Tech Leadership Development Program

I was fortunate enough to be involved in the Tech Leadership Development Program at ThoughtWorks in late 2016. It was great to be able to talk to other experienced Tech Leads and take the time to understand what good technical leadership entails.

Lambdas in Java 8

Prior to Java 1.8, writing Java code in a functional way was very heavyweight, requiring an interface and an anonymous class:

Changing my perspective on testing

The first time I encountered software testing was at university in my 2nd year. We had previously learnt how to write procedural software in Pascal and C, and had started to learn about different software paradigms such as object oriented programming (using C++). One of the lectures talked about how we could add assert statements to our code to test that the program was acting sensibly when we were developing it (we would of course turn off the asserts in ‘production’), and introduced the idea of pre- and post-conditions for methods (pre-conditions define what our function expects to be true when it is invokes, and post-conditions define what the consumer can expect to be true from the result). Of course back then I didn’t think testing was interesting or cool, so I didn’t really pay it much attention. Even when I did add assertions in my code, these were not automated and so were rarely run, and so had little visibility, and failed to keep me interested.

GOTO Chicago Summary

I was lucky enough recently to attend GOTO software engineering conference in Chicago. One of the reasons I really enjoy working at ThoughtWorks is the emphasis they place on professional development, and having well informed employees who are active in the community. This is one of the things that I believe make us a really influential (and disruptive) force in our industry. If any of this sounds of interest to you, I’ve also written a post about my first 6 months at ThoughtWorks which I encourage you to read, as it could well be a home for you as it has been for me…

StrengthsFinder and goal setting

At my last project we decided to all do the StrengthsFinder test to identify the different strengths that we have in our team and how to best utilise them. StrengthsFinder tries to help you on improving on your strengths, rather than focusing on your weaknesses.

Reverse SSH Tunnel

Here’s an interesting thing I can across recently at work. We are using the PayPal API as a payment gateway on one of our client projects, but were having problems getting the callback from the API to our local dev machines.