Blog of Rob Galanakis (@robgalanakis)

Jim Crow is hiding in Silicon Valley’s hiring

What do Silicon Valley interview processes have in common with Jim Crow literacy tests? A surprising amount!

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And now, some terrible advice

In a previous post, I talked about the most important advice I’d ever gotten. Now, lest you think some people are really wise and just dispense good advice constantly, I’ll tell you about how the same individual also gave some terrible advice.† The advice can be distilled down to...

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How the Zapier interview process is making me rethink my own

Over the last two months of looking for a new job, I’ve applied to over a couple dozen companies and interviewed with about a quarter of them. The process that stood out the most was Zapier’s. Their interview process is non-typical from start to finish. They have a great...

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Failed assertions and async functions

Armin Ronacher asked in a tweet: If you want to signal a bad calll from an async function (failed assertion). Do you … — Armin Ronacher (@mitsuhiko) February 7, 2018 I explored this quite a bit working in JavaScript on the client and feel like I have a good...

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Diffusing religious arguments

I called arguments between assemble-your-own vs. kitchen-sink framework approaches a religious one akin to tabs vs. spaces in my previous post. All of my leadership positions have been on brownfield products, usually turnarounds, so I’ve walked into minefields of religion that I’ve had to diffuse in order to focus...

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Comparing assemble-your-own vs. kitchen-sink frameworks

In my previous post, I wrote about some of the “performance” tradeoffs in build-yourself vs. off-the-shelf approaches as an analogue for remote vs. collocated teams. I’d like to wade deeper into the build-yourself vs. off-the-shelf approaches, in this case going with an “assemble-your-own” framework (Sinatra with Sequel, Flask with...

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Performance of remote vs. collocated teams

I saw a tweet the other week about remote teams having lower performance than colocated teams: It's not possible to not take a significant performance hit if you're not collocated. Remote if you must, but don't imagine that it's not costing both money and time to do that. —...

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Modern computing is fast

There was a bug I fixed that I was reminded of recently. It’s was small bug – a one line fix – and it didn’t take too long to track down, but it left an impression as to how fast modern computing is. We had some code in an...

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How to turn a team around in one easy step

My last four roles have all been “turn-around” scenarios. At CCP Games I had three: as Technical Art Director, I turned around a group that was struggling on executing basic tooling; as Technical Director I had to turn an entire engineering department that was writing an order of magnitude...

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The most important piece of advice I’ve ever gotten

In May 2010, I had been at BioWare for about 2 years, and was ready to quit. Actually, I had quit. My Art Director at the time set up a meeting between myself and Gordon Walton, a the General Manager for BioWare Austin. Despite of being at BioWare for...

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