Links: 7-17-2013

Links: 7-11-2013

  • 20 Best Travel & Adventure Books – Gear Patrol
    Books to read someday.
    (categories: books toread )

  • collision detection: How "making" leads to "fixing"
    Quote: "… there are some interesting differences in the psychologies of making vs. fixing. I’ve found it’s easier to be daring with fixer projects, because the emotional cost of failure is lower. If I’ve got a busted laptop, why not crack it open? What’s the worst I can do? Break it? It’s already broken! There’s also a sort of puzzle-solving pleasure in fixing, a sense of grappling with complexity. You encounter a lot of mystery that you’ll never solve and just have to live with, which is what makes repair a philosophically powerful activity. You learn humbleness in the face of intransigent reality." Describes my current job perfectly.
    (categories: fixing work purpose complexity )

Links: 7-8-2013

  • About
    Quote: "Foursquare is currently hosted within Amazon’s EC2 service, using hundreds of servers running a bare bones version of CentOS Linux. We use NGINX to route requests and serve static content, and HAProxy to load balance web and API requests across many machines. Then we get to the fun part. Moving up the stack, the live site data is stored in MongoDB (though we use Memcache to cache a small set of expensive calculations). For offline data analysis we regularly snapshot our live data and import it into a Hadoop cluster. We have some custom MapReduce jobs, but mostly rely on Hive’s simple query syntax and a custom built job scheduler for regular calculations. We use Solr and Elasticsearch for powering venues, tips, users, and events search. Our search geo-indexing uses Google’s s2 library to store cellids within our search index. We use PostGIS and the wonderful dataset to reverse geocode addresses into coordinates, which allows us to place venues on a map and make them available for location-based search. Kestrel is our queue for asynchronous tasks that we wish to perform out of band of users’ requests. User generated photos are stored on Amazon S3 with content delivery through Akamai. There is a bit more complexity if you dig deeper, but that’s the heart of it. Almost all of the code for the web site, API, and batch processing is written in Scala. The web and API are built on top of the Lift web framework. We also use a good bit of Python and Bash scripting for automating build, deployment, and operations tasks. Finally, the dynamic content on the web site is written in javascript with a mix of jQuery, Backbone.js for object models, and Soy for templating. We use beautiful maps by MapBox created using data provided by the wonderful © OpenStreetMap and contributors, and licensed Open Data Commons Open Database License. The interactive maps are generated using the open-source library Leaflet."
    (categories: technology foursquare lift scala amazon nginx mongodb hadoop kestrel jquery soy maps )

  • How Clothes Should Fit
    Simple guide with pictures!
    (categories: clothes style fit )

Links: 7-5-2013