Saturday, January 2, 2021

Read it or Throw it #217

  1. Train Your Own Neural Network (
    If you love reading about different learning strategies, then this piece I’ve written a few months ago rambles about pattern-practicing methods, emphasizing feeding our brains with many inputs.

  2. ZSA Moonlander: Next-gen Ergonomics
    Recently I’ve started using the Moonlander keyboard. This is a mechanical split-keyboard that is fully configurable. You can customize your own keyboard into layers so that each layer acts like a new layout.
    A common pattern is to configure the default layer with the English characters (QWERTY, Dvorak, Colemak) and have the upper layers dedicated each to some subject.
    Usually symbols (i.e @ # : {}[]$ …) will have a dedicated layer, sometimes combined with digits, other times having their own separate layer. Gamers like to have layers devoted to common gaming elements for boosting their gaming experience.
    Besides that, there are other perks. One of them is the thumb cluster - the keyboard is not only split into two halves but each halve has an extension targeted to the thumb finger. The thumb cluster is generally used for mapping Enter, Space, Backspace, Esc, Tab, etc.
    Another very cool feature is called Auto shift. A short press on an English letter will translate into a lowercase character, while a long press (even the duration is totally configurable!) will emit an uppercase character.
    It does take a few days to get used to, but once you overcome it - it’s truly a game-changer.
    It’s not the cheapest keyboard out there but I personally think that it worths it.

  3. Announcing Tokio 1.0
    This is a huge milestone not only for the Tokio project but for Rust in general. Tokio is a very dominant project in the Rust ecosystem and reaching the 1.0 milestone is a huge step forward for Rust maturity.

  4. Death of an Open Source Business Model
    I really liked reading this article. The author argues that the era of Software companies granting free access to their core is over in general.
    The author gives examples for companies that have chosen to Open-Source their code under MIT or similar license - only to later become a closed source or to adapt their license.
    I tend to agree with most of the content - there will always be exceptions but in general companies need to stay competitive and giving away free access to their core assets will in most cases make it much harder.

  5. Adding BPF target support to the Rust compiler
    The eBPF is the new generation of the old BPF bytecode that has been used for dealing with network traffic. It brings unseen advanced inspection and tracing capabilities into the kernel and running applications.
    The BPF programs are deployed into the kernel and are written in an ad-hoc bytecode. The are new initiatives to use Rust for writing tools that will output BPF programs instead of using a dedicated tool or writing plain C code (or mixing python with C snippets).
    Generating BPF programs using some ergonomic Rust API has very good potential. It reminds me of the high involvement of Rust in the Wasm (WebAssembly). Both Wasm and eBPF are still considered early-stage and it seems that Rust is in the path to being dominant in both domains.

  6. Isoflow - Create beautiful cloud diagrams in minutes
    A nice and free online tool I’ve found that makes it easy to draw architecture diagrams. It’s good to bookmark for future use.

  7. One year of Nushell
    Another Rust project that gains traction is nushell. It’s written purely in Rust with focuses on structured data in a way that resembles PowerShell.
    I’ll keep tracking its progress and maybe in the future, it’ll become my default shell.

  8. Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think
    This is a classic article that details why most of us care about what others think of us and suggests how to mitigate such irrational thoughts and unproductive resulting actions that stem from them.

  9. Recommended Book - Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones
    I consider this book as one of the most influential books I’ve ever read. It has tons of life wisdom tactics of how to form new habits and, more importantly, how to maintain them. This book made me think a lot about the way I manage myself and where I can get better by forming new useful habits.
    After you read it - please take a look at Hooked book. This book shares a lot of the ideas of the Atomic Habits but in another context, of how to design products that will make people use them habitually.

  10. Recommended Book - Practical TLA+: Planning Driven Development
    If you’re interested in an introduction to Model Checking using TLA+ (PlusCal if to be precise), then look no further. This subject is considered intimidating and this book walks the reader slowly through the subjects and explains clearly the concepts of TLA+.
    It uses a language called PlusCal which is compiled to TLA+ in order to ease the pain for a topic that is not easy regardless of the syntax.

To change is to improve. To perfect is to change often.
Winston Churchill

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