Articles by Eric

The Happy Coder

By Eric — 9 minute read

Happy Coder

Image credit: Stable Diffusion

While reading an interview with Guido van Rossum a while back, I encountered the following quote by Clive Thompson:

When you meet a coder, you're meeting someone whose core daily experience is of unending failure and grinding frustration.

I chuckled and thought, Oh, man, sometimes that …

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What's hard about SQL

By Eric — 6 minute read

SQL can be hard

Image credit: Stable Diffusion

These are some things that I find difficult about SQL.

Leaky abstraction

SQL is the poster-child for leaky abstractions.

The SQL language is meant to abstract away the procedural steps that are needed to query a database, instead allowing you to define merely what you want …

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Review of "Python Testing with pytest, Second Edition"

By Eric — 3 minute read

Book Cover

Even though I've been using pytest for years, being a testing enthusiast, I thought I'd read Brian Okken's book to see what I might be able to learn from it. I was pleased to discover not only several tidbits of the workings of pytest I hadn't known about, but also …

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Review of "Waxing On: The Karate Kid and Me"

By Eric — 4 minute read

Book Cover

Hollywood memoirs aren't things I normally read. I like movies, but usually I prefer the characters to the actors, so I'm fine being ignorant. Waxing On: The Karate Kid and Me by Ralph Macchio ended up in my hands after helping a neighbor with a computer problem. The problem was …

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Experimenting with Stable Diffusion on my own machine

By Eric — 2 minute read

AI generated artwork has been in the news a lot lately, from the person who won an art contest with a computer-generated image, to Microsoft recently announcing that they'd include AI image generation in their Bing search engine. I've fiddled a little with online services for AI image generation, but …

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PyCon US 2022

By Eric — 8 minute read

Welcome to PyCon!

I wrapped up my participation in this year's PyCon last night. Being in Salt Lake City was great, since that's just a half-hour drive from my house, but it also means that I don't have the "completely focused on this" experience that traveling to a conference gives you. For example …

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Architecture Patterns with Python Review

By Eric — 5 minute read

Architecture Patterns with Python

Architecture Patterns with Python by Harry Percival and Bob Gregory

I learned about this book by watching Harry Percival's 2020 PyCon talk Stop Using Mocks (for a while). In the past, I was pretty enthusiastic about mocks, especially in Python because they, along with patching, let me test just about …

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UI Horror: Login... Again

By Eric

I use Office 365 with the web version of Outlook at work. At some point, I'll notice that the browser tab has changed appearance, and click on it to find that I've been logged out. No worries, there's a prompt right there for my password to renew my session. Soon …

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eero Pro 6 First Impressions

By Eric — 7 minute read

I set up an eero Pro 6 mesh network in my house this past week. These are my first impressions of the system.

Why

Earlier this year, my employer decided that the pandemic-motivated "work from home" policy would continue indefinitely for the engineering department. After moving a few PCs from …

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Functions Returning True on Success

By Eric — 3 minute read

Many beginning programmers latch on to the idea of having functions return True if they succeed and False if they fail so that you have code like this:

if do_something():
    # It worked!
    do_some_other_stuff()
else:
    logger.error("Something didn't work!")

For me, I think it was when I saw some …

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