5 Lessons From LivingSocial CTO and Co-Founder Aaron Batalion

24 Oct

Yesterday, I attended at talk by CTO and Co-Founder of LivingSocial Aaron Batalion at Dev Bootcamp. Here are some amazing lessons I walked away with:

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How To Use The VCR Gem With Rails And Rspec

21 Oct

So yesterday I spent way too much time trying to make this really cool VCR gem work with my rspec tests. The problem was that most of the tutorials out there were pretty outdated, and things have changed a bit.

The VCR gem is really useful if you have methods that need to make an api request. You don’t want to make api requests during tests, especially if the api has some kind of rate limit (I’m looking at you Twitter!).

So what you could do is create a text file mocking the response you get from the web service you’re making the api to and do the tests that way, or you can use the VCR gem! The VCR gem makes an api request once, and records the response to a cassette, which it then uses in future tests. Clever, no?

Here’s how you set up the VCR gem in your Rails App with Rspec:
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How Pair Programming Is Like A Slap In The Face

20 Oct

So this guy  actually hired a girl from Craigslist to sit next to him all day and slap him in the face every time he went on Facebook or some other distracting site. While this may seem extreme, his productivity QUADRUPLED. He had two big conclusions from this experiment that I’d like to point out:

“If you add a social element to the work that you do, you will become more productive”


“Having another pair of eyes to go over my content drastically improved the quality of my work.”

Sound familiar?

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Amazing Rails Console / IRB Trick

18 Oct

When you’re playing around in IRB or Rails Console, you might come up with an output that you wanted to save as a variable, but didn’t (you’re playing around after all!). Now you have to retype your long statement all over again and this time save it to a variable.

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RubyMine Review: 5 Features That’ll Get You Hooked

17 Oct

Ever since I first learned Rails, I’ve used TextMate and then Sublime Text as my text editors of choice. They worked fine until I started using RubyMine, a Ruby on Rails IDE, a few weeks ago.  There is no going back. Here are just some of the features I can no longer live without:

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When Making A Mess Is Ok

14 Oct

Starting a project is super fun, especially with Rails. Your code is clean, you’re adding tests, and you’re refactoring. But there is no running away from the reality. As you add more features and debug and change things, your code will become a big spaghetti mess in a matter of only a few days. So how do you deal with this?

Check out this great talk by Sandi Metz: Go Ahead, Make a Mess

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My New Favorite Command Line Shortcut

9 Oct

I recently learned about the Command + K command line shortcut on the Mac, and absolutely fell in love :). When there’s a ton of stuff going on in your Terminal tab, it might be hard to figure out what just happened after you clicked that button on your website vs what was loaded before.

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