than increasing the particles’ velocities (which are already very close to the speed of light), the function of the accelerators is really to increase the particles’ energies so that heavy particles can be created when the particles collide. When the particles are accelerated to maximum energy (and focused to so-called bunches), an electron and a positron bunch is made to collide with each other at one of the collision points of the detector. When an electron and a positron collide, they annihilate to a virtual particle, either a photon or a Z boson. The virtual particle almost immediately decays into other elementary particles, which are then detected by huge particle detectors.
  • tags: CSS, debug

    • Great little debuging snippet found while browsing. The code adds different coloured borders to the assets depending on its level. Leave commented out if not needed.
  • tags: encryption

    • Normally if you submit a form and you don’t use SSL, your data will be sent in plain text.
      But SSL is neither supported by every webhost nor it’s easy to install/apply sometimes.
      So I created this plug-in in order that you are able to encrypt your data fast and simple.
      jCryption uses the public-key algorithm of RSA for the encryption.
  • tags: Git

    • I installed it and tried it out – it’s pretty easy to use. And because it’s a generic builder you can also use it for non-test related tasks, like compiling stuff. It has a server BuildBot and worker BuildBots which means you can scale it to run many concurrent tasks, even across machines.
  • tags: PM, minimalism

  • tags: scribd

    • We made some changes that will have a short-term impact on traffic. Primarily: 1) improving our copyright filter, which keeps unauthorized content off the site and 2) reducing the aggressiveness of our SEO, which reduces total traffic in the near term but increases the relevancy of Scribd links in search engine results 3) trending down typical in the summer time — we experienced this last year at this time and other major sites (YouTube , Google Books ) are experiencing the same.

      We’re not concerned about the dip – we expect traffic to go back up quickly. The metrics we care about at Scribd are active members of our community and uploads of unique, authorized works. As long as these numbers keep growing, we are positioned very well for long-term growth in unique visitors.

      These product changes are part of a long-term strategy to focus on user experience and quality content. We call it a “controlled growth strategy”, similar to what Facebook did a few years ago. We have a lot product changes planned in the next few months that will increase quality / relevance / stickiness of the site.

    • Scribd always SUCKED! They have a crap product: viewing PDFs in a tiny window using the cancer of the internet (Flash).

      All their content is basically stolen. Just search for the word “Copyright” to see to whom the documents belong to.

  • tags: programmer

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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