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Discovering Corporate Open Source Contributions

A year or two ago, I saw a Microsoft’s director deliver the keynote at a conference. He claimed at the time that Microsoft had entered a new era of supporting open source development, which raised a few eyebrows considering their history. This was at a Solr conference, which made me think it’d be interesting to […]

“WTF does a Developer Evangelist do?”

I went to see a great talk by Ryan Joy (MSFT) and Keith Casey (Twilio), at Refresh Austin, on what developer evangelists do. I found this surprisingly interesting; this combination of programming and marketing knowledge is a fairly rare and high bar for a developer. Typically the people found for these positions are already active […]

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Testing ETL Processes

ETL (“extract, transform, load”) come in many shapes, sizes, and product types, and occur under many names – “data migration” projects, business intelligence software, analytics, reporting, scraping, database upgrades, and so on. I’ve collected some notes, attempting to classify these projects by their principal attributes, so that you can estimate the risks and plan the […]

Parsing Code in a Search Engine with Node.js

In my last article I presented a simple tool for discovering senior developers from source code history, which imports Git history into a search engine. This lets you do searches like “who is our Sharepoint expert,” or “who fixed all our Oracle problems.” There are a few code search products that handle similiar problems, e.g. […]


Talk Summary: What is Acunu?

I recently attended a talk by a sales engineer for Acunu (http://www.acunu.com/), an analytics platform for Cassandra. I came away with a couple interesting notes: – The product aims to build data cubes for you in a “big data” scenario – Operating on the principle that disk space is cheap, they increment lots of counters […]


Using ORM layers to ease Support

One of the challenges in supporting complex applications is to answer questions like “Why doesn’t my document show up in search results,” or “why isn’t this event in my report?” Even though database operations are often modeled with set theory, returning the inverse of a query is not sufficient. Consider, however, a hypothetical ORM layer, […]

Base64 Encoding and Decoding Example in Scala

This fairly simple example makes use of the core Java APIs to read files, demonstrating how to construct a base-64 encoded version, and then generating the original file again. package com.garysieling { import java.io.{File, FileInputStream, FileOutputStream} import sun.misc.{BASE64Encoder, BASE64Decoder}   object Base64 extends App { val filename = """C:\IdeaProjects\base64\tests.pdf""" Console.println("Testing " + filename)   val […]