Categories
Travel and places

Sunrise photowalk along the new Modiin city center boulevard

Exploring our new city center

Years under construction

I’ve been watching the site slowly take shape over the last four years. I captured the development’s progress on and off in my photographs, many of which are on Flickr 👉

Taking shape

My favourite feature of this boulevard is the center section that runs from the top opposite the municipality, and extends all the way to the bottom where it intersects with another road. It’s a really comfortable space to walk along, and there are water features, seating, and smaller buildings for coffee shops, restaurants, and bars.

Even though the center section seems mostly complete, the buildings on either side are still very much under construction, and it will probably still be some time before those are completed, and occupied.

Although the boulevard seems to be open to pedestrians, it’s still closed to cars (although that didn’t stop a few people from taking a drive through this morning).

Closed for cars

I like this sort of space in a city. It feels more open, comfortable, and I’m looking forward to seeing which stores open there. Mostly, I’m hopeful that we’ll have a few places open on Saturdays when stores are generally closed here in Israel.


I have a few more photos in my Flickr album, here:

Click to see my full album on Flickr.
Click on the collage to see my full album on Flickr
Categories
Events and Life Music Travel and places

Vicarious adventures with GoPro

Vicarious adventures with GoPro

One of my new favourite YouTube channels is the GoPro channel. It’s an awesome channel for vicarious adventures, and some great music I wasn’t aware of. One of my favourite videos is this promo of the GoPro HERO6:

The track in this video is A Moment Apart by Odesza, and it’s my morning work anthem today:

unsplash-logoCover image by Chris Osmond
Categories
Applications Coding Entertainment Semantic Web

A curious sequence of events with Google and its YouTube recommendations

Well spotted there, Google! 🔭

I noticed a curious sequence of events this morning. I responded to a tweet about Donald Trump’s latest tweet where he referred to his “great and unmatched wisdom” using the Twitter app on my Android phone –

I then turned to our Android TV box where we were watching YouTube videos in the YouTube app, and I saw a recommendation for this Late Late Show video about Trump’s tweets:

That’s some pretty snappy algorithmic matching there, Google! 🤔

unsplash-logoCover image by Scott Webb
Categories
Mindsets Spirituality

Sitting with difficult emotions

I noticed this quote on Tumblr. I’ve noticed on the few occasions I’m able to just sit with difficult emotions in a meditation, they tend not to be as monolithic as they otherwise seemed beforehand.

On a related note, it’s been a while since I read anything by Jack Kornfield. I really enjoyed his book “A Path with Heart: A Guide Through the Perils and Promises of Spiritual Life” when I read it in 2006 during our honeymoon in the Drakensberg mountains.

In fact, I read the book here:

IMGP1843.JPG
Categories
Business and work Events and Life Mindsets Writing

In person kudos at the Automattic Grand Meetup

Appreciating our colleagues

We have an amazing culture at Automattic that includes giving each other kudos as one form of recognition for great work, whether that’s delivering happiness to a customer, or to each other.

Typically we use a Slack bot to share kudos, and that’s posted to an internal WordPress site dedicated to showcasing internal kudos.

At the Grand Meetup (which we attended in mid-September – I’ll probably share more from that soon), we also have the option of giving handwritten kudos to each other. I like the ease of giving digital kudos, and at the same time I really like being able to write a note to my colleagues to express my appreciation for their efforts.

Automattic kudos card
Kudos IRL

This year I was fortunate to receive a few cards from my colleagues, and really appreciate each of them.

I decided against sharing details of all of the cards I received as the messages can be pretty personal. At the same time, I’m grateful for each card.

Categories
Devices Science and nature

A quantum computer did something a classical computer just can’t do

Quantum computing still seems to be at a pretty early stage. At the same time, it looks like it has the potential to do truly remarkable things. In at least one case, it did something a classical computer just can’t feasibly do:

But that seriously understates what’s going on here. Every calculation that’s done on a quantum computer will end up being a measurement of a quantum system. And in this case, there is simply no way to get that probability distribution using a classical computer. With this system, we can get it in under 10 minutes, and most of that time is spent in processing that doesn’t involve the qubits. As the researchers put it, “To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor.”

Ars Technica

For more, read the full article “Paper leaks showing a quantum computer doing something a supercomputer can’t | Ars Technica“.

Image credit: DWave 128 chip by DWave, licensed CC BY 3.0

Categories
Business and work Coding Mindsets Policy issues

New Automattic research on how to improve gender representation for technical roles

Our team has just released a white paper titled “Trust, Growth,Inclusion: A Study ofWomen Engineers’Job-Search Priorities” that explores what motivates women and non-binary technical professionals to join companies, and what helps retain them.

Better gender representation is a challenge. I’m proud of our team’s efforts to better understand this challenge, and how to meet it. It’s clearly not something that’s capable of a simple fix, but I’m glad that we seem to be moving in a good direction. Here are some links if you’re interested in reading further:


If you’re interested in joining Automattic, we’re hiring people for a number of roles, especially in Engineering!

Categories
Devices Writing

Multilingual keyboards can be tricky

Here in Israel we have people who speak Hebrew, Russian, Arabic, and English (just to name more common languages). Keyboards sold here tend to have at least English and Hebrew layouts to cater for what are probably more typical requirements.

When I bought a new keyboard and mouse for our daughter (I went with a Logitech K120 cabled keyboard and mouse combo), I managed to buy a keyboard with English, Hebrew, and Cyrillic layouts.

Multilingual keyboard
English, Hebrew, and Cyrillic layouts on a keyboard.

I don’t speak Russian, so I don’t have a need for the Cyrillic layout. I’ve been using my daughter’s keyboard this morning, and having the extra Cyrillic layout is a little too confusing for me.

Featured image credit: Juan Gomez on Unsplash