Chris Zempel

Latest Posts

How to Debug

Published 9 months ago

Ask a programmer how they debug, and they will reveal to you their soul. I'd like to say I'm being a little melodramatic here, but honestly, I'm not. Not only do I think this is a great interview question, but how you answer it strikes to the heart of a deeper question: how do you actually believe people and technology fit together? Here's my answer.

Coffee isn't Complicated

Published 9 months ago

In an experiment that takes three cups of coffee, in three days, you can produce a permanent quality of life upgrade. People talk about all the thousands of flavors in coffee beans and stuff, but nobody's got time for that.

React in Rails: The Gotchas

Published 11 months ago

React is great for doing heavy UI lifting in Rails apps by making your UI interactions easy to reason about and change. However, as someone who is quite familiar with Rails but passingly proficient in JS, there are some gotchas you're going to run into that other guides didn't cover for me. This isn't a cohesive "clone this feature" article. This is the quick-and-dirty, let's get you to functional and help you avoid some mines I stepped on article.

Junior vs Senior

Published about 2 years ago

It would be an understatement to say the hardest moment a developer faces isn’t when they know what to do, but when they don’t. And nowhere is this more immediate than early on on the process of learning how to code.

The Development Behind InvisibleGirlfriend

Published about 2 years ago

This is the first public war story I have, and the lesson about design patterns I learned here has influenced me ever since in many, many places beyond coding.

What is Critical Thinking?

Published over 2 years ago

One of the things that haunts my thoughts at night is this: what makes one product better than another? What differentiates software? What, exactly, is the way you can discover how to change the question “Why should I use this?” into “Why *shouldn’t* I use this?”

The Five Core Activities of a Software Dev

Published almost 4 years ago

(Post 5 of 5) At this point, I was pretty much running out of things to write about. I still chuckle at the horrible Zoolander joke I made, though.

Learning to Think Like A Developer

Published almost 4 years ago

(Post 4 of 5) Like ever single entrant into the programming arena ever, I contend with the notion of the 10x programmer. Funny how this straightforward notion dissolves over time into context and nuance. Surprisingly, the pictures still work because I went with imgur!

Working at Efeqdev

Published almost 4 years ago

(Post 3 of 5) In the third post of this series, I talk through how my approach to tackling learning quickly has evolved and give a rundown of all my coworkers. Man I had some rose tinted glasses.

Test Your Might: How I’m Getting up to Speed

Published about 4 years ago

(Post 2 of 5) In the second post of the series, I talk about the approach I use to tackle learning how to code in the most optimal fashion I know how. Even reading this years later, I still agree with most of what I wrote.

How I Launched My Development Career in Nine Months

Published about 4 years ago

(Post 1 of 5) The first post in the series detailing my shift from slinging pizzas to slinging code. This was originally posted on a website that's no longer around.

 

Is there something you'd like to read about?


"In excess, most endeavors and possessions take on the characteristics of their opposite."

Please read responsibly.