This week #1

A random collection of technical, management and other thoughts from this week.


I’ve been reflecting a little on how much time I’ve spent on operations work in previous roles - wrangling servers, configuring everything from DNS to job queues.

I think in many projects I’ve worked on the companies involved would have got much better value from managed / off the shelf solutions. In the smaller ones it might be that they could have just used a managed Drupal or Wordpress host. In others they needed a full continuous development pipeline but might have been able to get 90% of that from Heroku.

It’s easy to look at Heroku (and similar providers) on paper and label it ‘too expensive’, but when I think of the hundreds of hours spent setting up a deployment pipeline and automating server configurations it would probably have balanced out. The worst factor in roll-your-own solutions is that they potentially slow down the development, so the cost compounds over time.

It does seem like there might be a gap between a Heroku-style solution which is expensive but basically does everything for you, and a DIY deployment pipeline shipping to EC2 or a Kube cluster. As a company grows, and Heroku gets expensive but the dev team is still < 20 people, it’s not clear to me where those teams should land.


Your work is not your worth. Trying to square what I know (I am not my work) with how I feel.

This twitter thread from Ryan Hoover. Getting paid as an remote contractor outside the US feels messier than necessary, and having a bunch of remote employees in many countries seems nearly impossible for small start ups right now.

Calculating the mean of a list of numbers. Turns out this is much harder than you’d think.

Born for it. A write up of how the image of a socially-awkward, white, male programmer came about, including some good take-aways about how the women and people of colour are disadvantaged by idea of intellectual ability as a fixed gift vs something you can improve over time.


A lot of Keeno and other dnb. I’ll try to pay more attention for next week!