Johnathan Lyman

My name is Johnathan Lyman. I'm an engineer at Papertrail, a huge Apple nerd and semi-regular blogger. I enjoy bubble tea way too much and find Farming Simulator relaxing.

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2014 – 2018 Johnathan Lyman. All 338 posts and 12 pages were made with and in Seattle.

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March 2015 Archives

The Microwave


I chuckled at this one, because the struggle is real.

However, it got me to thinking. What are some of the small things in life that are actually quite enjoyable and satisfying?

I think for me, one of the most satisfying small things is when I sit down to write, I have this sudden flow of words, as if they came out of nowhere. I don’t have to look at my list of things I want to talk about, I don’t have to browse the Internet looking for inspiration.

It just happens.



end game (n.) – the late or final stages of any activity.

Thinking about what my goal for this blog is made me realize: I don’t have one.

I’m ok with that. There’s something to be said about just wanting to do something because you can. I don’t play video games because at one point I’ll end up being a professional gamer and spending my life playing League of Legends for money. I don’t blog because one day I want to make this site a full time job earning money.

At least not right now.

There’s always the same thought that crosses my mind every once in a while regarding the slim possibility this site ever becomes famous or even just a smidgen popular. I have plans for my blog but none of them involve some masterful end goal.

As time progresses, things change. When traffic increases, perhaps it’ll be time to focus on specific topics or themes. Right now, I ramble most of the time and post generic stuff. Sometimes there’s a theme, sometimes not.

I know people read this but I also know more people would read it if they found it interesting to them.

Right now though,t it doesn’t really matter. I write because I can, because I want to. I write because it frankly feels good to me. Some people knit, some paint. Writing makes me feel like I accomplished something.

As long as I can continue to do just that, I don’t need an end goal. And end is an exit. I don’t want to exit from writing.



Deep. Or is it? It’s hard to say.

This is one of those short films that really leave you thinking. What was it that we actually saw? What does it all mean? I dunno, but it was damn cool to watch.

Did I mention that Warner Bros. is picking it up to do a movie?



I’m always looking for interesting things I can do to my site and the series underneath if it means providing some sort of benefit, even if just a small one. I also like learning, so I got the best of both worlds when I took the time a few days ago to set up Redis as a front-end cache for WordPress.

Installing it was dead simple. I already had the PHP PECL module installed, so all I needed to do was install it via apt-get, install a WordPress plugin, and I’m on my way. It took less than ten minutes. Way cool.

Page loads drops by about half. I like that.



Acid Reflux sucks. I don’t typically suffer from such things but lately it’s been rough. Part of this big (to me) move is having to leave a place I grew up and essentially spent all of my living years behind. Compound that with everything that’s going into moving and the amount of money it really does cost to move. Don’t think you can move for cheap… that’s just not a thing.

One thing that’s been quite interesting, however, is the closer I get to the magic date, the better I feel. When everything first became a reality, I was stupid scared. I didn’t sleep well if at all, I constantly missed my alarm, wasn’t productive throughout the day, etc. It sucked.

As time has passed and I’m getting closer to April 4th, I’m starting to be okay with the idea. I’ve moved my Comcast service, I’ve set up utilities, paid some deposits, looked into things to do in the area, how the city works, etc. I’ve also allotted myself a few days before I start working at my new job to relax and enjoy the area. I know one of the first things I want to do the morning after we move in is sit on my deck and watch the sun rise. Hell yeah that sounds nice.

In Washington, I wouldn’t have the slightest opportunity to do that: we have too many tall trees and my deck faces south surrounded by those damn tall trees. In Cali, I’ll have an uninterrupted view of the east with just gentle rolling hills.

It’s thing like that that make me okay with the whole thing. I look at the weather and see it’s going to be sunny and not sad like it is in Washington. I see it’ll be warmer all around so I don’t have to wear layers to combat 37 degrees and wind and then try to pack them home in the afternoon with 55 and all sun.

Just writing about all this is making me feel less stressed out. Reflecting on all the new and cool that I’ll get to experience is making things easier on me. I’ve moved past the grieving stage and have accepted my departure as fact. The last hurdle I’ll have to jump is two days of driving. If we were driving in a car and not a moving truck, we could do it in one day (12.5 hours non-stop).

While the effects of stress still leave an effect on me every once in a while, it’s not as bad as it could be, I’m getting tired of chewing Alka Seltzer Heartburn Chewables. They taste flavorful until they ever so smoothly remind you that they’re chalky and full of hatred.

Missing Images


I want to pass on that I’m aware of all the missing images a lot of my posts have. Somewhere during an image processing sweep a lot of them never finished and thus are now basically invalid files. I’m working on restoring them. No need to email me 🙂

Why This Site


I’ve kept this site going with mostly daily content for the last few months now, and I’m quite impressed with how far it’s come. It’s no money maker, for sure. It likely never will be. At some point, this address won’t even point to a blog, but a more professional presentation of me. This blog will be delegated to its own address with its own name.

But that’s a project for another time. Right now, I want to reflect on why I do this.

I don’t blog because all the cool kids are doing it. I don’t blog because it’s my job. I don’t blog because I have something I want the entire world to hear or read. I blog because I can. Plain and simple. I do it because have thoughts and things I want to talk about to whomever will listen and this is the best way to do that without annoying the hell out of someone.

I blog because it’s the right thing to do. I could keep all my thoughts and words to myself, but what’s the fun in that? What’s the point? The truth of the matter is, you’re not protecting yourself from anyone by doing that.

I also don’t care if my thoughts don’t elicit the proper responses. I’m telling a story, explaining something, or just flat out offering my opinion. Whether people like it or not is up to them and at the end of the day, all I’m doing is blogging… because I can.

I set up this site originally as a portal for just that. After having for a couple years and not really doing anything with it, I decided it would make for a good home for this project. Coincidentally, having this site has also kept my mind fresh regarding self-hosting a site and all that goes into it.

I don’t think I’d have the same attachment to it if I used a managed service. I think that gives me an advantage regarding staying the course.

That and I have lots to say.



I’m always looking for new ways to learn how to code. Up until recently, I had no idea where to really start with Swift, the language used to craft iOS apps and games that mades its appearance in iOS 8.

A few days ago, I came across Swifty, a free app (with a couple in-app purchases) that teaches you the basics of iOS programming. I recommend you go check it out on the App Store. It’s a great way to get started and with no cost for entry, if you don’t like it, you’re not out any money. It’s available for both the iPhone and iPad.

Hands on with GAget


Recently I wrote a couple blurbs about an iOS app and OS X notification widget called GAget. I received the opportunity to get some hands-on time with it and now I’m ready to share with you my experiences.

iOS App

First let’s start with the iOS version, simply because I have my phone in front of me. When I first wrote about GAget, I had an iPhone 5. Now I have an iPhone 6. The app isn’t optimized for the iPhone 6 and 6+ but no matter as it still looks pretty dang good. 

Setting up the app is dead simple. You’re asked to go in to a Google account (ideally one that has access to Google Analytics) to get started. You’re taken to a Google sign in page where you’re instructed to enter your credentials. If you have two-step authentication enabled on your account like I do, you’ll have to take care of that, as well.

Upon verifying your credentials and accepting the app’s request to view your Google Analytics data, you’re taken to a wonderful home screen.  All the essentials you need to keep track of visitor history is right there. This app isn’t for those who want to have super granular campaign data or do whatever they do with behavior tracking. That’s not what this app is about. GAget is for those who want the basics and they want it without fuss.

You’re presented with a line graph of historical data regarding visitors, and are shown the most recent entry, which should be the same day. As you scroll down, you get to see things like overall stats for the last two weeks including visits, unique visitors, and total page views among said visits.

Next is you’re given some nice circle-based metrics (a.k.a. a pie chart) showing more visit and exit percentages. Follow that up with some averages and a detailed traffic breakdown and you’re on your way! Need a refresh? just shake.

The app is lightweight, super smooth, and supposedly comes with the ability to use your site as a background. I was unable to get this to work, however, but I imagine it looks good, too. 

GAget will allow you to view multiple sites, if you have more than one present in Google Analytics. All you need to do is swipe left and right to move through them!

OS X Widget

The widget that sits in the OS X notification center functions a lot like the iOS app in that it shows you a lot of the same information, only if you request it. The widget sits in the Today section and by default only shows you your visits for the day, but when clicked, expands to show recent history, as well. It doesn’t have the same granularity in terms of sources of traffic but everything else seems to be present. 

The widget is really meant for a quick glance at the action taking place on your site and how many millions of people you have coming to see your wares. It’s ok if you don’t have millions. It don’t, and it works for me, too.

Both the iOS app and the OS X widget are priced well, at $1.99 and $2.99 each. The iOS doesn’t have a free option nor does it have any kind of ads present, so it’s really one of those pay-once-enjoy-forever deals that I personally really like. 

I’ve spent a week with both versions  and I like each in its own way. They make glancing at your data easy and painless and for the price, you really can’t go wrong with that much more convenience. For the price of a cup of coffee, you can have both apps. For the price of a vending machine snack, you can have your Google Analytics data in your phone without the fuss.

Update: I received an email from the App developer and clarified a couple points in the article.

iPhone Trade In


I did something I never thought I’d have to do.

I traded in my iPhone 5 and signed up for Verizon EDGE and got an iPhone 6.

That means: I’m making payments on my phone.

It might not sound bad to some, and I totally get the idea behind it. It serves a purpose, and I think I discovered one of those purposes. Let me explain.

Up until yesterday, I had a white iPhone 5. It served its purpose. It didn’t have the largest capacity nor was it perfect on the outside. It worked and it worked well… most of the time. On occasion, it would play battery tricks on me that I didn’t appreciate.

For example: I’m using my phone and going about my business when I look at my battery level to see it’s at 50%. No big deal, that’ll last me a few hours at my current pace. A couple minutes later, I look at my screen and am informed I am at 10%. That’s odd, I was at 50% just a few minutes ago.

Lo and behold, I’m actually at 4%. Depending on the scenario, my butt might be puckering a bit at this point. As I find a charger and plug it in, my phone tells me I have 50% remaining once more. Unplugging my phone in confusion, my battery stays at 50%.

What did I just experience? Am I in the twilight zone or is the phone hardware just not doing its job reporting remaining charge anymore?

It’s likely the second. In cases where my charge drops dramatically, it will stay there until the likely real charge passes that level, in which case it resumes recording depletion. I had it run on 7% for two hours.

Fun, eh?

I couldn’t handle that drama, anymore. I called Verizon and asked them what it would take to buy out the rest of my contract so I could re-sign and get a new phone. Turns out, it would take a cancellation of my line. Well… that blows.

Oh but wait! Haley, the customer service person on the other end says I’m eligible for a “promotion” that involves signing up for Verizon EDGE so long as I turn in my old phone. Hmm. I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about making monthly payments on a phone, paying full price for it in the end, and still being in a contract, but I didn’t care at the time, and $31 a month isn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

So in a nutshell, I caved and signed up for what I never thought I would do. On the plus side, I have a sexy new phone that really does kick a lot of ass. On the neutral side, my next bill will be  $140 larger than normal (they bill you for sales tax).


P.S.: The cat photo has nothing to do with anything I just wrote. I like cats.

Commuting and Wasted Time


It’s no secret that I commute a rather long ways (measured by time, not distance) to work every morning. By way of bus it’s 80 minutes. By way of car, it’s 45. The distance is only 20 miles. To some, that’s a lot. I know people that have never commuted more than 20 minutes in any one direction in their life. I envy them.

I envy them because long commutes steal life from creativity, drain the energy from what makes us get up in the morning and want to do what we do, give us motivation to continue long term, and make us wish ever more that the weekend would just hurry up and get here.

One thing that’s likely changing after our move to the Bay Area in a couple months is commuting. We only have one car, and that works for us. After we land, we plan on keeping it that way. Fortunately, we’ve found an area that will allow us to keep the cheap public transit option in play and the need for a second car at bay.

Except this time it’ll be the other way around.

I’ve taken the bus to work for the last three years. Before that, I used to drive into work. I had to be at work at 5AM, so there weren’t many busses that ran from where I was coming from that early. After a shift in location, the bus became an option and we rolled with it.

As each year passed, taking the bus to and from work became gradually easier.

And again this year, it will become easier, still.

There’s a point to all this that I’m trying to make.

I can’t name one person who wouldn’t want a shorter commute. We strive for those extra minutes of sleep. We strive for those extra minutes of being home with our families before sleep. See how odd that is? In the morning, we want nothing more than to sleep in. In the evening, we want nothing more than to be awake to do stuff or e with our families and friends.

Why is there so much prejudice toward the morning?

Everybody’s a morning person, whether they want to admit it or not. I used to believe I wasn’t a morning person, then I started waking up between 4-4:30 am not to go to work, but to write. I started doing something I found interesting and stimulating, and now I do it every week day. The weekends aren’t quite the same, but I’m still up before most people my age.

I used to laugh at the idea of being a morning person. Around that same time, I used to get up at noon, too. I always had an inkling in the back of my mind that I really wanted to be up before the sun and be productive before the Today Show started on the east coast, but I didn’t really understood what that took.

Now, I think I do. I’m not a master of that, yet, as there are still days—like this one—where I falter a bit. With those trick days, it’s important to still try and stick to the routine as much as possible.

Over the last couple of days, I’ve been a bit behind in the mornings and end up doing my writing on the first of two legs of my morning bus journey. Since I usually have ideas already ready to go, putting the words down isn’t very difficult and can be done with little effort. The problem I’m facing now is that I’m getting used to that idea, and that’s not what I want, at all.

When I started this blog in January, the goal was first to just write a few days a week, then it was to create something every day. Both iterations of that goal involved a routine. I talked briefly about hacking my sleep routine—or whatever the startup kids say these days—to make it more qualitatively productive instead of quantitative. That’s been the hardest part throughout all this. As much as I try, I can’t always get to bed at the same time.

Unless I force myself. As I discussed in an earlier post today, one of the things that makes us pro is not rolling with the punches (that’s avoidance), but rather instilling discipline in ourselves. Discipline surrounding every aspect of our lives. We cannot be disciplined in only one area of our lives, but all.

To bring this back around to commutes, like I was originally discussing, long commutes suck but they only suck because they’re not being used to their full potential. Sleeping on the bus is not a productive use of your time. If you can’t sleep in, go to bed earlier. If you can’t go to bed earlier, go to bed at a decent time and wake up at a time in which you’re sleeping at your lightest. It might suck if that time is an hour earlier than what you wanted. If that’s the case, deal with it.

Being flexible is part of the gig. Also sticking to your guns. And discipline. If you get up at the last minute because you want those “extra snoozes” (which are useless, by the way), you’re doing yourself a disservice. Find your light sleep time and get up with that. Do your typical morning routine and when you’re done, see how much extra time you have. Put that time to good use. Do what I do and write a blog post. Or don’t, it doesn’t matter. Just do something besides sit around and watch the news.

And the kid excuse doesn’t work. if your kids are a distraction in the morning, wake up before them. They need more sleep than you, so you don’t have much of an excuse, there.

We blame our long commutes for not having enough time to do things, yet we some how seem to be able to make time on one side of them, every single day. If we made time on the other side of them, we wouldn’t be complaining. When I get off this bus, I’m done with this task. I’m moving on to another. I’ve established this time for the purpose of writing and that’s that.

If I can do this, you can, too.



from Pressfield:

the pro mindset is a discipline that we use to overcome Resistance . To defeat the self-sabotaging habits of procrastination, self-doubt, susceptibility to distraction, perfectionism, and shallowness, we enlist the self-strengthening habits of order, regularity, discipline, and a constant striving after excellence.


There’s something we tend to do a lot, especially when the waters aren’t smooth sailing. It involves justifying mediocrity, delaying, and otherwise finding excuses.

I’m not talking about excuses for why X isn’t done on time, or why you forgot Y at the grocery store. I’m talking about excuses for ourselves. Excuses for our behaviors. Excuses for our amateur-ness.

The resolution is simple. Rules. Routine. +1-ing the day before. It’s easy to say “I’ll do it tomorrow,” and God knows I’m guilty of that like none other, but fixing that is simple: combat procrastination with scheduling.

I schedule a lot of my tasks at work and firmly believe that extending that scheduling to my personal life can make a big difference. For example: I’ve been meaning to clean up my car a bit. It’s getting dirty on the inside. Unfortunately, I don’t drive it much during the week so it’s been put by the wayside. If I were to block out an hour of time this weekend to take care of that, I’d be more likely to do just that.

We can combat perfectionism by understanding the concept of striving for excellence. Let me tell you something. If you ever plan on finishing that one thing you’ve been working on for months but feel it has to be just right, you’re never going to get it done.

The only way you’ll be able to get that thing out there and improve for the next is to let it go. Don’t throw it away, but let go of the idea that if you just tweak that one thing in that one place, it’ll be magically perfect. Pro tip: that’s a whack expectation.

Magic isn’t real. It’s illusionary in nature. Magic shows trick your mind into seeing and believing what’s not real. At the same time, we also trick ourselves into believing what we want by way of all of the above. We become distracted by the fluff and the illusionary perfectionism that we forget what’s actually going on behind the curtain.

Unless you plan on being a magician, ditch the magic.



You can’t think yourself out of a writing block; you have to write yourself out of a thinking block.  — John Rogers

These words are very true, and I have the experience to back them up.

Last week, I spent 30 minutes writing non-stop. I didn’t think about what I was writing, nor did I stop to even see if what I wrote flowed. At the end, I just published it. The premise behind that exercise was to not just pad my monthly word count, but to simply see what ideas come to mind as I write.

The result was quite interesting. There were clear transitions between topics, but each of those topics was a morph from the one previous. It’s as though when I was discussing one thing, another idea started forming in my mind.

Another prime example is just today when I was discussing SageTV. I started going on about QAM 256 and channel bandwidth and other non-related stuff all to come back to the point of there being better ways to go about executing a set top box in 2015 like what Google’s doing.

This is what Rogers is talking about. I could easily have another couple posts right there about things I have at least some knowledge of. I could explain the intricacies of QAM and bore the hell out of you. I could also explain why open-sourcing a set-top box is both a great and a terrible idea.

Perhaps I will. Who knows. The point is that I wouldn’t have even thought of those topics to talk about had I not written about them.

This is one of the many reasons why I like writing on a regular basis. There isn’t some massive end-goal in mind. I’m not trying to build a mega-blog full of money-making ideas that I can litter with ads and end up in a penthouse. Not even close. I write because it stimulates my mind and gives me new things to talk about and new ideas to ponder. There isn’t another medium of creativity where I’ve been able to work out how to write at a pace of almost 3500 words an hour.

Some say I should really write a book.

Open-Source SageTV


Comcast, I hope you’re reading this.

SageTV founder (and current Google employee) Jeffrey Kardatzke says that Google “has agreed to open-source the SageTV platform.”


If you’re unfamiliar, SageTV has been off the market for a few years now after being one of the first to release a DVR box and home theater PC software title. Google bought it up and pulled it away, only to end up using it in their Google Fiber TV box.

It’s great to see this kind of move. There’s a lot of capability in set top boxes that go untouched. I can speak from experience with my X1 box from Comcast. I have HDMI in and out, of which I can only use the OUT. I also have USB and Ethernet, both of which do nothing. I would love to be able to use the ethernet jack instead. It would behoove Comcast to switch to an IPTV-type setup, instead. The bandwidth of traditional cable (QAM256) is limited to something like 39mbps per channel, and each channel is typically split in half (since there aren’t enough channels in the spectrum for 1:1 usage). That brings us down to 19.8mbps per channel, at max. That’s not bad, but it could be better. Blu-Ray discs are usually 25-35mbps for video and roughly 5-8mbps for audio. Compressed 5.1 is roughly 1.5mbps so taking that out of our 19.8mbps stream leaves us with 18.3mbps.

But enough about that. I can ramble about the quality of a TV signal all day. The point is that each stream could be any number of bits in size, not just a technological maximum of 19.8mbps. The trick would be switching streams in a timely manner and implementing some pretty hardcore QoS all along the pipe to ensure the TV signal doesn’t become degraded because your kids are having a LAN party in their room and sucking up all the Internets.

Even without a move to IPTV, opening up a box to other apps and developers would make for a much more desirable platform, regardless of the vendor. One thing I’ve always wanted on my X1 was a Netflix app. Will that happen? Probably not, so long as Comcast has a beef with Netflix.

The trick will be to not let too many crazy things through the flood gates. If app developers start making shoddy apps, the quality of service for the entire system becomes compromised, and we know how Google loves to keep Android and open platform and what that ultimately does for the quality of apps.

Triple Digits on Earth


One thing I’ve always found so amazing is that with today’s excellent blend of technologies to keep people living longer, we regularly see people living past 100 years of age.

How do you live to be 109 years old? Exercise, a nice warm bowl of porridge, and staying away from men—at least that’s the explanation given by Scotland’s oldest woman, Jessie Gallan, in a story that went viral earlier this year.


It’s quite wild to think that there’s a possibility I might live to be that long. Shortly after that realization another one hits: I’m going to need to save more for retirement. Most retirement plans account for 20-30 years between retirement and death. If I want to stick to my valiant plans of retiring at 55, I’m going to need more than that. If I’m Jessie, I’ll need 50 years. Oh boy. Good thing there are services to help manage money out there. I’m not sure I could do that on my own.

I’m not even going to start on the age of the oldest living woman at 118 years. I just can’t. It’s daunting to think that there’s so much more life left to live after retirement for some people. Usually when you reach that point, things change and daily life changes. I don’t think I could deal with that for over 60 years.

Then again, I could just retire later, too.

That’s so long from now, God only knows what’ll happen.

Forty Years


Voyager 1 and 2. Covering a million miles a day, these two crafts are still humming along. After 40 years of travel, they still gather data, and some of the original crew still watch over them… even if they do so from a simple office park in Pasadena.

Reading about Steve Howard, 65, the man who’s in a group of people controlling the space crafts from 16 light hours away, is quite humbling. Voyager 1 took a “family photo” of the solar system 25 years ago and in 2036, will shut down. Most sensors will do so long before the nine 2025 as its Plutonium-238 reactor dwindles into nothingness, but an eleven more years is still an impressive feat.

Howard will be 90 by then. There isn’t much of a change either Voyager will find anything super interesting until 40,000 years from now, when they’ll be dead metal and nothing more.

The next time you complain your internet is slow, think about Steve and his 17 34 hour round-trip transmission time from his computer, through the Deep Space Network, to Voyager 1.

featured image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Getting Started with Loggly Part 2: The Cool Stuff!


This is a continuation of part 1: Getting Started with Loggly.

Note: Apparently waiting hours for account generation isn’t a thing according to the fine folks on twitter @loggly.

@_JohnathanLyman Creation takes a few sec so likely something happened during form validation. Perhaps try again or DM us the subdomain you typed in

— Loggly, Inc. (@loggly) March 15, 2015

Now that we’re signed up, let’s get down to the good stuff!

The first thing I want to do is start tracking Linux. The core of my site is Ubuntu (among other things). Loggly makes this easy. All I need to do is click the Linux icon on my account’s main page.

It really is as simple as copying the two lines of code and running them with superuser access. Within a few seconds, Loggly grabbed a hold and started showing me cool stuff!

It’s pretty empty now, because I literally just started tracking and I’m only tracking Linux. With time this will become more populated and more interesting to parse through.

Moving on to other applications, now. I want to start tracking nginx. Nginx is just one of the apps Loggly can track. The list is massive.

Getting Nginx set up was just as easy as Linux, although Loggly believed my Nginx logs weren’t of a proper format. No matter, they’re coming in great.

Getting MySQL set up isn’t a one-click process like the others. This requires MySQL to do some extra work and get a bit re-configured. No worries, it’s nothing extravagant.

Setting up PHP was a breeze, and I like a good breeze.

Once everything was added like I wanted, I started poking through my logs to see if I could really find good data without hassle. Turns out, I can.

What’s better than watching someone from China try to hack into your system via SSH by trying to log in as the root user?

Nothing 🙂

I’d recommend Loggly to anyone who wants to consolidate and be able to parse and search through their log data. You might not need the heavy plans, I know I don’t. It’s still good to be able to look at events as they happen in real time with an interface that doesn’t suck and from anywhere in the world without having to log into your system.

Go check out Loggly, right now. You’ll enjoy it, for sure!

Getting Started with Loggly


I love logs. I love massive amounts of data. I have this thing where if I feel I can consume and process tons of data by doing something menial and useless, I’ll do it.

One thing I don’t really do though is keep tabs on the logs for my site and its services. This is where Loggly comes in, and this is my experience getting it set up.

Signing up was pretty easy. I just went to, clicked Sign Up in the top right corner, filled out a few things, and waited patiently while their systems used magic fairy dust and unicorn blood to construct my logging instance. They provide a full 30-day trial that gives a user full access to all features to determine if it’s really right for them. After 30 days, it drops down to their limited free tier, which is still good for small people like me.

I’m writing this as I go through their service, so let’s take a moment to talk about what Loggly actually does.

The whole goal of Loggly is to provide centralized log management without the need for agents. This allows sysadmins or anybody who cares to view and track log data in real time. You can search through logs as they come in and graph out instances of particular events to track down issues as they’re happening.

Logy allows you to track logs from almost any source. Their list is pretty exhaustive if you ask me:

  • Windows
  • Linux
  • Apache
  • Nginx
  • IIS
  • JavaScript
  • Tomcat
  • MySQL
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Rails
  • Python
  • Django
  • MongoDB
  • PHP
  • Java
  • Ruby
  • Node.JS
  • .NET
  • Docket
  • Puppet
  • Chef
  • FluentD
  • AWS Cloudtrail
  • AWS S3
  • and Heroku

That really is a pretty big list.

I mentioned that you can get started for free than that there’s a free tier, but let’s talk about what that actually means and the other options that are available.

The free tier gives you the basics including searching and filters, persistent workspaces, and built-in alerting. The standard tier ($49/month) gives you 1GB/day of log storage and 7-day retention, unlimited users, built-in alerting, customized dashboards, and more.

Moving to the Pro tier is where you start getting some of the more tasty features.  You get peak overage protection, AWS S3 archiving, telephone support, and more. The default plan grants 15 days of retention at $109/month, but if you need more than that, you’re more than welcome to it: 10GB/day for $499, 50GB/day for $2500 and more. If 50GB/day and $2500 sounds like a lot, don’t worry, it is. 50GB of log files in a day though is a lot and if you need that kind of support, you’re not too worried about the price.

The second half of this post is to follow after my account is set up… see you soon!

Make School


If only there was something like this when I was getting out of high school.

Introducing Make School:

Imagine going to a school where everyone is trying to change the world with technology. Welcome to Make School. Your education will be focused on building apps and websites that improve the lives of those around you. You’ll learn the underlying computer science theory, development best practices and design principles that enable you to ship polished products.

You’ll start a company, work on teams, contribute to open source software and intern at a tech startup, all in 2 years. You’ll improve your storytelling, writing, pitching, and learn the social engineering needed to excel as a founder or climb a corporate ladder. You’ll culminate your experience with a 2 month capstone project where you can build a startup or dive deep into computer science topics like artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Make School was featured in Fast Company when they featured a kid fresh out of high school who could have gone to MIT. Even before finishing, he was already jumping into the real world:

One month shy of officially finishing Make School’s course—which included iOS, Ruby on Rails, and web development—Bando’s preliminary job hunt yielded an offer for a software engineering position at Papaly, a social bookmarking startup, at a salary just north of $90,000.


I’ll say again: where was this when I was finishing high school? sigh

You can read the rest of the article from Fast Company here or check out Make School. Both are good choices, I think.



I use Google Analytics. It keeps track of all sorts of goodies for me. The thing I like the most and really appreciate is the visitor tracking. I like knowing how many people visit my site on a regular basis. I don’t use much outside those base features, though. Good thing there’s an app for that.

There’s a sick little iPhone and OS X app called GAget. It’s sole purpose is to provide you with just-the-meat of your Google Analytics data including visitor sessions, bounce rate, new visitor percentage, and visit length. On iOS, this comes in the form of a super clean app that you can scroll though. On OS X, it’s a notification center widget. Both are super sexy.

I strongly recommend you check it out on the OS X App Store ($2.99) or the iOS App Store ($1.99).

Johnathan Lyman
Kenmore, WA,
United States
blogging, design, technology, software, development, gaming, photography