The Tech Done Right podcast is a show by and for people who care about what they build. We don't just build software, we build teams, companies, careers, and communities.
Each episode features host Noel Rappin talking to interesting people in the tech community about building something the right way. We’re not just going to give you our thoughts on the topic, but tools, processes, or references that you can use immediately to build better software and communities.
July 12th, 2017 | 44 mins 35 secs
agile, communication, management
How can you tell whether an agile software team is successful? Many teams use a single measure: velocity. Doc Norton, author of Escape Velocity, and Claire Podulka join the show to discuss why velocity is not a useful measure: it doesn't explain the problems with an unsuccessful team, and successful teams probably don't need it. We discuss the problems with velocity, what to use instead, and get on soapboxes for our least favorite agile anti-patterns.
June 28th, 2017 | 40 mins 43 secs
How does an idea become a pitch become a company? Join Maci Peterson, founder of the startup On Second Thought, and Alicia Drucker, from Table XI, to discuss how a bad text can lead to a good pitch and then a funded startup. How hard is it to break into Silicon Valley if you don't match the expected image of an entrepreneur? Maci discusses how diversity and inclusivity improved her startup business.
June 14th, 2017 | 41 mins 38 secs
career, communication, developer
Is your code the kind of cluttered house you might find on a reality TV show? Or the kind of sleek, minimalist house you might find in a architectural magazine? Neither one sounds like a place you could comfortably live. Sarah Mei joins the podcast to talk about Livable Code, what makes a codebase livable, how to negotiate tension between junior and senior developers and how Rails deals with developer happiness.
May 31st, 2017 | 36 mins 43 secs
How can you get honest feedback from co-workers, even when you are their manager? How can you support your team's career growth and support them as they improve their skills? Claire Lew, the CEO of Know your Company, and Dan Hodos, Table XI's Director of Operations, join Noel to discuss why listening is the most important thing you can do when getting feedback, how specific questions can break the "fine" reflex, how sticky notes can help with career growth, and the one thing you should never do in a one-on-one meeting.
May 17th, 2017 | 41 mins
code, developer, testing
What makes a code base go bad and become "Legacy Code"? Can teams avoid writing bad code? Michael Feathers, author of Working Effectively With Legacy Code joins Tech Done Right to talk about technical debt, how communication can prevent bad coding practices, why coding problems are never just about code, and what it's like to go around the world seeing the worst code messes ever written.
May 10th, 2017 | 44 mins 43 secs
design, design sprint
Do you have a product that needs improvement, or a process to define? Is your team looking for a way to generate and test new ideas quickly? The Design Sprint process, created at Google, is a structured way to explore a problem, create a solution, and get user feedback, all in five days or less. Join Kai Haley (@kaihaley), who teaches sprint facilitation at Google, and Zeke Binion (@ebinion), who has run many sprints, as they show Noel Rappin (@noelrap) how to use Design Sprints.
April 26th, 2017 | 46 mins 40 secs
conference, d_and_i, speaking
Want to start speaking at conferences? We go over how to get your first conference acceptance, then how to become a better speaker over time. For conference organizers, we also discuss how to find the best speakers from a diverse set of backgrounds and experiences. Carina C. Zona (@cczona) and Mark Yoon (@wimyoon) join Noel Rappin (@noelrap) on this episode of Tech Done Right.
April 12th, 2017 | 40 mins 53 secs
community, d_and_i, open source
How can you manage a social media site to maximize community and make all contributors feel safe? Coraline Ada Ehmke (@CoralineAda), from GitHub's Community and Safety Team, and Yana Carstens (@YanaCarstens), a Senior UX designer with Table XI, join Noel on this episode of Tech Done Right. We discuss tools for allowing users more control over their social media environment and community, and how to use personas in design as a way to understand user's goals and guide them toward positive community actions.
March 29th, 2017 | 42 mins 13 secs
developer, open source
How does the Rails core team work? How are new features planned and implemented? How can I contribute? What should I do if I find a security issue in Rails? Our guest is the newest Rails core team member Eileen Uchitelle (@eileencodes) joins Table Xi senior developer Andrew Horner and host Noel Rappin (@noelrap) to discuss Rails, the new testing features in Rails 5.1, and the Rails Core Team.
March 15th, 2017 | 38 mins 16 secs
health, management, tech for good
How can we use software to build better countries? Our guest, Andy Slavitt (@aslavitt), helps us answer by telling us what he learned leading the recovery effort on Healthcare.gov in 2013 and 2014. Andy will talk about the 6,000 defect backlog he inherited when he took over the system, how it got worse before it got better and why it took a culture shift to really improve things. Even if you can't call the White House to berate underperforming contractors, you'll be able to learn how to run a rescue project under monumental pressure.
March 8th, 2017 | 42 mins 52 secs
February 22nd, 2017 | 49 mins 16 secs
Sam Phippen, Justin Searls, and Noel Rappin spend this episode talking about the value of test-driven development (TDD) as well as its cost. They discuss the kinds of problems that developers are likely to have after they learn TDD and attempt to apply it to a large application. Learn why Rails is both great and terrible for automated testing, and how testing can influence the structure of your code.
February 8th, 2017 | 37 mins 43 secs
career, communication, remote
Allison McMillan (@allie_p) and Bradley Schaefer (@soulcutter) talk about remote work in the age of Slack. What makes a good remote worker, or a good remote working team? How can you support more junior team members who want to work remotely? How do you email cake to remote workers on launch celebration day? How can you improve code review for remote workers?
January 25th, 2017 | 40 mins 37 secs
Brandon Hays and Pete Brooks join the Tech Done Right podcast to discuss career development. We'll discuss career development questions like: What makes somebody a senior developer? How do you acquire senior developer skills? What can you do to prepare yourself for a lifetime career and ensure that you are properly valued?
January 16th, 2017 | 40 mins 28 secs
software, teams, trust
We talk about the role that trust has in building teams, and how improv games can help build that trust and improve the way you deliver feedback. We are joined by guests Jessie Shternshus, founder of The Improv Effect and Mark Rickmeier, CEO of Table XI.
January 4th, 2017 | 31 mins 12 secs
css, front-end, html, web
This one is with Table XI front-end developer Aly Fluckey and it’s all about how the Table XI team organizes CSS to best manage the demands of a large code base with lots of styles. We try to avoid common CSS problems, mostly involving having to guess what styles will actually be applied to any given element. The goal is to have the CSS be as predictable and easy to find as possible.