John Barton
Yep, a newsletter
Yep, a newsletter

Big news this fortnight - I’m opening up the Heartbeat beta to the next round of fearless guinea pigs. Read the launch post for more information but the short version is that any current or near-future dispatch customer can opt into the beta for free.


Programming paradigms for dummies: what every programmer should know
I have not yet had time to read the full paper, but if the summary is anything to go by, this looks like a super useful guide to the underlying paradigms in the programming languages we use.

Eliminate error handling by eliminating errors
Solid post from Dave on tidying up a bunch of the “if err” checks that litter just about every go program out there.

Accidentally Quadratic
I was on a bit of a tumblr kick over the long weekend and re-discovered this absolute gem. It’s kind of like a kinder, narrow topic version of the daily WTF.

Why Don’t People Use Formal Methods?
Excellent introduction to the world of formal design and code verification. It almost convinced me to give it a try.

Programming Fonts
Handy little “try before you buy” utility page to help you choose between a huge list of open source programming fonts.

Business & Management

On Sizing Your Engineering Organizations
Super useful article on properly sizing your engineering team against your roadmap. Feels pretty accurate against my own experience.

The Intrinsic Value of a SaaS Business: A 20 Year DCF
I feel like a lot of startup people forget that valuation is theoretically meant to represent something about future cashflows and isn’t just an intense kind of eBay auction. This post shows how the maths works for SAAS businesses.

Breaking Down Our SaaS Start-up’s Operating Agreement
I’d not heard of an operating agreement before but they sound useful and this seems like a decent one.

Schumpeter on Strategy
Some interesting thoughts on entrepreneurial strategy based on some ye-olde economics.

What Skeptics Get Wrong About Full-Stack Engineers—And Why We Need Them
There’s quite a bit of backlash against the notion of a full stack engineer within the development community to which I think this post is a reasonable rebuttal.


Lawrence Lessig On What MMOs Can Teach Us About Real Life Politics
Learning how to run a team from online gaming is so 2018. Learning how to run a government from online gaming is where it’s at now.

Penny Fractions: The Ghosts of Music Streaming’s Past
A look at the history of streaming and record labels in the Napster era that can help you understand what’s going on now with Spotify.

Farming Simulator Esports Expands with League and Farm-Tech Sponsors
If I wasn’t already all about esports (though I am) this would have pushed me over the line. Racing to stack pretend haybales on the computer makes at least as much sense to me as the rules of cricket and is unlikely to take four days to play.

A City Called Copenhagen
Don’t ask my why but I was listening to a podcast about Danish public information movies of the early to mid 20th century and then I watched a bunch of them and this one was probably my favourite and you might like it too.

The devotion of the human dad separates us from other apes
As a dad struggling to find his feet, I found this article about what dads are actually for very heartening. I was worried a couple of times it would veer into red-pill MRA gender determinism territory but I think it managed to avoid it.

Contractually Obligated Nautical Fact

Gaming at Sea
TL;DR - the merchant navy is apparently not as fun as it used to be and it is hard to play steam games on satellite internet.

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