Weeknotes 2024.19

Last week I learned Next.js out of pragmatism. It was a busy week for Apple culminating in this week’s event. SQLite and PostgreSQL are my GOATs. BASIC is 60 and a few more links on Programming, Science and (Sim) Racing.

Here we go, a little later than usual. Since the week was pretty depressing due to what is happening everywhere, ranging from more violence to spreading of super bugs (the biological kind), I tried to focus on the more positive notes in these weeknotes.


Busy week for Apple, with their earnings call and the upcoming iPad event, the rumour mill is working full time.


As per usual, you can read the transcript on Six Colors and put it into historic context with the charts on Six Colors. MacRumors has the key takeaways. The numbers are mind-boggling, which makes Apple’s petulant behaviour in some areas even more inexcusable.


It can be hard to keep up with all new things AI, even if you’re focused on Apple. It doesn’t help that they are tight-lipped and all you have to work on are open source releases and research papers. That didn’t stop The Verge from trying. We might see a few more hints on the upcoming event, but my guess is that the big stuff will be announced at the WWDC keynote in June.


The event on Tuesday will give us new iPads, that’s for sure. What else? Ars and MacRumors have you covered. What is not expected? MacRumors again.


Amidst all this, they released a Star Wars themed ad, full of wonderfully geeky references. My favourite bit was the fake speeder bike swooshing through one shot.



Vector Search SQLite Extension

Alex Garcia announced he’s working on a new vector search extension for SQLite, which improves on a few problems an earlier extension had. (via)


GQL is an ISO standard now. It’s SQL for Graph databases, not to be confused with GraphQL. I foresee glorious misunderstandings literally everywhere 😂

SQLite and Bytecode

D. Richard Hipp explains why SQLite uses bytecode for prepared statements with a draft paper and on hacker news (linking to Simon’s page with the relevant quote).

PostgreSQL is the GOAT

Why PostgreSQL Is the Bedrock for the Future of Data, sure Timescale might be biased, but between them, Neon, CockroachDB, and Supabase, to name but a few, PostgreSQL is becoming the DB technology du jour. It has always been my favourite, mainly due to PostGIS, and I managed a nice cluster of irons running PostgreSQL for a while.

Both PostgreSQL and SQLite have become labels of trust for me, ie. I might be more inclined to try products using those technologies.


60 years of GOTO

The BASIC programming language turns 60. Say what you want about BASIC, it was an important step towards making programming more accessible. It also was my first encounter with programming in the form of AmigaBASIC at the age of 7. It needed the German Translation of SICP a little later for me to catch the software engineering bug.

My CI is on localhost

Whether you or I agree with DHH and 37signals or not is beside the point. Moving continuous integration to the developer machines works for them. One thing should be taken from this, even if you think you’re more like Shopify or GitHub: many good practices evolved in very different environments, with very different constraints. When constraints change, you should reevaluate your practices.


How Perplexity builds product offers a nice look behind the scenes. It will be equally scary to many, as it’s the exact opposite to how they run product teams, which seem to require a specialist for each (virtual) screw.


Another boost for federated media in general and Mastodon in particular with Biz Stone joining the board of Mastodon’s new US nonprofit.



Agree with Jeremy Howard, regulation should be on the usage of AI, because there is where the harm can be done. Trying to regulate what AI is allowed to do will become an arms race with bad actors that we will all lose. (via)



My favourite science place on earth has opened an additional observatory, the TAO, or Tokyo University Atacama Observatory.

(Sim) Racing

Adrian Newey

Probably the biggest news, if you’re into motorsports, is Adrian Newey leaving the Red Bull Formula 1 team. Ars Technica compiled a list of race cars designed by Newey and in my favourite way of being, I go against the grain and say the March 85C Indycar was his best design.

Crazy Sim Rig

A $600,000 off-road racing rig. What in the name of what’s holy?!

We made quite some progress on the consulting / coaching side of the business, zeroing in on the unique value we can provide. We’re basically left with implementing it and refining the copy.

In a decision of pragmatism, the first iteration of the website will be done in Next.js. While I still prefer the single file components approach of Svelte, Vue and WebC, I was able to get up to speed over the last week and think I will be done with a good enough page this week. I might even be willing to try Next.js and React in a few other places, because the existing integrations and polish make you so dang productive.

See you next week!