Note Pass available in the AppStore

August 12th, 2009

My first iPhone application, Note Pass, is available in the iTunes App Store. It is a very, very basic application, about 5 lines of code, that was inspired by Quicksilver’s Large Type feature. All it does is show whatever you type in large, white text on a black background. (It’s free, you can’t charge for 5 lines of code, unless they’re very elegant (mine are not))

One of the biggest joys of development is seeing your application used in ways you didn’t imagine. Since Note Pass is very basic, it lends itself well to alternate uses. The first intended use was for boring meetings — type your note, hold up your iPhone, get your colleagues attention and then hilarity ensues. Probably my favorite alternate use is from shadowstorm – Spin the NotePass! Other alternate uses are to note pass in a noisy bar to get the bartender’s attention (or someone else’s attention) and also notepassing to communicate with someone on the phone (when you can’t speak).

Now I need to stop procrastinating and actually put some elegant code into the next version.

Note Pass (iTunes Store Link)

reminderss alpha is live!

July 30th, 2008

Announcing: reminderss – retro browsing for the rss reader era!

Last week I launched a small project – This is both a utility that I wanted for my own browsing and also a project to learn ruby on rails. If it’s something that I can use, chances are a few others can also use it.

reminderss is a utility for reminding you to browse sites the “old-fashioned way”. I do the majority (>= 90%) of my web browsing through my rss reader, which is amazing, but there are a handful of sites that either don’t have rss feeds or their rss feeds aren’t quite what I want to read. reminderss gives me an rss feed solution – I have a daily reminder to view (because their rss feed is too much data, and I want to at-a-glance scan the homepage for the big news items), a monthly reminder to view (my home-town news site, which doesn’t have an rss feed) and several other reminderss. The site is an alpha version, the basics are there, you can sign-up (with open-id) and create your own reminderss feed — but, there is still much to add, including lots of polish and performance. Please try it out!

I had fun building it, and I’m very excited to now have a solution for my “what to do about sites that don’t have rss” problem.

JavaOne 2006

May 19th, 2006

I’m at JavaOne (my first, wooo!) and blogging about it on here.

MacBook, 13″ Black — I want it

May 19th, 2006

I’m lusting for the new MacBook. Perfect size for traveling and easily powerful enough to hack away on some RoR (rails), Java and Cocoa (really fun, I’ve heard). I’ve been envying all the mac laptops at tech conferences and this may be the right entry point for me. When the intel G6 comes out I can get that as my super beefy developer machine. Such hawtness. I might spend the rest of the day gazing at pictures like this (oh, hello new desktop image 🙂 ).

Google Toolbar for Firefox 2.0 Beta

April 6th, 2006

Google Toolbar for Firefox

they added better gmail and personalized google homepage integration, et. al.

the best way to keep up on google’s product announcements is the Official Google Blog, but you already knew that

sxsw is a blast!

March 12th, 2006

throwing the ajax gang sign with the ajax godfather

Originally uploaded by benchristen.

I’m at sxsw now — wow, Austin is a fun town. Here I am throwing the Ajax sign with none other than Jess James Garrett – the originator of the term (Ajax) itself! The sign is thrown asynchronously (of course). I was also at etech last week and I showed up at BarCampLA for friday night. It’s been a whirlwind of tech conferences and I LOVE it! It will take the rest of the week to formulate my notes into legible blog posts and my head is swimming with ideas.

ETech was great, the presentations were all well done, the food was great and there was a wealth of very technical information and lots of tech all-stars. SXSW is less technical (on the in-depth level) but more fun and loose. The same level of all-stars are here, but they’re more from the blogging world and the design/ia/tech manager world.

I’m doing my best to eat BBQ for every meal and I may be leaving town with new cowboy boots (which is weird for me, since I’ve always eschewed them growing up in Nebraska). Hopefully more detailed/focused posts to come.

I have no idea what to present at BarCampLA

February 28th, 2006

None. Well, some, but I don’t think they’re all that exciting. Maybe I can talk about GTD (and my text file/svn system). I had thought to talk about how to name your applications, but then someone went a did a blog on the same topic (qwerky). Hopefully I can just show up and be inspired.

Regardless, I’m very excited to meet other LA internet techies!

networking dos and don’ts

January 22nd, 2006

Do: Flattery. We all LOVE to hear about how great we are, especially when it’s sincere.

Don’t: After giving said flattery (and your site/product pitch), do not ask me what my name is.

Wow. I can’t believe that actually happened. For one, all flattery is now voided, since you don’t have an accurate idea of who I am. And second, just let it slide, ask your friends to find my name, spare yourself the embarrassment. But really, why be talking to me in the first place in this situation?

Best Domain Search (so far)

January 21st, 2006

Real-time Domain Search is my favorite domain search site/util. Simple, real-time, ajaxed (fast) and a direct link to purchase the domain on godaddy — awesome. They only search .com and .net, but, that’s probably all you want anyway. The next question is, what other domains should I buy now? Found via

What to do when you run out of Internet?

December 10th, 2005

This happens (surprisingly) quite a bit (and I know it happens to some of my friends too). What do you do when you’ve run out of Internet? I’ve read all my rss (bloglines) feeds, checked in on my fantasy sports teams, browsed flickr (no new pics from friends), browsed upcoming (no new events), scanned (which is one of my feeds), shopped on amazon a bit, read all the news on mlb rumor central, read all my email and I don’t have anything to blog. I think it’s a common problem for internet junkies. I guess at this point you actually go outside and do something in the real world (but I think that’s a cop-out answer!). Please let me know if you have a solution for this problem.