• 4 min read
    Email
    For me, instant messaging is overwhelming. Keeping up with Slack or Discord messages often feels like drinking from a fire hose of information. And some features of these apps bring out the worst in people. I wish these apps were more like email, because email got a lot of things right. My...
  • 5 min read
    Tech debt for non-techies
    Tech dept doesn’t occur by accident. You go into it intentionally - it is a loan like any other, but instead of loaning money you loan time. When you want to “save time” by implementing a hack (something that goes against the grain of the software’s architecture) you are making an intentional...
  • 5 min read
    Fight perfection
    Seeking perfection is a fool’s errand. Perfection is a fading spark that can only be achieved for oneself - never when working with others - and as soon as it’s gone the search for the new perfect begins. By constantly searching for perfection you end up living in the fantastic future - in the...
  • 3 min read
    What is a professional tool anyway?
    One weekend in 2017 I was using my Macbook Pro when all of a sudden the screen turned black and it started spewing white smoke like it had just elected the new Pope. Luckily, it didn’t catch fire. Later that day I opened up the laptop to see what happened. To my surprise it wasn’t the battery,...
  • 6 min read
    A week in Helsinki
    Last Wednesday my girlfriend and I woke up at 4 AM and headed to the Zagreb Airport to catch a flight to Helsinki. I haven’t been in Helsinki since Junction 2016, but with EuRuKo 2022 (the European Ruby Konference - this is not a typo) being there this was the prefect opportunity to visit...
  • 8 min read
    How an index made rendering slow
    I noticed that a view I was working on was rendering much slower than I would expect it to. The view showed a list of events, together with the person that generated the event and the device that the event belongs to. It took nearly half a second to render 25 events, while other similar pages...
  • 6 min read
    140 million rows later
    At work, as part of a project I’m working on, I wanted to add a new reference to a table. ”Simple enough” - I thought. Spoiler alert, it wasn’t. Adding a reference from one table to another is straight forward in Rails. You create a migration using rails generate and then write in it something...
  • 4 min read
    “Having a monolith is a single point of failure”
    I recently took part in a discussion that brought to light the most unusual argument against having a monolith that I have ever heard - that a monolith is a single point of failure. I want to make clear that I consider monoliths and microservices neither good nor bad, or universally better or...
  • 3 min read
    The humble ActiveModel
    ActiveModel is one of my most used tools in Rails applications. I use it in service objects, form objects and objects that represent external entities. Why? Because it provides a nice interface for validating inputs and results, it can have callbacks for pre and post-processing data, and it...
  • 4 min read
    Take a break
    At my first job I used to take a break every time I got stuck on a problem until one day my boss caught me looking out of the window. He didn’t say anything the first time he saw me, but when he saw me in the same position some 15 min later he yelled “At least sit by your desk and have your...
  • 6 min read
    Keep it boring, don’t surprise me
    “I’ve spent a lot of my life worried that people will think I don’t know enough. Sometimes, that worry has made me use big words when I didn’t need to.  –Randall Munroe in the foreword to the Thing Explainer” I used to be a stickler for organizing code by what it was. Models, decorators, form...
  • 4 min read
    Scrum is for time estimates, not projects
    From my experience Scrum is the prevalent project management framework in software development. Most of the teams I was part of used it to develop, deliver and maintain their projects. Despite its prevalence I always felt like Scrum was bogs me down - that it was more harmful than useful. I knew...
  • 8 min read
    Misguided Mark misrepresents Micro-services: A story about paradigms
    Tom was brewing tea in preparation for a 5 o'clock meeting he knew little about. The agenda was so vague it might as well have been left out - it read “Mark introduces a new system for controlling 3rd party IoT water sprinklers”. That was standard practice for CorpCorp - the company Tom worked...
  • 6 min read
    How I stumbled upon Strada while forwarding an email
    I wanted to forward an email one evening, so I opened up the Hey app on my phone, found the email, tapped on the “More” button, and just before I hit “Forward” I noticed a “Share or print…” button at the bottom of the screen. I hit “Share” and to my surprise was greeted by a share sheet. It...
  • 4 min read
    The Judo way
    As a kid I practiced Judo which is a martial art as well as a philosophy. And my Judo teacher gave us a philosophical story which I came to understand only recently and which helped me achieve more than I though was possible. So I wanted to share it. The story was about a small tree in a strong...
  • 4 min read
    New coat of paint
    Recently I got the urge to write again so I gave this blog a new coat of paint, and decided to give a brief history, the reason I stopped writing and an explanation as to why I moved away from Medium. I started this blog back in 2016 as a way to share and discuss ideas and solutions to problem's...
  • 6 min read
    GraphQL file upload with Shrine
    At the moment of writing there is no officially supported way to do file upload through GraphQL. Here is a roundup of all available methods to do file upload through it, their pros and cons. This post grew out of a request on the Shrine issue tracker — you can find the original issue here. It's...
  • 5 min read
    Function composition >> Ruby
    Last week Proc#<< and Proc#>> got merged into Ruby 2.6. This opens the door for function composition. Here’s my opinion as to why this is a great leap forward for Ruby and what needs to improve. Composition vs. inheritanceRuby is an object-oriented language (among others), meaning it has the...
  • 7 min read
    Best image uploader for Rails — Revisited
    Three years ago I wrote about how to choose the right uploader gem for your project. Since the time the original article has been published, all mentioned libraries got updated, one got deprecated, and two new libraries have appeared. I feel it's time to revisit this topic. Why do we use uploader...
  • 11 min read
    Licensing software
    Recently I've started working on a small Ruby library. While I was sketching the architecture of it to I was listening to some lectures from Richard M. Stallman which got me thinking about how I should license my library. Note: I'm by no means a legal expert. Everything written here is what I've...
  • 7 min read
    Do you really need WebSockets?
    Over the years I've had this conversation a couple of times. This post will explain why we use WebSockets, how they can be used, what alternatives exist and when to use them. Every time I worked on a project where we had to implement any kind of a "real-time" component, usually a chat or an...
  • 13 min read
    RabbitMQ is more than a Sidekiq replacement
    I've had gripes with Sidekiq because of which I switched to RabbitMQ. Here are my thoughts and experiences after a year of using it in production. I got inspired to write this post by the overwhelming response I received for my talk at the local Ruby user group. Why do we need Sidekiq or...
  • 8 min read
    Supercharging services architectures with RabbitMQ
    When I first started using RabbitMQ I didn't understand its usefulness beyond a job queue, but it's helped me to grow and manage services architectures without headaches. Services ArchitectureIn web development, a services architecture describes a single application that consists of multiple,...
  • 6 min read
    Tips to improve your tests
    Peoples' test suites often get out of hand. Having thousands of tests that run for hours on some CI should be a thing of the past. There doesn't exist code that's too hard to test or code that can't fail. You shouldn't waste your time waiting for your test suite, or chasing some bug you are...
  • 10 min read
    Hacking privacy into Facebook’s Messenger in 24 hours
    Hackathons are great. When a friend of mine asked me if I wanted to go with him to Copenhacks I had no idea that we would spend 24 hours reverse engineering Facebook's Messenger, let alone win first place. The journey to CopenhagenWe usually go to a lot of hackathons and coding competitions, but...