A little bit about Unicode


I thought about writing a really long post about handling Unicode in Python, but, honestly, you should go watch this video; that’s where most of my points would have come from, anyway. (It’s a great video! It’s funny and helpful and relevant, whether you use Python 2 or 3. I hope I get to go to PyCon and meet Ned in person and thank him for it!) If you wonder how I ended up watching that video—along with several coworkers—we were doing a lot of metadata parsing, as part of our work on the SHARE project. We were building an … Continue reading

Playing with GitHub

this shows up when GitHub has errors

I had the opportunity, at work (and a bit outside of work), to learn the GitHub API, as wrapped by Python’s github3 module. I found the documentation really hard to follow, maybe because I don’t have a lot of experience reading API docs, or because it wasn’t organized in the way I think about things, or maybe just because my work on this API was part of a larger, much more harrowing project, and I was already discouraged* … who knows? I made a thing! Maybe it’s helpful! Ultimately, I ended up documenting the parts of it I needed to … Continue reading

Psoriatic arthritis awareness


October 29 is World Psoriasis Day. I’ve already missed World Arthritis Day (Facebook link), which was October 12th. (I was too busy to write, then, anyway.) I’m going to bullet point out the conclusions I want you to draw from this post, before I get to the post itself. Consider this a TL;DR: Not all disabilities are visible. Many people are fighting battles that you can’t perceive. Some people literally have fewer hours in their day than you do, either because they need more hours of sleep per night, or because their body requires extra daily maintenance to work; some … Continue reading

Help make #moreadacamps happen!

the AdaCamp star

I’ve written before about how amazing AdaCamp is. Twice. By now, y’all know it was a huge step in my growth as an intersectional feminist and as a member of the open culture and development communities. I wish there was some way to have everyone go through the Impostor Syndrome and Ally Skills workshops—the world would be a better place! So this is going to be a short post. Throughout this week, AdaCamp alumni are planning to blog about our experiences at AdaCamp and about why it’s so vital that AdaCamps continue happening, so that more women in open culture … Continue reading

Three weeks as a developer

My work laptop is fairly opinionated, too.

Three weeks have gone by. I still don’t feel like a real developer, most of the time. But there are glimmers, moments when I do. Usually it’s right after I finish a little script of some sort, or I give a funny name to a variable (while still following PEP 8), or I use a clever shortcut, or I realize I’m writing really opinionated code. There’s that moment of “YES! I am good at this!” Continue reading

Rockstar Librarians

flaming guitar image

If you don’t want the responsibility that comes from having power, get off the effing stage. There are so many people who do want it and who will use it well. And if you choose to keep the power, without being responsible, then understand: many of us will turn our backs on you. We won’t come to your talks, follow you on social media, work for your organization, or vote for you when you want to govern our associations—whatever form of power you have been granted, it will fade if you are not responsible. I, for one, am tired of granting power to people who don’t deserve it. I won’t do it anymore, and I hope others will join me in that. Continue reading

Why I give to the Ada Initiative (and hope you will too)


This blog post is a little late. Others have written really evocatively about this subject, already. But, late or not, it feels wrong not to say something. The Ada Initiative is my favorite non-profit (besides perhaps the one I work for? :)). They’re my smile.amazon charity, when I remember to use it. AdaCamp changed my life. And I think sometimes librarians might be inclined to look at the Ada Initiative as “a tech thing,” something not relevant to reference librarians or children’s librarians or school librarians … or really any librarian who doesn’t write code for their job. But Ada doesn’t look at it that way. Continue reading

Week one as a developer

I had hoped to document all of the stuff I was learning each day, or at least each couple of days, through my first few weeks in this job. I knew I’d have a lot to share. But I’m so tired at the end of each day that I don’t really have a blog post in me. I hear one gets used to non-stop thinking for 8+ hours per day and functions better over time. :) Continue reading

Day one as a developer

Day one of the new job: I don’t feel like a real developer yet. I didn’t write any code today. I did read through a good portion of our documentation; install the development environment on a shared machine (my laptop hasn’t come yet — and actually, getting the shared machine working is a step toward one of the things I want this organization to do, anyway, so it’s good); fill out all but one of my new employee forms; get access to the offices/parking; and add two steps that were missing from the “setup” directions to our docs. But since … Continue reading