The Bike Shed

The Bike Shed

On The Bike Shed, hosts Chris Toomey & Steph Viccari discuss their development experience and challenges at thoughtbot with Ruby, Rails, JavaScript, and whatever else is drawing their attention, admiration, or ire this week.

Episodes

July 19, 2021 42 min
What do you get when you mix a worm and a hammerhead shark? Also ants. Steph made some cool new discoveries in bug-land. She also talks about deploys versus releases and how her and her team has changed their deploy structure. Two words: feature flags. Chris talks about cookies: cookie sessions, cookie payloads, cookie footprints, cookie storing. Mmm cookies! The convo wraps up with lamenting over truthiness in code. Truthy or fals...
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The big "Three Oh Oh!" What a milestone for this podcast! Aside from celebrating that the show has made it this far, Chris gives some followup on some Inertia.js issues he had been having, and talks about open source licenses and legality and testing against external APIs. Steph has thoughts on mozzarella sticks and what makes good ones; particularly the cheese to bread ratio... They then, together, answer a listener questi...
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July 5, 2021 46 min
Let's talk about Agile! What is it, what do we like, we do we not like? In this episode, Steph and Chris discuss: Broadly, are they fans? What makes this practice work well? What makes this practice work poorly? And also, hit specific topics and practices like Scrum, Kanban, and Extreme Programming. Twitter Poll re: Gotime Podcast - Is Agile's Time Over? (https://twitter.com/gotimefm/status/1388126124299878412?s=21) The...
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June 28, 2021 42 min
Chris gives some small updates on working with Svelte. He really likes Svelte so far. Svelte's great. Modals are complicated. He also talks about using a little JavaScript library, called Quicklink. Steph talks about sending data to a third-party system and using feature flags to help deprecate some code. Finally, they both riff on a listener question on consulting. Said listener asked, "Do you think about your work as '...
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June 21, 2021 48 min
Chris gives the deets on that new new – (he joined a startup!) and laments about the back button being so complicated. Steph talks about extracting an untrustworthy service and likens the scenario to making a Pixar movie. You don't wanna miss this hero's journey! Eric Bailey's bunny updates (https://twitter.com/ericwbailey/status/1389332217088851971) Katrina Owen's Therapeutic Refactoring Talk (https://www.youtube.c...
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Nate Berkopec is the author of the Complete Guide to Rails Performance, the creator of the Rails Performance Workshop, and the co-maintainer of Puma. He talks with Steph about being known as "The Rails Speed Guy," and how he ended up with that title, publishing content, working on workshops, and also contributing to open source projects. (You could say he's kind of a busy guy!) Speedshop (https://www.speedshop.co/) Puma...
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June 6, 2021 35 min
After the last episode where database switching was discussed, a number of listeners reached out with thoughts. In particular, one listener gave a reproducible example of how to make things better. Chris talks about why he always moves errors to the left, and Steph gives a hot take where she admits that she is not a fan of hackathons and explains why. Steph and Chris also share exciting Bike Shed show news in that we now have trans...
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May 24, 2021 45 min
On this week's episode, Steph and Chris respond to a listener question about how to know if we're improving as developers. They discuss the heuristics they think about when it comes to improving, how they've helped the teams they've worked with plan for and measure their growth, and some specific tips for improving. Rails Autoscale (https://railsautoscale.com/) Rubular regex playground (https://rubular.com/) The Pra...
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May 17, 2021 41 min
On this week's episode, Chris and Steph share a speedy step to restart your rails server and chat about accessibility improvements and favorite a11y tools. They also dive into a tale of database switching and delight in a new Rails query method that returns orphaned records. Restart Rails server via tmp/restart.txt (https://twitter.com/christoomey/status/1387799863929212931?s=20) WebAIM: Constrast Checker (https://webaim.or...
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On this week's episode, Steph and Chris are joined by fellow thoughtbotter, Joël Quenneville, to discuss all things debugging. Joël is helping publish a weekly debugging blog series and in this conversation they discuss how the series got started, technology agnostic debugging strategies, writing less bug-prone software, and speculate if Joël moonlights as a hockey coach. Debugging Blog Series 2021 (https://thoughtbot.com/blog/...
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This week Steph's taking a quick break, but while she's off, Chris is joined by a special guest - Jonathan Reinink. Jonathan is the creator of Inertia.js. Inertia.js (https://inertiajs.com/) lets you quickly build modern single-page React, Vue and Svelte apps using classic server-side routing and controllers, and listeners of the show will certainly have heard Chris rave about it on previous episodes. Chris and Jonathan dig...
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April 26, 2021 32 min
On this week's episode, Chris and Steph discuss testing webhooks, the challenges in replicating third-party data, and troubleshooting unexpected side effects. They also respond to a listener question about secrets management, touring popular solutions and discussing the trade-offs. This episode is brought to you by ScoutAPM (https://scoutapm.com/bikeshed). Give Scout a try for free today and Scout will donate $5 to the open sou...
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April 19, 2021 37 min
On this week's episode, Steph and Chris tackle a pair of questions -- the first dealing with how closely we might want to map an API to the underlying database schema, and the second dealing with back of the envelope math and horses (it makes more sense in context.... mostly). They also discuss the subtleties of the javascript date API across browsers, and a quick adventure in tuning database indexes for fun and profit. This ep...
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April 13, 2021 36 min
On this week's episode, Chris and Steph discuss migrating a polymorphic relationship over to UUIDs and balancing trade-offs between data integrity vs complexity. They also touch on a new Rails feature that adds support to safely remove and add columns, GitHub Discussions, measuring team experiments, and purposeful communication. This episode is brought to you by ScoutAPM (https://scoutapm.com/bikeshed). Give Scout a try for fre...
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March 29, 2021 37 min
On this week's episode, Steph shares a recent performance improvement, a Postgres delight, and testing concurrency in RSpec. Chris revisits an earlier theme of "Good Idea, Bad Idea?" as he explores ways to speed up tests builds and avoid duplicate test builds. They round things out with a listener question about managing ERB partials and Vue components. This episode is brought to you by ScoutAPM (https://scoutapm.com/bi...
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March 22, 2021 26 min
On this week's episode, Chris shares a rare airing of grievances regarding the importance of secure, encrypted websites and Steph shares a tale of time zone troubles and testing. This episode is brought to you by ScoutAPM (https://scoutapm.com/bikeshed). Give Scout a try for free today and Scout will donate $5 to the open source project of your choice when you deploy Time.use_zone (https://apidock.com/rails/v6.0.0/Time/use_zone...
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March 15, 2021 39 min
On this week's episode, Steph and Chris tackle a listener question around the world of service objects. Where, really, should we be putting our business logic. Model concerns, "service" objects, the model files themselves? Tune in to find out. They also discuss a perilous Rails 6 upgrade deployment and the ensuing debugging session, as well as Steph's retro on her extended break from work. This episode is brought to...
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March 9, 2021 46 min
On this week's episode Chris and Steph chat about upgrading to Rails 6, intercepting emails, and play a few rounds of Software Terminology Trivia. They also discuss "Deep Work" by Cal Newport and share strategies for finding and maintaining focus. This episode is brought to you by ScoutAPM (https://scoutapm.com/bikeshed). Give Scout a try for free today and Scout will donate $5 to the open source project of your choice ...
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March 2, 2021 26 min
On this week's episode Steph and Chris discuss a listener question around managing content within an application, weighing options like an integrated CMS, headless CMS provides, proxying the content, and supporting marketing and landing pages without needing a developer for every change. They also provide an update on dead man's snitch and a preview of a rails 6 upgrade on the horizon and dreams of database switching. This ...
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February 23, 2021 39 min
On this week's episode, Chris adds Dead Man's Snitch to a personal project and considers "what is the app doing at runtime?" as he touches on the importance of creating observable systems. Steph shares analyzing a site's traffic and using Apache Bench for simple load testing. They also respond to a listener question about creating environment-specific data for data-intensive applications. This episode is brought...
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