March 1, 2022
Roughly two years ago, after a solid period of funemployment, I posted a Twitter thread about my readiness to rejoin the workforce. I talked about interests I had developed in the time leading up to then and about my goals around career and industry. In short, it laid out the intention “to obtain an exciting –software engineering?– position in the electrification / renewable energy space”. As always with plans, things went slightly different...

career electrification energy span

Automating npm install

May 18, 2021
I’ve previously written about using Make as a command interface for your repository and the other day, I ran into a situation where using Makefiles takes away a real-life annoyance for teams working on NodeJS and other Javascript or TypeScript based projects. When growing teams work in repositories that use NPM for Yarn for package management, dependency updates will enter the local workspace frequently when the main branch is pulled. Unless you’re religious about running npm install after every git pull, updating local dependencies of often omitted and sometimes leads to confusing red herring bugs or in the very least, lost time...

devops make npm

Smoking Trout on a Pit Barrel Cooker

February 19, 2021
Sitting by the water, staring at the end of a fishing rod was never a thing in my family even though my childhood home is close to several recreational fishing ponds. I didn’t grow up with much exposure to seafood either, as my home village is about an hour and a half from the North Sea, which by Dutch standards is about the equivalent of Colorado’s proximity to the nearest ocean...

cooking smoking recipe

render-md-mermaid, a GitHub Action

January 31, 2021
Earlier, I wrote about rendering Mermaid graphs in Markdown on GitHub by invoking a script, possibly using a make target to cover all Markdown files in an entire repository. Since then I’ve used Mermaid diagrams and the script presented in that post in docs for a couple of projects. While the script works great, having to remember to run it or plumb client side automation to do so automatically can be a bit of a hassle...

mermaid markdown github

Rendering Mermaid graphs in Markdown on GitHub

January 20, 2021
When writing documentation for software, sooner or later you’re going to hit the point at which a picture will explain in a glance what you would have a hard time describing in the proverbial “thousand words”. While documenting something technical, this usually means diving into the drawing section of whatever editor you’re using and wrangling with lines and boxes until you’re satisfied with your masterpiece or you’ve exhausted your patience with the tool...

make mermaid markdown github

Bye, Wordpress!

January 9, 2021
Last summer, frustrated over the loss of my personal domain, I bought a cute url and set up a Wordpress blog with the intention of sharing some content about what I was working on. Our son was born around the same time and so the site sat idle for a few months, but when I picked up writing back in November, the experience with Wordpress irked me. Wordpress is a fine CMS, it is great for getting a quick blog up and going, but I wanted more control over my content...

blog github hugo

“Make” as a command interface to your repository

November 21, 2020
Back in 1976, when Make first entered the scene, it solved the problem of automating dependency aware software builds. By defining what sources a build target operates on, it could automatically determine what should be compiled based on what files had changed, thus saving on computing time while guaranteeing correct builds. Command vs Automatic Targets The ability to define build targets that could be invoked from the command line as make arguments, quickly lead to Make being used for other tasks than just building software, think of make install for example...

devops make

Cover Story

November 14, 2020
One of the emails I’m willingly subscribed to and really look forward to every week, is a newsletter for subscribers of The Economist that tells the story of the week’s cover choice. While guaranteed to–excuse the pun–cover the news, the newsletter is an always interesting distraction from current events. In a few paragraphs, accompanied with sketches and more polished candidates that did not make the final cut, the email describes the creative and journalistic process that lead to that week’s magazine newspaper cover image...


Test-object builders for Stripe API resources

November 12, 2020
Working with the Stripe API is unlike most anything else in the world of software development. Stripe’s documentation is outstanding. Their API is intuitive and the language specific clients are easy to use. Each Stripe account comes with a test environment that makes development and integration testing effortless. The stripe command line tool can be used for simple API queries, setting up authentication and testing of web hooks. On top of all that, there is stripe-mock, a local service with a near- complete implementation of the API that can be used for testing and development without requiring a network connection to the Stripe Test environment...

mockito python stripe unit-testing

GCloud Dataproc image upgrades & Zeppelin Notebooks

November 10, 2020
A Dataproc cluster with the Zeppelin Notebooks component enabled is a great tool for exposing a quick collaboration-, query and insight interface to data-stores in the Google Cloud Platform (GCP). It is easy to set up. In just a few clicks, gcloud commands or lines of Terraform configuration, you can access the Zeppelin UI and start creating Notebooks. A Google Cloud Storage (GCS) bucket is used to store the notebooks, which means that after re-creating the cluster for software or hardware changes, you can pick up where you left off...

dataproc gcloud gcp zeppelin