Category Archives: Keeping Up With It All

A Recap Of My Top 4 Tech Article Reads From Pocket

Sometimes I get overwhelmed with the number of articles that are in my pocket. I’ve got articles on livability, transit, cycling, auto issues, node.js, java, javascript, coding practices, software craftsmanship, feminism, heavy metal, death metal, black metal, jazz, progressive jazz, fusion jazz, NASA news, space discoveries, space research, Star Trek news, Star Wars news, information on sci-fi books and a slight spattering of politics and some other just interesting nonsensical stuff.

Here's a shot of Pocket on OS-X with an article about Seattle's Tech Advantage over many American cities being rooted in urban density. Which, I'd also argue, gives Seattle a unique advantage (And is a serious pain point for Microsoft's misstep into the suburbs decades ago)

Here’s a shot of Pocket on OS-X with an article about Seattle’s Tech Advantage over many American cities being rooted in urban density. Which, I’d also argue, gives Seattle a unique advantage (And is a serious pain point for Microsoft’s misstep into the suburbs decades ago)

I’ve taken the time to sort through this list of articles, pick out the top technical articles and get this down to a manageable level again. In the process I’ve created this list of solid articles that I’ve now officially read or found useful in some way and present it here for you dear reader. Enjoy, I hope they’re useful to you too.

Article Recon, The Top

  1. Zef Hemel wrote up a piece titled “Docker: Using Linux Containers to Support Portable Application Deployment“. In the article Zef delves into a number of things that are key to understanding Docker and the notion of portland application deployment. Other topics covered include isolation, security, reproducing deployments and resource constraints. The article closes with an example of  application containers and their respective deployment.
  2. 7 Javascript Basics Many Developers Aren’t Using (Properly) albeit slightly useful, I found this one more entertaining. It does give some small insight to the scope of oddities that JavaScript has and how one can easily miss the basics in JavaScript.
  3. Even though the article is from late last year, “The Premature Return to SQL” is a good read. As Alex Popescu   states it, “This pisses me off. A lot.” I too find myself pissed off a lot at the naive understanding and decisions making around SQL or alternate options. It’s almost as if some people decide to just flip a coin to make these determinations with zero insight into what they’re actually attempting to do.
  4. The article “No Deadlines for You! Software Dev Without Estimates, Specs or Other Lies” is spectacular in laying out how bullshit specs and estimates are. They’re almost entirely wasted effort on the developers part. In my own opinion it is often a failure (and yeah, I’ve been in management and leadership too, and removed these issues) of management to understand in the slightest what is actually being built or how it is being built. A lack of vision on behalf of the project is a sure fire sign that the original estimates are already completely off, the design and build out of whatever it is will likely be wrong and a host of other issues. Building software isn’t a bridge, it’s more like a painting, you decide as you go. There is no paint by numbers in software development.

Anyway, that’s my list from the 50+ tech articles that were in my Pocket app. Maybe on day I can get disciplined enough to keep the list limited to really good reads and I’ll start putting together a “My Top Pocket Reads this Month” blog entries? That sounds like it could be useful. Until then, happy coding.

I’ve Got a JavaScript & Node.js Webinar, Webstorm Tutorial Videos, Work & Flow With JavaScript Development and More…

Webinar: Node.js Development Workflow in WebStorm

This coming week I’m doing an intro to work and flow with Node.js JavaScript Programming that I’m working with JetBrains on. In the webinar I’ll be covering the following key topics in the webinar:

  • Open an existing project & getting WebStorm configured for running, testing and related working tasks.
  • A quick tour of other IDE features that help with daily work. Some in pretty huge ways.
  • Running WebStorm & debugging Node.js JavaScript applications.
  • Checking out Mocha, how it works and what it gives WebStorm the power to do. Then we’ll write a few tests & implement that code too.

All this will include Q & A throughout and at the end of the webinar. Be sure to register soon!

WebStorm Tutorials: Learning Shortcuts, Customizing Layout and Others

These WebStorm Tutorials have been put together by John Lindquist @johnlindquist for JetBrains. There solid, quick snippets of useful WebStorm usage. Two that I’ve found really useful I’ve included here:

John also has a lot of other great totally kick ass material out there. So check out his blog @ http://johnlindquist.com/ and follow his youtube channel too.

Coming Up in the Near Future, The Work & Flow of JavaScript Development

I have a new course I’m working on right now for Pluralsight, that will take these basic precepts and dive even deeper into the daily workflow of the JavaScript Developer. Whether it’s client side hacking or server side coding, I’ll be diving into a whole lot of JavaScript goodness. If you’d like me to ping you when the course is done, hit me up on Twitter @adron and just let me know. In the meantime get a Pluralsight subscription (free to sign up and at least give it a try) and check out these courses by myself and others.

Sardonic Observations for the Week Ending July 7th, 2012

This is the beginning of another series I’m going to be doing via the blog here. Just a quick week ending summary of the things I’ve taken note of via the media, cool hackathons, startups or other things of that nature. With that simple mission, here’s entry #1.

Meteor Lands $11.2 Million

Gigaom published an article titled “Meteor Rakes in $11.2 Million…” by Barb Darrow (@gigabarb) about Meteor. Meteor is a company that is attempting to redefine, change, alter or do something for or to Enterprise Development. This is good, because enterprise software development generally needs a lot of help. I’m however not sure how they’re intending to do this, or to get the legions of enterprise developers to get more familiar with JavaScript. It can’t be a bad idea since almost everybody on Earth is focusing in some way on JavaScript. So maybe they’ve found a great avenue into the Enterprise?

Who Invented the Internet

First off, let me answer this. The answer is ‘individuals’. Not the stupid Government or the silly Corporations or the … blagh blagh blagh. This argument has been unfolding between the Obama comment, the WSJ, and some other mess. But rest assured, it’s PEOPLE that have brought it to what it is. Not the crappy DOD mandate to “Defend” or even the corporatist “make profit” motive. It’s almost like asking, “who invented society”. Well, people did. Not a Government, those are nothing without people, not a corporation, because those need people too. But trying to scream about who deserves credit is pretty inane. My response at this point is, the individuals, and just shutup already. We have it, make life better now, we’re wasting time arguing about who invented it.  Cheers!  🙂

If you’re curious as to the argument, here’s all the fool’s arguing: Gregory Ferenstein & Vint Cerf Techcruch, Gordon Crovitz at WSJ, and others…  google it, you’ll find the explosion.

AppFog Releases Pricing and a Desire to “Do What Gmail Did…”

Alex Williams wrote up a piece “AppFog Wants to Do For Developer Platforms what Gmail Did for Email” on the recent release of AppFog’s new pricing and related information around their AppFog PaaS. This is great news, as AppFog offers a pretty freaking sweet service for small and mid-size sites. Things may get sketchy as you grow larger, but getting big sites on the service will push further resiliency. AppFog already supports Cloud Foundry based services and will soon support Azure as a back end. Pretty remarkable if you ask me, I’m shocked and surprised they’re making this work. Over time we’ll see how things pan out.

That’s it for now, until next time. Keeping my eyes open to the latest cool tech bits.

Apress and O’reilly

So I had a miniature epiphany today while coding away on a multi-tier application I’m building for interactions with one of my other blogs and with a database driven website application.

That epiphany is that I have two books, the have basically outlined the difference between a $70,000 developer and a $105,000 developer or architect.

The first book is Pro ASP.NET 2.0 in C# 2005 from Apress.  If a developer knows all the ins and outs of each piece of technology in this book they are easily worth 65-75k.  Probably a little bit more depending on their location, but definately NOT less.

The second book is Head First Design Patterns from O’Reilly Press.  This book is not for the beginning developer really as the design patterns, any design patterns, aren’t really of any use until after one understand object oriented programming, basic project management, and various other topics at different levels of software development.  A developer that knows at least 1/2 of what this book offers up is easily worth $105,000 or more depending on position as developer or architect.  A developer with this knowledge would probably top out at about $90-95,000 with this knowledge, but tag Senior Developer, Architect, or Senior Architect and that range is easily somewhere in the $100-125,000 yearly range.

So to those budding developers, if you want a gauge of where you are, hit up these two books and you’ll have a good idea of where you stand.  If you’re under that bracket and you live somewhere out on the left coast (LA, San Fran, Portland, or Seattle) you REALLY better renegotiate or find a new job.  You’re bringing the rate down for the rest of us.  Even India has brought it’s rate up that the flow of offshoring has slowed to a trickle as of late.

As for developers out in the midwest or southern US, I’d estimate these ranges accordingly with cost of living, usually about 15-30% less than what is above… but then of course you guys in those areas can buy 3,000 square foot houses on 2 acres of land for the price of a 700 square foot condo out on the left.  😦

anyway… enough of my rambling off topic discussions.