John Barton
Yep, a newsletter
Yep, a newsletter

Good afternoon readers,

Sorry it’s going to be a short one this week. My baby’s teething and it has thrown the whole week into disarray.

Product news: the new-new version of the Hecate marketing site has shipped. The big things to see there are the two new products I’m working on to complement Dispatch (what I’ve renamed shipping news to). The Slack integration for Dispatch went live last week too so if that’s something you’ve been waiting for - check it out.


joho/awesome-code-review: An “Awesome” list of code review resources
I’ve shared this before but it just got accepted into the official awesome awesome list this past week.

Go for Industrial Programming
I really like this term “industrial programming” for the kind of regular commercial work we do as an industry. Good Go practices regardless of what you call it.

How We Ditched Redux for MobX
I also ditched Redux for MobX and couldn’t be happier. Well I could be, but that’s got very little do with React state management.

Designing Microservice Architectures the Right Way
Some interesting guidelines for how to design microservices. Don’t agree 100% but still a valuable read.

Business & Management

Are We Investing Enough in Our Managers?
The short answer is no. Someone should make a startup to try and help managers out. Someone.

Go to Where the Actual Work Is Being Done
Oldie but a goodie. Managers should build up a routine to actually go check out the work where it’s happening.

Book recommendations.
Another list of books to read spanning tech and management (mostly management). Will the internet run out of reading lists before I run out of newsletters? Let’s find out.

Library Rules: How to make an open office plan work
Great post on how you can make open office spaces work. Good news: it can be done. Bad news: you need a lot of budget and clout in your org to get away with it.

Transitioning from Programming to Management
Good advice for the newly promoted engineering manager.


It’s been a busy fortnight for me so not as much of the fun stuff this issue sorry.

This Children’s Book Is Messed Up: The Story Of Babar
Like a lot of Australian’s of my generation I grew up on ABC cartoons. Babar was on heavy rotation and something I thought was pretty innocuous. Much like Tintin, it wasn’t.

The Healing Buzz of “Drunk History”
An intellectual rationalisation of one of my favourite TV shows. I’m all in on making history less stuffy and more accessible.

Contractually Obligated Nautical Fact

One of my all time favourite movies is Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, which may be the only Russell Crowe movie I like. Two bits of trivia about the movie. The first is that it was all shot on a replica of the HMS Rose which used to be bookable for cruises, but is now kept at the San Diego Maritime Museum. The second is that the entire cast got terribly seasick except for Paul Bettany because he was a Sea Cadet as a kid. Not sure what you’d do with either of those tidbits, that utility isn’t really the aim of the game with the Contractually Obligated Nautical Facts.

Thaks for reading. You can find this issue online here.If you know anyone who might enjoy these emails, feel free to send them to the subscribe form