I’ve been messing around with some basic cryptography challenges ever since DEFCON, which was a ton of fun and very informative. The most recent challenge involved breaking a Vigenere cipher (also known as a repeating key XOR). []

I recently got an invitation to watch a debate between the UMBC philosophy and computer science departments regarding the ethics of brain-computer interfaces. []

I’m one of the billion or so people who love Instagram. It’s not quite an addiction, I guess… []

I remember what programming through a monochromatic terminal emulator was like. It was awful. I rejoiced when I discovered Emacs could be configured to respond properly to the cursor error keys on my keyboard, without tangling my terminal into a knot of line wraps slathered in a character buffer dump. Using whitespace was the only way to maintain any semblance of sanity when reading code. It was a dark time. []

I’ve been an on-and-off subscriber to Netflix since 2005. When the service was still firmly grounded in snail mail delivery of DVDs, I was on the three-at-a-time plan. What a menu?! I had my queue and veg schedule worked out so that I was pretty much never without new viewing material. And this all worked for a while, but after changing jobs to one with a longer commute my appetite waned, so I flicked flix for the first time. []

In nearly every one of my graduate reading seminars, at some point, we were asked to read Professor Elke Duncker’s 2002 Joint Conference on Digital Libraries (JCDL) presentation, “Cross-cultural usability of the library metaphor” [1]. It’s an excellent academic work that my professors typically used to kick-off discussions on “quick-and-dirty” ethnography in HCI research, and value-centric design. []