Becoming a better supporter of women in tech

In a recent conversation, I asked what practical things I could do to help address the gender imbalance in tech. The person I was talking to (who is well known for their advocacy on the subject) responded that they were unaware it mattered to me because I’d never publicly spoken about it. Well, that changes today. No more hand-wringing from me. No more “oh isn’t it a difficult situation” or “whatever can be done?” In today’s post, I’m going on record as a proud feminist who’s prepared to take action.

Continue reading

Anglocentrism broke my tests – ignore localisation at your peril!

An issue was recently raised on the ConTabs project that sent me down a bit of a localisation rabbit hole. You see, I’d written a load of conformance tests that included example output. What I hadn’t factored in was how many of these were dependent on my locale. These would potentially fail on computers with different locales. In today’s post, I’d like to explore exactly what went wrong and how we put it right.

Continue reading

Mega mash-up: API testing with Postman, Azure DevOps and

Put on your aprons people – it’s recipe time. Today we’ll be cooking up a delicious batch of automated API tests. For this recipe, you’ll need a buttery Postman base, a squeeze from a random user data API, and a CI system to bake it all in (I used Azure Devops). The result is a set of golden-brown integration tests that use realistic fake data and run in the cloud on a schedule of your choosing. Sound like the sort of recipe you’d like to master? Read on… Continue reading

Happy 10th birthday Stack Overflow (my alter alma mater)

If you’re a developer, you can’t have failed to spot that Stack Overflow is celebrating its tenth birthday. Similarly, I’m sure I’m not alone in owing a great deal to Stack Overflow in terms of my professional development. I thought about sending an eCard, but decided that a blog post might be a more fitting tribute. In today’s post, I want to share my memories of how transformative Stack Overflow was and the impact it had on me personally.

Continue reading