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TIMO ZIMMERMANN

balancing software engineering & infosec

Reading list 2021-11-14

posted on Nov. 14, 2021, 7:28 p.m. in news

Optimize local dev environments for better onboarding - I cannot stress enough how frustrating it is to people when getting a local development environment up and running takes a week or more of their time. "Oh you just need to setup your hosts file to point to resources on AWS and,..." - just no. It does not matter if Docker, VMs, scripts or whatever you prefer. Make it easy and fast to setup an environment. Especially when onboarding junior engineers or engineers new to the stack. Everyone else will most likely have a strongly held opinion how all of this should work anyway and be able to make it work the way they want.

How do you build a bare minimum feature? - When starting a new project or working on features it is always a good idea to clarify requirements and expectations, not only when you try to figure out what the bare minimum feature is. Even if scope does not change, often enough are some unknown requirements and assumptions uncovered by asking those questions.

Code quality: a concern for businesses, bottom lines, and empathetic programmers - A really good explanation why code quality matters and how to communicate its value. Optimising local dev environments for onboarding is one thing, but if you code is nearly impossible to follow, extend or debug you will not see any benefits from having people get an environment up and running quickly.

"This project will only take 2 hours" - Estimating how long something takes is an art. Mostly because it is abstract, unique to the eye of the beholder and more often than not wrong. I love the example as it sounds like a simple thing to do until you think about all the small details related to the feature you are setting out to build.

How To Make A CPU - A Simple Picture Based Explanation - Want to build your own CPU? Easy enough! Get a rock and smash it. While I think no one takes this statement serious, the article shows the essentail steps going into making CPU. A short, easy to follow article I found quiet entertaining.