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Beliefs, behavioral patterns, thoughts, and institutions of the developer community.
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Don Goodman-Wilson maintainerati.org

Reviving Maintainerati

I missed this good news announced back in March…“We’re putting the band back together.” I’m glad to hear that we can now look forward to more Maintainerati events. …one important thing we learned is that maintainers need to have access to others who are sharing the same experiences, struggles and successes they have while running an open source project. In response to this, GitHub has reached out to some passionate people in the broader maintainers community to help bring some structure and growth to Maintainerati, in the shape of a new core team to run Maintainerati events and organize the community.

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Dave Kerr github.com

Hacker Laws 💻📖

From Conway’s Law, to The Law of Leaky Abstractions — you’ll find links to laws, theories, principles, and patterns useful to developers — curated by Dave Kerr. Conway’s Law — This law suggests that the technical boundaries of a system will reflect the structure of the organization. It is commonly referred to when looking at organization improvements, Conway’s Law suggests that if an organization is structured into many small, disconnected units, the software it produces will be. If an organization is built more around ‘verticals’ which are orientated around features or services, the software systems will also reflect this.

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Patrick Woods developermode.com

Building TwilioQuest from the ground up

Twilio uses a custom-made, 8-bit RPG game to teach developers their APIs, both online and at events like Superclass and Twilio Signal. Created by Kevin Whinnery, TwilioQuest is a premier example of how to educate developers without putting them to sleep. “Younger generations of technologists […] have grown up collecting loot and gaining XP”

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Kay Singh singhkays.com

It's time to replace GIFs with AV1 video

It is 2019 and we need to make a decision about GIFs. GIFs take up a massive amount of space (often multiple megabytes!) and if you’re a web developer, then that’s completely against your ethos! If your goal is to improve your website your loading performance, then a GIF needs to be yanked! But then how do you have moving pictures? The answer is a video. And in most cases, you’ll get better quality as well as almost 50-90% size savings! AV1 videos give us smaller file sizes and better quality?! There must be a catch…maybe…read on to find out.

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Kevin Goslar Hackernoon

Go is on a trajectory to become the next enterprise programming language

Clearly we’re a fan of Go — listen to Go Time — but, what is it going to take to make it succeed Java as the dominating enterprise programming language? This post from Kevin Goslar lays out the strengths of Go that make this a real possibility. Go — a programming language designed for large-scale software development — provides a robust development experience and avoids many issues that existing programming languages have. … Companies and open-source initiatives looking for a safe and forward-looking technology choice for creating large-scale cloud infrastructures in the coming decades are well advised to consider Go as their primary programming language. A large portion of modern cloud, networking, and DevOps software is written in Go, for example Docker, Kubernetes, Terraform, etcd, or ist.io.Many companies are using it for general-purpose development as well. The capabilities that Go enables have allowed these projects to attract a large number of users, while Go’s ease of use has enabled many contributions.

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InfoQ Icon InfoQ

A tribute to Joe Armstrong

Following the sad news about Joe Armstrong passing away, some of his former colleagues from Ericsson wrote a good-bye note and asked if InfoQ would publish it. Joe has been on my shortlist of people to invite on The Changelog for a long time, but I never got around to contacting him. Regretful. This is a touching tribute. I especially enjoyed this bit: Nobody could avoid being affected by Joe’s good mood and boundless enthusiasm. He was highly appreciated as a speaker and panel member at many international conferences. Many programmers can testify to just how important Joe has been for them in developing their profession.

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Mark Christian writing.markchristian.org

You should have a personal web site

Mark Christian, being 💯% accurate: Hello! This is my personal web site. It’s not much, but it’s mine. After nearly a decade of just barely existing, I’ve spent quite a bit of time in 2019 trying to breathe new life into it. At this point, I think just about everyone–but especially folks in the software engineering universe–should have a personal web site of their own. Let me tell you why.

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David Singleton Stripe

Stripe’s next engineering hub is remote

Companies like GitLab and Zapier are 💯 remote. Stripe’s next engineering push, colocated in what they call “hubs,” will be a new style of hub — remote. Stripe has engineering hubs in San Francisco, Seattle, Dublin, and Singapore. We are establishing a fifth hub that is less traditional but no less important: Remote. We are doing this to situate product development closer to our customers, improve our ability to tap the 99.74% of talented engineers living outside the metro areas of our first four hubs, and further our mission of increasing the GDP of the internet. Stripe will hire over a hundred remote engineers this year. They will be deployed across every major engineering workstream at Stripe. This means if you’ve ever wanted to join the ranks of Stripe, but moving was a blocker for you, the window of opportunity is now open to you and there’s no limit to what you can work on. We have seen such promising results from our remote engineers that we are greatly increasing our investment in remote engineering.

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Kira Booth blog.plaid.com

Growing our team with retrospectives

From Kira Booth writing on the Plaid blog. …we take an agile-like approach to how we think about process. If our team’s process isn’t working, we talk about it in a retrospective (aka “retro”) and figure out how to change it. Many companies don’t begin retros until they are large and have many processes in place, but we feel that retros are especially valuable at our size and rate of growth. Plaid’s engineering organization is rapidly growing. In the Salt Lake City office where I work, we have plans to grow from 20 to 60 engineers this year. Processes that worked just a few months ago may not work now. A culture of continuous process improvement helps us to stay ahead of growing pains like inefficient collaboration, error-prone coding practices, and interpersonal conflict.

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Eduards Sizovs sizovs.net

Great developers are raised, not hired

This post by Eduards Sizvos is loaded with wisdom: You can escape this crazy hiring race by creating an environment, where experienced developers mentor less experienced developers. Hire for attitude, and teach technical skills. Be the company that says: we are hiring mentoring. This pairs nicely with our mentorship discussion with Emma Wedekind and next week’s Go Time on hiring and job interviews.

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Mike McQuaid mikemcquaid.com

Stop mentoring first-time contributors

According to Mike McQuaid, the focus of an open source maintainer should be learning to mentor efficiently — where should you be investing your time? If you’re an open source maintainer lucky enough to have a significant number of contributors you need to learn to mentor efficiently. First timer issues are not the right good way to get people involved in your project nor mentoring individual first-time contributors. Instead, do things that help all of them.

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Jeremy Wagner A List Apart

Responsible JavaScript (Part 1)

This pretty much sums up the point Jeremy is trying to get across with this post on A List Apart and the future parts to this story of “Responsible JavaScript.” I’m not here to kill JavaScript — Make no mistake, I have no ill will toward JavaScript. It’s given me a career and—if I’m being honest with myself—a source of enjoyment for over a decade. Like any long-term relationship, I learn more about it the more time I spend with it. It’s a mature, feature-rich language that only gets more capable and elegant with every passing year. Yet, there are times when I feel like JavaScript and I are at odds. I am critical of JavaScript. Or maybe more accurately, I’m critical of how we’ve developed a tendency to view it as a first resort to building for the web…

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Thorsten Ball thorstenball.com

Learn more programming languages, even if you won't use them

Thorsten Ball writes on his personal blog: Different programming languages are good at different things and bad at others. Each one makes certain things easier and in turn others harder. Depending on what we want to do we can save ourselves a lot of work by choosing the language that makes solving the type of problem we’re facing the easiest. That’s one of the tangible, no-nonsense benefits of learning more languages. You put another tool in your toolbox and when the time comes you’re able to choose the best one. But I would go even one step further. I think it’s valuable to learn new programming languages even if — here it comes — you never take them out of the box. But why? Languages shape the way we think, each in their own peculiar way. That’s true for programming languages as well…

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Catherine Clifford cnbc.com

Jack Dorsey's 11 biohacks

From walking five miles from his home to the office, no food all weekend, to using saunas and ice baths in the evening… Dorsey only eats dinner. Sometime between 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. he has a meal of fish, chicken, or steak with a salad, spinach, asparagus or Brussels sprouts. He has mixed berries or some dark chocolate for dessert and also sometimes drinks red wine. “I’ll go from Friday ‘til Sunday. I won’t have dinner on Friday. I won’t have dinner or any meal on Saturday. And the first time I’ll eat will be Sunday evening. I’ve done that three times now where I do [an] extended fast where I’m just drinking water,” Dorsey says.

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Dhawal Shah freeCodeCamp

570 free online programming & computer science courses

Get your free learning on! Dhawal Shah, founder of Class Central , writes for freeCodeCamp: Seven years ago, universities like MIT and Stanford first opened up free online courses to the public. Today, more than 850 schools around the world have created thousands of free online courses, popularly known as Massive Open Online Courses or MOOCs. I’ve compiled this list of 550 such free online courses that you can start in March. For this, I leveraged Class Central’s database of over 11,000 online courses. I’ve also included each course’s average rating.

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Nikita Prokopov tonsky.me

How not to hire a software engineer

Nikita Prokopov writes on his personal blog about eight (8) common sense practices to use when hiring software engineers. I’m not an expert in hiring for big companies, but I have extensive experience for small ones and a bit of common sense. If you are in a business of hiring software engineers, big companies’ practices are not your friends. Common sense, fairness, tolerance, real interest, and open-mindedness are.

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Matt Dole artsy.github.io

So you want to be a software engineer

Are you or someone you know trying to move into the engineering department from a position that’s unrelated to software engineering at a company? …I wanted to pursue computer engineering. I’d been at Artsy for a bit less than two years at that point, first as a marketing intern working on SEO and then as a coordinator on the CRM (read: email) team. I’d consistently been working on small technical projects; first doing some work on a tool for SEO optimization for our Editorial team, then building emails with MJML, and a few other bits and bobs. But I didn’t think of it as a serious pursuit. It was Artsy’s Engineering team that convinced me that programming was something that I both wanted to and could do. Our engineers have always welcomed learners and been happy to answer questions and empower other teams to do technical work. I eventually realized that the parts of my work where I was coding were the parts I enjoyed the most, and that I would likely feel more fulfilled if I made programming my full-time occupation. (Gosh, that opening sounds like the first line of a pharmaceutical commercial. Sorry about that!)

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Rod Johnson changelog.com/posts

Evolving understanding of software delivery

Two new terms have recently emerged around software delivery: Software Defined Delivery and Progressive Delivery. Why? How do they relate to Continuous Delivery? Several forces today make delivery increasingly complex. Notably, proliferation of repositories, with hundreds of small projects replacing a handful of monoliths; desire for greater automation to realize the full potential of CD across multiple environments; the rise of feature flagging; and increased evidence (such as the Equifax debacle) of the need to bake security into the delivery process.

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