Recommended Articles - 2017/01/08

  • Raspberry Pi’s PIXEL Linux desktop now available for x86 PCs: Linux is fast, but working with such a limited hardware by default means this desktop is probably even faster and smaller, perfect for old PCs and laptops.

  • Speed of development always wins. Performance problems will (eventually) get engineered away. This is nearly always how technology changes -@seldo

  • Stack on a budget: List of services with free tiers of interest to developers.

  • The Power of Less Code: Nice read. Highlights:

    • Try hard to get rid of anything that isn’t needed
    • Code is a liability. You and your teammates are responsible for each and every line of code you produce
    • Less code means less complexity, which means less bugs, which means less unexpected outcomes in production
    • Simplicity is a prerequisite for reliability. The more complex a system, the more difficult it is to build a mental model, and the harder it becomes to operate and debug it
    • [Regarding code] complete it or delete it
    • The best code is no code at all
  • Why Percentiles Don’t Work the Way you Think: One of those must reads to avoid common misconceptions, very revealing. Some highlights I wanted to keep for the future:

    • Looking at your average response time is like measuring the average temperature of a hospital. What you really care about is a patient’s temperature, and in particular, the patients who need the most help
    • Percentiles are computed from a population of data, and have to be recalculated every time the population changes. Time series databases average over varying amounts of time, and don’t have the original population.
    • Think of percentiles as wave marks on a beach
    • A distribution shows the shape of the entire population
    • Heatmaps: essentially 3d charts where histograms are turned sideways and stacked together, collected over time, and visualized with the darkness of a color
  • Everything You Know About Latency Is Wrong: Related with previous point but regarding latencies, also some fallacies and mistakes commonly made.

  • If Your Boss Could Do Your Job, You’re More Likely to Be Happy at Work

    • People don’t quit bad jobs, they quit bad bosses
    • Employees are far happier when they are led by people with deep expertise in the core activity of the business
    • Bottom line: Employees are happiest when the boss knows what she or he is talking about, and that drives performance
  • Chabuduo! Close enough...: Chabuduo means leaving things unfinished, the opposite of craftmanship. It is a sad but interesting reading, because China might be "the land of the cut corner" but this slowly is happening elsewhere.

    • "The quota, set for everything from wordcounts for journalists to arrests for policemen, is a powerful spur to value nothing about the product except the speed of its production" Doesn't it sound like KPIs?
  • The empty brain: Your brain does not process information and is not a computer: Really interesting read as it is true I often hear that we're "just very complex computers", and readings like this opens your eyes to radically different points of views (and very well argumented).

  • Take It to the Limit: Considerations for Building Reliable Systems: interesting introduction to platform limits and backpressure.

  • If you can't trust your employees to work flexibly, why hire them in the first place?: Self-explanatory title.

  • Free Design books from O'Reilly: The trick is that some are more "reports" than real books, and a few have names that sound like buzzwords, but probably there's also relevant information.

  • Don't Get Trampled: The Puzzle For "Unicorn" Employees: Good advices for equity/stock options grants to employees.

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Posted by Kartones on 2017-01-08