Near Future Tech – Opportunities in Software Development

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My goal for this post is to share how I answered a seemingly simple question — what should I learn in my free time?

While developing software in Silicon Valley is educationally rewarding on a daily basis, there is still so much more to learn. Tech news is constantly bombarding readers with new technologies like blockchain, machine learning, and autonomous-(insert vehicle type here).  Staying ahead is exciting for me, but also critical to my career.

I considered a few ways figure out what is “hot”:

  • what new courses were coming out on Udacity, and other online platforms
  • what types of companies are getting funding on Crunchbase
  • what companies did YC actually fund

I found that, for me, the YC batch list tended to be the best resource. I was more confident about what the initial investment was for, compared to later stage funding information I could find on Crunchbase. I didn’t feel like there were enough data points with courses. I also thought going through YC companies would also be fun, something I could probably quantify, and generally interesting to learn about what companies were accepted.

Here’s a breakdown of my analysis and steps:

  • Browsed websites of 121 YC17 Summer Batch funded companies
  • Tagged 72 companies with an unequal number of tags, just tags of what they were working on

And here are the results:

 

Based on these results, I decided that I would pursue general machine learning. While there are many projects to help people just like me use machine learning without coding, I think it would be helpful to understand the underworking. This is in addition to writing more Python since I currently focus on Swift. First, I will begin with the basics by brushing up on my calculus and taking a quick course on linear algebra. Then I’ll try to make my own model even though these guys have done a great job of that already.

At the end of the day I think it’s important to choose something you’re passionate about and that you think is exciting, because who would want to spend their free time doing something otherwise?

Cybernetics: A cyborg-free introduction

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It has been observed that the acceleration of Moore’s Law has left tech culture with a tendency to discount the past, which leads to issues when building for the long-term. If everything we do is going to be circular filed in a few years anyhow, why bother? I think we’re starting to see some of the limits of ahistorical strategies, especially because building for internet scale means that systems can affect higher-order aspects of society and culture in unexpected ways. This is why I want to talk a little bit about cybernetics.

Net Neutrality

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Net Neutrality has become a big argument of debate lately, since the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently repealed it on December 2017. But what is it exactly Net Neutrality? Why is it considered so important? What could be the effects on you as a consumer or your business?

A Brief Introduction to Drones

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Drones have been become one of the hottest tech toys in recent years, but what are these flying machines and what are they capable of?

“Drone” is the common name for an unmanned aerial vehicle, or UAV for short. UAVs are vehicles that do not carry humans inside of them. They can be controlled by either a human or by a computer. UAVs were originally used in the military to carry out tasks that were either too difficult or too dangerous for humans to perform. Some other military applications include drone surveillance and drone attacks.

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Mobile App?

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A mobile app is a great way to bring new ideas to life, add value for your customers, or boost awareness of your business—but only if you can build a quality mobile experience without breaking the bank. And nailing down the cost of an app in advance isn’t exactly easy. App development costs can range from trivial to extreme, depending on a host of factors such as what your app does, how users will interact with it, and how you plan to staff the project.

The Rise and Future of Coding Bootcamps

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If you work in the tech industry, coding bootcamps are something you have probably heard of, possibly attended, or know someone that graduated from one. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, the industry of coding bootcamps is fairly new, with the first ones starting around 2011-2012. In the short time they have been around, these alternative education programs have gained significant popularity, making their presence known in the tech world.

Unmanned Grocery Stores

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Unmanned Grocery Store

These days grocery stores are facing many challenges, like high maintenance costs, price competition with online stores, and limited business hours. All of these issues can be solved with unmanned grocery stores.

Introduction to Mobile Cloud Platforms

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If you are building a mobile application of any sophistication, you are likely to need some services to support your app. You’ll need a way to distribute your app for testing prior to submitting to the app store(s), as well as analytics, error logging, crash reporting, and possibly user and data management services. Of course, you could write these services yourself and provision servers to host these services, but why do that when you don’t have to?

Mobile App Development: Native vs Hybrid

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Your company needs a mobile app and you want to save money (of course). You want the app live last week, and you’d really like to avoid hiring Android and iOS devs on top of your existing web team.

In light of these considerations, going the hybrid route looks like a pretty good option. Hybrid mobile apps promise to be cheaper and faster to develop, and they’re built with tried and true technologies like Javascript, HTML, and CSS. The hybrid sales pitch can be summarized as “one codebase for multiple platforms”. Hybrid platforms include React Native, PhoneGap, Ionic, Titanium, and others.

Computed Properties vs Functions – Why Does It Matter?

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Cookies

What’s your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe? I bet you could ask that question to 5 different people and get 5 totally different recipes… brown sugar vs white sugar, cake flour vs all purpose, dark chocolate vs milk chocolate. All of these recipes result in a chocolate chip cookie but the process by which we get there is a matter of personal preference.  If you were to ask multiple developers to solve a problem, it’s doubtful that any two developers write identical code.  It’s not that any one solution is necessarily better than the others… the resulting code is likely just a matter of personal preference.