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Programming insights to Storytelling, it's all here.

Ibrahim Diallo

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2020

November

Don't connect your App to your database

Don't connect your App to your database

In web development, connecting the application to a database is rarely an issue. Most programming languages come with a database driver that does all the work. You call the connect function with credentials and host as arguments, and you are in. When working on a phone app, we expect to do the same thing. But there is a key difference here.

October

How to become an effective Consultant

How to become an effective Consultant

The advantages of working in tech is that our work can easily transition into consulting. It's all code after all. But at work we use tools like Jira or Trello. The manager drops tickets in your queue and that's what you work on. We rarely think about what to do next. When consulting, you are on your own to figure what to do right now. Most developers will give up on consulting after their first stint. (Turns out you hate working on your cousin's app)

September

Unions are not coming back

Unions are not coming back

I once worked in a small security booth in downtown LA. The capacity was exactly for one person sitting down. But each shift had two security guards. To fit in the booth, both guards had to stand up. One of the guards who often interrupted my sitting and forced me to stand up was Lance. After so many years at the job, Lance was tired of working as a security guard. The pay was low, the hours were inconvenient and there were no opportunities for growth. One of the janitors told him that he would make more money if he worked with them instead. Depending on seniority, he could eventually become team lead. Plus he would be part of a union, so no one could ever fire him.

August

When to use !important in CSS

When to use !important in CSS

CSS has a feature called !important. What it does is force a property to be used, regardless of other properties that are more specific. It can be very handy.

July

The brave cotton pickers of America

The brave cotton pickers of America

I grew up learning about America in a chapter or two in our school's history book. It said that Christopher Columbus sailed across the seas. Through shear luck, he discovered the new world. When he reached the land, he greeted the inhabitants as Indians. The book went on to describe him as a heroic navigator and trader. That's the image I had ingrained in my mind.

May

How to write well when you don't know how to

How to write well when you don't know how to

It's easy to decide if a writing is bad. The author uses big words, writes long complicated sentences, and forgets the point he is trying to make. Other common things in bad writing is lack of structure and lack of knowledge in the subject. In a nutshell, when you read it, you don't understand it.

April

Count the number of words with MySQL

Count the number of words with MySQL

I was looking for a way to count the number of words in a blog post using MySQL. Most solutions I found online required I create a function. I wanted something simpler instead, something as close to a native function as possible. And the answer that occurred to me was to use the Length() and Replace() function with a catch.

March

How I learned to charge my customers

How I learned to charge my customers

After I completed my first programming class, I went straight to Craigslist. I advertised my programming services. I called myself an experienced programmer who could code anything. I posted a link to a website, the one and only I had built for a friend. I described the challenges regular people face when building their own website, then I said a few bad things about WordPress. I ended the post with these words: "I charge a fair price."

Making the impossible possible

Making the impossible possible

One weekend morning, I got up at 7 am. I wore a white t-shirt and black shorts, I tightened my shoes and went down to gym in our apartment building. I had one machine in mind. The treadmill. This wasn't a very active year for me. The only exercise I was familiar with was walking to the bus stop to get to work, and walking to the bus stop to get to school. But that day, I was determined to do cardio.

The Spam we love to read

The Spam we love to read

I have the bad habit of reaching for my phone the very instant I wake up. I start straight with emails, where I get replies from coworkers or companies I work with. They respond to my emails from the evening before, ask for status reports, or schedule meetings. I read and respond from bed before starting my day. But last week, I realized something that has gone unnoticed for a while. I had no new emails from my coworkers, but my screen was full of unread messages. In fact, I had read all messages that mattered, yet there were more in my inbox. I pulled the left navigation and looked at my spam folder. It was empty.

JS Tip of the day

For loop does not create a new scope

Unlike in other languages, the content of a for loop is not in a new scope. Let me show you. var elements = document.getElementsByTagName("*"); for (var i = 0;…

Photography