Tag Archive

Road Ratchet Revamp Redresses “Ratcheting Breaks Breaks” Bug

Wednesday, October 14th, 2020
Road Ratchet Revamp Redresses “Ratcheting Breaks Breaks” Bug

Are you somehow stumbling upon this blog post without knowing anything about Beeminder? Hoo-boy are you in the wrong place. But here’s a frenzied attempt to catch you up in time: Beeminder graphs your progress toward goals by drawing a bright line, called the Yellow Brick Road, that you commit... »

Choices are Bad: The Anti-Settings Principle

Thursday, July 30th, 2020
Choices are Bad: The Anti-Settings Principle

What’s the most absurdly provocative way I can put this? Never imagine what your users will want! Apps must only ever do one single thing! If-statements considered harmful! Yes, this is all pretty rich coming from the people who built a goal-tracking app with, if I’m doing this math right, multiplying out all the various settings… 73,728 types of... »

The Anti-Robustness Principle

Thursday, July 16th, 2020
The Anti-Robustness Principle

This is another tech nerd post. Normal humans seek cover!   Abstract: Fail loudly and immediately.   (I sure hope all the normal humans took cover already because that sentence sure would sound different to them than to us! I also hope this isn’t all too obvious... »

Announcement: The Yellow Brick Half-Plane Has Arrived

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020
Announcement: The Yellow Brick Half-Plane Has Arrived

Until today Beeminder had a fundamental design flaw that was baked in from literally day one. The first line of code for what would become Beeminder was to draw a line on a graph in Mathematica from a target weight to a goal... »

The Anti-Magic Principle

Wednesday, May 27th, 2020
The Anti-Magic Principle

Being a fan of overly provocative titles, I was tempted to title this “If-Statements Considered Harmful”. Meaning that it’s so tempting to add little bits of intelligence to your app to make it do the sensible thing in different circumstances. And that’s usually perfectly correct but the Anti-Magic Principle... »

X-Treme Nerd Interlude: Computing and Visualizing Level Curves of the Days-To-Derailment Function for the Upcoming Yellow Brick Half-Plane New World Order

Thursday, May 14th, 2020
X-Treme Nerd Interlude: Computing and Visualizing Level Curves of the Days-To-Derailment Function for the Upcoming Yellow Brick Half-Plane New World Order

For background on the Yellow Brick Half-Plane that a normal human could conceivably care about, see our previous post on how we’re killing the custom lane widths feature. This post is strictly for abnormal humans, and/or, more realistically, for ourselves, because math... »

How To Write Functional Specs

Thursday, March 12th, 2020
How To Write Functional Specs

We’re assuming here that you’re already conceptually on board with writing specs. If you’re skeptical, Joel Spolsky will set you straight! Here’s my own mini-pitch for specs: Writing... »

The Startup Egg-Basket Principle

Friday, February 28th, 2020
The Startup Egg-Basket Principle

The startup egg-basket principle is: put all your eggs in one basket. Be laser-focused on the one thing you’re best at. If you’re scrambling for survival, focus only on the one most promising thing for making the startup sustainable. For example, most startups should focus exclusively on their premium plans and not have a free plan. So much... »

Beeminder ♥ Project Euler

Monday, November 4th, 2019
Beeminder ♥ Project Euler

We have a new official integration partner! Except arguably not official, nor a partner. Project Euler is philosophically opposed to any kind of commercialization. So much so that the founder and all volunteers who contribute to it have committed to never profit financially from doing so. Pretty... »

Redqueening, Inbox Zero, Backlogs, and Fluid Dynamics

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2019
Redqueening, Inbox Zero, Backlogs, and Fluid Dynamics

If you’re a fan of Mark Forster (as we certainly are) then this whole post amounts to giving a name — “redqueening” — to step 2 of his »