📄New blog post: Make Customer Support Your Competitive Advantage
📕 Book notes from Radical Candor by Kim Scott
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Moved my Diet notes into my new public notes system.
Nice early voting reminder from HelpScout:
(Displayed after all support tickets have been responded to.)
Thoughts on Prepaying your mortgage
Added more RSS feeds
(In the process I fixed some issues with my articles feed—sorry if you got some duplicate updates.)
test && commit || revert
test && commit || revert (TCR) is a new programming workflow introduced by Kent Beck in 2018. In a normal TDD (Test-driven Development) workflow, the goal is to write a failing test before writing the code to make it pass. TCR flips the TDD paradigm upside down, with a twist:
Not only must your tests always pass (on every file save, no less), but if they don’t pass, your code is automatically reverted.
I must admit: when I learned about TCR, I hated the idea. Coming from a TDD background, it’s so counter-intuitive. It’s funny, though, the more I think about my initial reaction, the more I want to try it.
A Honeybadger customer replied to one of my onboarding emails:
Another Honeybadger testimonial (emphasis added):
As far as how it compares to Sentry, I have had a great experience with Honeybadger. The UI is much much easier to navigate than Sentry. It is less cluttered, and gives me the information I need right away, all in one place. The setup in Elixir was so much easier than Sentry too! I haven’t explored all the options in Honeybadger yet, but I’m excited about uptime tracking as I’ve been using Pingdom for that, but I’d rather consolidate as many tools as I can.
Taking a break from FounderQuest for a few months. Don’t worry, we’ll be back for season 3 with fresh episodes (and fresh attitudes?) Time off is important, but I’m already looking forward to recording again. 🤙
Added permalinks on hover
Only H1 headings generate separate pages (instead of creating a page for every block). This is an alternate approach to a previous idea:
Added blockquote styles
There was an HN discussion about it late last year.
What a strange year.
Cobra Kai is an allegory of America, right?
My ideal work day
Or what I like best
I like to keep my head down,
making progress on challenging problems.
Not passively engaging on Twitter
It’s bad when the water cooler is attached to your desk
Working with people, yes—
but towards meaningful goals
really helping them move forward
…not shouting empty advice
I don’t want to be a thought leader
I just want to make cool stuff
In Federalist 84, Hamilton argues against the inclusion of a Bill of Rights in the Constitution (and a few other misc. things).
In Federalist 85, Hamilton concludes The Federalist Papers with an argument for ratifying the Constitution now and amending it later.
The framers knew that the Constitution wasn’t perfect, and they anticipated that there would be unknowns as the nation grows and develops. That’s why there’s an amendment process.
In Federalist 83—the last of a series of six essays on the judicial branch—Hamilton examines the constitutional provision for trial by jury in criminal cases.
In Federalist 82—the fifth of a series of six essays on the power and limitations of the judicial branch—Hamilton further discusses the jurisdiction between the State and Supreme Courts.
In Federalist 81, Hamilton examines the distribution of the judicial authority, including the role of the Supreme Court as an appellate court, its limited original jurisdiction, the inferior district courts, and the relation of the courts to State legislatures.
This was a weird day to lose RBG. What a career. RIP.
Hamilton continues his analysis of the powers and limitations of the judicial branch in Federalist 80.
Hey, it’s Constitution Day. How fitting. :)
TFW you deploy a change to a complex system and IT WORKS!!!
A listing of companies that don’t desperately email and call you constantly saying “Remember us! Please use our tools! Check us out! Hey hey hey!
No lifecycle emails. No sales calls. No contact with you outside of the product itself.
If you have the choice, write a book, teach a course, build an app… just don’t start an infrastructure monitoring company. 😂 Link
Currently Middleman builds a page for every Roam block (including nested blocks) in the export.
Being able to link directly to blocks is really nice if I want to write a short blog post in Daily Notes, for example, but then link to it on its own page. I.e., here’s this post.
I will rarely want to link to more than one or two levels deep, however. I could add a setting for that, so that it only generates pages N-blocks deep.
I could also add an option to skip creating pages for blocks without children.
In Federalist 78, Hamilton examines the judiciary.
I sent an email to my newsletter today that used a (humorous) hacked Trump tweet as an example of a link hijacking vulnerability. I only got two angry replies (not bad), but the click rate is more telling… So far 2.4% compared to the normal 4-10%.
The content itself is really interesting, so I’m thinking people have Trump fatigue. Come to think of it, so do I. Lesson learned moving forward. 😂
Throw away your todo lists
Alex tweeted about todo lists: “I don’t like todo lists because I don’t like being told what to do, even by past me.”
My favorite todo lists are the ones that are easy to throw away. It’s why I prefer 3x5 cards.
I also like contextualizing todos, which is something most apps do poorly. For instance, I write my home maintenance todos on a whiteboard in my garage.
In Federalist 77, Hamilton concludes an 11-part series of essays on the Executive branch.
Marketing should not be manipulative. Good marketing should stand on its own, and the user should be better for it regardless of whether they end up buying today. That rules out much of advertising. We do some advertising at Honeybadger, but try to direct it towards providing legitimate value to the audience, not just our users.
Started a Website todo list
To whoever needs to hear this: stop reading the Twitter feed.
This site is now deployed to Amazon S3
Netlify has been having issues for me lately; today, the
fetch-roam script I use to export my database when building this website began timing out, even though I’ve had no issues with it locally.
Build times have also been a problem. I can build this site in around 25 seconds on my 16” MacBook Pro, including the database download. Netlify was routinely taking 3-5 minutes—Ruby in particular seems to be very slow on Netlify.
So I deployed the site to s3 instead, which actually seems to fit this project better:
I can run deploys locally or via any CI system (I’m planning to use GitHub Actions)
aws s3 sync, so files which haven’t changed since the last build don’t need to be uploaded.
If I can figure out how to keep the build directory around between CI runs (using a shared volume, maybe?), Middleman generation may also run faster, as it skips unchanged files. This would sort of give me incremental builds.
I’m not totally sure on this one, since it does need to generate the file contents to know what changed.
Normally I’d miss some of the niceties that come with Netlify such as branch previews and functions, but in this case I think the tradeoff is worth it.
Fires rage across the West Coast. It feels like Chernobyl in the US rn.
“At least it’s not radioactive” pretty much sums up 2020 at this point. It’s true, though. At least it’s NOT radioactive.
Federalist 76 covers the appointment power of the Executive.
Derrick Reimer launched his new scheduling SaaS today. https://savvycal.com/
That was a smooth onboarding flow, Derrick. 👌
Here’s my summary of Federalist 75
I can’t get past how much overhead Gatsby adds to a project.
19:38 Cool, I have a working project with all the basics (inbound/outbound linking, block references, etc.) That was easier than I thought.
Good morning! It’s Wolf Shirt Wednesday
Here’s a summary of Federalist 74
Thank you, random internet strangers. <3
Reminds me of Scripting News
I’m already starting to see why generating a static site from Roam will be important: Roam loads the entire database locally, which isn’t ideal for sharing (also, page previews would be nice). #Digital Garden
14:19 Thinking about TypeScript and how it can help keep bad data out of a system when you have data coming in from many different sources (users, browsers, 3rd-party integrations).
If you define the edges of the system, you can receive
anytyped data and sanitize it before allowing it to cross the boundary—from that point on you’re working with typed data.
For instance, given a
ClientAPI, methods which are exposed to non-TS users receive input as type
These methods have tests to verify type conversion (to whatever type the data should be).
Beyond the public API, the rest of the (internal) system is strictly typed.
Number of calling arguments in public methods should also be tested, since outside of TS it’s easy to introduce
undefinedvalues by omitting arguments.
Thanks to Julio for helping me think about TypeScript data structures
Love this “Enterprise” sales page: https://ghost.org/enterprise/
I speculated about whether companies were adding positions to oversee remote benefits on last week’s FounderQuest. It turns out they are: Hot new job title in a pandemic: ‘Head of remote work’
Welcome to my Digital Garden
For more on digital gardens, see Joel’s post.
A few notes on this project: