Curated Content April 2023

A few pieces of content I thought were worthwhile in the month of April.

Curated Content April 2023
Photo by Maksym Kaharlytskyi / Unsplash

April was a much thinner month for curated content, but there were still a few great pieces I came across to share.


Programming as Theory Building

This one dates back to 1985, and highlights a truth our industry seems to only accept in pockets almost 40 years later.

Peter argues that a program is not its source code. A program is a shared mental construct (theory) that lives in the minds of the people who work on it. If you lose the people, you lose the program.

I'd strongly recommend this for anyone interested in developing and maintaining software in order to operate their business successfully.

Why Perfect Testing is Impossible Without Mocks

Why Perfect Testing is Impossible Without Mocks

While I'm in agreement with the majority that you should avoid mocks as much as possible when designing your code, I also think that this article articulates why mocks are an indispensable part of your testing tool-belt, and it has to do explicitly with abstraction of interactions with complex systems and side effects.

If you're sending emails via a third party service, chances are it really is critical that you send the email, and verify that via testing. But it's expensive, and likely pointless and flakey, to setup an actual email receiver. Just test that the function that calls the email service is called.

Universal Software Engineering Topics

While this post wasn't as great in the sense of:

Oh man, Hillel really dropped something incredible/novel here.

It was great in that it articulated something that I think about a lot.

I think there are a lot of great references on each of the topics that he mentions that exist, but there hasn't been as much effort to aggregate them, or to list the real tradeoff considerations in a way that isn't just SEO fodder or attempting to sell your own product. (Even if that product is just competitive open source software)

Consolidating all of this into a single repository of knowledge could be extremely useful for the industry.


Good Economics for Hard Times

A really interesting read. While I had been exposed to much of what was in here through other sources this is a solid introduction to a lot of the ideology and mythology that is interwoven into a lot of mainstream/pop economics, compared to what the field actually says when you're looking at it and it's intersection with observed reality.

Would strongly recommend for anyone with limited exposure to economics, especially if you've ever uttered following phrase un-ironically:

That's econ 101.

Conf Talks

None this month.


None this month.


None this month.