April 4, 2023
Week of March 26–April 1
Sour end to the week
The work week ended on a sour note. Three of my teammates found out they were being laid off on Friday morning. And then the rest of the team found out afterward.
Revenue streams have slowed down in the current economy. Our leadership made a conscious decision to act now to ensure the long-term health of the company. They are optimistic about our future but want to be prudent in the current financial environment.
It sucks. We mourn the loss that each of these teammates was to our team. We empathize as they face the uncertainty ahead. I hope that each of them can land on their feet quickly and find a place that highly values their gifts and talents.
On Tuesday, we launched the project I have been working on since the beginning of February. We built a brand new site and brand for a maritime innovator. Due to contract agreements, I am not at liberty to share specific information about the project.
One of the things I like to do as I reflect on a project post-launch is to consider the new things I learned or new tools or techniques that I was able to employ in building out the solution. For this project, a couple of things stand out.
- Flexbox borders – I employed a technique to add borders to a flexbox layout that would evenly space with the flexible layout. I wrote a post about the inspiration behind my solution.
- Variable fonts – The typeface we were using had a variable font option and I decided to give it a try. The advantage of a variable font is that it incorporates several variations of the font (weight, widths, and styles) in one single font file. The final font file was about 35kb, which is smaller than any of one the five font files I had to use in another recent project.
- Transparent video – One of the features of the design was an animated ship that looked like a wireframe and rotated around. Due to a tight deadline and unavailability of resources, we decided to use video instead of a WebGL or a three.js solution. One of the issues we ran into was that the background color was darker in Windows than in macOS due to differences in color rendering. After consulting with my dev team, I decided to try “transparent video.” I had wondered earlier on if a transparent video was possible. It is and we were able to implement a solution.
My workload has been light recently. I took some time this week to “tinker” by revisiting a solution I created in the fall but was not entirely happy with. And I took some time to reflect on my tinkering experience.
Articles I read
- The Age of AI has begun (Bill Gates)
- The Enduring Point of Pointless Corp (Viget) – I enjoyed learning about Viget’s innovation lab. and hackathons. I would love to explore this idea of making our own projects with LGND.
- 6 CSS snippets every front-end developer should know in 2023 (Adam Argyle)
- Goldman Sachs is using ChatGPT-style A.I. in house to assist developers with writing code (CNBC)
- 9 Simple Ways to Improve Your Life Right Now (Chris Guillebeau)
- Midlife, Christ Is (Jared Wilson) – I am right there and appreciated the perspective.
- Riding the ever-changing waves of front-end development (LeadDev)
- Health Benefits of Browser Diversity (Tim Kadlec)
- Steam (Jeremy Keith) – Another article about AI.
- Struggling with the Struggle
- These units will change how we write CSS (Kevin Powell) – A short video about container query units.
- The Shadow is a Small and Passing Thing – I enjoyed these encouraging words inspired by one of my favorite scenes in The Return of the King.
- Don’t call it a redesign! (Jason Beaird)
Books I am reading
- Winning Fixes Everything – I finished this one on Monday. I really enjoyed these read.
- Ten Words to Live By
- AI 2041 – I added this book to a list of books I was interested in at my local library sometime in the last year. I decided to request it this week after finishing Winning Fixes Everything. I have been thinking a lot about AI recently. Late in the week, I was reminded that one of my teammates had recommended the book. This book imagines the future of AI and how it will shape our world and lives. It looks at the positives and potential pitfalls as we consider this next big advancement in technology.
- Talking About Race
What I watched
- Madame Secretary (Netflix)
- Bad Batch (Disney+)
- The Mandalorian (Season 3 on Disney+)
- Clarkson’s Farm Season 2 (Prime)
- NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament (CBS and online)
- The Franchise Season 3 (2022-2023) (YouTube)
What I played
- FIFA23 (Manchester City)
- Madden20 – exhibition game between Chiefs and Chargers