There’s a very common metaphor that I, along with many other it seems, have subscribed to for as long as I can remember— it’s the concept recharging one’s batteries. The theory goes that you work hard over a period of time at which point you kind of burn down the charge in your body’s batteries, thus you need the opportunity to take a break to focus on replenishing your charge back to 100%. It’s often suggested that time off from work — either planned annual leave, or even a career break — is the opportunity to do so.

On the…

Given I generally develop on the JVM (Scala or Java), and given that I happen to be a big fan of containerisation in general, one of the biggest pain points I’ve come across with this combination is slooooooooooooooow docker image builds.

Local caching of ivy2 and/or maven dependencies is something that prevents all us JVM developers from throwing in the towel — who wants to Download the Internet with every sbt/mvn compile for goodness sake?! Problem is, that when packaging up JVM apps into docker images, you’re kind of breaking the rules of docker image building if your Dockerfiles rely…

“Listen to your software, when it’s calling for you”

Anyone with a penchant for late 80’s pop power ballads will recognise my reference here to the smash hit record “Listen to your Heart” by the abundantly talented Swedish pop duo, Roxette. A song that that steadily builds momentum, scales rarely experienced heights of melodic seduction, and fully captivates its listener — even over repeated plays — for a total of 5 minutes and 28 seconds (album version). A songwriting masterclass if, of course, you like that sort of thing (I do).

But, I’m afraid this post isn’t about Roxette, or…

Given my love of both software engineering and cycling, I thought it would be an interesting experiment to draw parallels between them, specifically in the context of hiring, and with regard to skills and teamwork.

The stereotypical technical interview process is broken.

Those who know me well will attest to my views on this subject matter! I’m hoping the parallels I’ll draw with cycling will demonstrate a degree of balance to my (usual) argument. I don’t intend to provide a completely bulletproof analogy, instead do just enough to plant a seed.

An introduction to the pro peloton

The professional cycling peloton is made up of highly…

So, I’ve had this idea to break up technical debt into two high-level categories — high interest and low interest. Somebody may have already expanded the concept to this level of detail, but I came up with this on my own, thus it doesn’t count as plagiarism :-D

A quick recap of technical debt

Technical debt was a term coined by technical people as a metaphor for helping to explain the accumulation of complexity in software systems that causes a slowdown in ongoing development — a time penalty on adding new features. …

This is the second post in a three part series looking at the topic of microservice integration. In the first installment, I focused mainly on the theory side of event-driven service choreography. In this second part, I’ll dig into the practical traits that we’ll require of our technical implementations that enable us to satisfy the theory discussed in the first post. In the final installment of the series, I’ll look at different specific implementation techniques/technologies and how they map to the traits discussed in this post.

Implementation traits

I’d like to provide some coverage on what I believe to be the key…

This is the first post in a three part series looking at the topic of microservice integration. In this first installment, I’ll be focusing mainly on the theory side of event-driven service choreography. In the second post, I’ll cover the implementation traits required to satisfy the theory discussed in this first post, and, in final post, I’ll be assessing the support available for those traits in well known implementation technologies. So, let’s get on with part one!

Looking back

One of the biggest shortcomings of traditional SOA is/was the tendency to break up a highly-coupled monolith into a series of smaller services…

In this post, I’m going to dip my toes into the world of customer experience (CX). This isn’t a subject I’ve written about before, but a recent sub-optimal hotel experience during a trip to Belgium has prompted this analysis.

Whilst this story does not relate specifically to technology, great customer experience is something that all businesses should pursue, whether technical or not in nature.

Our story

Back in early December, my wife and I booked a two night city break to Bruges (Belgium), to return for the third time to what will remain an unnamed hotel, a hotel that continued to rank…

I’m sure I’m not the only one who breathed a sign of relief when the clever brains behind Heroku published the Twelve Factor App guidelines. Here was a reliable set of principles — born out of real life experience — that immediately hit home, providing sensible advice for overcoming the many pitfalls developers and operations teams have fought relentless battles with time and time again.

One of the principles that I was especially able to connect with is the advice regarding from where applications should read their configuration. Having regularly encountered config file hell over the years, this simple, platform…

It’s been a while since I last posted here, and good reason — I’ve been trying to run a startup! As this is a technically focused blog — and given my startup experiences were mainly commercially focused — I didn’t have all that much to say here. But, now I’ve experienced my first startup failure, I thought I’d write about it here (even though it’s not really technical content).

It has become somewhat customary for entrepreneurs to write about the good times and the bad. In either case — often even more relevant in the case of the bad times…

Andrew Easter

Software engineering nut. Cyclist. Musician. Dog lover

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