All Episodes

  • Leaving Debian

    Leaving Debian

    • icon Nov 02, 21
    • icon 40 min

    Today’s story is an insider view of Debian. One of the oldest Linux distributions and probably one of the longest-running volunteer-based open-source projects.

    Joey Hess is my guest, and he dedicated significant parts of his adult life to working on Debian. He’s going to share what that was like. The good and the bad, and... more..

  • The Original Remote Developer

    The Original Remote Developer

    • icon Oct 04, 21
    • icon 41 min

    Today’s episode is about remote work. Well, sort of. I found someone with a different perspective on remote work and a fantastic story to share, Paul Lutus.

    I think that he might be the original remote software developer.

    He left California behind for a lower cost of living in Oregon. And from Oregon, he developed... more..

  • Quines, Polyglot Code and Other Fun Computations

    Quines, Polyglot Code and Other Fun Computations

    • icon Sep 02, 21
    • icon 61 min

    Today, previous guest and my neighbor Don Mckay and I will discuss items from the endless fascinating Cursed Computer Iceberg Meme. The Iceberg is a giant list of “the peculiarities and weirdness of computers.”

    We each a select few items from the list and alternate explaining it to each other. Don’s choices are varied,... more..

  • Full-Time Open Source

    Full-Time Open Source

    • icon Aug 02, 21
    • icon 46 min

    Today’s show: How to quit your job and work on open source full time.

    This story has it all – balancing side projects and full-time employment, building up enough supports to leave your job, and explaining quitting to your family and friends.

    And also: what do you do if your project succeeds, and then someone... more..

  • The Untold Story of SQLite

    The Untold Story of SQLite

    • icon Jul 02, 21
    • icon 38 min

    On today’s show, I’m talking to Richard Hipp about surviving becoming core infrastructure for the world. SQLite is everywhere. It’s in your web browser, it’s in your phone, it’s probably in your car, and it’s definitely in commercial planes. It’s where your iMessages and WhatsApp messages are stored, and if you do a find on... more..

  • From Competitive Programming to APL

    From Competitive Programming to APL

    • icon Jun 02, 21
    • icon 53 min

    Today on the show, we have solving algorithmic programming problems. You know when you interview for a job to write CSS and they ask you to reverse a binary tree on the whiteboard using C and in constant memory space? It’s that kind of thing. These problems have their roots in algorithmic programming contests. And... more..

  • Smart Contract Rescue

    Smart Contract Rescue

    • icon May 02, 21
    • icon 34 min

    Today I talk to Dan Robinson about trying to get someone their money back on Ethereum. He’s going to be battling this murky world of blockchain high-frequency bots. Along the way, we’ll learn how trades are executed on Ethereum and a bit of game theory and political philosophy.

    It’s an entertaining peek into a world... more..

  • Apple 2001

    Apple 2001

    • icon Apr 03, 21
    • icon 48 min

    David Shayer worked at Apple for 14 years, and he has a wild experience to share. Apple has a unique culture, and David will give us an insider view of what it was like for him at Apple during the 2000s, roughly between 2001 to 2015 when Apple transformed into the powerhouse that it is... more..

  • Video Game Programming From Scratch

    Video Game Programming From Scratch

    • icon Mar 01, 21
    • icon 41 min

    I’m not really a big gamer, but lately, I’ve fallen down this rabbit hole into the world of Casey Muratori, and this project that he started on Twitch in 2014. He is building a video game from scratch and explaining it all as he goes along.

    Casey is a professional video game and game engine,... more..

  • Reinforcement Learning At Facebook

    Reinforcement Learning At Facebook

    • icon Feb 01, 21
    • icon 38 min

    If you ever wanted to learn about machine learning you could do worse than have Jason Gauci teach you. Jason has worked on YouTube recommendations. He was an early contributor to TensorFlow the open-source machine learning platform. His thesis work was cited by DeepMind.

    But what I find so fascinating with Jason is he recognized... more..

  • 2020 Year End

    2020 Year End

    • icon Jan 01, 21
    • icon 34 min

    Welcome to the year-end episode. Today is all the bonus questions. Often times I have questions that I want to ask guests, but they don’t quite fit the overall theme of the episode. So today we’re going to do a whole episode of those extra questions.

    I have previously recorded questions for Brian Kernighan, the... more..

  • Frontiers of Performance

    Frontiers of Performance

    • icon Dec 01, 20
    • icon 47 min

    Did you ever meet somebody who seemed a little bit different than the rest of the world? Maybe they question things that others wouldn’t question or said things that others would never say. Daniel is a world-renowned expert on software performance, and one of the most popular open-source developers, if you measure by Github followers.... more..

  • The Birth of UNIX

    The Birth of UNIX

    • icon Nov 01, 20
    • icon 51 min

    When you work on your computer, there are so many things you take for granted: operating systems, programming languages, they all have to come from somewhere.

    In the late 1960s and 1970s, that somewhere was Bell Labs, and the operating system they were building was UNIX.

    They were building more than just an operating system... more..

  • To The Assembly

    To The Assembly

    • icon Oct 01, 20
    • icon 41 min

    How do CPUs work? How do compilers work? How does high-level code get translated into machine code? Today’s guest is Matt Godbolt and he knows the answers to these questions.

    How he became an expert in bare metal programming is an interesting story. Matt shares his origin story and the creation of compiler explorer in... more..

  • Memento Mori

    Memento Mori

    • icon Sep 01, 20
    • icon 40 min

    Preparing our minds for the inevitable is hard. But, after facing terminal cancer, Kate Gregory recalled that facing death has many lessons to teach us.

    In this episode,  Kate will share the lessons she learned and explain how you can apply them to your career as a software developer and live a remarkable life.

  • We're Teaching Functional Programming Wrong

    We're Teaching Functional Programming Wrong

    • icon Aug 03, 20
    • icon 46 min

    Today Richard Feldman shares his story of going from javascript developer to elm developer to functional programming teacher.

    Along the way, Richard finds that people are teaching functional programming wrong. We are teaching it in a way that misses how most industrial software engineers learn best.

    Richard also delves into Elm, his approach, and how... more..

  • Software That Doesn't Suck

    Software That Doesn't Suck

    • icon Jul 01, 20
    • icon 37 min

    Software is just the tool and it should get out of your way. In this episode, Jim discusses how to build a great developer tool. It all started with: “What’s the worst software that you use every day?” and led to the creation of Subversion.

  • Unproven Techology Case Study

    Unproven Techology Case Study

    • icon Jun 10, 20
    • icon 39 min

    Choosing the programming language or framework for a project can be to the success of the project.

    In today’s episode, Sean Allen shares a story of picking the right tool for a job. The tool he ends up picking will surprise you.

    His problem: make a distributed stream processing framework, something that can take a... more..

  • Krystal's Story

    Krystal's Story

    • icon May 18, 20
    • icon 40 min

    Things are easier to learn when you are passionate about something. A lot of great careers are built on curiosity and obsession including Krystal Maughan our guest for today’s episode.

    Krystal will share her journey as she chased her curiosity in programming wherever it led her.

  • Learning a new language

    Learning a new language

    • icon May 05, 20
    • icon 35 min

    There’s joy that can be found in language learning and pain as well. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, there are still some things you can only discover by picking up a new language.

    Bruce Tate will tell us how learning new languages rekindled the spark of joy for him.

  • Portal Abstractions with Sam Ritchie

    Portal Abstractions with Sam Ritchie

    • icon Apr 17, 20
    • icon 35 min

    Today the story of how twitter engineers came up with a unique solution to data engineering.

    Adam interviews Sam about how the abstract algebra and probabilistic data structures help solve fast versus big data issues that many are struggling with.

    Adam talks to Sam Ritchie, a machine learning researcher. Stop in to hear Adam and... more..

  • Loving Legacy Code with Jonathan Boccara

    Loving Legacy Code with Jonathan Boccara

    • icon Apr 03, 20
    • icon 26 min

    Legacy code is everywhere. I don’t think I’ve met anyone who doesn’t have to deal with legacy code in the substantial portion of his work.

    Our guest, Jonathan Boccara is a French C++ developer and the author of The Legacy Code Programmer’s Toolbox. In this episode, Jonathan will help us understand and build the correct... more..

  • The Reason For Types

    The Reason For Types

    • icon Mar 16, 20
    • icon 36 min

    Adam talked to Jared Forsyth about his journey from untyped javascript to using flow and eventually reasonml.

  • Karl L Hughes on Conference Talks

    Karl L Hughes on Conference Talks

    • icon Mar 02, 20
    • icon 50 min

    Adam talks to Karl Hughes about his path to becoming a conference speaker and the work he has done to make it easier for others to follow in his footsteps.

  • Don and Adam Discuss Folds

    Don and Adam Discuss Folds

    • icon Feb 15, 20
    • icon 36 min

    Today we try a different format. Adam invites his neighbour, Don McKay, over to ask him questions. An interesting discussion on recursion, corecursion and the naming of the podcast unfolds.

  • David Heinemeier Hansson

    David Heinemeier Hansson

    • icon Feb 01, 20
    • icon 1: min

    David Heinemeier Hansson talks to Adam about avoiding a software monoculture. He explains why we should find a programming language that speaks to us, why ergonomics matter, and why single page apps and microservices are not for him.

  • React and Scala JS

    React and Scala JS

    • icon Jan 16, 20
    • icon 38 min

    Today Adam talks to Shadaj Laddad. What is React? Why do we need front end frameworks at all. Shadaj explains modern front end web development. He also explains why he likes to use react from scala.js and built a framework to make that easy for all.

  • The Business Of Developer Tools

    The Business Of Developer Tools

    • icon Dec 17, 19
    • icon 37 min

    How do you build a business around tools for software engineers? Adam talks to Lee Edwards, a VC who spends a lot of time thinking about this question.

  • Software in Context

    Software in Context

    • icon Dec 02, 19
    • icon 53 min

    Adam talks to Author and Clojure advocate Zach Tellman about how great software is built.

  • Beautiful and Useless Coding

    Beautiful and Useless Coding

    • icon Nov 16, 19
    • icon 52 min

    Generative Art involves using the tools of computation to creative ends. Adam talks to Allison Parrish about how she uses word vectors to create unique poetry. Word vectors represent a fundamentally new tool for working with text.

    Adam and Allison also talk about creative computer programming and building twitter bots and what makes something art.

    ... more..
  • Tech Evangelism

    Tech Evangelism

    • icon Nov 01, 19
    • icon 67 min

    What makes some pieces of technology take off? Why is java popular and not small talk or Haskell?

    Gabe is a popular blogger, a former Haskell cheerleader, and creator of the Dhall configuration language. Today we talk about marketing and tech evangelism.

  • Language Oriented Design

    Language Oriented Design

    • icon Oct 01, 19
    • icon 56 min

    Adam talks to Hal Abelson about the textbook he coauthored in 1985, The Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs and why it is still popular and influential today.

  • Open Source Health and Diversity

    Open Source Health and Diversity

    • icon Sep 15, 19
    • icon 41 min

    Heather Miller is an Assistant Professor at CMU. She is concerned that key open source projects are at risk of failure and no one is paying attention. Adam talks to her about open source, how it grows, the diversity problems it has and much more.

    Heather also shares some interesting stories about the early days... more..

  • Learning About Compilers

    Learning About Compilers

    • icon Sep 01, 19
    • icon 58 min

    What do compilers do? What is the runtime of a language? What does it mean to compile something down to bytecode and what executes the bytecode. Throsten Ball answers these questions in this interview with Adam.

  • Advanced Software Design

    Advanced Software Design

    • icon Aug 16, 19
    • icon 53 min

    How do we create great software? What are the important skills need to properly review a PR? How do you identify assumptions of a code base and the stable contracts of a software module?

    Jimmy Koppel is working on his Ph.D. in the field of program synthesis at MIT. He was previously paid 100 thousand... more..

  • Category Theory

    Category Theory

    • icon Aug 15, 19
    • icon 53 min

    Today Adam talks to Bartosz Milewski. He is the author of a popular blog series, lecture series, and now book on Category Theory for programmers.

    The world of functional programming is rife with terminology imported from abstract algebra and Category Theory. In fact, it may be one of the most valid criticisms of functional programming... more..

  • Using TypeScript Like A Pro

    Using TypeScript Like A Pro

    • icon Jul 15, 19
    • icon 70 min

    How do we make javascript easier to work with? Chris Krycho has been using typescript to add types to javascript since 2016.

    Chris is a software developer at LinkedIn who, at his previous gig, worked on converting one of the largest Ember apps in the world to TypeScript. I was shocked by the size. Chris... more..

  • Rethinking Technological Positivism

    Rethinking Technological Positivism

    • icon Jun 15, 19
    • icon 61 min

    Self-driving cars or armed autonomous military robots may make use of the same technologies. In a certain sense, we as software developers are helping to build and shape the future. What does the future look like and are we helping build the right one? Is technology a force for liberty or oppression.

    Cory Doctorow is... more..

  • How to Build a Programming Language

    How to Build a Programming Language

    • icon May 31, 19
    • icon 56 min

    Bob Nystrom is the author of Crafting Interpreters. I speak with Nystrom about building a programming language and an interpreter implementation for it. We talk about parsing, the difference between compiler and interpreters and a lot more.

    If you are wondering why many languages have hand-rolled parser implementations yet much content on building languages implementations... more..

  • Refinement Types

    Refinement Types

    • icon May 15, 19
    • icon 50 min

    Formal verification and type systems - how do they relate? Niki Vazou is on a mission to bring better formal verification to the masses.

    I have done a couple of episodes about dependent types and my feeling is that dependent types are super powerful and have some conceptual simplicity ( Types are a first class... more..

  • Rethinking Databases

    Rethinking Databases

    • icon Apr 30, 19
    • icon 58 min

    Can we make databases faster and remove the need for caching reads in an external cache? Can we make a distributed SQL based relational database that outperforms memcached? Jon Gjengset and the PDOS team at MIT CSAIL have done just that with Noria.

    Today I talk to Jon about Noria, about building a database in... more..

  • Learning to Think

    Learning to Think

    • icon Apr 15, 19
    • icon 53 min

    Andy Hunt is a celebrity in the world of software development. Or at least he is one to me. The Pragmatic Programmer is a classic book on software development book. He is an author of the agile manifesto and started the book company that has published many great books, including several by recent guests.

    Today... more..

  • Data and Scale

    Data and Scale

    • icon Mar 31, 19
    • icon 56 min

    Pat Helland has a wealth of knowledge on building distributed data stores. He has been working on distributed data stores since 1978, when he worked on the tandem fault-tolerant database. Since then he has been involved in many distributed database projects.

    Here is the key thing, he is also a master at explaining the key... more..

  • Abstraction and Learning

    Abstraction and Learning

    • icon Mar 15, 19
    • icon 49 min

    What is abstraction? Can we have a precise definition of abstraction that, once understood, makes writing software simpler?

    Runar has thought a lot about abstraction and how we can choose the proper level for the software we write.

    In this interview, he explains these concepts using examples from the real world. Examples include SQL, effectful... more..

  • Modern Systems Programming

    Modern Systems Programming

    • icon Feb 22, 19
    • icon 0 min

    Richard Whaling has an interesting perspective on software development. If you write software for the JVM or if you are interested in low level system programming, or even doing data heavy or network heavy IO programming then you will find this interview interesting.

    We discuss how to build faster software in a modern fashion by... more..

  • Recreational Coding

    Recreational Coding

    • icon Jan 25, 19
    • icon 62 min

    A decade ago Jamis Buck was not loving his job. He was an important open source contributor. He worked for the hottest trendiest software company at the time, 37 signals, creator of ruby on rails.

    He was on top of the world but also he was burnt out.

    Today Jamis talks about how he overcame... more..

  • Software as a Reflection of Values

    Software as a Reflection of Values

    • icon Dec 18, 18
    • icon 79 min

    Which operating system is the best? Which programming language is the best? What text editor?

    Bryan Cantrill, CTO of Joyent says that is the wrong question. Languages, operating systems and communities have to make trade offs and they do that based on their values. So the right language is the one who’s values align with... more..

  • The Little Typer

    The Little Typer

    • icon Dec 01, 18
    • icon 67 min

    You can write more correct software and even rigorous mathematical proofs. Prepare for some mind stretching.

    Previous guests like Edwin Brady and Stephanie Weirich have discussed some of the exciting things a dependent type system can do Miles Sabin said dependent types are surely the future. This interview is to get us ready for the... more..

  • Big Ball Of Mud

    Big Ball Of Mud

    • icon Nov 14, 18
    • icon 60 min

    In 1997, researchers analyzed the actual architectures of software in the field. The horrifying results: a large portion were best described by colorful phrases like “big ball of mud” and “sweep it under the rug.”

    Wade Waldron talks about designing reactive applications and systems and how to avoid these anti-patterns. We also cover when a... more..

  • God's Programming Language

    God's Programming Language

    • icon Oct 22, 18
    • icon 60 min

    Does God Code in Haskell?

    Professor and accomplished programming language researcher Philip Wadler believes that typed lambda calculus was discovered not invented – part of the underpinnings of the universe itself. As a result, functional programming languages are more fundamental and deeply justified than their alternatives.

    We talk about this principle, which has guided... more..

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Leaving Debian