The Upsyde

The simplest website that could possibly work.

Recent Blog Posts

2018-06-02 How to Change Elixir Log Levels for a Running Application

Logging is essential to any production system, but it’s also terribly easy to make your logs so noisy they become worthless. That’s why I’m a big fan of carefully specifying the criticality level of everything I log. Not only does it allow us to easily search the logs for potential problems, it allows us to […]

2018-02-16 Test Driving Arduino

I gave a workshop for the Columbus Arduino and Raspberry Pi Enthusiasts (CARPE) Tuesday night. We had a great time and I thought it would be a good idea to share the experience and my motivation creating the workshop here. The Arduino IDE isn’t what I’d call good. It’s great for someone new to programming […]

2017-07-22 How to See Memory and CPU Usage for All Your Docker Containers on CentOS 6

I run a bunch of Docker containers on a single CentOS 6 server with a limited amount of memory. (I only recently bumped it from 0.5 to 1 whole whopping gig!) Before I bring another container online, I like to check to see how much room I’ve got. Being the newest versions of Docker aren’t […]

2017-06-10 Go away. It will all be waiting for you when you return. 

I realize that my posts here have become a bit infrequent and erratic. If you’re a frequent reader, you know that I changed jobs early this year. I didn’t just change jobs though; I completely swapped stacks. Learning a dozen technologies “overnight” has taken up a lot of the time that I previously dedicated to […]

2017-05-13 Pretend Your Users Sat Next to You Everyday

I’m very much a “The tests pass. Ship it.” kind of guy. I like to fail fast and have long believed that the best way to find places where we missed a requirement or made a mistake is to get it into the hands of real users as quickly as possible. Recently however, the users […]

2017-04-30 Two Quick Tips for a Better Code Review Experience

Let’s talk about Code Reviews for a minute. They’re important; they spread knowledge around and catch bugs [citation needed], but they can be frustrating some times. They don’t need to be though. There are a few things we can do to keep the code review a pleasant experience.  Review the code, not the coder.  Keep […]

2017-03-20 Tests tell stories, listen to what they say

I’m not a big fan of integration tests. They’re often unreliable and “flaky” due to their very nature of being integration tests that rely on file systems, networks, and databases. These kinds of tests are hard to get right. At least, it’s hard to get them stable enough to be valuable and I often wonder if […]

2017-03-04 Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks

I had a really amazing experience this week. I had an opportunity to pair with a gentleman who has been programming since I was in diapers. He had only ever test driven code once before, but is really excited about learning. I think that in and of itself is amazing, but I learned a few […]

2017-01-22 The Bottleneck

The monk Ahiru¬†was pairing with the bright young apprentice, Taipisuto. The apprentice was quite impressed with his customized editor and the speed at which he could type. Ahiru was not nearly as impressed. The screen was flickering in a way that made him more than just a bit nauseous. “And what shall you do when […]

2017-01-09 Doing what’s best, even when it sucks

About 8 months ago, I promised you that I’d follow up and let you know how our transition to Agile software development was going.¬†This is that long overdue follow up and I’m sad to say that six weeks ago I submitted my resignation. Tomorrow I start with my new company. I’m sitting in an airport […]