The Changelog

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Conversations with the hackers, leaders, and innovators of the software world


The ChangelogThe Changelog #424

You can FINALLY use JSHint for evil

Today we welcome Mike Pennisi into our Maintainer Spotlight. This is a special flavor of The Changelog where we go deep into a maintainer’s story. Mike is the maintainer of JSHint which, since its creation in 2011, was encumbered by a license that made it very hard for legally-conscious teams to use the project. The license was the widely-used MIT Expat license, but it included one additional clause: “The Software shall be used for Good, not Evil.” Because of this clause, many teams could not use JSHint.

Today’s episode with Mike covers the full gamut of JSHint’s journey and how non-free licensing can poison the well of free software.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #423

Coding without your hands

What do you do when you make a living typing on a keyboard, but you can no longer do that for more than a few minutes at a time? Switch careers?! Not Josh Comeau. He decided to learn from others who have come before him and develop his own solution for coding without his hands. Spoiler Alert: he uses weird noises and some fancy eye tracking tech.

On this episode Josh tells us all about the fascinating system he developed, how it changed his perspective on work & life, and where he’s going from here. Plus we mix in some CSS & JS chat along the way.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #422

Growing as a software engineer

Gergely Orosz joined Adam for a conversation about his journey as a software engineer. Gergely recently stepped down from his role as Engineering Manager at Uber to pursue his next big thing. But, that next big thing isn’t quite clear to him yet. So, in the meantime, he has been using this break to write a few books and blog more so he can share what he’s learned along the way. He’s also validating some startup ideas he has on platform engineering. His first book is available to read now — it’s called The Tech Resume Inside Out and offers a practical guide to writing a tech resume written by the people who do the resume screening. Both topics gave us quite a bit to talk about.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #421

The future of Mac

We have a BIG show for you today. We’re talking about the future of the Mac. Coming off of Apple’s “One more thing.” event to launch the Apple M1 chip and M1 powered Macs, we have a two part show giving you the perspective of Apple as well as a Mac app developer on the future of the Mac.

Part 1 features Tim Triemstra from Apple. Tim is the Product Marketing Manager for Developer Technologies. He’s been at Apple for 15 years and the team he manages is responsible for developer tools and technologies including Xcode, Swift Playgrounds, the Swift language, and UNIX tools.

Part 2 features Ken Case from The Omni Group. Ken is the Founder and CEO of The Omni Group and they’re well known for their Omni Productivity Suite including OmniFocus, OmniPlan, OmniGraffle, and OmniOutliner – all of which are developed for iOS & Mac.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #420

The Kollected Kode Vicious

We’re joined by George Neville-Neil, aka Kode Vicious. Writing as Kode Vicious for ACMs Queue magazine, George Neville-Neil has spent the last 15+ years sharing incisive advice and fierce insights for everyone who codes, works with code, or works with coders. These columns have been among the most popular items published in ACMs Queue magazine and it was only a matter of time for a book to emerge from his work. His book, The Kollected Kode Vicious, is a compilation of the most popular items he’s published over the years, plus a few extras you can only find in the book. We cover all the details in this episode.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #419

Inside 2020's infrastructure for Changelog.com

We’re talking with Gerhard Lazu, our resident SRE, ops, and infrastructure expert about the evolution of Changelog’s infrastructure, what’s new in 2020, and what we’re planning for in 2021. The most notable change? We’re now running on Linode Kubernetes Engine (LKE)! We even test the resilience of this new infrastructure by purposefully taking the site down. That’s near the end, so don’t miss it!

The ChangelogThe Changelog #418

Maintaining the massive success of Envoy

Today we welcome Matt Klein into our Maintainer Spotlight. Matt is the creator of Envoy, born inside of Lyft. It’s an edge and service proxy designed for cloud-native applications. Envoy was unexpectedly popular, and completely changed the way Lyft considers what and how to open source. While Matt has had several opportunities to turn Envoy into a commercial open source company, he didn’t. In today’s conversation with Matt we learn why he choose a completely different path for the project.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #416

Shopify’s massive storefront rewrite

Maxime Vaillancourt joined us to talk about Shopify’s massive storefront rewrite from a Ruby on Rails monolith to a completely new implementation written in Ruby. It’s a fairly well known opinion that rewrites are “the single worst strategic mistake that any software company can make” and generally something “you should never do.” But Maxime and the team at Shopify have proved successful in their efforts in this massive storefront rewrite and today’s conversation covers all the details.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #415

Spotify's open platform for shipping at scale

We’re joined by Jim Haughwout (Head of Infrastructure and Operations) and Stefan Ålund (Principal Product Manager) from Spotify to talk about how they manage hundreds of teams producing code and shipping at scale. Thanks to their recently open sourced open platform for building developer portals called Backstage, Spotify is able to keep engineering squads connected and shipping high-quality code quickly — without compromising autonomy.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #414

Gitter’s big adventure

Gitter is exiting GitLab and entering the Matrix…ok, we couldn’t help ourselves with that one. Today we’re joined by Sid Sibrandij (CEO of GitLab) and Matthew Hodgson (technical co-founder of Matrix) to discuss the acquisition of Gitter. A little backstory to tee things up…back in 2017 GitLab announced the acquisition of Gitter to help push their idea of chatops within GitLab. As it turns out, the GitLab team saw a different path for Gitter as a core part of Matrix rather than a non-core project at GitLab. We talk through all the details in this episode with Matthew and Sid.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #413

How open source saved htop

Today we welcome Hisham Muhammad into our Maintainer Spotlight. Hisham is the creator of htop - a well known cross-platform interactive process viewer. This conversation with Hisham covers the gamut of being an open source software maintainer. To set the stage, a new version of htop was announced, but not by Hisham – it was a kind takeover of the project and needless to say Hisham was surprised, but ultimately relieved. Why? Well, that’s what this episode it all about…

The ChangelogThe Changelog #411

Inside GitHub's Arctic Code Vault

Earlier this year on February 2nd, 2020 Jon Evans and his team of archivists took a snapshot of all active public repositories on GitHub and sent it to a decommissioned coal mine in the Svalbard archipelago where it will be stored for the next 1,000 years.

On this episode, Jon chats with Jerod all about the GitHub Archive Program and how they’re preserving open source software for future generations.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #410

Bringing beauty to the world of code sharing

Carbon is an open source web app that helps you create and share beautiful images of your source code. Whether you’ve used Carbon personally or not, odds are you’ve seen its dent on the universe of social code sharing. Mike Fix has been maintaining Carbon for a few years and he’s embraced the project as an opportunity to experiment and practice working in public.

On this Maintainer Spotlight episode, we chat with Mike about building Carbon, growing its community, sustainability models, and why he loves the world of open source.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #409

Celebrating Practical AI turning 100!! 🎉

We’re so excited to see Chris and Daniel take this show to 100 episodes, and that’s exactly why we’re rebroadcasting Practical AI #100 here on The Changelog. They’ve had so many great guests and discussions about everything from AGI to GPUs to AI for good. In this episode, we circle back to the beginning when Jerod and I joined the first episode to help kick off the podcast. We discuss how our perspectives have changed over time, what it has been like to host an AI podcast, and what the future of AI might look like. (GIVEAWAY!)

The ChangelogThe Changelog #408

Working in Public

Nadia Eghbal is back and this time she’s talking with us about her new book Working in Public. If you’re an old school listener you might remember the podcast we produced with Nadia and Mikeal Rogers called Request for Commits. If you weren’t listening then, or can’t remember…don’t worry…the back catalog of Request for Commits is still online and subscribe-able via all the podcast ways. That podcast is still getting listens to this very day!

Obviously we go way back with Nadia…and having a chance to now talk with her through all the details of her new book Working in Public, this was a milestone for this show and Jerod and I. We talked through the reasons she wrote the book in the first place, Nadia’s thoughts on the future of the internet and the connection of creators to the platforms they build their followings on, and we also talk about the health of projects and communities and the challenges we face internet-at-large as well as right here in our backyard in the open source community.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #407

Designing and building HEY

We’re talking about designing and building HEY with Jonas Downey, the lead designer behind HEY. In their words, “Email sucked for years, but not anymore.” We were super interested in how they went about solving the problems with email, so we invited Jonas on to share all the details and a behind-the-scenes look at the making of HEY.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #406

Making Windows Terminal awesome

Kayla Cinnamon, Program Manager at Microsoft for Windows Terminal, Console, Command Line, and Cascadia Code joined us to talk about the release of Windows Terminal 1.0 and the new Windows command-line experience. We talk about everything that went into rethinking the command line experience on Windows, the UX and UI design behind it all, the learnings of working in open source, and what’s to come for the Windows command line experience.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #405

It’s OK to make money from your open source

Adam loves a good dark theme and supporting a fellow creator, and Hedy Li finished the episode we did with Nikita Prokopov covering FiraCode and reached out saying Zeno Rocha’s work on Dracula deserved the same credit. We agreed. So we linked up with Zeno about his passion for open source, how he’s changed his mind on making money with open source, his big release of Dracula Pro and the future of Dracula, and of course his new book – 14 Habits of Highly Productive Developers. Check for a link in the show notes for details on how to get your hands on Zeno’s book for free through our giveaway.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #402

What's next for José Valim and Elixir?

We’re joined again by José Valim talking about the recent acquihire of Plataformatec and what that means for the Elixir language, as well as José. We also talk about Dashbit a new 3 person company he helped form from work done while at Plataformatec to help startups and enterprises adopt and run Elixir in production. Lastly we talk about a new idea José has called Bytepack that aims to help developers package and deliver software products to developers and enterprises.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #399

Shipping work that matters

We’re revisiting Shape Up and product development thoughts with Ryan Singer, Head of Product Strategy at Basecamp. Last August we talked with Ryan when he first launched his book Shape Up and now we’re back to see how Shape Up is shaping up — “How are teams using the wisdom in this book to actually ship work that matters? How does Shape Up work in new versus existing products?” We also talk about the concept of longitudinal thinking and the way it’s impacting Ryan’s designs, plus a grab bag of topics in the last segment.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #397

Creating GitLab’s remote playbook

We’re talking about all things all-remote with Darren Murph, Head of Remote at GitLab. Darren is tasked with putting intentional thought and action into place to lead the largest all-remote company in the world. Yes, GitLab is 100% all-remote, as in, no offices…and they employee more than 1,200 people across 67 countries. They’ve been iterating and documenting how to work remotely for years. We cover Darren’s personal story on remote work while he served as managing editor at Engadget, his thoughts on how “work” is evolving and ways to reframe and rethink about when you work, this idea of work life harmony, and the backstory and details of the playbook GitLab released free of charge to the world.

The ChangelogThe Changelog #396

De-Google-ing your website analytics

Plausible creators Uku Täht and Marko Saric join the show to talk about their open source, privacy-friendly alternative to Google Analytics. We talk through the backstory of the project, why it’s open source, the details behind a few viral blog posts Marko shared to bring in a ton of new interest to the project, why privacy matters in web analytics, how they prioritize building new features, the technical details behind their no cookie light-weight JavaScript approach, and their thoughts on a server-side option.

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