How Many Sprints Does it Take to Change a Lightbulb?

I haven’t touched a light switch in weeks. Over the past few months, I’ve been rolling out a smart light network throughout my house. To successfully complete the project, I followed a simple Agile process that we use all the time at Atomic to help clients navigate large software projects with lots of stakeholders. If you’re thinking about starting a software project, or you just want to play around with home automation, here’s what you’ll want to do. Read more on How Many Sprints Does it Take to Change a Lightbulb?…

Three Pitfalls of React Native Development (and How to Leap Over Them)

React Native is one of the best things to happen in the cross-platform mobile app development scene since the WebView. I can’t get enough of it. My current project (an iOS and Android application built with React Native and a heavily customized UI) would have taken at least twice as long to build as a cross-platform Xamarin app, and twice again as long to build as two independent native apps. It provides an incredible speed boost and brings native app development way closer to the sub-second write/refresh/results loop that web developers have enjoyed for years.

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Five Build Commands to Make Project Onboarding Faster & Easier

New team members shouldn’t have to spend their time probing the subtle differences between their MacBook and yours while reading a lovingly worded project_treatise.md. They should be able to jump in and run the project in 10 minutes, flat.

So next time you start a new project, try writing your Makefile before you write the Readme. You’ll spend a bit more time upfront building automation, but it will pay off when collaborators join you. Here are five commands that I add to every project to make joining up fast and painless. Read more on Five Build Commands to Make Project Onboarding Faster & Easier…

Four Reasons Your Mobile App Needs a Web Back End

Building a modern mobile application can be an intimidating prospect. From establishing trademarks to choosing the right technology approach to planning your marketing campaign, there’s a lot to keep in mind.

One thing that’s easy to overlook is the web back end, but it’s essential to powering many of the experiences that customers expect from a top-tier application.
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You’re Not the Only Imposter at the Office: 6 Strategies for Dealing with Imposter Syndrome at Work

Do you ever get the feeling that you don’t have any business doing the job that you do? That everyone else knows exactly what to say, while you trip over your words like a toddler in clown shoes? Yeah. Me too.

I work at one of the most prestigious software consultancies in Michigan, building multi-platform applications that are in active use by people who seem pretty happy. We have a rigorous interview process. But most days, I feel like the hiring team must’ve been asleep on the job when they let me in. Read more on You’re Not the Only Imposter at the Office: 6 Strategies for Dealing with Imposter Syndrome at Work…

Keep Your Temporary Hacks Temporary with a Shame.cs

In every codebase of a certain age, there are dark corners. Unloved, poorly-lit classes that smell vaguely of moldering wood and mothballs. Methods that creak when a lonely dev walks by. Small trees poking out of reactive pipelines, drawing sustenance from thick, loamy beds of commented-out code. We’ve all wandered through those codebases. Lately, I’ve been tidying up a few cobwebby windowsills in mine with a trick that I picked up from Harry over at CSS Wizardry. Read more on Keep Your Temporary Hacks Temporary with a Shame.cs…

Choosing the Right Release Cadence for Your Project

On software projects, choosing a release schedule that works for both your team and your client is essential to long-term project health. Release too often, and you risk coming off as frantic and harried to your customers, your clients, or both. Release too seldom, and you risk appearing stodgy, inflexible, and unresponsive. Read more on Choosing the Right Release Cadence for Your Project…

Code Like a Craftsman with a Vim Clutch

Stroll around our Grand Rapids office, and you’ll find some unique input methods. Curved, split, and mechanical keyboards, mice shaped like everything from sashimi to joysticks, giant trackpads, drawing tablets, Echo Dots, and Yetis. We like to keep things interesting when it comes to our workspaces.

For the last hundred days, I’ve been kicking around a centuries-old input method in a new context. Here’s how you can set up your own Vim clutch.
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