Archive for March, 2007

I love Neal Stephenson

Tuesday, March 27th, 2007

because he writes with just the right amount of wit, humor, sarcasm, innuendo, and showmanship to keep me always wanting more. Sure, at times his prose feels like it came out from the bottom of the drugstore bargain bin. But who cares? Stephenson is the nerd’s nerd. Perhaps you have to be a Physics major to see him the way I do.

I just found his delightful 1999 essay In The Beginning Was The Command Line, which begins with the most delightful metaphor of Computer OS makers as Automobile Dealerships. Although I have only made it through about a third of it, I can already recommend it highly.

Newbie.new

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

I would like to write a long post about the sensations of ecstasy coming over me as I get introduced to the Ruby programming language. But alas, I am having so much fun that I must really get back to work. Go figure. The nerd within me is boss.

TextMate is Beautiful

Wednesday, March 21st, 2007

It’s hard to get excited about a text editor. Sure, I have been excited about the benefits of using a text editor instead of a frustratingly snarky WYSIWYG tool (examples of which shall remain nameless). But that said, it really does not matter all that much which text editor you choose. Use whatever you are familiar with.

When I started using text editors in earnest, I adopted Emacs because that was what everyone else was using. When I had to switch over to Win32 systems, Crimson Editor has been a great sidekick, if a little slow to load. But now I am switching towards the Mac OS X environment. BareBones Text Wrangler seems too complicated and heavy-hitting to me, and after more than six months of keeping it centered in my dock I used it less than ten times.

Along with a growing number of users, I am very pleased to be using TextMate. Rands tried it and wrote probably the most evocative review anyone could write of a text editor; I was almost moved to tears, folks. One day into using TextMate and I’m happy to have spent the money. Hey, if yours truly (a cheapskate developer who would more readily go barefoot in the desert than pay for software) bought it and is happy, maybe it’s actually worth something.