I had the wonderful opportunity to attend Google I/O last week and absolutely loved it. I learned a lot of things during the three days. Btw, it was tiring too with the continuous sessions and the sunny Sun. This post is an attempt to share the main highlights and the announcements that I found interesting. If you attended the event or watched the sessions online, let me know if there were more things that you found interesting.
I use Xcode playground a lot in order to write code snippets - either to try out something that I read in a blog, or to demonstrate a code improvement that I want to suggest in a code review, or sometimes even to prototype a design before doing the full-blown implementation in Xcode project. During this experimentation phase, the correctness of the code was verified by analyzing the ouput displayed on the right-hand side column of the playground.
Realm is a company that I respect a lot because of their support for mobile developers and the open nature nature of their offerings. Their easy-to-use, blazingly fast Mobile database software supports all mobile platforms - iOS, Android, React Native and Xamarin, in Java, ObjC, Swift and C#. That is why I am happy to see that today they announced Realm Mobile Platform that combines Realm client side database with server-side technology (Object Server as they call it).
As part of my Machine Learning course, I wanted to share some of my learnings / notes in this blog so that someone will find it useful and I could also refer to it later. But I was not sure how to display the mathemtical expressions used in calculating cost function, gradient descent etc. in my blog. I have used the OneNote Equation tool before, but didn’t know how to do it on the Web for my blog.
Few weeks ago, I started the Machine Learning course on Coursera by Andrew Ng of Stanford University. The course is great, learning a lot of new concepts. Sometimes it is hard, but it is really fun learning this new topic and brushing up the old Math lessons of Linear Algebra, matrix manipulation and derivatives. The course starts with the basics, including a primer on Linear Algebra (it is optional, but I took it anyway since it has been more than a decade when I learned it in college).
I have been thoroughly enjoying working on ReactNative projects, but was disappointed by the lack of a good debugging environment. I had tried multiple solutions like Nuclide (which I found it to be very slow), WebStorm with JSX plugins (which is mainly syntax recognition). So I had to always launch the app from Xcode/Android Studio, then attach Chrome Dev tools and keep switching between all three for debugging. This was frustrating, but there is hope… ReactJS conference in February announced the release of ReactNative extension for VisualStudio Code, the lightweight editor by Microsoft.
The User Interface is going beyond UI and voice recognition to the new trend of using conversation as a new way to engage with customers, i.e. Conversation As Interface. It is a more natural form of communication, especially for question-answer / interview experiences. Now there is an emerging trend of companies opening their chat bot API to third party developers. Facebook has been doing experiments in their Messenger app allowing a few developers like Uber, Assist etc.
This is my first blog post created by Hugo, a simple, fast and powerful blogging engine written in Go. Setting up my blog on Hugo was quick and easy; it took less than 4 hours. I have set this up such that I publish the content to GitHub pages, so the publish workflow is as simple as writing some Markdown and a git push. This is a good tutorial on how to do this.