Is a robot uprising taking place?

Is a robot uprising taking place?

The short answer is no.

The long answer is…

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.NET-Core GoogleCloudMlV1PredictRequest Execture Method Returns null Response

Execute GoogleCloudMlV1PredictRequest gives a GoogleApiHttpBody object that has null fields

While creating a .NET-Core MVC API to interact with my Google Cloud ml-engine model, I came across a strange issue. For testing purposes, I used Google’s Census example to get up to speed and make sure what I wanted to do works.

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The Basics of Machine Learning

Today, my brother-in-law asked me about machine learning and where it’s going. I’ve been really interested in the field lately, so I wrote a message to illustrate some of the basics. I decided I would post it on here for anyone else who might be interested in learning a bit more. Let me know your thoughts, questions, and any points I might have gone wrong too!

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Why You Aren’t Actually a Hopeless Romantic

Are you incorrectly identifying yourself as a hopeless romantic?

I was talking to a friend who identified herself as a hopeless romantic. This immediately rang false to me because she is very positive, and takes responsibility for her life. Hopeless romanticism has always struck me with a negative vibe. Subscribing to a belief without actually believing in it. Like someone who takes vitamins everyday but doesn’t actually believe they do anything. Going through the motions and cynically subscribing to something because it is either easier or fashionable. It makes you into a kind of martyr, which is a way to self identify, but not a healthy one.

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Are GUIDs actually unique?


This could potentially be the shortest blog post ever written, and the short mathematically accurate answer is “no”. A GUID (globally unique identifier) is a 32 character sequence of  alphanumeric (letters or numbers). They are useful to developers because, in theory when generated, no GUID like this has been generated before, nor will another be generated again.

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Why Travel Days Are Better During the Day Than the Night

Money and time wise, economically it makes sense to travel at night. You save money on booking a hostel, and you’re sleeping during a time where you’re physically inactive anyways. In practice though, it just doesn’t seem to work out.

Night travel gets you into a city WAY too early (usually around 6 AM) meaning that you can’t actually check into your hostel (there is something so unsatisfying about leaving your bad in the hostel lockup).

You also probably didn’t sleep well on your bus/plane/train so you’re groggy. Even as a self diagnosed narcoleptic who can sleep pretty much anywhere at any time of day, once I’ve had that first doze off on my mode of transportation I’m pretty much awake for the rest of the ride, day OR night.

If you actually do muster up the motivation to start exploring, you get immediately frustrated when you can’t find things, and even when you do manage to successfully navigate a map through the fog of exhaustion and find your way, you aren’t conscious enough to appreciate the things that you find.

Arriving mid day means you get to check into your hostel, wash the bus/train/plane off you, and settle into your new home for the next X number of days. You have time to chill in the hostel common room where you’ll talk to other travellers. You’ll have some time to learn from those who have been touring the city already for a few days before you head off into it on your own.

Old Town Hostel Dubrovnik - Common Room

Pictured: Experts in their particular field

Wandering around a city you don’t know with little to no advice (trust me, I’ve tried doing the research BEFORE getting into a city online or in guidebooks, and word of mouth has won over in good advice about 100 to 1) is just not as effective. Not that I don’t mind a good wander, but a good wander is usually a lot more enjoyable after a good nights sleep and with some idea of the lay of the land (from a helpful receptionist).

What do you think? Is there a way to travel at night that works for you? What are your experiences?


View of waterfront from KEX hostel

View of waterfront from KEX hostel

The trip started out on just the right foot. As usual, I got to the airport 3 and a half hours early, but the trade off was I got to sit in the emergency exit seats with infinity legroom, and I was informed the seat next to me was going to be empty. Not a bad start to the trip.

Additionally, although Icelandair doesn’t serve in flight meals (not gonna lie, was NOT aware of that when I boarded on a totally empty stomach) but it has a lot of nice little touches. Bottles shaped like glaciers, all the stuff on board has little Icelandic phrases on it (though since some of the characters are beyond my lexicon and there is no phonetic pronunciation included, they are a little beyond me), and although it’s small I love these little touches. I’d gladly give up the crappy in flight meal for them.

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Simple Optimization to make your Website Faster

Since my first course in Javascript 5 years ago, I was taught like a good web developer that you should always put your javascript declarations in the header tag of your HTML page. The reasoning behind this is quite logical. If you’re attaching and element events to functionality (such as a buttons “onclick” event) you want that functionality defined before a user sees the button.

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What is Cloud Computing?

If you’re in the IT field you’re probably at your wits end hearing the term “Cloud Computing”. Chances are if you’ll admit that you know that it’s a good thing, you don’t really know why, and you haven’t the time to figure out what it is. If not, you’re probably high up in the chain of command and have been using the term as a buzzword for years because it sounds smart and nobody would argue with you that it’s a bad idea. This is because cloud computing IS at its core a really good idea for your business. I almost feel like I’m a couple years behind writing about this idea because cloud computing has existed as a service for at least 8 years now (the first I believe being Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) in 2006) which an eternity in the tech industry.

So what is cloud computing? An analogy about how companies used to consume electricity might work best. Back before there were electric companies, if you ran your own factory, one of your fixed expenses was that you’d have to buy a power generator for your facility. You would have to have a generator that produced enough electricity to satisfy your peak power consumption. The issue was that during the rest of the day when you didn’t require peak use, the generator wasn’t being used at its full capacity. It also meant that if your electricity requirements rose beyond a generators maximum output, you’d have to replace your existing generator with a whole new one. This was exceedingly cost inefficient. This is synonymous with purchasing web hosting. You need to pay for hosting that covers your maximum load, even if it only reaches that maximum once a day, week, or even month. If your website has 10000 visitors over the course of just one hour a day, but is idle for the other 23, you are still required to reserve and pay for resources that can deal with that load for the other 23 hours. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could share those resources with other people that needed them for another hour in that day?

This is where cloud computing comes in. Returning to the electrical generators example, the same issue was identified. Instead of every business having its own generator, there was an opportunity to produce all the electricity in one place, and serve it out and charge for it based on usage. You could expand your operation without buying more generators. This is the idea behind cloud computing. Cloud computing allows you to be charged by usage, and as your website becomes popular (which is something everyone wants) then you can expand without incurring extra fixed costs. Having a slow month? You won’t be charged for that bulky server that’s sitting idle. You are charged for what you use by sharing that processing power. Efficiency and money savings.
There is a lot more to discuss about Cloud Computing. Hopefully this post has given you enough information to wrap your mind around the concept and given you some ideas on how you could make Cloud Computing work for your business needs. It is now a mature technology so fears faced by the non-early adopters should be dissipated. This is the new way the web will look going into the future, so it’s time to take that old diesel generator out to pasture. Your website should grow as your business does, and there is no better place for it to do that than the cloud.

The Top 5 Grossest Dairy Queen Cake Decorations

My Anus is Bleeding Dairy Queen CakeFor Emily’s birthday, I’d ordered a cake containing an image from one of one of Don Hertzfeldt’s rejected commercials (for more information on the meme, click here). When I called to order it from Dairy Queen, my conversation went something like this:

“About how racy would something be for you guys not to be able to do it?”
“Oh, we’ll do anything.”
“I’m wondering if you’re going to regret saying that.”
“… Let me get my manager.”

Luckily, the manager turned out to be even cool. The results, as you can see to the left, are nothing short of amazing. I e-mailed the image and he texted it back to me to confirm. Yes, I want a cake inscribed with the message “My Anus is Bleeding” on it. He asked if there needed to be any other text on it. I replied no. “My Anus Is Bleeding” is enough. At this point I think I was just testing how many time I could say “My Anus is Bleeding”. I then had to ask:

“So, is this the weirdest request for a Dairy Queen cake you’ve ever had?”
“Hmmmm … maybe in the top 5.”
I went silent with excitement, then asked “What are the other 4?”

Here they are:

  1. A penis with a superman cape saying “Time to Fly, Little One”
  2. An asian guy with a small penis saying “Congrats on Losing Your Virginity”
  3. A toilet with steaming poo inside saying “What Makes You Think Your Shit Doesn’t Stink?”
  4. A big fat cock, simply saying “Eat Me”

Dairy Queen, consider me a satisfied customer.

If you guys don’t know Emily, she is the genius responsible for Tyler’s Adventure’s. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. If you have, check it again because as you’ll remember, it’s hilarious.

Also, send her a Happy Birthday on Facebook if you feel so compelled. She needs it. She’s old balls.

Happy Birthday, Emily!