Kristian Glass - Do I Smell Burning?

Mostly technical things

Distributed vs Remote

I like to distinguish between “distributed” and “remote”.

Being distributed is an intrinsic property - a team can be distributed, with no real central locus like an office.

Being remote is an extrinsic property - you’re remote from something, like a remote team in another country.

Installing the Raspberry Pi Desktop

Most of my Raspberry Pis run headless, with no screen. So the image I keep around is Raspbian Lite. It’s half the size of the “full” Raspbian-with-Desktop image, it has everything I usually want, and very little that I don’t.

But sometimes I find I want a GUI.

I don’t want to have to keep the full image around and re-image my Pi. Nor do I want to have to manually install the various components of a desktop environment.

I do want a single command that just “gives me a GUI”.

Django: An Unofficial Opinionated FAQ

I really like Django. Django is fast, featureful, secure, scalable, and versatile. It works well with a variety of workflows, approaches, tools, platforms, and libraries.

But sometimes you can have too much choice.

I’ve spent a lot of time working with Django, and supporting other users via IRC in #django on Freenode. In that time I’ve seen a lot of the same questions come up again and again.

Django doesn’t provide official answers to many of these questions, and I don’t think it should - its versatility is one of its strengths. Here are my answers though - all of which are broad and given without knowing exactly what you’re doing - they’re not universally correct, but in the absence of knowing better, if you’re facing an unclear choice, then they should provide some clarity.

Good luck!

An Aged Octopress

I moved this blog from to Octopress in 2013.

Moving from a “blog service” to a static site generator has been great:

  • Hosting static content is pretty easy
  • It’s backed by git, so I get all the benefits that brings: history, branches, diffs, etc.
  • Security-wise, the attack surface is much smaller - the production site is just static HTML/CSS/JS, so there are entire classes of vulnerabilities and threats that I don’t have to worry about

However, it’s possibly come with a little complacency - I looked back recently to find I’d not actually updated the framework itself since my very first commit ~6 years ago. Slightly embarrassing (as someone who regularly talks about the benefits and importance of regular incremental updates) but not exactly surprising: “the cobbler’s children have the worst shoes” after all…