One of my weekly routines is to solve the FiveThirtyEight Riddler puzzle. If you've never done them before, they are a set of weekly riddles that tend to involve math, logic, and statistics. Sometimes, though, they make you think. That's silly, thinking is what computers are for!

This week's puzzle is a perfect example of a puzzle that can be solved with one of my favorite programming languages, Prolog. I believe that in order to be a good software engineer or computer scientist you must be versed in many different programming languages. …


My latest hobby is solving crossword puzzles. I’ve been doing the New York Times puzzle daily for the last 8 months or so and absolutely love it. I am constantly impressed and amazed by what the creators of these crosswords can do — build a complete and connected puzzle while still integrating humor, trivia, creativity, and puns.

I’ve been so impressed, in fact, that I decided to give it a go myself. What goes into building — colloquially referred to as “constructing” — a crossword puzzle? Can I do it myself? Can I end up constructing a puzzle that makes…


It’s undeniable that we are entering a new era of computing. Whether you call it the Internet of Things, the Third Wave, the Fourth Wave, distributed computing, whatever it is, the technology landscape and the machines around us are starting to look different.

Plenty has been written about this shift but one aspect that is often overlooked is how interfaces evolve as we move into new technical eras. An interface, for the purposes of this post, refers to how humans interact with machines. You use different interfaces every day, whether you realize it or not. …


Ok, there are probably more than two questions that fit into this category. How much money do you make? What’s that thing on your face? Did you have to kill anyone in Iraq? But these are two I’ve had recent personal experiences with that may not be as obvious, so I thought I’d share.

So, without further ado, the two questions you should never ask anyone are:

How is the job hunt going?

When are you going to have kids?

The first one was totally my bad. I recently asked this to a friend of mine who had been unemployed…


Liar’s dice is a great game. Easy to learn, difficult to master. A good balance of luck and strategy. If you don’t know the game, I encourage you to check it out, it’s great for a group.

In our last session, we encountered an interesting situation when we got down to the final two. One player had all 6 of his remaining dice while his opponent was down to one. Of course this led to much discussion and side betting. Mainly, we set out (read: argued) to answer the following questions:

Can the player with all six dice devise an…

Matt Dodge

Constantly struggling to figure out whether I like software development or the Dodgers more. CTO of niolabs.

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