Technical Debt: we all have it. Yet, this phenomenon remains poorly understood by product managers. Unlike financial debt, the costs are often hidden and difficult to measure. But the most dangerous aspect is that "Technical Debt items are contagious, causing other parts of the system to be contaminated with the same problem, which may lead to nonlinear growth of interest."  Here's a case study of one such event; unmanaged tech debt caused interest costs to spiral catastrophically out of…
November 14, 2017
With the rise of Big Data™ and IoT we saw a large wave of NoSQL™ proponents. Everyone began to jump on the bandwagon and hype trains to use these technologies to service their persistence layers. It became a mantra and it seemed like the end of nigh for relational (SQL) databases. Some companies were steadfast in only using NoSQL™ stores, claiming this was all that was needed for their data and would not hear another word of ever using a traditional "SQL" database. Unsurprisingly, SQL is not…
November 13, 2017
Django 2.0 is in beta now. It's expected to be released in December 2017. The question remains, is the rest of the world going to be ready? Let's take a look at the history of Django versions and see why this might not be as tough of an upgrade as you might expect.
November 6, 2017
...On Serverless Infrastructure The what
November 3, 2017
"Grove Park Traincare Depot and sidings" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by train_photos Engineers at Metal Toad participate in a variety of continuing education such as the Hackathon, dedicated time for professional development, and various interest groups for a variety of topics like machine learning and iOS/Android development. Haskell I recently joined the interest group on functional programming in Haskell. We start with an introduction to Algebraic Data Types.
November 2, 2017
In April of 2017 I put a widget on my phone that reminds me that I’m going to die. This is how it improved my life. A long time ago I learned about the concept of Momento Mori. It’s a simple phrase that is held up by the trussing of history and hardened by philosophy. It means: “Remember that you must die."
October 31, 2017
The most important measure of progress in building blogging expertise is not word count, it’s how many timers you hit the publish button. Every post is either a rock or a gem dropped into the water; the rocks will sink and be forgotten but the gems will be scooped up and shared. Drop enough rocks in the water and you are more likely to create a gem. So push the publish button already.
October 31, 2017
Connecting to a Microsoft SQL Server database isn't too hard, most of the time. But, what if the database is in your office, and you want to access it remotely, but you don't have a VPN? There is another way to connect, using PuTTY and port forwarding. All you need is a server in the office which accepts SSH connections and can connect to the SQL Server. This will serve as a gateway or makeshift proxy server. With the proper port forwarding setup, you can connect to your database from anywhere.
October 28, 2017
As a sequel to the article I wrote last month about the process and technology improvements I helped design/build firm Design Platform make earlier this year, I wanted to highlight another change that they implemented that transformed their workflow efficiency: Two week sprints.
October 24, 2017
Leveraging Structs and Generics in the Networking Layer with Swift 4 (An update to objc.io Swift Talk)
Swift Talk #1 and #8 introduces an approach (hereinafter alternative approach) to using structs and generics to build a networking layer in Foundation. The original code was written in Swift 2.2. Here, I will make an update for Swift 4, incorporating the use of newly available JSON parsing features. I will also show how it could be extended to fetch images.
October 23, 2017