Welcome to my PinkLetter. A short, weekly, technology-agnostic, and pink newsletter where we cultivate timeless skills about web development.
When is the last time you were asked to estimate a feature?
Estimations are a terrible tool, but I'm sure you already know that.
A couple of weeks ago, I was asked for one. I refused to try, and I asked a question instead: how much time would you be willing to spend on this feature?
Dabbling as a product developer in the last few months taught me something important: a feature is a solution, but the critical part is solving the underlying problem.
We can always build a better, more sophisticated feature. But sometimes simpler and sooner makes more sense.
Flexbox is incredibly powerful. But it's also crazy hard to learn well. So we all end up depending on a cheat sheet and some mad guessing in the dev tools.
This is an Educational Game. Each section unravels part of the plot, gives you expertise over a new flexbox concept, and presents zombie survival challenges that force you to solidify your new skills like your life depends on it.
(Riccardo: Watch out,
display: flex; will assume a whole new meaning after playing the game.)
A surprisingly common problem in both application development and analysis is: given an input name, find the database record it most likely refers to. It's common because databases of names and people are common, and it's a problem because names are a very irregular identifying token.
(Riccardo: This is an excellent read, regardless of your database of choice.)
Magic Test allows you to write Rails system tests interactively through a combination of trial-and-error in a debugger session and also just simple clicking around in the application being tested, all without the slowness of constantly restarting the testing environment.
(Riccardo: The REPL-driven-development shown in the videos is so cool. Let's steal the idea and bring it to other languages. Thanks, Arek, for the link!)