Automating Your Home Garden


Every year, the technological advancements available to the home gardener become more abundant, bringing more users the ability to easily maintain their very own fresh produce aisle. From soil sensors to plug-and-play growing machines, today it’s easier than ever to grow your very own herbs and vegetables.

GraphQL Subscription using Absinthe


Over the last four months, I have been working on a project that helps architects to design strategies they need to optimize workspaces. We have used Elixir, Phoenix, and Absinthe to create a GraphQL API. Currently, we are interacting with this API by sending in queries and mutations. There is a third operation that can be implemented to receive near real-time updates of some server action in the clients of an application.

In this post, I’m going to discuss what GraphQL subscriptions are and how to implement them using Absinthe.

Building Success with User Story Workshops


When building a new product, Grio always likes to start with a user story workshop (USW). A USW is our way of bringing a cross-functional team together to visualize the project and create clear project goals and priorities. In this post, I will introduce the USW and the benefits it provides for both Grio and our clients. 

Designing for Accessibility


As I have helped some of my older relatives use technology and have watched them get frustrated time and time again, I’ve realized that tech has continually ignored the senior citizen population. Most of the time when we are designing something, our clients are focusing on the up-and-coming iPhone and the tech-savvy generations.  Even when efforts are put in to create a user-centered design, a consideration of the needs of seniors are not typically part of that process.

For this post, I’ll review a recent theoretical case study I did for the shopping experience, and review some of the ways that it could be optimized for the senior citizen population. 

COVID-19 and the Fitness Tech Wave


Virtual fitness is on the rise. Thanks to the lockdowns and social distancing of the last year, gyms have been closed, and many people have had to shift to virtual fitness for their daily workouts. As a result, technology is increasingly finding a permanent place within people’s fitness routines. 

Over the past few years, there has also been a considerable shift in consumer mindsets: gym-goers are more curious than ever before to know more about their overall wellness, which encompasses everything from working out and eating right to mindfulness and sleep quality. 

This post explores how these two variables have come together to create a new virtual fitness movement, and how our fitness equipment is evolving in response.  

Walking a Fine Line with Content Moderation


One of the larger debates in the final months of Donald Trump’s presidency revolved around his social media presence and how much he should be allowed to say online. On Twitter, for example, he was given free rein for most of his presidency, tweeting a staggering 12,200 times in 2020. However, in the final months, Twitter began posting warnings with tweets that were factually incorrect, and eventually banned him altogether.  

The progression of Trump’s fall from Twitter has prompted many to question social media platform policies on content moderation. Large social media platforms have revealed the complexity of content moderation, and the ongoing evolution of the field. 

The Design of You: Maximizing Your Inner Tech


When I ask my Grio teammates, “where do you live,” they all give slightly different answers. Some will say “San Francisco” while others say “the Bay Area.” Some say “the United States” while others say “Mexico.” While our answers may all be different, we do have one thing in common: There is only one place we will each live for the rest of our lives. That place is our bodies. 

In this blog, I’ll discuss how our modern lifestyles impact our “inner tech” and look at some of the physical and ergonomic solutions we have to keep our bodies in tip-top shape. 

Next.js 10 Updates and the Pros and Cons of the Virtual Conference Experience


The first Next.js conference was held in October 2020 and due to the coronavirus pandemic, the conference was held virtually. Instead of hotel conference rooms and banquet halls, I attended the conference from the comfort of my home. Like many who attended a conference this year, this was my first experience with an online conference. In this post, I will be talking about both the highlights of the conference itself, as well as the experience of attending a virtual conference in general.

Hacking the Brain: Learning How to Learn in Adulthood


It can be overwhelming to learn a new skill, especially as you reach adulthood. If you want to start a new career, learn a new hobby, play an instrument, or try a new activity, it requires your brain to learn an entirely new way of thinking. In this post, I will explore some ways you can “hack” your brain, helping your old brain learn some new tricks.