Business Archives

How to Get Things Done When You Have no Time

This last month or so has been a hell of a busy time for me.  Working long hours, with a 1 year old at home who needs attention while trying to squeeze in social events, exercise, sleep, reading and personal projects is a lot to juggle. How have I managed to rock a streak of 53 consecutive days with..

The Tragedy of Magic Code

There are many software platforms that offer ‘magic’ like ways to accomplish things. Ruby on Rails has a lot magic going on – pass in a string argument and it gets automatically pluralized, converted from snake case to elephant case, inferred as a class name in the global namespace, instantiated and connected to set of URL routes.  Magic code..

Exploratory Programming

One of the unexpected benefits of free coding daily is the chance to explore solutions to problems you have to work on that day. When you write code freely without considering the use of it there is less pressure to keep a poor implementation. It’s practice that is a way to boost your understanding of the problem before writing it for real. There are..

Study Open Source Applications

I came across an excellent resource last week that more people should know about. The Architecture for Open Source Applications is a series of books that examines how some of the best software ever written is designed. Programmers rarely get the chance to study the work of others in detail.  You learn the fundamentals in school but when it comes..

How to Provide a Great Estimate

Estimating the cost of developing software is difficult.  Very difficult. That’s because with each new project there are always unknowns, mis-interpretations and assumptions that are not communicated.  If the client knew exactly what they wanted then it would just be a matter of typing it up.  They hire you because they don’t know how to do it themselves. Agile development realizes..

How to Create a Billion $ Company in 8 Months

If you want to get a sense of just how crazy the world of technology is for businesses that want to make money you need look no further than Slack. For those of you unfamiliar with Slack.  They launched a product in February 2014 which is a private communication tool for business inspired by IRC. It has quickly grown to..

Move Fast, Break Things and Collect Data

With the help of unit tests, BDD, Coverage reports, Continuous Integration, and Source code control it has become easier than ever to build code that is robust against regressions while letting you branch and play with ideas quickly and without risk.  However there are times when the scale of code use in production requires a different approach to testing...

Finding Opportunities to Open Source

There are so many good reasons to open source code. Gain contributions from the wider community Contribute back for all the awesome you’ve gotten from Open Source To build the status of yourself or your company Attract the best programmers Get public feedback on the quality of your software More people will use your software open source reusable components actually..

Building Things Quickly

Developer productivity is a  perpetual area of improvement. Finding better tools, new abstractions, learning shortcut keys and using modern project planning is a way to continually get better at your job.  The goal of doing all that is to produce better software faster. Choosing the right tool for the job plays a big part. Lets say you wanted to..

Building Social Services

Technology is getting more and more personal. As it does such it becomes easier to make things social in a real way. Bringing a social experience to your application is more than just slapping a like button somewhere. Social is about making people aware that when they use your application they are entering a social situation. A party is..