Nino D'Aversa

Dad, husband, and professional hand waver. Values life, love and design. Director of Engineering, Energy @ ecobee

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Bot obsession

One fateful day back in August of 2014 I happened to be working from home. During my lunch break an idea popped into my head that having a company chat bot might make for a few laughs around Wattpad HQ. I remembered how much fun we had at Polar mustachifying each other.

So, knowing how easy other integrations were to setup on Slack I thought lets see if I can get it working over lunch. I quickly settled on a Hubot and named him HAL, as one does. He was up and running on a free Heroku instance within the allotted time.

However my brief indulgence quickly turned into a madhouse of hilarity – How I was not fired that day, I will never know. Animated gifs and images were flying all over the place in random. It was nearly impossible to keep up with it even if you dedicated your whole self to it, and nearly everyone had. Although I felt guilty for the time we lost, the laughs we had might...

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What if…

Apple has also been working overtime to improve the inductive charging mechanism necessary for charging up the device each night

This reminded me of an idea I had awhile back …

What if Apple created an external magnetic battery, perhaps 1-2x the thickness of your standard watch battery that could be slipped on underneath the watch to charge it up overnight.

If possible, this would enable sleep tracking and easy charge-ups on the go.

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iPhone 6

Like many other lunatics I awoke in the middle of the night to preorder a new iPhone. After having spent previous launches in line at carrier and Apple stores I decided that having it delivered to the office was the only grown-up thing to do.

This year required some up front thinking. Which iPhone did I want? Historically I have always ordered the new iPhone in the largest size available. This year as the parts leaks mounted leading up to the event it became clear the choice would come down to either a 4.7" or 5.5" screen.

I have lamented in the past how these extra large phone screens were ridiculous and even laughed at the size of the Galaxy Note when I first held one years ago. But I started to think about how I use my devices and what I needed from the one that was always with me.

Enter the iPad

As with iPhones I have always purchased flagship iPads. Unlike the iPhone however, I...

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I was in need of a carousel, here were some of my requirements:

  • Memory efficient. It creates the illusion of an infinite carousel but it only uses as many elements as necessary to fake it.
  • CSS3 translate3d based, because thats where the best performance is to be found on mobile
  • Had both snapping and non-snapping behaviour (big swipes trigger snapping, small touches do not)
  • Provide both looping and non-looping behaviour
  • Page widths that were configurable (not always 100% width)
  • Works well enough on Android 2.3 to be respectable
  • Works on desktop with a mouse (although I think the user experience of this interaction-heavy interface isn’t ideal)

SwipeView was pretty close but my attempts to bend it to my will were in vain. The biggest problem I faced was the lack of unit tests. As I made my modifications (read: hacks) I introduced unintended instablity. I hate working without tests and...

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Yesterday was my one month anniversary here at Wattpad. It definitely feels like its been much longer – things move incredibly quick here (we deploy to production a dozen times a day, for instance). The energy in the office is almost palatable – like bottled potential that is due to go off at any moment.

We have been, and are, hiring like crazy, every week there are new, exciting people to meet. The best way to describe this place is to say, it feels like something big is about to happen.

A couple of weeks ago the entire Wattpad crew gathered at Ocho for our annual write-a-thon. Every employee spent time doing what millions of Wattpad users do everyday, write stories. You can find all of our stories here.

This week I have been working on an embedable story widget. So I thought it would be neat to share both my technical and creative works together, so without further ado .

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As tradition has dictated thus far, we spent our weekend surrounded by family and friends at the cottage; we do our best to detach ourselves from the usual day-to-day. We typically spend most of our time eating and drinking and then joking about how much we just ate and drank.

This year I’m taking the time to share what I have to be thankful for.


Preparing a lunch for thirty people is no simple feat. There are those who awoke at five in the morning to stuff turkeys, and others who helped prepare hams, soup, pies, mashed potatoes and more. I am so thankful and proud to be part of a family that works so hard to give one another this gift that we all get to share in.


Our grandparents came to this amazing country with literally nothing but the clothes on their backs. I am so thankful for the opportunities I have been afforded: to learn, to love and live freely. None...

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It’s been awhile

I haven’t blogged in years, that is, if tweeting doesn’t count as blogging – which it doesn’t.

I’m a rather opinionated guy (read: insufferable), and often these 140 and 256 character limits don’t quite give me the latitude to truly convey my banality to the world.

I do apologize in advance for the rather poor grammar you will undoubtedly find herein. I pretty much just throw in random commas, dashes and semi-colons​ wherever I fancy.

​In reality I don’t expect many to read this, but thats not really the point as I see it.​

The Why

Tasha and I cleaned up the basement awhile back and I came across a ton of old letters, pictures and school work. Predictably I spent more time riffling through all of it then I did cleaning – I can go from zero to nostalgic faster then most.

I love reading all the things we wrote back then; back when we knew everything and the world was a much smaller...

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