1. Challenge yourself with a Coding Challenge

    Reading time: 2 minutes
    Posted

    As a mentor via CodingCoach.io I'm currently working my way through the 21 Days of Code coding challenge by Lighthouse Labs with my mentees. I thought to share our findings and resolutions here, as well as offer some perspective on these events.

    Firstly, I kind of like this iteration (we've previously did a similar coding challenge side by side). We're following a storyline involving the Mayor of Codeville and face different kinds of challenges. It's nice to have some context and not simply solving problems. I think this is a really engaging way of keeping interest and motivation.

  2. Optimised team work

    Reading time: 4 minutes
    Posted

    With the right processes and tooling, it becomes a lot easier to share code between developers. With the right amount of documentation in the right place, you also flatten the learning curve for onboarding developers to get up to speed. This reduces the risk that responsibility lies with a single developer (read: a single point of failure) and encourages developers to share, contribute, review and refactor code. Just make sure you have ample coverage so that you confidently can refactor, with minimal impact on existing features.

    Any software project tends to grow in complexity over time. Without a good development strategy, sooner of later the quality of projects can erode.

  3. Educate yourself in a fast paced environment

    Reading time: 4 minutes
    Posted

    Software development has such a high velocity compared to other industries because ideas and concepts can be shared so efficiently. I think the best description is the expression: “Standing on the shoulders of giants”: Make smart use of the work of your predecessors and colleagues. Use that also when acquiring knowledge: you don't have to do everything yourself. The development community is very large and helpful and a lot of information is easily accessible.

    If anything was indicative of the frontend community in 2016, it was the term JavaScript Fatigue. What does it mean? The number of JavaScript frameworks has exploded over the past period. Indeed, it is an overwhelming number of new methods, tools and techniques available to us as developers. What can you do to keep your head above water or even take advantage of these rapid developments?

  4. The faceless interfaces

    Reading time: 3 minutes
    Posted

    Siri, Cortana, Google Home, SlackBot, the Star Trek computer and in lesser extent K.I.T.T. These are all interfaces without an actual ‘face’. The Internet of Things connecting personal assistants such as Echo, Jibo or Zenbo with your home. I tend to call them assistants and not bots. I believe there is a nuance, where bots are more suited to perform the same repetitive task over and over again and assistants are more orientated towards user interaction with changing context and tasks.

    Everything is connected: machine to machine, human to machine and vice versa.