A battered door painted bright blue and red sports a brass doorknob and deadbolt.
A battered door painted bright blue and red sports a brass doorknob and deadbolt.
Photo by Nate Bell on Unsplash

Recently I was buried deep in a massive migration project involving IdentityServer and OIDC. But that’s a story for another time. This post comes from the other side of the tracks, from the point of view of a mild-mannered user trying to create and manage their user account on your site.

As software people, one of our main goals should be to delight our users. Unfortunately, as a user myself, I am often underwhelmed, frustrated, and decidedly un-delighted when faced with managing my user account. Here’s how to make it better.

Email address validation

Let’s start with email. The email address is often…


It was 1983, and the Internet was an infant with fresh poo in its diaper, cooing for attention. Now an aging millennial, the diaper is long gone. The cries for attention, however, have become the raucous worldwide cacophony of the digital age.

And the poo? It’s everywhere, as you can see from this pie graph I just made up.

The founding fathers of the Internet hoped to usher in a new Information Age, facilitate the sharing of Big Ideas and the free flow of information across cultural, linguistic, and national boundaries — Yup, totally nailed it.👍 …


Hi, I’m Ty, and I’m a runner! 👋 Recently I ran past the invisible 10,000 kilometer mark.

The journey? Amazing! And educational. So far I’ve managed to avoid serious injury, and keep a smile on my face. I’m grateful for the advice of running buddies and loads of running books, blogs, and videos.

Here I’ve compiled a concentrated list of “running rules” that may help you get faster, stay injury free, and never lose that mid-run smile.

TL;DR

Boil all the rules down to their core, and you’ll get a few guiding principles:

  • Running is a relatively high-impact activity
  • Don’t run…

You’ve got a bunch of DNS zones hosted on Verizon’s EdgeCast, and you’d like to move them over to Azure DNS. Sounds tedious and error-prone. Let’s use the API’s for EdgeCast and Azure to automate copying over those DNS records.

Photo by Gareth Davies on Unsplash

Step 0. Prerequisites

First off, I’ll be using PowerShell 7+, because it’s great, and it’s platform independent. (Get PowerShell)

Step 1. Setup your EdgeCast API

When you visit your EdgeCast dashboard , there’s no clue that an awesome API is lurking beneath. There is only lots of manual drudgery. Fortunately there is a pretty comprehensive REST API document . …


Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

“Hey, can I make money trading crypto?” — For technologists, this question is starting to feel like the new, “Can you fix my computer?”

Except that this question is so much worse, the stakes so much higher. So my response is to get all shifty and uncomfortable, launching into an super subtle staring contest with the contents of my red Solo cup.

Of course, the short answer is an eyebrow scrunching, lip puckering, “um… yes…?”.

And yes, that’s a “yes” couched delicately between two ellipses, like an egg in the mouth of a Golden Retriever. …


All but the most trivial code needs some configuration and setup to do meaningful work. From database connection strings to IoC container initialization — even the lowly idempotent Hello World app is dependent on the implicit default configuration of its environment.

In the physical world, we like instrument clusters, dashboards, things that bring together all the buttons, switches, dials, and toggles into one convenient place. Configuring our code should be no different. Wouldn’t it be nice if managing all the config things were as easy as driving your car?

Well, meet your new friend, Dicese Slex, (Dih-CHESS-ee Slex, for the…


Photo by Jay Heike on Unsplash

I saw a tweet the other day that said, “the scariest thing about COVID-19 is that it looks like a JIRA ticket.” That is scary!

Gets you thinking though: What if COVID-19 were a JIRA ticket for a software bug? Can we unearth a lesson or two about how to prevent bugs from sneaking into our haloed code repositories and affecting our users?

It’s 9:17AM. You’ve just returned from the coffee corner, all smiles, like a big golden sunflower. Setting your mug to one side, you begin energetically logging into your machine. …


Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

What if your favorite programming language was actually moonlighting as a running shoe? What would it feel like to run in it? Say no more, because here they are, and in no particular order. It’s just a heap of running shoes.

C

Programming in C is like running barefoot. It’s just you and the hard asphalt, the bare metal. Or maybe the grass, if you’re fortunate. In fact, you may need some grass, after your first buffer overrun pierces your foot and leads to that humiliating international incident.

Assembly

Perhaps you objected to C as the bare asphalt barefoot running shoe, expecting…


Photo by Markus Petritz on Unsplash

“Voice hoarse, I heaved a huge shoulder-slumping sigh. I’d just wanted to maximize the thing. Instead there I was yelling at all the kids on my lawn, throwing rocks at a cloud, ranting on about non-existent terms like Trust-Driven-Development. Who hurt me, you ask?”

It was the forth annual company campout and we were huddled around the fire pit swapping horror stories gathered from the dark depths of the software industry, holding the fire at bay with an array of steely s’more forks.

“Desire,” I continue, leaning forward slightly on my log perch. “It started with a single desire. I…


Can your product’s “killer feature” — that amazing bit of utility that sets it apart from the competition — actually drive customers away from your product? Consider one example.

Photo by Yaoqi LAI on Unsplash

My Trello Love Story

For a couple of years, I used Trello for personal organization. It’s a great app, one of the best, and I say that as someone who has tried a lot of these types of apps.

(Productivity apps I’ve tried include Asana, GitHub issues, Kanban Flow, Microsoft To-do, MyLifeOrganized, Outlook Tasks, Remember the Milk, Swipes, Todoist, Zenkit, and others I forgot)

With over two years daily use under my belt, Trello was…

Ty Walls

I'm a software engineer in love with creating and learning. (https://www.tygertec.com)

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