Why Do Standup

Share work before it happens – prevent overlap, raise gotchas. Foster communication and collaboration – offer help rather than waiting for someone to ask. Start the day with intention. Turns out, status updates are not the most useful aspect of standup.

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Creating a Randomized Emoji String in Python

You might have noticed this part of the 2016 Emoji Report – part of the graphic features an emoji for each of our subscribers. It’s a randomized ordering of all the different skin tones of the 👩‍💻 and 👨‍💻 emoji, repeated [number of subscribers] / 12. Our subscriber count wasn’t exactly divisible by 12, so I […]

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We Hire The Best

The tech industry prides itself on its rationality, and yet is filled with trite slogans that are demonstrably untrue… and further, harmful. Originally published in Model View Culture, November 2014. “We hire the best.” It’s a slogan we can rally around in company meetings, a tagline to put on the jobs page… a shoring up […]

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All the Leaves are Brown and the Sky is Gray

It’s a weird thing to reflect on my career and realize that very little of the code I wrote is still in production – because very few of the things I worked on are still in production. Most of the products I have worked on have failed. We build with bits not bricks. Architects and […]

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Android: Testing an Intent Service

Note: The ServiceTestRule class does not support testing of IntentService objects. If you need to test a IntentService object, you should encapsulate the logic in a separate class and create a corresponding unit test instead.

There’s a handy thing in Espresso called the ServiceTestRule, which is for testing Services. Yay. I thought it was just what I needed until I read this bit of the documentation… OK, first up – refactoring my IntentService. This class already did very little, poking something else depending on the kind of Intent it received, and […]

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Creative Coding Podcast

creative coding podcast

I was on another podcast! This time, creative coding with @seb_ly [listen]. We talked about managing coders, color theory, side projects, lasers, being homeless, interviewing (and applied humaning). It was really fun (but cold!) to record, and I hope you enjoy it.

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4 Situations Where Managers Write Code

P vs NP

The two hardest things about becoming a manager have been: 1) the emotional exhaustion, and 2) letting go of the part of my identity that was tied up in writing code. I accepted that writing code wasn’t the best thing I could do reasonably quickly, but it took longer to finally stop saying I was […]

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I Wrote a Book Chapter and Finally, You Can Read It

My 2014 side project was a technical book chapter on image processing for the Architecture of Open Source 500 Lines or Less Project. It was my bête noire, that consumed various evenings and weekends either by actual work, or by guilt. 2015 was mainly guilt, and some editing. Recently the final copy edits came back, […]

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Thankless Emotional Labour as Management Training

My first month as a manager I barely had time to think about how I didn’t really know what I was doing, because there was so much that clearly needed to be done. So I accepted that stuff was not writing code, and got on with it. Month two opened, and I kept getting on […]

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