Self portrait 01 big
Daniel Puglisi @daniel

Hi, I'm Daniel. I make, Shimatta and Desk Hunt. Cofounded Codegestalt. This is where I dump my brain.

So I just wrote a little roundup of what has been added over the course of the last 4 months to

The article can be found here: (it's in german).

The product is evolving and I'm having fun building and improving it. But to be honest I'm also a bit stressed out. Mostly because I feel like I should spend more time selling the tool instead of improving it. Sometimes this goes hand in hand, because a new prospect suggests a new feature that will benefit all of our customers. Other times it doesn't and it's just me over engineering.

So I've made a plan.

Until the end of the year I'm going to split my week into different sections.

Monday and Tuesday I'm going to focus on selling and getting the word out about our platform. This is the most important thing at the moment.

Wednesday and Thursday I'm going to do development and work off the remaining ToDos that are not super necessary but provide a clean cut for the next iteration. As soon as I'm done with those I'm going to focus solely on development tasks that are relevant for the selling and marketing work at the beginning of the week.

Friday is reserved for research and experimenting. Reading, writing and thinking.

Saturday and Sunday are off days. With the exception that on Sunday I'm going to plan the next week. I've found that I sleep a lot better if I know what I'm going to work on the next day. So planning it is.

And that's it. That's the plan. Let's see what happens and if I can stick with it.

or Cancel

I was asked earlier this week what makes Codegestalt different than other companies. At the time I was asked the question I had a bit of a black out which made me feel the answer was a bit unsatisfying. So here is a more thorough answer:

  • Automation: We try to automate almost everything. Especially administrative work which mostly consists of repetitive and boring tasks. Most of these tasks follows a pattern or a sequence that a computer can execute way more efficiently than we humans. So instead of wasting our time with those tasks, we write a little piece of software so we can "outsource" those tasks to a computer. This can include easy tasks like sending out personalized e-mails to multiple prospects or clients but also more complex things like creating entries in our accounting system. Aside from automating work-tasks for the short-term, we also try to automate our revenue by developing subscription based services for the long-term.
  • Workspace: We don't have an office. Our office consists of two things. A laptop and an internet connection. If those two things are present, we can work from almost everywhere. E.g. from home, from a coffee shop, from a remote island, it doesn't matter.
  • Communication: Most of our communication is asynchronous and goes through a chat and project management software (currently Telegram and Basecamp). This way we don't need to be available all day long and can get back to each other as soon as we're available. This is especially useful to us because we only see each other around two or three times a week which allows us to stay focused without getting interrupted to much. People that work in offices tend to distract each other by requesting something they think are important and needs to be solved right away. Most of the time it's not and it's only scattering your focus. We also don't do meeting and use daily and weekly check-ins which is just a written text message to keep each other up to the date on the progress of our various projects.
  • Paper(less): Everything that doesn't need to be archived on a piece of paper gets scanned and then thrown into the garbage. There are company basements and walls full of folders and papers that not a single person is ever going to lay eyes on again. And if they do, have fun finding what you're looking for. By keeping everything digital we save a lot of space (which we don't have anyway) and if we ever need to find something again we can just execute a simple search and find the desired document without having to go through hundreds of pages. For example our whole accounting system is digital. We don't glue receipts to a piece of paper and file them into a folder as others do, most of our receipts are digital anyway. The only thing we haven't thrown away yet are our annual financial statements because our trustee said we should keep them. But honestly, I don't see why.
or Cancel

I’m trying to sell houses in Las Vegas. I know that these houses exist, but I don’t know anything about photography, which might be crucial in order for me to you know…sell houses. In todays terms, we’re talking about going out and finding a web designer or developer and a photographer, hoping that somehow we can pay these people to make something so that I can sell these houses. Here’s the thing. This is going to cost me money. I don’t know if it’s going to work, and I definitely don’t know how to fix it if anything breaks. So the service I’m about to provide — will not be my core competency.

Now let’s take this same person, and imagine a world in which Humanic exists. I can now simply be a Source of information, and generate revenue as a Source. I know these houses exist, at XYZ place, and that information is valuable, just not without the parts I’m not competent at providing. Perhaps if I’m able to market myself as a source of great information, I’ll lead myself to greater streams of content creators such as photographers, or videographers — working to help me sell my houses. We both have vested interest, and can both profit in different ways.

or Cancel

The ultimate tool for corporations to sustain a culture of this sort is to develop the 40-hour workweek as the normal lifestyle. Under these working conditions people have to build a life in the evenings and on weekends. This arrangement makes us naturally more inclined to spend heavily on entertainment and conveniences because our free time is so scarce.

I’ve only been back at work for a few days, but already I’m noticing that the more wholesome activities are quickly dropping out of my life: walking, exercising, reading, meditating, and extra writing.

or Cancel

Another weekend has past. This time I attended my 5th Rails Girls Switzerland event. Once again as part coach and part photographer. Had quite a blast and was able to catch up with some friends I haven't seen in a long time. All the pictures are available on a shared Google Photos album. It's the first time I used Google Photos and have to say it's quite cool. At the next event we should create a shared album from the get go and tell the attendees to join and share their own pictures as well.

or Cancel

I’ve finished reading The Elon Musk Blog Series by Wait But Why yesterday evening. All in all a really good blog post series but the last chapter was my personal highlight. It’s a depiction about how Elon Musk is able to do what he does. If you think about your body as hardware then your consciousness, your thoughts, your feelings are your software. And it’s what the last chapter is all about. I don’t have the time to go into much detail, but you can read the whole chapter here.

For me personally, it’s like I’ve found the next puzzle piece for conquering my fears:

Humans are programmed to take fear very seriously, and evolution didn’t find it efficient to have us assess and re-assess every fear inside of us. It went instead with the “better safe than sorry” philosophy—i.e. if there’s a chance that a certain fear might be based on real danger, file it away as a real fear, just in case, and even if you confirm later that a fear of yours has no basis, keep it with you, just in case. Better safe than sorry.

I’ve already been through epiphany #1 (I don’t know shit) and epiphany #2 (No one else knows shit either) but got stuck on epiphany #3 (You’re playing Grand Theft Life). It’s mostly my fears that hold me back and keep me from making progress. Everything else is ready to go. Damn, I can program almost anything but can’t sell it. Because somewhere deep down I’m afraid of what other people might think about me. Objectively does it matter? No. Most people will stop thinking about me the moment I leave their plain of sight or hang up the phone. Because unless I’m the source of their worries they don’t have the time to think about me. And I don’t intend to worry people, I intend to help them. But as described in the quote above, humans are programmed to take fear seriously, even if those fears are not rational. So, how can I solve this? Let’s use another quote to answer that question and close this thought:

The challenge with this last epiphany is to somehow figure out a way to lose respect for your own fear. That respect is in our wiring, and the only way to weaken it is by defying it and seeing, when nothing bad ends up happening, that most of the fear you’ve been feeling has just been a smoke and mirrors act. Doing something out of your comfort zone and having it turn out okay is an incredibly powerful experience, one that changes you—and each time you have that kind of experience, it chips away at your respect for your brain’s ingrained, irrational fears.

or Cancel

Don't worry. I haven't forgotten about this place. I started writing morning pages since about one month ago and stuck with them more or less. Most of them are written on paper and lately I've started to write them on my Laptop. I haven't reached a point were I'm comfortable publishing them but that'll be the next step. Until that happens. Here is a great article for you to read:

or Cancel

Stumbled upon a great thought today:

The inherent problem in any book that's a how-to for something artistic, whether it be writing or painting or making music or the artistry in tailoring a custom Voltron costume, the problem with the how-to book is that when you're reading the how-to book you're not doing the actual thing you're being taught to do. In other words, a book ABOUT writing is probably less helpful to a writer than a book that's just plain good. A how-to book about painting is probably of less use than a book of paintings you enjoy.

or Cancel

I've looked into storing locations with Ruby today. Haven't found what one could call best practices, but discovered a lot of interesting gems.

The initial idea was to save the address, zip code and country code. This way we could find out about the location and region with a reverse lookup. Preferably without hitting an external service.

Here we go:

  • jgv/area
    Not sure what it includes, but certainly not data from Switzerland
  • monterail/zip-codes
    US only
  • midwire/my_zipcode_gem
    This one looked promising, unfortunately US only as well
  • midwire/free_zipcode_data
    US only –.–
  • elecnix/ruby-geonames
    Getting closer. Ruby gem for a pretty cool service called GeoNames that let's you lookup all kind of location related data.
  • jim/carmen
    This one almost did it for me. Unfortunately the Swiss regions are a mix of french and german. Could do a PR but I feel like this needs to be correct from the start.
  • hexorx/countries
    Another interesting one. But also weird localizations for Swiss regions...
  • geokit/geokit
    Not what I intended in the beginning. But the best I've found so far.
  • alexreisner/geocoder
    And last but not least geocoder. Also hits external services for looking up information.

The ones that do not hit external services unfortunately had wrong localizations. I could create a PR for fixing the ones from Switzerland. The problem is I also need location data from other countries and I don't know if the provided information is correct or not. That's why I'm going with geokit/geokit or alexreisner/geocoder. Both seem well maintained and popular.

or Cancel

Username mentions are now live.

It's now possible to link someone's profile like this: @rodrigo, @feyyaz. If the username doesn't exist it won't do anything (@username). The user will currently not receive a notification for this.

or Cancel