Nicholas Young

Blog

Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Carbon is All Business

A few months ago, my 2015 MacBook Pro began showing signs of failure. It wasn’t necessarily a “bad apple,” but a growing list of concerns had begun to pile up and were slowly eating away at my productivity. The display would often become non-responsive; keys would temporarily stop working only to start functioning intermittently much later; and most concerning, the laptop would refuse to wake from sleep until power was cycled, forcing it to restart....

Parsing, Validating, and Assembling URLs in Rust

These days, we hardly think about URLs. Popular content management tools default to so-called “pretty” slugs, and even here, on secretfader.com, I remove stop-words to ensure the tidiest, most SEO-friendly URLs possible. It would be easy to forget the struggles that led to best practices of today’s web. However, to my generation of internet hackers, URLs riddled with ampersands and question marks were entirely normal. In those days, assuming URLs would be comprised of hyphenated alphanumeric characters was obviously unsafe; instead, we learned the official standard for parsing and constructing URLs....

Erasing Yesterday

At precisely ten o’clock local time on October 23rd, I will be soundly asleep as doctors and nurses lay my dormant body on an operating table. For them, this is another routine procedure. On the other hand, I understand it as nothing short of rebirth. It’s been nearly four years at this point, but in the past, I was an extremely active cyclist; living on Chicago’s north side, tenaciously pursuing both my professional and personal goals....

Turn the Page

I’ve often found that the words you write are less important than ones left behind. Yesterday evening, as the Republican-controlled Senate attempted to ram through a [400-page, vastly unbalanced tax reform bill][bill], I furiously tapped out a Tweet that wouldn’t be sent. It begins, “I’m concerned spectacle isn’t enough,” before continuing to discuss recent moments of spectacle in my life. I thought the spectacle is a young man falling to the pavement while trying to cross the street with crutches would be enough for my insurance and doctors to help me obtain better mobility aids....

True Colors

Writing in Tuesday’s edition of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Senator Lisa Murkowski, a crucial swing vote on both healthcare and tax reform, announced her support for the besieged GOP tax package. “I have always supported the freedom to choose,” Murkowski writes. “That is the fundamental reason why I opposed the Affordable Care Act from its inception, and also why I co-sponsored a bill to repeal the individual mandate tax as early as 2013....

Professional Jeopardy

Pain is a companion. It accompanies me when I rise, only allows brief privacy to shower, and returns with every step, turn, and bend. I tell myself this journey is temporary; not because there is a magical future when I’ll rid myself of the second shadow, but that I now have tools and medication to dim its presence. I can cope with discomfort, lost sleep, and isolation well enough; but chronic illness’ true crime is stealing life from beneath my feet....

Talking Points to Oppose Graham-Cassidy

As the Senate rushes towards yet another attempt to replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, several outlets, including Politico, are reporting that the long-besieged healthcare bill may remain intact, for now. This does not mean we can rest. Tomorrow, the National Disability Call-in Day to Save Medicaid will heat up D.C. switchboards in opposition to a dangerous volume of amendments modifying the ACA, and known only by the names of co-sponsors Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson....

If I Left You Behind

I have spent most of 2017 writing long-form non-fiction pieces concerning flaws in the American healthcare system, often attempting to communicate why we, as a country, shouldn’t embrace changes that would severely limit access to care for chronically ill and disabled citizens. Most words, I fear, were skimmed or disregarded; even by individuals who had offered support in the past. One by one, friends have become strangers when asked to share my articles or take simple political action that will enhance my life and the lives of those around me....

Hidden Costs of the ADA Education and Reform Act

July 26, 1990 won’t be soon forgotten. On that day, President George H. W. Bush signed what White House staff publicized as as “the most sweeping civil rights statute since the 1964 Civil Rights Bill.” The legislation prohibited discrimination in employment, public services, accomidations, and transportation, while simultaneously improving communication services for disabled individuals. Last week, H.R.620, the “ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017”, moved out of committee and will soon be voted on by the full house....

Commuting While Disabled

During the last several months, I’ve written much concerning how disabled people are only valuable to the media for their redemption stories, and why it is difficult to attain proper medical care. Last June I discussed the increase in my pain levels due to an advancing genetic condition, after I wrote an introductory post introducing you to Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. To say I’ve spilled ink is an understatement; I even took you deep into my life with chronic illness, writing my own personal frequently asked questions addressing what I wish you understood about my fluid, but still disabling condition....