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Development

We’ve written 26 blog posts about Development. View all topics »

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    5 Things I’ve Learned About Tech Leadership

    Tech leadership is a mystery to many. As one racks up years of experience as a developer, there’s often an assumption that one must eventually move into tech leadership to continue to grow. And while this may be true, given the structure and hierarchy of the company you work for, the jump from individual contributor to tech leader isn’t always smooth. The two roles have some crossover in skills, but each also requires its own unique set of skills to get the job done as well.

  2. Enter the Matrix

    A few years ago, a fellow developer (Santiago Sosa) and I were brainstorming ways to foster our company culture when we came up with the idea to bring our developers together more often for informal discovery sessions. In the company’s early days, we were a fairly small and close-knit development team that usually had a decent idea of what everyone else was working on and what technologies everyone was using. However, as the team began to quickly grow, we realized that developers were working on a wide variety of projects and were bringing with them a diverse set of skills and knowledge that many other developers were unfamiliar with. Often, developers weren’t aware of all the exciting projects that others were involved with. We felt it would be an incredibly valuable opportunity for the team to share what they were working on with each other on a regular basis.

  3. Happy Cog Starter Files 2016

    I have spent close to 7 years as a front-end developer at Happy Cog and in that time I’ve seen our discipline go through many great changes— from spacer gifs to responsive web design, we’ve all iterated quite a bit. This rate of change is one of the things I most love about frontend— the collaborative, communicative community that pushes us all forward whether we like it or not. As process has evolved, so too has it improved.

  4. My one true layout

    11/6/15

    by Mark Huot

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    Recently I’ve been “evangelizing” Docker quite a bit among the Happy Cog developers. Sometimes that sounds like “zomg, Mark really loves Docker” and other times it’s closer to “omg, why is he over engineering this again.” What I’ve been working on, lately, is a way to use Docker containers to re-implement a more flexible version of Heroku. The end goal is a workflow that starts with a developer pushing code. That code, regardless of branch, is published to a unique URL that anyone can see, regardless of their setup or environment.

  5. Gone zshin’

    Terminal is one of the more powerful apps that comes pre-installed on the Mac. In a nut-shell (see what I did?), it’s an emulator for bash, which is a command processor that lets us interact directly with the UNIX-based operating system that makes the Mac go. As developers, designers and curious tinkerers alike, it’s safe to assume we all rely on it one way or another.

  6. Things I’ve Learned From Working With My First Web Team

    8/20/15

    by Paul Phan

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    For the last 6 months or so, I’ve had the privilege of completing an internship working as a developer for Happy Cog. Throughout my time working here, I learned about the strategy, artifacts, and processes of building a beautiful, user-focused, responsive website. I attended both internal and client project meetings, worked directly with the designers and developers, and built an understanding of design systems and the best practices for coding.

  7. Structured Typography with Sass Maps

    For each development project at Happy Cog, we start with a set of starter files. Much like HTML5 Boilerplate or other similar initiatives, it’s intended to get us going as quick as possible. In that spirit, I’ve been thinking about how to move the needle in that direction as far as possible. The trick is to do so without burdening development with too many constraints and limitations.

  8. The Intro Tech Call

    Yesterday at Happy Cog, Mark, Abby, and I had an intro call with a tech team for a client who will be implementing our templates into their CMS, which, in this case, is ExpressionEngine.

  9. Developers and Communication

    The ability to communicate well with non-technical people is what separates star developers from the rest. Star developers understand that other team members don’t need to know about implementation details. They’ve developed an understanding of the non-technical aspects of project work—things like requirements, risk, scope, client concerns, project timelines. They handle more than just the technical parts of a project with ease.

    It’s no secret that most developers have room to grow in the communication department. Even within the development world, back-end developers and front-end developers’ communication skills can range. We have a hard enough time communicating with each other about things like CMS implementation, template integration, CSS best practices… and we speak each other’s lingo! Forget about trying to explain things to non-technical folks. (By the way, you may know Happy Cog only for exceptional designers and front-end devs, but it’s worth mentioning we have a brilliant back-end development team too.)

  10. Grunt Plugins Reviewed

    7/17/14

    by Cat Farman

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    The movement towards designing with performance budgets in mind has inspired more fist pumps and vuvuzela bleating in this developer than the recent World Cup. Thinking through the ramifications of design choices for site performance makes it easier for me to build a fast website when development begins.

    But when it comes to testing against budgets, we’ve been measuring page weight and rendering times manually, using tools like WebPageTest.org and Yahoo’s YSlow. Relying on humans to run tests has meant we don’t always measure our performance consistently, therefore missing page weight hogs like the occasional stray Blingee. There has to be a better way, right? A curious client got us wondering how we could automate our performance testing.

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