Containerization baby

I work at a pretty cool place. One of the things I like about it is the autonomy and freedom we tend to have around solution picking. The CTO is laid back around those things; as long as the solutions are valuable for the business then we’re good.

One of the things that we’re starting to do is containerize all the things. Much of the infrastructure is bullet-proof but maybe it’s not bomb-proof. Converting the apps to containers is a sometimes painless, sometimes painful process that will pay off in spades.

Our goal is to maintain the proper safety controls but increase the speed. I personally don’t believe that speed and safety are mutually exclusive. Containers are our way of getting to this place.

Will post more about how these efforts go monthly.

Soft Launching timberbot.xyz

I made a silly slack thing at https://timberbot.xyz Soft launching today to see what inbound traffic is like on July 4. This is probably a dumb day to launch it cause like – who’s at work and using slack??

Anyway – check it out.

 

Software Developers and Emotional Intelligence, a Podcast!

I had the pleasure of being a part of the EMAWW podcast this week!

We discussed how Software Developers and Emotional Intelligence can go hand in hand. I also talked about my own emotional journey from brash dumb-dumb to wise and stupid dumb-dumb.

If you’re a software developer and looking to get some perspective on your own emotional journey, check it out!

Emotional Intelligence and Software Developers at Work

 

Podcast Player – Free Feature Idea

You want to take money from me? Here’s the idea (I’m looking at you Downcast and Overcast!).

Feature:
During a podcast, passively listen for the words Audiobook or Audible and then for 10-20 words around that trigger term.

Search combinations of those words against an Audible search API to see if there is a book.

If you find a hit, note the time stamp and name of the podcast and send that back to the Audible API so that it knows there is a mention of this book at this podcast at this time.

The podcast app can send now present me with a link to the book so that I can grab it from Audible.
I’m so screwed if this feature gets implemented.

New things in the works

I’m writing a book about improv comedy.  But it will be a different book about improv comedy than all the other books about improv comedy.

More soon.

 

Sharing it when you’ve answered your own question

Recently a developer was asking a question in the group chat room wondering if anyone changed a component. I coached the dev privately to review the code change log in SVN.  I also encouraged them to post back to the slack room once they have the answer.

They actually did review the log and found that the code change in question was a bug fix that actually busted a few other things.  However, they did not follow that information up with the team in anyway.

It’s always courteous to follow up with the team if you’ve answered your own question.  Who knows – you might save the team a ton of heartache down the road!

Renaming Exported Mac Photos directories to be in date order

Recently I had to work out a script that would rename the directory names that Photos exported to something that was sortable by date.

Something like

2013 Photo Export/Westborough, MA - W Park Dr, January 30, 2013

would go to

2013 Photo Export/20130130, Westborough, MA - W Park Dr

That way the directory could sort on 20130130!

Just update the WORKING_DIR to the directory that contains the exported photos and use this.


from dateutil.parser import parse
import datetime, os, shutil
WORKING_DIR = ''

def rename_dir_to_name(direc):
tokens = direc.split(‘ ‘)

if len(tokens) == 3:
#name should be it
dirtokens = [ ]
datetokens = [x.replace(“,”, “”) for x in tokens]
else:
dirtokens = tokens[:-3]
dirtokens[-1] = dirtokens[-1].replace(“,”, “”)
datetokens = [x.replace(“,”, “”) for x in tokens[-3:]]

if len(dirtokens) > 0:
dir_str = ” “.join(dirtokens)
else:
dir_str = “”

date_str = ” “.join(datetokens)

d = parse(date_str)

dir_name = datetime.datetime.strftime(d, “%Y%m%d”)

if len(tokens) > 3:
dir_name = dir_name + “, ” + dir_str

return dir_name

for file_name in os.listdir(WORKING_DIR):
if os.path.isdir(WORKING_DIR + ‘/’ + file_name):
print “Moving ” + WORKING_DIR + ‘/’ + file_name + ” to ” + WORKING_DIR + ‘/’ + rename_dir_to_name(file_name)
shutil.move(WORKING_DIR + ‘/’ + file_name, WORKING_DIR + ‘/’ + rename_dir_to_name(file_name))

Whiteboarding Techniques? Who knew!

I’m in the middle of some interview preparation.  It’s been nice as it really does help you become more aware of yourself as a professional.  One area that I struggle with, without knowing that I struggle, has been in whiteboarding.

Since I do most of my work remotely there is usually not a huge demand to whiteboard with folks on the team.  I rely more on the written word than on visual identifiers which has a lot of issues.

The interview processes however, usually does require a lot of whiteboarding.  Showing up to one of these interviews with rudimentary whiteboarding skills is a negative signal on you.

Thankfully, folks over at smallbusiness.com did a 5 part series on how to whiteboard. All of the techniques are easy enough.  It looks helpful for everyone, even if they are ones who whiteboard all day everyday!

A simple tip:  Use lowercase block lettering while whiteboarding; it’s easier for people to read and lets you use uppercase block lettering to indicate impact/emotion.

 

Get a sense of control over your work with a Work Smash!

I like doing a Work Smash!  Say you have a list of to do items to get through.   They can be like.. a bunch of small tasks.    I use the Seconds app on my iPhone to create a “10 Minute Work Smash” timer that consists of 5 two minute exercises.

I start that timer and start working on one of the items on my todo list.  I let the 2 minute beep (short) let me know when it’s time to hurry up and finish and move to the next task.

What that does it give me a bit of fire on finishing the item.   Sometimes it might take 10 minutes to finish one item but that’s OK.  The point isn’t to get 5 tasks done, it’s really just to light a fire under you!