Hawaii Public Radio is the most intimate medium

I had the opportunity to discuss student employment in Hawaii and the Hawaii iOS Developer Meetup on the latest episode of Bytemarks Cafe.

Two days ago I was invited on to Hawaii Public Radio to be interviewed by Burt Lum and Ryan Ozawa in the first 7 minutes of the Bytemarks Cafe radio show. Follow this link to listen.

Before the interview, Burt and I had a chance to discuss our takeaways from the Purple Prize the Native Hawaiian app building contest we attended last week. Ryan shot, edited, and post produced the video in 2 days! Unreal, hard-working technology connectors and thought leaders. So lucky for this opportunity!

Radio is intense. You can’t mess up. You need to be completely in the moment. Thinking time turns into dead air.

Once the segment I was on was finished, Nicholas Yee, a former DJ at the University of Hawaii’s radio station KTUH spoke very kindly of our mutual friends.

I mentioned that my wife loves public radio and was interested in seeing how it’s all made. Nick was so kind. He heard the request and gave us a tour of the entire operation! We even got to check out the performance space in the studio The Atherton.

The Atherton is a lovely, 70-capacity studio, that is scientifically tuned with bevels behind the wood paneled interior. Nick mentioned that they are recording in the space. I’d just finished filming the Career Fair at the University of Hawaii at Manoa in 360 degrees with 2 Kodak SP360 cameras. The footage came out great. He gave me his business card. I hope we can collaborate in the near future.

At the end of the tour I asked Nick, “Do you feel like working at KTUH adequately prepared you for this job?” He smiled and said, “Yes.”

Hawaii iOS Developer Meetup – Session 18

We tried out Mob Programming last night. It was amazing. I learned that by enumerating an array you can get the index and the iterated item in a single line and capture the pair in a tuple.

I am consistently amazed by swift. Chris Lattner, really did a good job incorporating his work on compilers into decisions that have led to the Swift programming language.

Swift 3.1 just came out. Chae shared that there were some significant improvements in Swift 3.1 regarding linux development. Really great to hear. At the end of the meetup, Tyler and I discussed bubble sorts in Swift. He’s got Swift installed in a virtual box on his linux machine.

We had a new developer Isis attend the meetup. It was great to be able to show someone how to create a simple single view application that changes the text in a label on “touch down inside.”

I’ll be posting the video from the event as soon as the embed settings have been updated.

Really so happy with mob programming. I want to work on projects like this in the future.

Final takeaway, I’m committing to learn Firebase to leverage the offline by default, user credential storing/affirming, and analytics capabilities. If you’ve got any leads on great tutorials or OSS projects in Swift 3 with Firebase. Email me!

Hawaii iOS Developer Meetup – Session 17

The biggest takeaway from this meetup was the feedback from the programming exercise. There’s no recording of the live stream for this meetup because I yanked out the lightning cable and the feed went silent.

I felt it was more important to allow people in the room to showcase their code than it was to keep the live feed going. I did not know it would kill the resulting recording. Notes for the future.

I am going to keep putting an exercise at the end of the session. It’s working well. So interesting to see how different people come up with such different solutions to the same problem.

Programmers are problem solvers.

Let’s give them a lightweight opportunity to prove themselves.

We will be shifting over from pair programming to mob programming at future meetups. So much fun! Make coding social!!!

Native Hawaiian culture and App makers == Purple Prize

“Pili” is hawaiian for “a time of closeness.” This weekend I was lucky to get a chance to participate in the Purple Prize. Much pili was had! Read on to learn what we learned!

Early Morning

We started out at the Lo’i (Hawaiian taro patch) for some service work. I biked to the Lo’i and locked up my bike at 7:20am on Saturday morning. I saw Bruce talking to Forrest on one of the park benches and walked over to say good morning.

We were the first ones there and the coffee had not yet arrived so we sat around on our phones – quick tech warm up before the event started.

I checked “Chess with Friends” and submitted my moves.

As people started arriving the morning air heated up. Once everyone had shown up we gathered in the traditional A-frame house that had been constructed on the Lo’i. I knew we’d be doing some yardwork later in the day so I made sure to post up in strategic positions where I’d be in the shade.

We gathered hands and shouted introductions.

There were about 30-40 people there. Gotta remember this style of introduction: “Who are you? Where are you from? Who are you representing here.”

My turn came and I shouted, “David, Manoa, Hawaii iOS Developer Meetup!”

Everyone clapped and it was on to the next.

I met a guy named Kirk and had a good time sipping my coffee from a paper cup. I learned that Kirk is participating in a Google AdSense competition.


We walked up to where the river had been diverted into a side-stream to water the taro and purify the water. It’s a beautiful system. I wish I had taken more photos, but I’m holding out hope that they’ll be posting videos from the event soon. EDIT: Video posted 🙂

Once we sang a mele (song) about the river and the water, we walked back to the Lo’i and started doing yardwork.

Service Work

We gathered the fallen mango leaves into large plastic buckets. After about 15 minutes of gathering leaves we dumped them into a fallow taro patch. I was looking forward to this next step all month. Time to hehi hehi (Hawaiian word for the process of stepping the dried leaves into the wet taro patch with our bare feet)!

I was lost in thought stamping the leaves into the mud when, Matt and Raychong from Box Jelly came over to introduce themselves and say hi.

We were right in the middle of talking shop when ‘Imi, the Native Hawaiian Lo’i expert advised us to form a solid line to “comb” the taro patch by walking across together. We did one final walk to push the leaves into the ground.

Our “hehi-hehi-fun over,” I biked home to take a shower. We were to reconvene at Halau I’Nana, the old Napa Auto Parts near Anna O’Brien’s at 10:30am.

Information Sessions

They’ve really done a swell job making Halau I’Nana into a solid meeting/events/makerspace. It’s beautiful inside and air-conditioned.

The information sessions started next.

Kelsey set the ground rules for the event and shared the bathroom location. Tom Pena went first. He’s walked the islands and mapped out traditional water-ways. He printed a HUGE map, at least 12ft X 12ft. He took us outside and we all took off our slippers and shoes.

We walked over the map and he pointed out specific points sharing Hawaiian lore and history I’d never heard before – fascinating stuff about constellations, different islands being governed under different systems, and a geographic location in the middle of the island that Tom believes is the main source of all fresh water on the island of Oahu.

We put on our slippers and shoes and went back inside to cool off.

Next, Manulani Meyer, shared insights into indigenous epistemology that give new meanings to ancient Hawaiian myths and language. The combination of Tom’s talk and Manulani resulted in two powerful takeaways to me:

  1. Water and the way it flows informs time. “Water is the arteries of our lives. Clean water, clean ideas.”
  2. Cultural approval is often required but no one knows who/how to ask.

Next up, Maya from UHM, shared her program Seeds for Peace and the importance of forming a 360 view on building peace building leaders. The most memorable quote I took away from her talk was when she discussed her talks with Indonesians living in Java, “We live in harmony with the disaster.”

After the talk I thanked her for sharing her story with us. The last presenter discussed the alarming statistic I’m hearing from so many people on the island,

“Did you know that we import 90% of all of the food on the island?! We maybe have a week of food if shipping is halted.”

Next we had a delicious meal of locally prepared poi, salad, stew, beef, and curry. I brought my own wooden plate and pair of chopsticks 🙂

Competition Warmup

Another thing I wanted to document from this event was a process called smallify. I won’t go through the process here because it’s all spelled out on their website.

Smallify’s the best process I have every gone through in ideation. Here’s an image that details the process:

Competition Takeaways

All in all this was a fantastic opportunity. I’m very thankful that Nohea shared this event with me. Wonderful time!!!

The next step is for people to formally submit their ideas and rally a team around their idea. In 6 months, the judging will take place. I can’t wait to see what people create.

Now if I could only get one of those sweet Purple Mai’a tshirts 🙂

Unsorted takeaways:

  • The price of water sensors has dropped DRAMATICALLY within the past 7 months. So much so, that a sensor that traditionally sells for $20k can now be made for $100! Following up on this lead post-haste.
  • You gotta “Hana the Hana!” – this means you gotta work the work. Do the work to get something out of it!
  • Everyone wants to help. Just give them an opportunity to help.
  • Couldn’t shake the thought, “If the water could talk, what would it say?”
  • We want to focus on “Mana-tization” – Kamu

Click on the following link if you’re interested in learning more about the Purple Prize

Tetris Men

Last night, I got to meet and shake the hand of my programming idol, Alexi Pajitnov! Let me tell you how it happened.

My wife and I and a group of friends went downtown last night to celebrate St. Patrick’s day. The police stopped traffic for the block party.

We met by the pier and had a few drinks. Last call for the block party was 10pm. But we weren’t done for the night so I suggested that we go to Dragon to hear some live music.

I led the charge as we snaked through the crowds. Then I caught sight of a distinguished gray beard and a floral hat to my right. It was Henk Rogers! He brought Tetris to Nintendo. I didn’t want to bother him but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to thank him for bringing Tetris into my life.

I shook his hand and thanked him. Then he looked ahead of us and gestured saying, “Guess who else is here?”

I turned to see where he was pointing and I was face to face with Alexi Pajitnov, the creator of Tetris. I was so happy I fan’d out hard and asked my wife take our picture.

Check out this video to learn the awesome history of this soviet embroiled video game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhwNTo_Yr3k