Dev of the Week: Mike McCandless
- Three Exciting Lucene Features in One Day
- A New Version of the Compact Language Detector
- A New Lucene Suggester Based on Infix Matches
Thanks for talking to us! What have you been working on lately?
One thing that interests me about your blog is that you mention that you like to build software to control your house. What kind of gadgets to you code for your house? Do you think that homes of the future will be "smart"?
I use Insteon, which are devices (light switches, motion sensors, door sensors, etc.) that communicate over the power line; I created a Python interface so I can send commands and receive events. Using Insteon I turn lights on, by schedule depending on sun-set time, and also when motion or other events are detected. I also have a simple Web interface to turn things on/off. I haven't played with ZigBee yet but I want to.
A tiny 5-watt plug computer handles all of this.
Are there any particular developer tools or resources you couldn't live without?
Do you have a favorite open source project (or projects) that you've contributed to recently?Certainly Apache Lucene, but also the compact language detector project, which is the super-fast language detector extracted from Google's Chromium open-source browser. Recently version 2 was released!
I also love http://thingiverse.com, which are open-source "things" that you can print on your 3D printer. I've contributed just one open-source thing so far but downloaded and printed many others. If you don't have a 3D printer yet, get a Flashforge: half the price and just as good as a Makerbot! Using this, and with help from my four kids, we created a powerful automatic bubble blowing machine.
Do you follow any blogs or Twitter feeds that you would recommend to developers?
Did you have a coding first love -- a particular program, gadget, game, or language that set you on the path to life as a developer?
Anything else you'd like to mention?