The Bike Shed

About the show

On The Bike Shed, hosts Chris Toomey & Steph Viccari discuss their development experience and challenges at thoughtbot with Ruby, Rails, JavaScript, and whatever else is drawing their attention, admiration, or ire this week.

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  • 239: Admins All the Way Down

    April 7th, 2020  |  38 mins 5 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph and Chris discuss what it really means to make a project "open source". Is it just about making the code publicly available, or should we be considering licenses and responsibility to update?

    They also discuss the need for breaks and structure now that everyone is working from home, revisit previous discussions around building functionality for admin users and the various admin systems out there, and they round out the conversation with a discussion around doubles vs spies in testing.

  • 238: All the Single Quotes

    March 31st, 2020  |  28 mins 12 secs

    In this week's episode, Chris shares details about his new greenfield project, implementing static pages with high voltage, opting for just-in-time architecture decisions and working with various admin libraries. Steph discusses various ways to advocate for change across larger engineering teams, recognizing when it's important to push for change vs letting go of strong opinions, and how to gain buy-in from your team.

  • 237: I Love The Squiggles

    March 17th, 2020  |  39 mins 18 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph and Chris discuss the pros and cons of memoization, Chris revisits the discussion around the value of react snapshot tests as well as his continued explorations with Inertia.js while Steph updates us on living in a schema-less world, and they round out the conversation with a listener question about pairing tools, setup, and approaches.

  • 236: What's GNU With You?

    March 10th, 2020  |  44 mins 20 secs

    On this week's episode, Chris and Steph discuss recent challenges associated with upgrading React Router and uploading files to Amazon S3. Steph also shares her latest reading adventure in cybersecurity and Chris reflects on his time at thoughtbot, how his approach to web development has shifted over the past seven years, and what he plans to do next.

  • 235: Take a Deep Breath

    March 3rd, 2020  |  44 mins 24 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph and Chris dig into their shared love of refactoring. How do they think about it, have they ever reverted a refactor, thoughts on deferred refactoring, and more.

    They also discuss some positive team habits, snapshot testing, the importance of keeping your testing as close to production as possible, and finally, Chris shares some big personal news.

  • 234: No More Weird Stuff

    February 25th, 2020  |  34 mins 10 secs

    On this week's episode, Chris and Steph respond to a listener question about the complex tradeoffs between craft, preferences, and business needs. They also revisit Steph's recent work with mirage factories, Chris's struggles with test failures, and discuss Steph's recent use of the acts_as_paranoid gem.

  • 233: Software Development in Ancient Rome (Joël Quenneville)

    February 18th, 2020  |  42 mins 56 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph is joined by Joël Quenneville. It's the season for CFPs (call for proposals) and Joël shares insights about his past conference talk submissions, both the accepted and rejected. They also discuss writing habits that help increase blogpost frequency and helping teams upgrade their Rails application.

  • 232: I'm Not Allowed to Play With Other Shells

    February 11th, 2020  |  36 mins

    On this week's episode, Chris and Steph celebrate the new Bike Shed website and logo! Steph has found a new way to optimize her keyboard happiness and Chris dabbles with Zsh auto-suggestions. They also explore the team and technical trade-offs in the pursuit of clean code and respond to a listener question about building products that meet strict security policies.

  • 231: Fun and Useful

    February 4th, 2020  |  32 mins 25 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph shares some of her Ember testing adventures, Chris discusses the subtle realities of tooling and automation, and they answer a listener question about using React without an API.

  • 230: The Broken Road

    January 28th, 2020  |  42 mins 19 secs

    On this week's episode, Chris and Steph revisit the long-lived feature branch Chris has been working on and chat about adventures with Yalc. They also dive into the common questions and concerns associated with coding bootcamps, thoughtbot's exciting new partnership with Resilient Coders, and what it would be like to "start over".

  • 229: Nothing but Positive Fire

    January 21st, 2020  |  52 mins 40 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph and Chris catch up in their first recording of 2020. They discuss git workflows and the surprisingly strong opinions often associated with them, testing at all levels of your application, Steph gives a quick summary of her Ember adventures, and they round out the discussion with some new years systems building and Star Wars reviews.

  • 228: Friends and Food (George Brocklehurst)

    January 14th, 2020  |  50 mins 7 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph is joined by George Brocklehurst, a Development Director in the NYC thoughtbot office. Steph and George chat about the variety of projects and technologies that caught their attention during thoughtbot's recent internal hackathon. They also dive into Gitsh, a dedicated shell for Git commands, as they chat about preferred git workflows and George shares his recent adventure in updating Gitsh to support tab completion.

  • 227: Hacks and Cheats

    January 7th, 2020  |  32 mins 31 secs

    On this week's episode, Chris and Steph discuss their recent holiday hackathon efforts building a game in Elm. They discuss their experiences with Elm and the broader prospects of using Elm in more production applications. They also discuss the new git subcommands "git switch" and "git restore", and round things out with a listener question concerning FactoryBot and "minimum viable factories".

  • 226: Bespoke Nonsense

    December 31st, 2019  |  40 mins 58 secs

    On this week's episode, in celebration of the new year, Thom shares the 2019 blooper reel! Words are hard and here's the audio to prove it. Listen to all of the silly mishaps, goofs, and general nonsense captured in between the moments of "professional podcasting". Chris and Steph also reflect on their top themes of 2019 and discuss New Year Systems vs New Year Resolutions.

  • 225: Pepper in Some Security

    December 10th, 2019  |  40 mins 41 secs

    On this week's episode, Steph gets Chris to share his biggest developer regrets over the years. They also revisit a favorite topic of estimation and story points, and round out the conversation with some details from the world of application security.

  • 224: The One Manhattan Rule

    December 3rd, 2019  |  41 mins 37 secs

    On this week's episode, Chris catches us up on his latest keyboard adventures and Steph shares her first impression of working with Ember.

    They also dive into Chris's experience triaging errors with Sentry, their love for Elm, how teams achieve a consistent velocity, and Steph's upcoming workshop on how to stay agile when building a healthcare product. To bring it home, they respond to a listener who's wondering when is it a good idea to convert a loose data structure (e.g.: hash) into a class?