My 5 Steps for Tackling Stress

Deadlines, miscommunication, conflict. Regardless of what our jobs, projects, or responsibilities may be, we all face these things during our careers. If not handled properly, the stress from these issues can expand to other areas of life, quickly becoming unmanageable.

That’s why it’s critical to learn how to manage stress. While I’m not an expert in the field, I have had some experience dealing with stress and have learned a few things along the way. I’d like to share some tips that I have found useful when dealing with stress in my life.
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A Brief Introduction to Audio and Video Encoding

Every day, I listen to music or watch videos on different platforms–the radio, phone, computer, and television. Until recently, I had never considered exactly how that media was delivered to me. I would venture to guess that many people have been, or are in, that situation themselves.

I’ve spent some time looking into exactly how these forms of media are created and distributed, and I wanted to share some of the things that I’ve learned. While the concepts themselves aren’t overly challenging, the terminology can be confusing and misused, so I’m going to review some of the common terms and expressions.
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How We Used a Week of Spikes to Map Out a Feature

For those uninitiated to agile software development, “a spike solution is a very simple program to explore potential solutions” to a particularly challenging problem. This term and definition comes from XP Explained by Kent Beck, and it is still as relevant today as it ever was.
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How I Learned to Love (or at Least Like) Pair Programming

Some people are naturally inclined to pair. Not me. My brain is all over the place when I code, so it’s difficult to focus energy on solving the problem at hand while explaining my reasoning and approaches to my pair.

This thing is, pair programming is a highly-regarded and widely-practiced convention here at Atomic. When I started here, I had never paired before. And I was quite surprised to see both how effective it was for others, and how difficult it was for me.
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Clojure Development in Spacemacs

I’ve recently been doing some basic Clojure development, and it’s been a huge blast. I’ve played around with it in the past, but never bothered to fully set up a development environment. This time, however, I decided to spend a few evenings perfecting my workflow and becoming familiar with the tools available, focusing on my editor of choice: Spacemacs.
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IDE Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen

If you have ever found yourself working on iOS and Android projects, you’ve probably had to decide which IDE or text editor to use. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of options to choose from when it comes to native projects; however, this means that choosing an IDE is significantly easier. Android Studio is a great choice for Android development, and if you want to keep your environment consistent, AppCode is an excellent product.
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Getting Started with AppleScript

As a consultant, I do my best to be as efficient as possible. I want to provide the greatest value I can, and one of the ways of doing this is by cutting down the repetition in my workflow. If I find myself doing a task frequently, I try to shorten the time it takes to do it, or to automate it completely. Recently, I have been exploring AppleScript, which is a very powerful tool available to anyone running OS X.
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Learning from Pokémon GO: The Importance of Testing

Automated testing is one of the most powerful tools available to a software developer, but some people are reluctant to embrace it. With the release of Pokémon GO and its bugs seen in the first several weeks, this is a good time to discuss the importance of releasing quality code into production.
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