304: MEGA Crossover Episode (The Bike Shed x Rails with Jason x Remote Ruby x Ruby on Rails Podcast)

Episode 304 · August 11th, 2021 · 34 mins 38 secs

About this Episode

This is the sweeps week episode, the epic crossover episode, the mega episode! We have a very special episode as Chris, and Steph teamed up with the hosts of three other podcasts to bring you one giant, mega Ruby episode!

In this episode, you'll hear from the hosts of Remote Ruby, Rails with Jason, and Brittany Martin, the host of the Ruby on Rails podcast. They cover the origins of their shows, their experiences as hosts, and why podcasting is so important in keeping the Ruby community thriving.

*Transcript: *

STEPH: Hello and welcome to another episode of the Bike Shed, a weekly podcast from your friends at thoughtbot about developing great software. This week we have a very special episode as Chris, and I teamed up with the hosts of three other podcasts to bring you one giant, mega Ruby episode! In this episode, you'll hear from the hosts of Remote Ruby, Rails with Jason, and Brittany Martin, the host of the Ruby on Rails podcast. This episode was so much fun to record, and we have Brittany Martin to thank as she organized and moderated this special event. So without further ado, here is the mega Ruby episode.

BRITTANY: Welcome, everyone. We have a whopping seven podcast hosts recording today. So, listeners, you are in for a treat. This is the sweeps week episode, the epic crossover episode, the mega episode. We're going to need our editor to insert some epic sound effects right here.

Announcer: The mega episode.

BRITTANY: So let's go ahead and introduce the crew today. I am Brittany Martin from the Ruby on Rails Podcast.

CHRIS OLIVER: I'm Chris Oliver from Remote Ruby.

JASON CHARNES: I am Jason Charnes, also from Remote Ruby.

ANDREW: I am Andrew Mason, also from Remote Ruby.

STEPH: And I'm Stephanie Viccari from The Bike Shed.

CHRIS TOOMEY: I'm Chris Toomey from The Bike Shed.

JASON SWETT: And I'm Jason Swett from Rails with Jason

BRITTANY: Today, we're going to cover the origins of our shows, our experiences as hosts, and why podcasting is so important in keeping the Ruby community thriving. Now I know personally, I really enjoy the origin story behind Remote Ruby. So, Chris Oliver, could you kick us off with that?

CHRIS OLIVER: Yeah, we can go back maybe to the first time that Jason and I met, which was Jason emailed me out of the blue and was like, "Hey, are you going to be at RailsConf?" And I wasn't planning on it, but it was over in Kansas City, like four hours away from me. I was like, "No, I'm not going, but I'll meet you." So we went and drove over there and met and have been friends ever since. And Jason had the idea of doing an online meetup. And I'll let him explain where that started and turned into the Remote Ruby Podcast.

JASON CHARNES: I thought it would be a good idea. There weren't any online meetups. This was pre even the idea of shutting down the world for a pandemic. And maybe I was just too soon because I got Chris to speak at the first one, and we had 40, 50 people. I spoke at the next one, and there were 20. And by the third one, there were five of us. So it wasn't really a super sustainable thing for me to do. So Chris and I got together and said, "What if we tried podcasting?" Chris, you hadn't really done your own podcast at that point, had you?

CHRIS OLIVER: No, I don't think so. And you and I were just having calls every week or whatever just to hang out and chat. And we were like, why don't we just record that and publish that as a podcast? And here we are.

JASON CHARNES: Yeah. So we've been doing that. I think we started in 2018, so yeah, three years in June, and somehow people still keep listening to us talk but probably because we brought along our friend, Andrew.

ANDREW: Wow. Okay. No, that's not true. But yes, I was a guest on Remote Ruby before I joined as a host. And not to get into the details, but I was on another podcast, and something went down, and I no longer was on that podcast anymore. And Chris and Jason were like, "Do you want to come hang out with us?" And I was like, [chuckles] "Absolutely." So I started doing that, and at the same time, I also started The Ruby Blend with Nate Hopkins and Ron Cooke. And so we were doing that for a while until that had to tragically shut down. But I'm still here with Jason and Chris. I guess I should also mention that Jason Swett gave me my start in podcasting a month or two after I started full-time as a Rails developer on a now archived show called The Ruby Testing Podcast.

BRITTANY: Which is the perfect segue because Jason Swett was also my first opportunity to guest on a podcast. So I was already hosting, but I hadn't guested, which is kind of the opposite order. So, Jason, do you want to tell the origin of where Rails with Jason came from?

JASON SWETT: Sure. I'd been involved with podcasting since around 2016. I somehow ended up on the Ruby Rogues Podcast and was on there for maybe a year or so. And then, somehow, I got the idea that I could start my own podcast. And as an experiment, I started a podcast that I called The Ruby Testing Podcast, which I figured was sufficiently narrow that I could get some traction. And to my surprise, guests actually said yes to coming on the show. And also, to my surprise, people actually listened to the podcast. That gave me some confidence. So maybe a year later, I broadened, and I changed from The Ruby Testing Podcast to just Rails with Jason. And I have been doing that for something like two years.

BRITTANY: That's fantastic. I want to move to probably our most experienced podcast veteran, and that would be Chris Toomey. When I was learning how to code, I was listening to Giant Robots and then was excited for the transition that The Bike Shed took. Chris, I would love to hear the story of what it was like taking over a really popular podcast and really maintaining the drive behind it.

CHRIS TOOMEY: So, as you mentioned, I had done a little bit of podcasting. It was about a six-month run where I was a co-host on Giant Robots, which was the original podcast of thoughtbot. And that was more in the business and sort of how do we build a software company? So at that point, I was running Upcase, which was the subscription learning platform that thoughtbot had. So I was talking about the inner details of the business, and the marketing tests, and A/B tests and things like that that I was doing. And every week, I was sharing my MRR rather transparently in that thoughtbot way that we do. I did that for, like I said, about six months and then took a while off.

And in the background, thoughtbot had started up a new podcast called The Bike Shed, and that started October 31st of 2014. So The Bike Shed has been going for a long time now, and that was hosted by Derek Pryor and Sage Griffin. And they ran that for a number of years. I think it was about four years that the two of them worked collectively on that. But at some point, they both moved on from thoughtbot, and there was an opportunity for new hosts to step in. So I took over in August of 2018. So I've been doing this now for about three years.

And so, for that first year, I took the opportunity to do a tour around thoughtbot and talk with many different individuals from the company and a handful of people external to thoughtbot. But I knew that there were so many great voices and ideas and points of view within thoughtbot that I really wanted to spend some time getting to know more of them personally and then sharing that as much as I could with the existing audience that The Bike Shed had. But secretly, all along, I was looking for a person to hang out with all the more so, and Steph was the person that was a perfect choice for that. And so, for the past two years, Steph and I have been chatting. And I will send it over to Steph to share a little bit of her point of view on that transition. But from my point of view, it's been fantastic.

STEPH: I still remember exactly when we had the conversation. You were running The Bike Shed and doing an incredible job of just having weekly guests. And then you'd reached out to me and said, "Hey, would you be interested in doing an episode?" And I thought, "No, absolutely not. I can't podcast. I can't begin to do this." So you continued to convince me. And finally, you said something that resonated where you were like, "Well, we can just show up and record, and we don't have to publish. We can just see how it goes." I was like, that's a perfect safety net. I'm into that. So I showed up, and I think the first episode that you and I recorded ended up being titled What I Believe About Software. And it was a lot of fun. I realized I have a lot of things to say. And after that, I think it was another month or so. You continued interviewing more guests, but then you reached out to me and asked me if I wanted to be a co-host. And at that point, I was super jazzed about it, and it's been wonderful. It's been a roller coaster. I have learned a ton.

BRITTANY: I'm kind of seeing a pattern here where over the last three years, it seems like Remote Ruby came into place, Bike Shed transitioned. That's when I took over as host of the 5by5 Ruby on Rails Podcast. We're going to call it the golden era of the Ruby Podcasts. But for me, I probably have the longest-running podcast. It was started back in 2009 on the 5by5 Network, but it's gone through many different hosts. And so, I took over roughly about three and a half years ago as the main host from Kyle Daigle. And then, just a couple of weeks ago, as I announced on my podcast, we took the podcast independent. We are now just The Ruby on Rails Podcast. And I'm starting to change the model where I'm bringing in more co-hosts. So that way, I can get those regular updates that I really appreciate on all these podcasts we have featured on the show today.

I am curious. I want to talk about how we put together the episodes and plan out how everything's going to go down. I know for me, I'm currently a mix of interviews and co-host episodes. So I'd love to hear from Andrew. How do you plan out what Remote Ruby is going to be week to week?

ANDREW: This is an easy question because we don't at all. We don't plan. We do have some guests that come on, and sometimes, they may get their Zoom link the day of; who’s to say? But we really don't have a plan. We don't talk about what we're going to talk about beforehand. We all just kind of show up, and I think we have that kind of relationship and flow where it always just works.

JASON CHARNES: And I think part of that came from actually how Chris and I started the show because we were trying to make it as low stress as possible because we knew if we put a lot of pressure on it, we would stop doing it. Our first episodes were YouTube live links that we just shared out. And then in our next episodes, we were like, oh, we should start using some software to do this. And then eventually, we got an editor, but that same core of let's just keep it fun for better or for worse, I think, also affects our planning.

BRITTANY: I've been lucky in the sense that I have guests sit on all three of the episodes. And I do want to give a compliment to The Bike Shed because it is very well run and very well planned. So I want to kick it over to Steph as to how putting together a Bike Shed episode looks.

STEPH: Oh, thank you. That's wonderful to hear, by the way. That's wonderful feedback. So we predominantly use Trello to organize our thoughts. So we will have...and as we're capturing community questions that are coming in, so we will capture those on the board. And then, we will have a ticket that represents a particular episode. Usually, on the day of, we'll share some thoughts about, hey, these are the broad topics I'm interested in. And there's usually some hot takes in there, which is fun because the other person doesn't know exactly what's coming, and we can have real honest conversations on the mic. And then, every so often, we'll grab a beer, and we'll go through that list. And we'll chat through what sparks joy. What do we want to talk about? What would we like to respond to? And that's pretty much how we organize everything that we discuss. Chris, is there anything I've left out that you want to add?

CHRIS TOOMEY: I think that mostly covers it. We do occasionally have interviews just as a way to keep some variety and different things going on, but primarily it's the sort of what's new in your world? And I find that those episodes are the ones that I think are the most fun to record for Steph and I when it really feels like a sincere conversation. I've recently taken to a segment I call good idea, terrible idea where I'm like, "I'm actually considering this, Steph. What do you think?" And live on-air, I'm getting Steph's feedback, and generally, we're very aligned. But every once in a while, she's like, "That's a terrible idea. Don't do that." And I love those, and I love being able to share that because I think it's really easy to talk about, you know, here's a list of things that are true about software, but really, everything depends. And it's all the nuance. And so, being able to share some of our more pointed experiences and then share the conversation that we have over those is hopefully very valuable to the audience but definitely the thing that I enjoy the most.

BRITTANY: So kicking it over to Jason Swett, I really enjoy the interviews that you do. I'm curious, how do you select guests?

JASON SWETT: Well, thanks. Selecting guests is tough. I had Peter Cooper on the other day, and I was telling him that I feel like every guest that I get on the show is the last guest I'm ever going to be able to get on the show. But somehow, I keep finding more and more guests. Early on, it was relatively easy because I would just find book authors, or if somebody else does podcasting, then it's fairly obvious okay, you're the kind of person who does podcasts, so I'll invite you.

But it's a little bit tough because I don't want to invite people who aren't into podcasting and would be really thrown, although sometimes that happens. But let's see, sometimes I send an email out to my email list, and I'm like, "Hey, I'm looking for guests for my show." Sometimes I just tweet that I'm looking for guests. And sometimes I get some really interesting guests from surprising places. But at least in the start, it was looking for those authors and podcasters and the people who are known in the Ruby community.

BRITTANY: I know for me, I strive to have at least 50% of my interviews be with people who've never been on a podcast before. And so that usually involves the top of the episode they're dry heaving into a paper bag. And I'm explaining to them, don't worry, about halfway through the episode, you're not going to remember that you're recording anymore. It'll be fine. And you know what? It's always fine. And so, I do love hearing from a wide variety from the Ruby community just because it really proves just how big it is. So I'm curious, could you host the podcast that you are currently hosting now if you weren't actively working in Ruby?

ANDREW: I could because Chris is the one that has all the clout. I could sit back and make dumb jokes and memes during it. And as long as Chris is there, I think we'll be good.

JASON SWETT: Yeah, I think I could because a good majority of what we talk about on Rails with Jason actually has nothing to do with Rails, so that would probably actually work out.

STEPH: I think yes is the answer. While a lot of our conversations do focus around Ruby and Rails, we often use a lot of other languages and tools, and those are a lot of fun to talk about. So I think I would just talk about whatever new tool or language that I'm using. So I think yes, it would just take a slightly different form but would still be at its core the same where we're still talking about our daily experiments and adventures in web development.

BRITTANY: I agree with you, Steph. I will say that it seems like Chris Oliver and Chris Toomey have an endless well of things to talk about just based on what they do day-to-day.

CHRIS TOOMEY: I try and go on adventures and then share as much as I can. But to resonate with what Steph was saying there, we try to make the show more generally about software, and it happens to be that it's grounded in Ruby on Rails because the vast majority of the work that we do is in that. And I just recently started a new project. I was given the choice of I could pick any technology I want, and it remains the technology that makes sense to me to be the foundation of an application that I want to maintain for years and years and years. So, on the one hand, I think I could definitely talk about software more generally. I think I'm doing that most of the time. But at the other end of the spectrum, but it's always going to be based on Ruby because I haven't found a thing elsewhere in the world that is better than that.

CHRIS OLIVER: I completely agree with that. I probably have a little bit of a unique thing doing a screencast every week. A lot of those are based on I'm building some project, and I need to build some random feature like Stripe Checkout. And that's a good one to do a screencast on and implement in the project. And then, we can also talk about the decisions along the way on the podcast, which is kind of nice.

BRITTANY: Yeah, it feels like every week, Chris Oliver is like, yeah, I've created a new open-source library, and I'm fabulous. [laughs] Let me listen to this.

CHRIS OLIVER: Too many of them. I'm currently rewriting a lot of the Pay gem. And it's just one of those things where you make a bunch of decisions. And then, if you make an open-source project, people use it in all these different ways that you didn't intend yourself, and so you want to support that. But then you need to rearchitect things in it. It is a lot of learning as you go, which is always a lot of fun. So those I think are really good topics to talk about when you're building something like that.

I'm always amazed by how does the Rails core team make these decisions on what should be in the framework and what shouldn't? And what do they want to maintain, and how do they keep it flexible but yet have some sort of rule with how they allow things to be implemented and whatever? It is a very hard job to have. So I get my little taste of that with some open source but not on their level.

BRITTANY: I always thought that you had a good contrast to Jason Charnes because Jason works at Podia. And while you do get to work on a lot of really cool technologies, I feel like the stakes are much higher. So you can't just rip out StimulusReflex and put in something else just because it sounds cool that week. And I love how you talk through the pluses and minuses to making a big change within the Podia codebase.

JASON CHARNES: Yeah. I haven't really thought about that contrast before, but it's helpful for me even just to talk it out with two other people once a week, and luckily, pretty cool about me just coming on and talking about hey, these are the steps we took to get here. Yeah, it's a cool dynamic.

BRITTANY: Steph, have you ever had a client from thoughtbot say, "Hey, were you talking about me?" whenever you're talking about your current client?

STEPH: That is one of my fears at times that it will happen [chuckles] although we stay very positive on the show. That's something that's very important to us. There's enough negativity in the world. So we really want to focus on our positive experiences through the week. But there have been times where I'm speaking about some of the challenges or things that we are running into that yes, the engineering team is listening to the podcast, and they're like, "Oh, I heard you talk about this feature that we're working on or this particular challenge." And that's really cool because they get that behind-the-scenes peek to see how Chris and I are chatting about that. But yet they know enough, and they know which project that I'm on that they recognize exactly the technology and the feature that I'm trying to describe. So that has certainly happened, and it can be a lot of fun when it does.

BRITTANY: Andrew, how have things changed for you now that you're not working at CodeFund, which was very much like an open-source thing? People could see what you were actively working on. And now you're working for a company where it's closed source. And so, you might not be able to reveal as much as what you're working on at any given point.

ANDREW: It's different, but I don't think it's been an issue per se. I'm not like, oh crap, I let that slip, and I didn't mean to. That's not really an issue. I really cherish the time I had at CodeFund. When I think back on my experiences, that was my favorite time just because I was able to do that thing that a lot of people really want to do. I was working as an open-source developer. We were spiking StimulusReflex; that’s when we were building up StimulusReflex and trying to build up the community. I joined Ruby. We started the Ruby Blend, and things were going good before a dramatic turn. But in terms of the closed and open source, it hasn't been that big of a shift just because instead of talking about what I'm doing at work, like, I still talk about it, but I speak about it in more general terms. But I also then kind of freed up to talk a lot more about the dumb crap I do on the nights and weekends.

BRITTANY: So the majority of our podcasts either have the word Ruby or Rails in it, but I think we've all agreed that a lot of the topics that we're talking about are not specific to that community. But in a lot of ways, I feel that having podcasts in our community is how we're going to keep our community thriving. So I'm curious if anyone has any thoughts around...is there a way to market our podcasts so that other developers will listen to it? I get really excited when I get listener feedback saying, "Hey, I used to do Rails maybe ten years ago, but I've been listening to your podcast, and I really enjoy such and such episode." How can we make our podcasts accessible to the general software community as opposed to just Ruby?

CHRIS TOOMEY: One thing that stands out to me about Ruby and Rails is because it's full-stack, because of its foundations, it tends to be holistically about web development. And so, whereas I look at React projects or other JavaScript or different things that are going on, I see a more narrow focus in those frameworks. And with Ruby and Rails, what I love about it is that it's really about building software. It's about building products that are valuable, that deliver value to end-users. And so that being the core of it, that's the story that constantly brings me back to Ruby and Rails. And it's the story that I want to keep telling as much as possible. And it's the thing that keeps me engaged with this community. And so, I think podcasts are a great way to continue to literally tell those sorts of stories and really celebrate that aspect of Ruby and Rails and why it remains such a productive way to build software.

CHRIS OLIVER: I think related to that, one of the things that we should talk about more is the draw of Rails was look at what you can do with one person or two people. And I feel like we went down the JavaScript route, and now you need two teams of people, and you end up building bigger stuff. And Hotwire has kind of been like, hey, here's a reminder of what you can do with a very small team. And I think that resonates a lot with a lot of people building startups and trying to build side projects and everything. And that's one that is Rails-related. But there's a ton of people building Hotwire stuff in Laravel too. And they're all very similar. So I think at a certain point, yeah, we're talking about maybe Rails specifically, but you can apply all those things to different frameworks and just different tools.

STEPH: I'd like to add on and extend that because I wholeheartedly agree with what both Chris Toomey and Chris Oliver just said. And in addition, a lot of the conversations that we have on The Bike Shed are focused on Ruby and Rails, but then we will extract that particular concept to the point that it really doesn't matter which language that you're using or which framework that you're using. We're talking more about the high level. What's your process? What are you thinking as you're going through and implementing this? And based on more of our recent conversations, you'd think we're more of a Postgres podcast, how much we hype up Postgres, and the things that we can do at the database layer. So I think there are a lot of ways that we can start with a foundation of this is how we're doing it with Ruby and Rails, but then talk about it at a higher level where then it's really applicable for everybody.

JASON CHARNES: If talking about one technology defined your podcast, we might as well be a Laravel podcast because we talk about that framework more than we do Rails sometimes. [chuckles]

BRITTANY: So that begs the question: is there room for more Ruby and Rails podcasts outside of who's currently on this call?

JASON SWETT: I think so. And I mentioned that Peter Cooper was on our podcast a little bit ago. That's something he and I actually talked about in that episode. And I shared the anecdote about how in the new America's founding, Ben Franklin's brother or something like that wanted to start a newspaper. And somebody told him what a dumb idea that was because America already had a newspaper. And people might say, oh, there are already however many Rails podcasts. There are a small handful. But I think there could be ten more Rails podcasts or even more than that potentially because I think people have an appetite for help, and camaraderie, and stuff like that. And I don't think we've nearly bottomed out in terms of satisfying people's appetite for that stuff.

JASON CHARNES: Yeah, I agree with that because a lot of times, when I listen to podcasts, the more you get to know someone, that connection becomes what it's about for me. So, yeah, there's plenty of room. I mean, brand it as Ruby and tell me about your life as a developer I'll listen.

CHRIS TOOMEY: I'll also throw it out there that the way you framed the question is like, is there room for it? But one of the wonderful things about podcasting as a medium is it is distributed. It's not centralized. You can start up a podcast any day. And I will say, as someone who inherited a popular podcast or a sufficiently popular podcast and just got to run with that, it has been such a wonderful way to get my voice out there and provide opportunities that I want that for everyone. I want everyone to have this ability to speak about the way they think about software and then find like-minded people and be able to build even many communities within the larger community of Ruby on Rails. So beyond the question of, Is there room?” which I definitely think there is, I so wholeheartedly support anyone pursuing this for their own reason.

ANDREW: Yeah, I think to bring it all the way back, one thing that Chris, Jason, and I care a lot about is Ruby as a community. The community aspects of Ruby are very important to us. And we're actively trying to build that up and bring in new people and bringing people onto their first podcast. We say it all the time, like, hey, if you want to come on the show, let us know. We've had a few people even, you know, recognition in jobs from that. So to us, that is the payoff of doing the show. Maybe our show is the first time someone learns about Rails. And that to me is the possibility in the future. It's like, how can we market our shows that markets Ruby as well so that this meme of Ruby being dead finally goes away because it's not. I think it's growing. And I think the more and more we push as people who are public figures in this space that we want to bring more people on, that this is a space for everyone, I think that's just kind of the ethos that all of us have, and I think that's great.

BRITTANY: So I'm curious, on a lighter note, has anyone had the funny experience of realizing that you're not just podcasting into the ether and that what you're saying and what you're doing matters? For me, I have definitely been at conferences where people will run up and hug me just because they heard my voice, and they are like, "I didn't know what you looked like, but I have your voice memorized," and it just blew my mind. And I was like, "Thank you so much for being such a loyal listener." And it just proves that people are out there listening.

ANDREW: I tend to talk very openly about mental health. And I very often fail in public and talk about it. And I've had a lot of people message me and email me over the past three or four years and be like, "Hey, thank you for talking about this thing that's not actually about Ruby. It's not actually about coding, but it's just about being a developer." And those are the emails that make me feel the best. Like, someone who's out there like, "Yeah, I also feel like this. Thank you for speaking about it."

JASON SWETT: I had a surreal experience. I went to India in 2019 through RubyConf India. And this guy wanted to take a selfie with me because apparently, he considered me famous. So that was cool and pretty surprising because I definitely didn't consider myself famous.

STEPH: My favorite has been when we receive listener questions because it lets us know that people are listening and engaged in the conversation, and I essentially feel like they're part of the conversation. They will write in to us and share anecdotes, or they'll share answers to some of the questions that Chris and I will pose on the show. But every now and then, we will also get an email from someone that says, "Hey, just thanks for doing the show. I listen, and it's great," and that's all they share. And that, to me, is just the most wonderful thing that I could receive.

BRITTANY: Some of my favorite episodes from all of your shows is when we get an inside peek into what people are doing, like Andrew moving. Jason Charnes, you putting together a conference was actually some of my favorite episodes of yours, which was really early on, which proves that I'm a Remote Ruby OG. But I loved hearing the inside track as to what organizing a conference is because I think we need to get more content out there about how difficult but how rewarding it is.

JASON CHARNES: Yeah, I hadn't really thought about...that was around those times we hadn't done... It feels like it's been ages since we did Southeast Ruby, but Chris and I actually podcasted from the last Southeast Ruby we did. We just met in a room and recorded. But when I started that conference, I didn't have a lot to go on. So I'm more than glad to share because the reason I started is there were no Ruby conferences around me, plus I'm an open book. So for better or for worse, maybe that's good podcast material.

JASON SWETT: Side note, it's one of the most enjoyable conferences I've ever been to.


BRITTANY: I completely agree. I miss the regional conferences.

JASON CHARNES: We lucked out because we were already planning on skipping 2020 because we were tired, and then COVID hit. I just sat on the couch one night and looked at Shannon (she helps me put on the conference), and I was like, "Wow, that would have been terrible. That would have come out of our own bank account, all that loss if we would have already booked somewhere." So phew, when it chills out, we'll try it again.

BRITTANY: So let's talk about legacies. I know that some of us have taken over from popular podcasts. Some of us have grown podcasts from the very beginning. So I'm curious, do you ever put any thought into the legacy of your podcast, whether or not you're going to stay with it to the end? Would you eventually pass it off? Do you think about whether or not it's your responsibility to the community to make sure that it keeps going?

JASON SWETT: I, for one, plan to have my consciousness uploaded to a supercomputer upon my death so that the Rails with Jason Podcast can continue on indefinitely.

JASON CHARNES: Did you recently watch Upload the TV show?

JASON SWETT: No, I've never heard of it.

JASON CHARNES: Oh, man. That's a whole nother conversation.

BRITTANY: Consider that homework, Jason.

JASON CHARNES: It's an interesting question because we started ours out of nothing. I wonder, is one of us going to get tired and just quit? I'd like to think that if one of us did, it would keep going because there are plenty of cool people who could hang out and talk Ruby on it. But it's interesting, something that's casually crossed my mind, but I think we're good. I think we're still doing it unless Chris and Andrew have a surprise for me today.

ANDREW: Surprise! [chuckles] I've thought about it a few times, specifically because I'm the youngest member of Remote Ruby. What if Jason and Chris just left, and they were like, "Oh, it's all yours now." Could I keep running it by myself? I think honestly, the answer is I would probably still do it just to have an excuse to talk to someone. I enjoy it. It's almost like a hobby at this point. I don't feel any obligation to create it. To me, it's really like an excuse to hang out with two friends, and other good stuff comes from that. But at the end of the day, I cherish that time just us hanging out a lot.

CHRIS OLIVER: Yeah. I think that's why we sometimes joke about it being a weekly therapy session where we are just hanging out and chatting about stuff. It's nice to be able to talk about programming things at a high level with people you don't work with that have totally different perspectives and stuff. So yeah, if Jason and Andrew dropped off, I would still try to have conversations with random people I know and keep it going just because it's enjoyable. I would hope that we would be able to keep it going and have other people on there.

BRITTANY: I'd love to hear from someone from The Bike Shed.

STEPH: I have thought about it. I've thought about it partially from the perspective that Chris Toomey brought up earlier in regards to being on a podcast is an incredible platform. You get to share your opinions, and people listen to you. And they know you, and it's really wonderful marketing. So I have thought about it from the perspective of I want other people to have access to this really wonderful podcast that we put on each week. So part of me is very aware of that and thinking about how more people can have similar exposures.

So a sort of a similar event occurred when Chris was moving on from thoughtbot and pursuing other interests. And at that moment, I just thought, oh my goodness, Chris brought me on as co-host, and now I'm here alone, and I don't know what I'm going to do. And I just panicked. I truly don't think I even considered other options. I was like, well, okay, it's over now. This was fun. And then it turned out where Chris was going to stay with the show. So things have just gone on swimmingly, and it's been wonderful.

But similar to what someone was saying earlier around when you start listening to a podcast, and you really develop that relationship and you go back to that podcast because you really enjoy hearing from those people and their adventures, it's very similar for me where The Bike Shed is very much the conversations and chats with Chris. So I think if we were to move on, it would be whenever Chris and I decided to move on and give the reins over to somebody else. I don't know if Chris fully agrees, so this will be interesting to find out. [chuckles]

CHRIS TOOMEY: I agree with that. Honestly, I'm honored to have continued on in the podcast after having moved on from thoughtbot because, in a very real way, the show is thoughtbot's channel to talk about things. I was at thoughtbot for seven years. I think I live and breathe that truth. And to me, that's what maybe has made sense for me to continue on. But I really do feel a responsibility to keep the show in good shape so that someday someone else gets to inherit this thing because I was so happy to get handed it. It was such a wonderful thing. And it has been such a joy to do for these past three years.

But at some point, I do presume that we will move on. And at that point, I do hope that other people pick up the mantle. And thankfully, thoughtbot as an organization, there is a group of individuals that I'm sure there will be someone wonderful that gets to step in, but I'm in no hurry to do that. And, Steph, I hope you're not either. So we'll continue the conversations for now, but I definitely do want to keep this thing alive if for no other reason than I got handed it. I don't feel like I could let it drop on the floor. That doesn't feel right.

BRITTANY: Well, I think on that warm, fuzzy feeling, we should wrap up. So let's go through everybody and just tell the listeners where they can listen to your podcasts and follow you. I am Brittany Martin, @BrittJMartin on Twitter. And you can listen to the Ruby on Rails Podcast at therubyonrailspodcast.com.

JASON CHARNES: So I'm Jason. We are Remote Ruby. I am @jmcharnes on Twitter. And I'll let the others tell you where you can find them.

ANDREW: You can find me everywhere @andrewmcodes. And if you email me, there's a really good chance you're never going to see a response because my email is a disaster. Please don't email me, but you can contact me anywhere else.

CHRIS OLIVER: I'm Chris Oliver, and you can find me on Twitter @excid3 or at Go Rails, and of course, gorails.com. And you can find the Remote Ruby podcast at remoteruby.com.

CHRIS TOOMEY: I am @christoomey on Twitter. The Bike Shed is @bikeshed on Twitter. We are at bikeshed.fm for a URL. I'm pretty sure www works, but I'm going to go check that real quick after because I want to make sure that's true. And yeah, that's me. And I'll send it over to Steph for her part.

STEPH: I am on Twitter @SViccari, and I post programming stuff, usually pictures of cute goats, cute dogs, that kind of content if you're into that.

JASON SWETT: For me, if you want to find my podcast, it's Rails with Jason. And if you search for Rails with Jason anywhere, you should be able to find it. And then my website, if you're interested in my blog and all that stuff, is codewithjason.com.

BRITTANY: Fantastic. Thank you, everyone, for being on this mega episode today. It was a lot of fun. We are going to be having a podcast panel at RubyConf; we’re excited to announce and some of us will be present. So stay tuned for details around that. And if you enjoyed this mega episode and want to see more mega episodes, please let us know on Twitter.

All: Bye.

CHRIS: The show notes for this episode can be found at bikeshed.fm.

STEPH: This show is produced and edited by Mandy Moore.

CHRIS: If you enjoyed listening, one really easy way to support the show is to leave us a quick rating or even a review on iTunes, as it really helps other folks find the show.

STEPH: If you have any feedback for this or any of our other episodes, you can reach us @bikeshed or reach me on Twitter @SViccari.

CHRIS: And I'm @christoomey.

STEPH: Or you can reach us at hosts@bikeshed.fm via email.

CHRIS: Thanks so much for listening to The Bike Shed, and we'll see you next week.

All: Bye.

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