Brian Gilham

Engineering leader, husband, and father


The Virus Is a Reminder of Something Lost Long Ago →

Even for those who continue their professional life working online, schedules have become more flexible. Demands have retreated. Daily routines have been interrupted. We suddenly have unstructured, free-floating, beckoning time. This terrible disaster has freed us from the prison of our time-driven lives. At least for a few months, we have the chance to slow down. In the past, we’ve had little opportunity to do so, swept along by the rushing tide of prosperity and speed in the modern world.

My blog is a digital garden, not a blog →

Just like plants in the garden I’ve got posts that are in various stages of growth and nurturing. Some might wither and die, and others (like this one you are reading) will flourish and provide a source of continued for the gardener and folks in community that visit.

QB64 →

QB64 is a modern extended BASIC programming language that retains QBasic/QuickBASIC 4.5 compatibility and compiles native binaries for Windows, Linux, and macOS.

The Whimsical Web →

So this site is meant to showcase how a more personal web could look like, and hopefully give you some inspiration to make your own corner of the web a bit weirder.

Growing Without Schooling →

What if school, in fact, isn’t the best place for your kids to learn? What if you didn’t try to replicate school at home? What if you had the opportunity, now, to try something else? What if we saw this time as a radical opportunity to let our kids learn and explore their interests unfettered by the demands of the classroom? What would happen if you stopped worrying about teaching them and gave your kids the time, space, and materials to lead their own learning? What would happen if you let them in on your working life, let them see you working, involved them more deeply in the work of keeping up a house and a home life?

We’re only three (almost four!) weeks into raising The Kid, but I find myself thinking about this stuff a lot.

Being Alone →

When you hit “Leave Meeting” and the stereo white noise from other people’s bedrooms cuts out, the quiet hits quick.

You’re still in the same seat you’ve been in for weeks, breathing the same air, staring at the same wall. As much as you know that there’s a world out there—a world you were just seeing through the wizardry of high speed connection and built-in front facing cameras—the afterglow of that video context just doesn’t last.

A long, but very worthwhile read from Ankit Shah.

An Insanely Comprehensive List of 260 Pop-Culture Oral Histories →

But even though the motif is a bit tired – and we’re doing our part in running the reporting technique into the ground – a well-crafted oral history is still hard to resist. But where to find them when you need them? To help you find the oral history that’s right for you, we’ve compiled this exhaustive list of 260 pop-culture oral histories we could find online.

I’m about to lose a lot of time to this list, I’m sure.

Writing Command Line Tools in Swift Using ArgumentParser →

If you’d like to write command-line tools using Swift, Andy Ibanez has written a great series of posts about using ArgumentParser.

In this article, we will explore ArgumentParser, and how we can start building some command line tools with it, using the basic building blocks, which are three Property Wrappers called Argument, Option, and Flag.

On Children: Poignant Parenting Advice from Kahlil Gibran →

You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.

For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

Hat tip to Derek for passing this along.

Confessions of a Former Bastard Cop →

Powerful essay (allegedly) written by a former police officer with ten years of experience in “a major metropolitan area in California with a predominantly poor, non-white population”.

I really want to hammer this home: every cop in your neighborhood is damaged by their training, emboldened by their immunity, and they have a gun and the ability to take your life with near-impunity. This does not make you safer, even if you’re white.

One Twitter account is reposting everything Trump tweets. It was suspended within 3 days. →

Twitter has repeatedly come under fire for its inconsistent policies surrounding abusive and harmful rhetoric on its platform. Though it recently began flagging and hiding some of Trump’s tweets that violate its terms of service, as well as one by Rep. Matt Gaetz, the company has continually stopped short of removing them or suspending his account.

Chris Rock - Tamborine (2018) - Bad Apples →

Leave Facebook →

Om Malik reminds all of us that being a part of Facebook’s empire is a choice. I “deactivated” my Facebook account years ago, but have continued to use Messenger and Instagram. I think it’s time for all of them to go — permanently. As Malik says, folks can come find me here.

I disagree with the company, and its leaders so much that I won’t spend any of my attention or energy on its platforms. My mother will have to actually call me on the phone. My friends will have to email me. And you will have to come to my homestead on the Internet to see my photos and visuals.

I have made my choice, and I encourage you to make yours.

Is This What You Wanted? →

Casey Liss:

If this is the America you wanted in 2016 — our Black community members demanding to be treated like humans, our hospitals fighting for the lives of everyday Americans, our doctors doing their jobs without the protective equipment they need to keep themselves safe — then I don’t know what to say to you.

Run the Jewels’ Killer Mike Delivers an Emotional Plea →

I woke up wanting to see the world burn down yesterday, because I’m tired of seeing black men die. He casually put his knee on a human being’s neck for nine minutes as he died, like a zebra in the clutch of a lion’s jaw. And we watch like murder porn, over and over again.

When Police View Citizens as Enemies →

Nor were the armed “Liberate” protesters who swarmed the Michigan statehouse earlier this month removed by force; instead, the legislature canceled its session. But perhaps it was inevitable that officials would turn to military language as demonstrations spread across the country this week. In cities large and small, police departments are now outfitted like military units. When you’re driving an armored vehicle down Main Street, civilians can begin to look like insurgents.

Rediscovering the Small Web →

This essay, by Parimal Satyal, was a nice trip down memory lane. And a reminder of what makes the open web so great.

You could of course always just get a pre-made template or a theme and use that, but it’s a different exercise. It’s the difference between buying art and learning how to paint or sculpt.

How to Sleep →

This article, from The Atlantic, is a few years old and most certainly out of date. But it’s worth sharing for this line alone:

In a high-school science-fair experiment in 1964, a 17-year-old stayed awake for 11 days. Since then, standards for science-fair safety have changed.

Cyberman smoking behind the scenes on the set of ‘Doctor Who’ in 1968 →

Mad Max: Fury Road’: The Oral History of a Modern Action Classic →

I deeply enjoyed reading this. I still remember walking out of the theatre, five years ago, feeling a bit shellshocked at what I’d seen. A classic.