We Built a Smart Mirror

This year my Dad and I built my sister a Smart Mirror for Christmas. It was his idea to build one and my idea to build it for Georgia. She lives in NYC now and if you don’t have a Smart Mirror in your NYC apartment are you really cool enough to live there 🤔 ? This isn’t a DIY manual with step-by-step instructions, just a little write up of our

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Git commit -am "s***"

On January 3, 2017, Github came out with the ability to search commit histories. Commits are chunks of code, normally accompanied by a message that explains what this new code does.

The circumstances under which you write commit messages are ripe for profanity. Celebratory profanity, when you conquer a major bug. Frustration profanity, when your code will not cooperate.

When I first saw this feature release I was immediately curious - curious to see which curse word appeared most in commits. Here are the results (as of 2/26/17):

  • Damn: 448,944
  • Sh*t: 319,186
  • D*ck: 245,414
  • F*ck: 203,372
  • B*tch: 46,621

And the winner is Damn with 448,944 appearances. This total includes other popular derivatives like “Goddamn” and “Damnit”.

The Biggest Win of the 2016 Election

Proposition 67.

Everyone has been talking about how California, Massachusetts, and Nevada have legalized recreational marijuana, but no one is talking about Prop 67.

California has banned single-use plastic bags. Finally, a state has taken responsibility for the environment on a level that includes the citizens. Yes, EPA requirements are important and impactful, but they don’t change behavior; they don’t ask citizens to play an active role in preserving our planet. Prop 67 does.

You can read more about Prop 67 here. The 2016 election has been something but look on the bright side, there will be approximately 15 billion less single-use plastic bags in the landfills of 2017. That’s gotta count for something, right?

This Election Day, Look at the Man in the Mirror

I’m 21. Most of my constituents are optimistic for the future, hungry about the impact they can have. That’s the beauty of a freshly minted college student. Given time they’ll become jaded and complacent (as many do) and stop believing that they can do anything other than buckle up and try to enjoy the ride.

Michael Jackson has a message for both the moonshot twenty-something and the complacent Baby Boomer who believes you need to be special to change anything in this world:

“I’m starting with the man in the mirror
I’m asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself, and then make a change.”

Change is like an oxygen mask on an airplane - be the change before even thinking about turning to someone else. Today, while you’re fulfilling your civic duty to vote, realize that it doesn’t end there. Make time today for a little introspection. Ask yourself, “am I holding myself to the same high standards that I hold the public?”

If you can’t get the man in the mirror to make a change, how’re you going to change anything else? And on the flip-side, for those disenchanted old souls who feel like pawns in a bigger game, one that takes place in a world separate from where you exist - you don’t have to be privy to those backroom dealings to make a difference. It starts with you.

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”
- Leo Tolstoy

make it your own

Quick backstory: in Prague, William, Georgia and I took a graffiti class with a local street artist. That is how we ended up with 7 cans of partially used spraypaint. Now you’re all caught up.

Let the tagging begin. #graffiti

A photo posted by William Ferguson (@wcferg) on

In response to Timmy Ham’s challenge to “make something you own your own”, William and I painted some of our notebooks and a pair of sunglasses with our remaining paint.

My helpful screenshot

There is a certain sense of pride that comes along with using something that you have made uniquely your own. I challenge those of you reading this to also “make something you own your own”. Tweet an image of whatever you make at me when you’re done, I’d love to see it!