By Rept0n1x (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

5 Whys considered harmful

Ian Rogers wrote “Adverse events happen – a website breaks down, a project doesn’t get delivered on time – and a  proposed technique to find ‘the root cause’ is to ask the “5 Whys”. Attributed to Sakichi Toyoda in the 1930’s and adopted by Toyota and other formal techniques it’s basically the technique of listing a fault and then asking…”

Just Enough Design

Ian Rogers wrote “On the one hand it’s become a bit of a cliché to say that Waterfall doesn’t work (in fact ‘waterfall’ may never have existed), but we know that rigid projects don’t deliver—when the level of resources is the only contingency in a project then budget overrun and missed deadlines (or lowered quality) become almost inevitable.…”

A basic recipe for an Elixir SSL server

Patrick Tschorn wrote “In this post, we’ll first try out Erlang’s SSL application interactively and then put together a simple Elixir SSL server OTP application using the Supervisor and GenServer behaviours. Preparation First of all, we’ll create a self-signed certificate: mkdir foo cd foo openssl genrsa -out key.pem 1024 openssl req -new -key key.pem -out request.pem # (using…”

Panegyric: showing off what we’ve done on Github

Tom Parker wrote “Last month, I said we’d be talking more about open source work that we’re doing. This month, I’ve been building Panegyric, a WordPress plugin (which is what this site is written in). This plugin (which isn’t live on the site yet, but will be soon) lists all the Github pull requests we’ve recently done. However…”

Grant Hollingworth Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Choosing the right scaffold

Ceri Storey wrote “One thing I’ve come to realise as I’ve matured as a developer, is that it turns out I’m merely human. That is somewhat obvious, but you often hear people opine on various discussion boards that their particular tools (that other people feel are error prone) are actually just fine; as long as you remember to…”

© Nevit Dilmen [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

GraphQL is really TreeQL and that’s OK

Ian Rogers wrote “Let’s have a look at GraphQL. It came out of Facebook as a replacement for REST style requests for querying data. It was initially developed from 2012 and made open source in 2015. As Facebook’s main database is the “social graph” it was naturally named GraphQL but, as we’ll see, that’s not a completely accurate…”

Anne Worner Points in the Right Direction (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Making the dockers work

Ceri Storey wrote “Over the past few weeks I’ve been fo­cusing mostly on build and de­ploy­ment tooling around docker and Kuber­netes. One par­tic­ular down­side of the cur­rent sys­tem, is our ap­plic­a­tions have a fair number of ser­vice de­pend­en­cies. Up until now, we’ve taken to run­ning everything in­side docker using dock­er­-­com­pose, but this feels to me more like a way…”

Automagical port allocation for tests

Ceri Storey wrote “It’s quite common to want to test a net­work ser­vice from the out­side, as if it was being ac­cessed from a cli­ent. Quite of­ten, people will pick a “well-­known” port to use, eg: port 8080 or 8888 for a HTTP ser­vice. But that means that if you leave a stray service process lying around, you’ll need to hunt it…”

How intelligent is artificial intelligence?

Ayoub Bessasso wrote “Perhaps we should start with asking ourselves, has AI lived up to our expectations? From the general public’s point of view, the answer would be a resounding ‘no’. This is not new; frustrations with AI, and its apparent lack of ability to ‘just do what it’s supposed to do’, go as far back as its inception. The general perception of AI, and it what regard it is held by the general public, and researchers and developers alike, has always fluctuated. The answer to the question posed earlier would probably be quite different if we had a better understanding of what artificial intelligence is, and subsequently more realistic expectations of its capabilities.”

Tailgate: calendar data for books

Tom Parker wrote “I’ve had an idea for a while, but like many good ideas it has the problem “but where do we get the data from?”. The idea in a nutshell: Songkick, but for authors. Songkick, for those who don’t use it, is a service that lets you track bands and get told when they announce new…”