open investments

I recently read “Why I wouldn’t invest in open-source companies, even though I ran one” by Wolfram Hempel and started to write a very long comment, but decided I’d just publish my own counterpoint instead.

build off

I’m lately watching The Great British Bake Off. When I thought about why you couldn’t do a similar show about programming, I realized the hurdles to televising it are the same hurdles teams face anyway.

one year

Some months ago, we decided I would be the one to take Kyle’s computer and put it to use. Today felt like the day I could remove the PC without doing further damage to my soul.

context puzzles

What is software development really if not a sprawling, borderless puzzle for which the lid with the big picture on it is long gone? To me, it seems obvious that the biggest hurdle to team-based software development is how difficult it is to communicate well.

binary consensus

Most substantive community work is about consensus seeking, and software is naturally very bad at this. How do you put humans at the center of community software? Don’t build better algorithms, build better workflows.

black box

The greatest sin of any developer is thinking they are cleverer than the users of what they build. “I can guess what you want.” In truth, guessing what someone wants is far easier than helping them achieve what they actually want.

tipped scales

Last week I spent a full day refactoring something and my brain went to that mythical “zone” for the first time in a long while. I was burning again with confidence I’d forgotten.

mental models

Designing software that doesn’t account for human mental models is unethical. It gaslights people into thinking they’re incapable, and the domino effects of that are incalculable.