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What I’ve Learned about Communication

I’ve learned as much about communication as I’ve learned about code since working at Alley (we’re hiring), a fully distributed digital agency. Since we all work remotely, communication happens using Slack and Zoom on the computer. While these tips outlined in this article certainly stem from things I’ve learned while working remotely, these are in… Continue Reading

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Code Review is Feedback

We have an open code review process at Alley. There is a review queue in Slack. We submit our Pull Requests (PRs) into the slack channel when ready for review and anyone can claim them. We also have a culture of feedback and have discussed in length the importance of feedback for adult growth. One… Continue Reading

Forest Fire

Put out the fire first.

Listening to some podcast which I’ve long since forgotten the name of, I heard a top executive talk about how there was always the fire of the day to put out. This small comment changed how I thought about my work. We have a list of things to do, but the most important task may… Continue Reading

Software Development

Diff of Code Change for WordPress core issue

My First Contribution to WordPress Core

I’m proud to add WordPress core contributor to my resume! It has been a long time goal. My software development career has been focused on developing enterprise WordPress websites, and I wanted to give back and contribute to core. My first contribution is finding and patching Issue 52584: Editor: Metaboxes fail to save after heartbeat… Continue Reading

WordPress WP_Query Tip: Always Specify Post Status

One of the quirks with working with WordPress queries is that the default arguments may not be suitable for your application. WordPress was originally a blogging platform. Now its use has expanded to many other types of websites, including news sites and e-commerce sites. Furthermore, with the advent of the Gutenberg block editor and Full… Continue Reading

Lego robot next to orange soda on the balcony in Cancun

If you know JavaScript, Learn PHP (Career Advice for Software Developers)

JavaScript is a popular first programming language. It is the language taught in frontend web development courses. JavaScript frameworks like React are very popular. With HTML & CSS & JavaScript, you have the perfect skillset to create a really awesome website. You can also build mobile apps with JavaScript.

More on Software Development

Web Development

How to Solve Software Bugs with Wrappers

It is possible to spend many hours and days trying to figure out WHY a bug occurs. Lately, I’ve decided that the fine detail of why the bug occurs doesn’t matter in some cases. That’s right, it doesn’t matter. All you need is a deep understanding of the problem.

enable checkbox setting

As a Web Developer, I should Add a Checkbox

I am dedicated to staying sane.  Sanity is not an option. But providing options may save your sanity, if you are a web developer.  Clients will rarely ask for the ability to turn something on and off.  Instead, they will describe the feature’s settings and appearance, but inevitably they will forget to tell you to… Continue Reading

Does your web form work?

You may say “of course, the form works” but I find non working forms to be relatively frequent. The first example is on the website of a multinational corporation. I once returned a router because the form didn’t work. In both of the cases below, there are “work arounds” that the user can use to… Continue Reading

Technical Leadership

Baby Coleus Plants - Coleus Seedlings

Scrum, Software Development, and 1 Week Sprints

I love scrum. Done right, tasks are small enough that they fit into a 1 week sprint. Because of the unknowns of software development, sometimes your first step is figuring out the first step. How do you write acceptance criteria for that? Basically, you need a ticket to allow you to sit back and think… Continue Reading

The Best Code is the Code you don’t write

Earlier in my software development career, I would get an assignment and eagerly jump into writing the code.  Hours later — after frustration and then the joys of success — I had the code done. Writing the code was a learning experience for me — I got better at programming the more I practiced —… Continue Reading

Success with Prosopagnosia

Prosopagnosia (Face Blindness) Coping Strategies

Prosopagnosia is the inability to recognize faces.  Also known as “Face blindness.”  There are varying degrees.  Some people can’t even recognize their immediate family’s faces.  Other people have a more mild case where it’s hard to recognize people that they see infrequently, or follow a movie plot when actors are dressed similarly. I’ve been working… Continue Reading

What matters the most to you?

The only way we really increase our productivity is by choosing what to spend our time on.  Prioritization is what makes scrum teams more effective, and prioritization is the most important part of time management. Do the right things for the right reasons. And, the only way to do the right things, is to decide… Continue Reading

How to get a Remote Programming Job

Is working remotely important to you? Do you want to work from home? Or do you want to live the digital nomad lifestyle? A good programmer may be an introvert or a traveler, and more companies are figuring out that it doesn’t matter if their employees don’t live near each other — what matters is finding talent. Wherever it is.