Last week, I returned from the inaugural Pacific Northwest PHP Conference in Seattle, Washington. Like most conferences in the PHP community, there was a strong vibe of getting together with old friends, making some news ones, and enjoying tasty beverages together while we learn cool things. There were a number of great sessions ranging from Sara Golemon talking about PHP […]
I’m contacted a few times a month by people who want to build (usually mobile) apps. Or more properly, want someone to build apps for them. While I don’t begrudge or criticize their hopes or goals, we need to look at things critically and honestly. Also, I’m tired of telling people the same thing over and […]
We’ve heard that adage in reference to using Facebook, Twitter, and a variety of others for quite a few years. While it absolutely does apply for general web users, in the API space, it takes on a more sinister tone. When you’re working with an API, it’s usually because it makes a piece of your […]
Note: To be clear, I am not accusing AirBnb or Facebook – or anyone else – of allowing this. According to my understanding of their Acceptable Use Policies and the law, this is way out of bounds and likely to result in trouble for all involved. Do not do it. Updated March 2018: I have […]
This was originally published on the Clarify.io blog, reproduced here. When I joined Twilio in early 2011, I learned that API companies have three user interfaces: First, there’s the website. It’s what we all think about because it’s the first thing most users see. We have designers, UX people, and similar who spend a lot of […]
Last week, the Office of Personnel Management announced that the security clearance background information (the dreaded SF-86 form) was compromised. I wrote about it in “Why this security breach is worse than all the others combined” and considered the implications of it. But this snippet from Arstechnica made me think of something else: A consultant who […]
During the week of June 8th, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) announced that the records of all current and past US federal employees had been compromised. That includes standard employment information – address, social security numbers, etc – of over 4 million people ranging from a random forest ranger to US Cabinet members. (According to OPM, the […]
This past weekend was our third annual ATX Hack for Change. It was still hosted at St Edwards University, but this time it was organized by the City of Austin’s Innovation Office. While Kerry O’Connor is the Chief Innovation Officer, her staff ran much of the show over the weekend. I was lucky enough to be invited […]
Over this past weekend, I came across a Wired called “Write the Perfect Email to Anyone with this Creepy Site” on using machine learning and natural language processing to analyze a person’s social media profiles and offer tips on how to communicate with them effectively. Most people immediately thought about sales, but one thread of the conversation […]
Building API helper libraries is hard.
The helper libraries rarely get the same time or attention as the API itself. They’re usually an afterthought.