Highgroove requires everyone to attend a conference every year, and begrudgingly I agreed to head to Hawaii for Aloha Ruby. The flight was long but well worth it, the weather was amazing, and the conference was packed with useful information.→ Read More
Requiring a would-be user to go through a sign-up process can often be too much to ask. Instead of jumping through your hoops, many people will just hit the 'back' button and continue browsing Reddit without ever discovering how cool your app is. In fact, I do it all the time.
Instead, why not treat your visitor as a valued customer with all the rights and privileges of a full-blown user from the get-go? With soft sign-ups, you can do just that.→ Read More
At Highgroove, we're no surgeons, but the folks at Hope Builds are. Though we aren't trained to use scalpels, we're really good at writing Rails applications, and that's just what they needed to make their surgical work more effective.→ Read More
Highgroove recently ran an experiment: Could we work remotely, and do it well? We thought so, and to test the theory, we rented two houses in Rosemary Beach for a week.
This was no vacation. Our office had been relocated to a new setting, but the same expectations for meeting results applied.→ Read More
All of the non-developer employees here at Highgroove recently spent a day with Andrew Fuqua for a hands-on agile training, where he took us on a quick tour of a full iterative project. We planned a project and learned to create measurable steps toward our goals.
Most importantly, I learned that agile isn't just for developers—it's useful for everyone. The agile principles can apply to all of us.→ Read More
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"if S is a subtype of T, then objects of type T in a program may be replaced with objects of type S without altering any of the desirable properties of that program."
Last weekend, I participated in Rails Girls, an event that introduces women to development in Ruby on Rails. This particular event was held in Washington D.C., a hotbed for the tech industry.
As a Rails Girls DC coach, I cheered on the girls as they worked through building a web application, and lent a hand when a little help was needed. There were several other coaches, and more significantly, several other female coaches. While I anticipated enjoying Rails Girls DC, I didn't expect that I would be so encouraged and excited by working with others at the event.→ Read More
We run our business the way the we develop software: we practice "small-a agile," meaning that we follow the core agile values and iterate on features as our needs change and grow.
As we've gone from two developers to 20, things have gotten a little more complicated. A traditional company might have started off by hiring a full C-level suite, but we've taken the approach of planning positions with very specific roles, sometimes even making up titles as we've gone along. Some of these jobs are pretty familiar, like "marketing manager," but there are some more unusual ones like "developerer" (more on that in a later post) and my role: "methodologist."→ Read More
There are a lot of ways to measure an individual's work performance. When you think of a manager, perhaps you imagine her stopping by an employee's office to see if he's in his chair during work hours, or checking whether he's spending too much time on Facebook.
As a ROWE, or Results-Only Work Environment, we stick to asking the truly important question: Are we delivering the results that matter?→ Read More
Our clients increasingly need features that rely on file uploads. In the past, we would typically use your average multi-part form with a file input and post the data to our servers. Once the file was done uploading, we would then turn around and push it to a cloud storage service.
But if you're using Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) to store your uploaded files, you can now upload files directly to Amazon without even touching your servers, speeding up your app in the process.→ Read More