I have a very simple rule that serves me well: Don’t think too much about your life after dinnertime.
Over the past 10 years or so, we’ve slowly but very surely transitioned to a state where frameworks are the norm, and I think it’s a problem.
The whole article is great, and really charmingly written, with some golden nuggets embedded within, like:
- You’ll find that spending more time getting HTML right reveals or even anticipates and evades accessibility issues. It’s just easier to write accessible code if it’s got semantic foundations.
- In my experience, you will almost always spend more time overriding frameworks or compromising your design to fit the opinions of a framework.
- Always style from the absolute smallest screen your content will be rendered on first, and use
@media (min-width)queries to break to layouts that allow for more real estate as it becomes available.
- Always progressively enhance your apps, especially when you’re fucking with something as browser-critical as page routing.
Excellent advice from Stuart.
Watch—and more importantly, listen—to this five minute video to get the full effect.
Pessimism always sounds smarter than optimism because optimism sounds like a sales pitch while pessimism sounds like someone trying to help you.
I usually hate these kinds of lists of bumper-sticker aphorisms but some of these have me pondering my own work, like this one:
People learn when they’re surprised. Not when they read the right answer, or are told they’re doing it wrong, but when they experience a gap between expectations and reality.
There are two types of information: stuff you’ll still care about in the future, and stuff that matters less and less over time. Long-term vs. expiring knowledge.
If only all thinkpieces on complexity in software development were written in such an entertaining style! (Although, admittedly, that would get very old very fast.)
A layman’s guide to thinking like the self-aware smol brained
Write about what you learn. It pushes you to understand topics better. Sometimes the gaps in your knowledge only become clear when you try explaining things to others. It’s OK if no one reads what you write. You get a lot out of just doing it for you.
Lots of good advice from Addy:
Saying no is better than overcommitting.
An opinionated blog about writing. I’ve subscribed in my feed reader.
I’m not usually that keen on lists of pithy aphorisms but some of these really resonated…
- If you stop to listen to a musician or street performer for more than a minute, you owe them a dollar.
- Efficiency is highly overrated; Goofing off is highly underrated. Regularly scheduled sabbaths, sabbaticals, vacations, breaks, aimless walks and time off are essential for top performance of any kind. The best work ethic requires a good rest ethic.
- The biggest lie we tell ourselves is “I dont need to write this down because I will remember it.”
- Buy used books. They have the same words as the new ones. Also libraries.
- You can be whatever you want, so be the person who ends meetings early.
- It’s thrilling to be extremely polite to rude strangers.
Blogging isn’t dead. In fact, the opposite is true. We’re about to enter a golden age of personal blogs.
Make it easy for people to find you. Buy a domain name and use it to create your own website, even if it’s very simple at first. Your website is your resume, your business card, your store, your directory, and your personal magazine. It’s the one place online that you completely own and control – your Online Home.
Good advice. Also:
Don’t write on Medium.
Look, I get it. Writing on Medium is an easy way to pick up readers and increases your chances of going viral. But the costs exceed the benefits. Medium is terrible for SEO. You don’t own your content and the platform makes it difficult to turn one-time readers into loyal ones.
The more you can use platforms you own, the better. Rather than writing on Medium, do the work to build a personal blog. That way, you can have a central place to point people to.
A great tool is not a universal tool it’s a tool well suited to a specific problem.
The more universal a solution someone claims to have to whatever software engineering problem exists, and the more confident they are that it is a fully generalized solution, the more you should question them.
Good advice for writing:
- Think about what your readers might already know
- Write shorter sentences, with simpler words
- Constantly think about audiences
- Communicate with purpose
- Clear communication helps teams solve problems
Dave shares some of his personal horror stories from public speaking, but also some of his practical tips for avoiding those kinds of situations.
Episode 226 – Create Your Own Website Write about What You Discover and Be Dependable with Jeremy Keith – IT Career Energizer
This was a really fun podcast chat—nice and snappy at just 20 minutes.
- Plan your scripts out on paper.
- Stop obsessing over tools.
- Focus on solving problems.
- Maintain a library of snippets that you can reuse.
Lots and lots of programming advice. I can’t attest to the veracity and efficacy of all of it, but this really rang true:
If you have no idea how to start, describe the flow of the application in high level, pure English/your language first. Then fill the spaces between comments with the code.
Blogging about your stupid solution is still better than being quiet.
You may feel “I’m not start enough to talk about this” or “This must be so stupid I shouldn’t talk about it”.
Create a blog. Post about your stupid solutions.
When you greet a stranger, look at his shoes.
Keep your money in your shoes.
Put your trouble behind.
When you greet a stranger, look at her hands.
Keep your money in your hands.
Put your travel behind.
It’s a short list, but this brief guide for coaches at Codebar is packed with excellent advice for anybody getting into teaching or training:
- Do not take over the keyboard! This can be off-putting and scary.
- Encourage the students to type and not copy paste.
- Assume that anyone you’re teaching has no knowledge but infinite intelligence.