John Barton
Yep, a newsletter
Yep, a newsletter

Ahoy there!

Not much preamble this fortnight, I’m head down, bum up working on features for the next Heartbeat release. Here are some things I read that hopefully you will too.


Michael Chan - Hot Garbage Architecture, Clean Code is Dead
My favourite tech talk I’ve watched for quite a while and well worth your time. Don’t 100% agree with clean code being dead, but think his position is a better starting point than the “teach all the robots how to be pedants” that seems to hold sway in the industry today.

Transmuting Low-Value Programmer Cred into High-Value Status lllegibility
An interesting insight into the realpolitik behind the technical track and why people never hire “staff engineers”.

From Prototype to Production: Lessons from Building and Scaling Reddit’s Ad Serving Platform with Go
It’s got pictures of boxes with lines between them and numbers and everything else you need in a tech architecture rundown.

Undersea Internet cables are at risk
This was a borderline nautical fact for the issue because my love of deep sea cabling is well documented, but figured it’s more straight tech than nautical. TL;DR lots of internet cables that need to be dry will probably be wet soon. Really wet.

Floppy Disk Archiving – Legacy Mode
Shoutout to the old Geelong airquote “hacking” crew! Fun, borderline excessively technical post about backing up ye olde floppy disk formats from old mate Segra.

Risky Business Requires Active Operators
If you’ve got one of those magical CI pipelines that deploy everything without you having to do anything, have a read of this and think really hard about whether that’s such a shit hot idea.

My Five Worst Bugs: Lessons Learned In System Design
Lists of mistakes made and lessons learned are my favourite way to learn.

Business & Management

Navigating branding for tech startups—a founder’s journey
Another newsletter, another shameless self-plug. Shared the story of how all the Hecate branding came together with my old team to make a blog.

We Spent $3.3M Buying Out Investors: Why and How We Did It
Buffer bought out their VCs and told everyone all about it. I would love to read the other side of the story.

Why we backed Amber Electric – Black Sheep Capital
I sit next to Chris at the Startmate office and this is all about his company. If you’re in Sydney and want cheaper electricity go have a look.

Investor-Founder fit in day-zero startups
This is the question that’s ruling my life right now.


The Political Life is no Life at All
A great essay on the toxicity of being in the political class and how that keeps regular humans out of the structures of power.

Generative Art Finds Its Prodigy
Generative Art is rad and you should learn more about it and maybe even do it. This is a good inspiration point to start from.

Why Nietzsche has once again become an inspiration to the far-right
I can’t keep up with whether or not I’m allowed to like Nietzsche. It’s a tough game being a fair weather undergraduate level philosophy fan.

This SimCity-Like Tool Lets Urban Planners See The Potential Impact Of Their Ideas
An Urban Planner Plays Sim City
Did I spend a half hour of my life watching a town planner narrate his own game of sim city? The chance you asked yourself that question is inversely proportional to the length of time you’ve been a subscriber to this here newsletter.

Contractually Obligated Nautical Fact

Conservation couple buys New Zealand Navy warship
Thanks Aprill for sending over this one. I now have a new lifegoal of buying an ex-warship from the NZ navy. Which is a thing you can do.

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 subscription form