Tool Overkill: The Joys of Simple Development

I’ve read countless posts bemoaning how complicated front-end development has become. I would always read those and think, yes I agree, but at the same time the front-end is incredibly complex. We have to support lots of different screen sizes and browsers, and I figured the complexity in the tooling was a result of the complexity of the problem.

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My Advice for Coding Bootcamp Graduates

I want to start off this article being very clear: I am 100% pro coding bootcamp. I think they are fantastic ideas, and I think they make more sense than getting a computer science degree later in your career. You’d have to pay a truckload and spend 4 years at a traditional university. The bootcamp is faster […]

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Fighting First Impressions

A buddy of mine, we’ll call him Jim, took a job at software company X a year ago. What followed was unpleasant. He was given a straightforward assignment in the beginning: design and code a new micro service to deal with analytics reporting for their business analysts. The analysts were using multiple Excel spreadsheets at […]

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Can you Avoid the Software Salary Ceiling by Specializing?

This is a follow up to a post I wrote a couple of years ago: How to Avoid the Software Salary Ceiling.

For better or worse, I didn’t follow my own advice. I unexpectedly got promoted into management, and that’s what I’ve been doing since.

My pay increased by around 30% which was better than any single raise I ever got as an individual contributor. I wrote about management here.

So do I still believe you can avoid the software salary ceiling by specializing?

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Big Data with Golang Instead of MapReduce

This is one of those software engineering ideas that I would normally warn you about. So many people use MapReduce that it seems foolhardy to use something else.

But in this case, it turned out well. The project was a success, and we were able to accomplish our goals more quickly and with fewer resources than it would have taken with a MapReduce cluster.


I work on 3d Warehouse for Trimble SketchUp (formerly Google).

One of our focuses over the last year has been analytics – both for our customers and for our own internal use. Most business intelligence providers are expensive – anywhere from 100-500K per year. Even with that price point, it’s still cheaper than engineering time, so that was originally the path we took.

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