About Talks Articles

The Importance of Defining Development Milestones

4 min read

A simple software project with one developer working on it, perhaps it is you and your open-source project, does not need an elaborated description of its progress. In fact, the state of your project can be binary, either it is still in development or it is available for the public consumption. But once the team grows, the complexity increases, and the project starts to become an amalgamation of a few subcomponents, the clarity around the development status, particularly towards its release, is crucial for all the involved stakeholders.

Portrait Mode and JPEG Compression

3 min read

High-end smartphones, such as the latest Apple iPhone and Google Pixel 2, offer the so-called Portrait Mode when taking pictures. This mode blurs the background so that the foreground object stands out, thereby creating a professional-looking photo with almost zero effort. Fortunately, this act of blurring the background also reducing the size of the JPEG file of that picture.

The Web Browser as the Ultimate Password Manager

4 min read

We are notoriously bad at password hygiene. Yet, it is crucial for our digital lives. How many of us managed to convince our friends and family members to use a strong and unique password for every service which they use? How about the grumpy response when you suggest them to always use a password manager for everything?

Cloud vs Cloud

4 min read

Because the particular nebulous definition of cloud computing, an organization which does not carefully perform a proper assessment typically ends up using sub-optimal cloud services. A very common mistake is to stick with IaaS, while moving to SaaS can yield a better outcome for all parties involved.

Improve Clarity by Eliminating Vague Pronouns

4 min read

Many forms of technical communication (functional specification, sprint planning, test plan, etc) need to demonstrate clarity. Unfortunately, clarity is often sacrificed – sometimes unconsciously – by an excessive use of ambiguous references.

Public Speaking: How to Elevate the Confidence Level

5 min read

Professional public speakers are always confident in their delivery. For the rest of us mere mortals, the confidence level can be boosted by our ability to maintain eye contact and demonstrate a good posture. Of course, it also helps to avoid any speech fillers as best as possible.

The Pyramid of Articulate Communication

2 min read

Being able to communicate with clarity and conciseness is a critical skill to the success of every engineering manager, tech lead, and software architect. A very typical approach to achieve that is by having a lot of deliberate practice.

Fun with Single-Element CSS Spinner

2 min read

There is no shortage of ready-to-use CSS-based loading spinners. Yet, it is still fun to derive a spinner from scratch, particular if the constraint is to use only one DOM element.

Deploying to Firebase from Visual Studio Team Services

3 min read

Firebase is an attractive service from Google to build web, Android, and iOS applications. Visual Studio Team Services is an amazing service from Microsoft to host code and to run deployment script. How can we combine these two services together?

Upgrading to HTTPS with stunnel

2 min read

If you are running an HTTP server and would like to enable SSL, an easy way to do that is to use a terminating proxy. Among others, stunnel is relatively simple and very easy to use.