Musings about technology, Sass, Compass, NYC, and all things in between

The Leaderboard Does Not Include You

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I don’t like to take lunch at in front of my computer, but today I did. If I do that, I try to use the time to surf since it is rather unproductive to bill my clients and nosh. Came across a blog post by MasterBranch about Leaderbaord,their new tool that ranks open source projects awesomness.

I searched for Drupal. Abysmal.

I realized after scouting through the top project–Rails, not surprised–that Drupal really does have some serious problems. Over the last month I’ve been stepping outside the Drupal community, my work is still in Drupal but I somehow feel like I’m observing the pen from above.

It all started on StartUpBus when I wrote static HTML5. The experience was both foreign and freeing. It taught me that I was too tied in that system.

Drupal is the enterprise CMS. Nothing compares. It is here to stay and has proven its viability by the projects that it powers. Within the community there are many quibbles about lack of core contributors, and I can see why.

Drupal needs to be on Git. It needs to be in the public. Drupal also needs to work on its release cycyles. Core contributors need to be open to outside influence and not protect their code. There is no reason that Drupal shouldn’t be a top contributed project. It is but, but the contributions are not in the public eye.

Github has revolutionized technologists ability to share and brought the best of the best out from the basement. Seriously, gone are they days of stigma about tech heads living shacked in their parents basement, with unibrows. Shit, we get mani/pedis and jet set around the world and get our shirts pressed for special events. Tech is sexy and so is knowing whose behind.

I hope that Drupal integrates more with the tech community. All languages and projects have something they can learn from the other. Rails and Python are incredibly public. I wonder if Drupal devs had the same level of transparency, if this could prevent the all to common mistake of hiring a supposed Drupal expert only to find your site is on-fire and your paying top-notch paramedics.

In short, public is good. And yes, Drupal did make a certified to Rock, but again, that’s privte, insular, within a community.

Facebook Owns Your Memories: The Instagram Acquisition

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@TODO Photo here

My pomodoro break landed just as my Twitter stream was starting to buzz with the news: Facebook Buys Instagram to Tune of 1Bil.

I’m definitely psyched for Instagram team–seriously, way to go. (To anyone that follows their dreams). Admittantly, I was looking forward to finally being able to use Instagram, being a Droid user, but now I’ll never use the damn thing. My photos will have have the modern, glossy sheen, or I’ll continue to use one of the other bazillion apps that do just about the same thing but not as…well? elegantly…who knows!

This news comes after a very good article posted by Cathiburns about Facebook in Berlin and Germany.

I’m a Facebook user. My college was one of the original 13 schools–see my pride–on the social network. I can’t let go my profile. And I don’t want to. I have a use case for Facebook–events and contact with friends I don’t see often. But as Facebook has slowly begun to be the IV that feeds the population, I have retreated away from it.

And in the face of today’s acquisition, I couldn’t help but think back to this scene from 1997

@TODO YouTube Link

My friend Scott Kellum posted this tweet some minutes after my jestfuly tweet: “people making fun not cool”

Look, I wasn’t poking fun. I hope we realize what it all means, and I don’t think we do. Consumers have very little idea what it means when apps sell their data or use their data. Big Data is all the rage and the masses just dont’ know. I build this stuff. I hear ideas day-in and out “We don’t have a revenue model but we will have Data.”

I’m a bit…well, not scared, just, disappointed.

This tweet also came up during the FB/Instagram tweet fest and it really touched my soul. Obama has recently signed a bill that will make it easier to invest in the future of our country. I hope that this leads to more companies for good. That work is far less sexy and definitely underfunded.

Hopefully the behemouths catch up. Schools wont’ be able to continue their blocked walls because we all know what is on the other side. Much like the fall of the Berlin wall. I’m optimistic that balance is on its way, even if today’s news shows otherwise.

NYC Sass and Compass Users United

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I’m excited to announce the NYC Sass and Compass Meetup Group. I was first introduced to Sass in 2009. And although its usage in the Ruby community has been strong, it has just really taken hold outside Ruby and in the CSS community at large.

I plan on speaking more on 17 April 2012 about the value and importance of CSS. I’ll dot on a view things here for the sake of this post.

The first meeting which is very much free form. It is important to bring everyone together and get an idea of what the user base looks like before making assumptions. I’m already surprised that a) People actually fill out the questions on the Meetup group, and b) we have a high number of intermediate-advanced users.

While I want the Meetup to be all inclusive,there is definitely, in my opinion, more content on the web for beginners than advanced users. I am not saying we will not cover beginner content–the goal is to serve the user base.

For future meetups I envision the advanced and intermediate users preparing presentations. I’d like to have talks about how people are integrating Sass down to more particulars such as writing your own framework, best practices for partials etc.

Uniting the Front-End Community

CSS Preprocessors, especially Sass when taken with its cohort Compass, finally give the front-end community a cohesive language. We have tried since Zeldman pioneered standards to create our own form of reusable content. The problem? It is hard. And while Sass will not solve bad CSS or hurried projects, it gives us a common set of tool to share. Coupled with Github , the ability to easily share best practices, which is what leads to their adoption, is finally upon us.

Preparing for SassCon

The murmurs are true: SassCon is coming to a city–New York City–near you. It is a great honor to be a part of the organizing committee, which includes Nathan, Chris, and Adam, as well as Mason Wendell, Sam Richards, and Scott Kellum. The meetup group will help us build our base and make a successful first SassCon.

Hello, World

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The obligatory first post, the getting started. Just saying “hello”, discussing why I launched on Ocotopress instead of Drupal, and the value of getting out of your comfort zone.