The Particular Finest

Presented by aurynn shaw

Joke Accounts and the BOFH are Garbage

You might be familiar with tech joke accounts on Twitter, stuff like PHP CEO and I Am Devloper. These are accounts meant to poke fun at specific stereotypes of people in the tech community, in these cases an ignorant CEO and an incompetent developer, by posting concepts that echo strongly within the experiences of people within tech.

And I came across a tweet on my timeline today, from the I Am Devloper account: and my first (and continued) response has been 😡, because this sort of thing is not okay.

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The That Guy Effect

If you got to see my talk about Human Driven Development at WDCNZ or LCA, you’ll remember that one of the concepts that I brought up was the idea of That Guy”, the team member that has great technical knowledge but no one really wants to talk to.

This idea was one of the parts of that talk that resonated really well with a lot of people, where a lot of people could identify where they had had to work with That Guy, and where they had unfortunately ended up as That Guy.

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The (Deep) Time Of Your Life

So one of the things that I keep getting asked about is when I refer to my past and my future as different people. I speak of the intents of my past, the situations she’s left me in and the struggles I face because of her.

I do this because past-aurynn is a real force in my life, a person who had hopes and goals and dreams but with whom I cannot hold a conversation. I can’t talk to her, share my triumphs or my failures, can’t ask her if it’s everything we hoped it would be.

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Ceci n'est pas une pipeline problem

This post was originally a tweetstorm! You can find the original tweetstorm right here.

Okay let’s dig into this, which is a blog post where he’s talking about the fallout around the recent, ragingly sexist 31c0n (which I’m not linking to from here).

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More Fun with Terraform Templates

So you may have noticed last time that I said I’m trying to create complex JSON objects from within Terraform.

In this case, I really want to be able to create an AWS ECS container definition, which looks a bit like this (copied from the AWS docs, here)

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Fun with Terraform Template Rendering

One of the things I do as part of Eiara is write a lot of Terraform, an infrastructure definition language, to provide a sensible baseline cloud instantiation of infrastructure and resources.

I’m quite fond of Terraform as a tool, even though it still has a decent number of weirdnesses and edge cases. If you haven’t seen it you should look at Charity’s Blog about Terraform for a great rundown on those issues. It’s quite powerful, and really works well with how I think to enable me to express exactly what I’m thinking.

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Trusting Trust

The tech industry is an interesting place. On the one hand, we have the old guard, the 80s-driven hacker culture” that drips with contempt culture and ivory tower silo mentalities.

On the other hand, we’re seeing a revolution in our culture in the form of DevOps. a DevOps is interesting in that it looks like it’s about tools, but in a complete head fake we see that nothing about DevOps is about our tools, but instead everything about how we work and how our teams function, both internally and externally.

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Impostor Syndrome

Impostor syndrome is rife, endemic even, in the tech industry, leaving so many of us feeling like we don’t belong, like we’re just one minor screwup or lack of knowledge from being outed as the frauds that we feel we are.

At the end of February, 2017, a Twitter thread started happening, where people in the tech community, prominent individuals who are widely seen as experts speaking up on all the things they can’t do, that they have to regularly look up, ask about, or otherwise make them feel like they’re not a real engineer.

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How to Make a Book of Photography

So after my recent(-ish)((6 months is recent, right?)) publication of Fly, A Collection, I wanted to talk about the process of making a book of photography.

Fly is my third work, following Linear A and Distinctly Coromandel. All three went through different publication routes, but contain a lot of similarities that are worth discussing.

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There Is No Meritocracy

Tech culture idolises the idea of the meritocracy, the mythical organisational strategy where those of skill and capability rise to the top, and lead naturally”. Of course, being tech this means that those of great technical knowledge and coding skill are the most meritorious, deserving of our recognition and adulation.

But, meritocracy is just an unacknowledged bias. When you say good at coding”, what you mean is that they have your background, value your values, prioritise like you prioritise. They have your ability to share on GitHub, your spare time to contribute, and make decisions that look like your decisions.

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