Eduards Sizovs - February 2021

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Eduards Sizovs

February 10 · Issue #15 · View online

I write about programming, leadership, mentoring, and hiring.


Hi there! 👋
Here is a quick recap of what happened to me since the last newsletter.
🍿 I spent a couple of days re-designing my pet project dev.tube – now it looks better and the search has become much faster. Because our video dataset has increased significantly over the years, tech solutions that worked initially no longer work. The good news is that the project still requires almost zero ops, as we’re 100% serverless. Conclusion: investing time in good architecture pays off.
In April I am returning to 🇱🇻 Riga for a series of in-house workshops. Demand for my Soft Skills and Leadership workshop is extremely high. It seems like COVID has good parts, too: more people realized the importance and power of emotional intelligence, communication, and the ability to build and keep strong relationships. Also, I have two available seats @ The Principal Developer course that will take place online on March 25-26. You’ll learn how to organize the dev process well, how to make your customers happy, and how to grow your team.
Money
  • How to Lose Money: a short write-up about losing (and earning) money
  • Simplywall.st: convenient stock analytics with nice infographics
  • If you’re investing in ETFs, you can win (or lose) your money faster by investing in leveraged ETFs, such as UPRO
  • You can buy Bitcoin on a classic stock exchange under ticker ABTCEUR
  • Did you know that you can access Google Finance API directly from Google spreadsheets via GOOGLEFINANCE() function?
  • Did you know that Astrid Menks – the wife of Warren Buffett is Latvian? : )
Apps/Technical
  • BeMyEyes: a fantastic mobile app for helping blind people. I have become a volunteer. Your small actions can make big difference in someone else’s life.
  • aText – conveneint Mac app for text expansion
  • Dank Mono – a super cool coding font, definitely my favorite. Looks particularly sexy with Material UI and Atom Material Icons IDEA themes
  • Observable – a killer tool for data wrangling (if you like JS)
  • Underscore – You’re Doing it Wrong – a nice video showing some good and practical FP tricks (and why Ramda.js is better than Underscore)

Some of my tweets
Eduards Sizovs
Bashing developers who "don't know something very important" is not helpful at all. Do something about it – inspire, teach, blog, speak.
Eduards Sizovs
IT Lead: My devs don’t speak at meetups
Me: Do you speak?
I: I don’t
M: That's the reason
I: Disagree. Ok, speaking is hard. Why they don’t attend meetups?
M: Do you attend?
I: I don’t have time for it
M: That's the reason.
I: No. They're not passionate
M: Are you passionate?
...
Eduards Sizovs
What do you enjoy more?

1) working on the most interesting/challenging tasks
2) watching your teammates work on the most interesting/challenging tasks

If you enjoy 2) more than 1), then you’re a good leader (or have a great potential to become one).
Eduards Sizovs
Agile Coach/Scrum Master is usually a non-tech person who sometimes gives important advice, maybe fixes a process issue, but can't lead devs by example. This is the main reason why devs don't trust them. Devs think: "ok, you say I should do TDD, why can't you just show me how?"
Eduards Sizovs
The fundamental pillar of agile software development is eXtreme Programming, which can only be mastered by working next to an experienced engineering mentor, who KNOWS and SHOWS how to get things done "right". Without XP, there is no agility.
Eduards Sizovs
Most Scrum projects are a mess because a vital ingredient is missing: Engineering Coach. It's not necessary a separate person, but a role that must be played by someone who can teach you architecture, patterns, BDD, TDD, pairing, code reviews, and how to live by XP values.
Eduards Sizovs
Many developers understand eXtreme Programming as a mix of engineering practices, such as Pair Programming, TDD, CI, or Refactoring. Yes, XP pays attention to engineering practices, but that's only a small part of the whole story.
Eduards Sizovs
XP is a set of values: simplicity, feedback, communication, respect, and courage. The last two are usually missing: respecting yourself, respecting each other, respecting your customer, having the courage to stand up for the right things, raise tough questions, and negotiate.
Eduards Sizovs
Values matter more than practices because if your values are right, good practices will naturally follow. This is important to remember when choosing people to work with.
Wrap up
All right, my friends, that’s all I have today. Stay in touch and keep positive vibes!
Paper Mill Coffee @ Tallinn
Paper Mill Coffee @ Tallinn
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