Design Thinking Toolkit, Lesson 6 – Card Sorting

Welcome to our series on Design Thinking methods and activities. You’ll find a full list of posts in this series at the end of the page.

Card Sorting

Card sorting works by presenting participants with a set of pre-made cards and asking them to prioritize or organize them into groups. In the context of user research, you might be trying to understand what motivates a user most (or least). And for information architecture, you might want to see how a user might sort navigational items in groups to build-out an IA. Read more on Design Thinking Toolkit, Lesson 6 – Card Sorting…

How Taking “Half-Steps” Can Further Your Career (& How Your Company Can Help)

Earlier this fall, I participated on a panel of women in STEM for the Grand Rapids Girls Robotics Competition. My fellow panelists and I had the pleasure of a very engaged audience of young women in high school, and we explored a wide range of topics relevant to women in STEM fields.

Read more on How Taking “Half-Steps” Can Further Your Career (& How Your Company Can Help)…

Secure HTTP Proxy with Static IP

Sometimes, we work with APIs that require whitelisting of origin IP addresses for access. This can prove challenging when applications run on SaaS platforms hosted in the public Cloud—you cannot be guaranteed that your application will make requests from a consistent IP address (or range of IP addresses).

For example, hosting on Heroku means that your origin IP address could conceivably be any IP address in the glut of AWS address spaces. Read more on Secure HTTP Proxy with Static IP…

Six Questions to Ask Your Software Consultant Team

As consultants, we work hard to anticipate our clients’ questions and needs. But sometimes we need a little nudge to share more detail. To show how these “nudges” can enhance outcomes, I’ve put together six questions you can ask to get more out of your software consultant team. Read more on Six Questions to Ask Your Software Consultant Team…

Flavoring: Flexible Nominal Typing for TypeScript

Recently, we’ve been making heavy use of TypeScript at Atomic Object. We love the great tooling and instant feedback we get with the language’s powerful type system. TypeScript’s structural type system gives us a lot of powerful tools for making invalid states unrepresentable, thereby pointing out bugs at compile time instead of runtime.

However, one challenge we’ve faced with TypeScript in applying this approach is how to differentiate between values that have the same shape, but mean very different things. For example, if both my Person and my BlogPost have a numeric ID, I’d really like to communicate to TypeScript that they’re not interchangeable. But a function that takes a number accepts both kinds of values.

This post will examine the challenges one might face using the usual approach to this modeling problem, and how we’ve side-stepped them with a variation on the usual technique.
Read more on Flavoring: Flexible Nominal Typing for TypeScript…

Four Questions I Ask Myself When Deciding What to Learn Next

Being a software consultant requires a constant growth mindset. This means having a thirst for knowledge, in both technical and interpersonal skills. With a plethora of topics and resources available, making a choice can be a daunting task. These are a few questions I ask myself when deciding on my next topic to research.
Read more on Four Questions I Ask Myself When Deciding What to Learn Next…

Want to Increase Your Custom Software ROI? Trust Your Team

To have a successful project, you need to trust your team, and they need to trust you.

This is obvious on some levels. Your team must trust that they’re going to get paid, and you must trust that they’re not going to copy your whole database and sell it to your competitors.

But trusting your team should mean more than that. To achieve real, powerful teamwork, trust must go far beyond, “I know you won’t cheat me.” Read more on Want to Increase Your Custom Software ROI? Trust Your Team…

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