Give Me Back My Headphone Jack

Headphone jack on the iPhone

This is one of my rants, so if you’re not into snarky griping with your facts, this might not be for you. Okay, let’s do this. I’m sick of the trend to remove the headphone jack from phones (and surely other devices). There’s nothing wrong, and plenty right, with the 3.5mm headphone jack, and replacing it with Bluetooth is totally self-serving for vendors with no benefit to consumers. I’m not going to say anything here that hasn’t been said countless times before, but I want to add my voice to the choir of the perturbed and get this off my chest.

Protecting Sites When Using CloudFlare's CNAME Setup

In my current job I work with a number of clients who want CloudFlare in front of their sites, but are unable or unwilling to make CloudFlare their authoritative DNS provider. CloudFlare supports this, through something they call CNAME Setup. Basically, every subdomain you’d like protected by CloudFlare is configured with a CNAME record in your authoritative DNS to point to a CloudFlare subdomain, which then routes through CloudFlare to your site.

Tug, the FJ Cruiser: My Latest Vehicle

Tug offroading

Meet Tug, my newest vehicle! Tug is a 2010 Toyota FJ Cruiser. It’s a bit of a departure from all of my previous cars, but I absolutely love it. This post is actually many months late, since I bought Tug in June 2016. I’ve liked the FJ Cruiser from the first time I saw and sat in one at an auto show in early 2008. Not thinking of myself as much of a truck guy, and being all in on BMW, I’d never given any serious thought to owning one until the spring and summer of 2016.

Setting up an Ubiquiti EdgeRouter to use CloudFlare for Dynamic DNS

I am a huge fan of Ubiquiti’s products. I own a number of the EdgeRouter X, as well as a variety of the devices in the Unifi product line. I am also a huge fan of CloudFlare, and use them to host DNS for all of my domains. In addition to great performance and security features, CloudFlare makes a great dynamic DNS provider due to their combination of short default TTL, and a robust API.

Learning Go as a PHP Developer: The Journey Begins

This is part 1 of a multi-part series about my experience learning Go. I’ve been writing software almost exclusively in PHP since I first started to program. In the early to mid 2000s, before the advent of cheap cloud computing, shared hosting was the most viable option for somebody with a small (read: non-existent) budget, which meant PHP was the language to learn if I wanted to write software for the web.

WordPress Needs to Take PHP Upgrades Seriously

Charge ahead

WordPress powers 25% of the web. It is arguably the most influential open source PHP project, and claims a massive community and developer base. It’s not handling PHP upgrades responsibly. This is not a new issue. The push from the community for WordPress to raise the minimum required version of PHP has been happening for years. It was brought up again with Matt Mullenweg at WordCamp US 2015. Take a look.

No, Fingerprint Login Isn't "Better than Nothing"

No more fingerprints

This week we learned that 5.6 million people’s fingerprints were part of the stolen data from OPM earlier this year. Samsung and HTC have come under fire for their (atrocious) implementation of fingerprint authentication that left fingerprint data unprotected on users’ devices. Apple’s Touch ID is arguably the most secure (and widely used) consumer fingerprint authentication system, but even it has flaws that have been exploited. There’s no such thing as bugless or unhackable software.

225 Years

HH-65 Dolphin and USCGC Eagle

Today, August 4, 2015, marks the 225th anniversary of the U.S. Coast Guard. On this day in 1790, Congress created the Revenue Cutter Service on the recommendation of Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton. In 1915, the Revenue Cutter Service merged with the U.S. Life-Saving Service to form the U.S. Coast Guard. The Coast Guard today has 11 missions spanning search and rescue, law enforcement, aids to navigation, and more. With fewer personnel than the New York Police Department, the Coast Guard does a lot in the average day.

30 Day Challenge: From Chrome to Firefox

Firefox on Ubuntu

I’ve been a died-in-the-wool Chrome fan pretty much since it was released. When it came out it was a breath of fresh air compared to the nightmare of Internet Explorer and the increasingly slow and bloated Firefox. Everything was so fast. The UI was so sparse and clean. It was such a departure from the way browsers had been set up. In the years since, Chrome has grown in size and reach to a point where it’s starting to feel a little heavy and, in some ways, losing its direction.

Patriotism and Free Speech


I read an article this week about a group of high school students in Portland, Maine questioning the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance in school. The TL;DR is that the senior class president, responsible for the morning announcements, has added the phrase “if you’d like to” after her request for students to rise and recite the Pledge. The students taking up this cause have a better understanding of patriotism, free speech and their rights as Americans than any of their detractors, including the school’s faculty and staff.