(TTFS) Time to First Smile

Page load times are important to customer happiness, and if you haven't used the Chrome User Experience Report tool yet on your website or web app, I urge you to do so. Tracking things like: Time to First Byte First Paint First Contentful Paint First Meaningful Paint Time to Interactive These are important numbers to … Continue reading (TTFS) Time to First Smile

Resilience Engineering and Strange Loops

My notes and takeaways from a long read on anomalies and system complexity called the STELLA Report from the SNAFUcatchers Workshop on Coping With Complexity, 2017. Via Matt. This paper is one of the best I’ve read in a while. Many lessons here match my experiences developing—and breaking—software for WordPress. I gained new insight into adaptive mental models, how best to … Continue reading Resilience Engineering and Strange Loops

Fire Suppression System

A dilemma to consider. Should we... Let the fires rage while we build a fire suppression system. Or... Continue to fight the fires while dreaming about a fire suppression system that we'll build someday.

Inclusive Design, Day 15/15: Links, Resources, Voices, and Stories

This is day 15 of 15 in a short series on inclusive design. If you missed any of the earlier posts, see day 1 here or view the full list below. Resources, notes, and links to recap the 15-day series on inclusive design, where I shared what I'm learning about inclusive design with you. I … Continue reading Inclusive Design, Day 15/15: Links, Resources, Voices, and Stories

Inclusive Design, Day 14/15: Diverse Teams Make Better Decisions

This is day 14 of 15 in a short series on inclusive design. If you missed any of the earlier posts, see day 1 here or view the full list. Inclusive and diverse teams make better, stronger teams — and these teams make better decisions. Because our work and thought patterns are influenced by our … Continue reading Inclusive Design, Day 14/15: Diverse Teams Make Better Decisions

Inclusive Design, Day 13/15: Mind the Mobile, Design for Low Bandwidth

This is day 13 of 15 in a short series on inclusive design. If you missed any of the earlier posts, see day 1 here or view the full list. Bandwidth is a Precious Resource Speed and connectivity should be considered be a major factor in exclusion. Just ride the BART in San Francisco. 😀 … Continue reading Inclusive Design, Day 13/15: Mind the Mobile, Design for Low Bandwidth

Tide: Automated Testing for WordPress Plugins and Themes

Yet another way to contribute! Remember this 20-piece WordPress contribution chart with the tester Easter Egg? Even though testing is growing stronger in WordPress core with each release, it's still mostly manual — usability, visual regression, accessibility, and beta testing with real sites before launch. Now the tide is turning a bit more toward automation. I'm beyond thrilled … Continue reading Tide: Automated Testing for WordPress Plugins and Themes

Flow Fallacy

Because the goal of commercial software development isn’t to create code you love—it’s to create products your customers will love. Recent efforts with my team at Automattic to improve the WordPress.com experience — and understand our customers better through "exposure hours" — reminded me of this classic software development essay from 2013 (via Andrew).  

Penny Allen on Key Traits of Technologists

  Penny Allen, quality lead for Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) inspired me with her keynote at PNSQC as she described six key traits of a technologist. Curiosity beyond "what does it do?" Inventive problem solver Self-driven learner Coherent communicator Open-minded but practical Adept at finding the signal in the noise View the full video of her talk: Quality Engineering … Continue reading Penny Allen on Key Traits of Technologists

(Listen) Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella hits refresh

I highly enjoyed Kai Ryssdal's conversation with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on NPR's "Corner Office from Marketplace" podcast. https://www.marketplace.org/2017/09/27/world/microsoft-ceo-satya-nadella-hits-refresh/popout On Microsoft's mission in the world (hint: it's not "a computer in every home and on every desk," which is a goal, not a purpose) [22:33]: We want to democratize the use of technology to create more technology. [Interviewer, … Continue reading (Listen) Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella hits refresh