Victor Adossi on Yak Shaving
Play • 1 hr 51 min

Victor is a software consultant in Tokyo who describes himself as a yak shaver. He writes on his blog at vadosware and curates Awesome F/OSS, a mailing list of open source products. He's also a contributor to the Open Core Ventures blog.

Before our conversation Victor wrote a structured summary of how he works on projects. I recommend checking that out in addition to the episode.

Topics covered:

  • Most people should use Dokku or CapRover
  • But he uses Kubernetes anyways
  • Hosting a Database in Kubernetes
  • Learning technology
  • You don't really know a thing until something goes wrong
  • History of Frontend Development
  • Context from lower layers of the stack and historical projects
  • Good project pages have comparisons to other products
  • Choosing technologies
  • Language choice affects maintainability
  • Knowing an ecosystem
  • Victor's preferred stack
  • Technology bake offs
  • Posting findings means you get free corrections
  • Why people use medium instead of personal sites


Victor's preferred stack

  • Docker - Containers
  • Kubernetes - Container provisioning (Though at the beginning of the episode he suggests Dokku for single server or CapRover for multiple)
  • TypeScript - JavaScript with syntax for types. Victor's default choice.
  • Rust - Language he uses if doing embedded work, performance is critical, or more correctness is desired
  • Haskell - Language he uses if correctness and type system is the most important for the project
  • Postgresql - General purpose database that's good enough for most use cases including full text search.
  • KeyDB - Redis compatible database for caching. Acquired by Snap and then made open source. Victor uses it over Redis because it is multi threaded and supports flash storage without a Redis Enterprise license.
  • Pulumi - Provision infrastructure with the languages you're already using instead of a specialized one or YAML
  • Svelte and SvelteKit - Preferred frontend stack. Previously used Nuxt.

Search engines

JavaScript build tools

JavaScript frameworks

Frameworks built on top of frameworks

Historical JavaScript tools and frameworks

Related Links


You can help edit this transcript on GitHub.

[00:00:00] Jeremy: This episode, I talk to Victor Adossi who describes himself as a yak shaver. Someone who likes trying a whole bunch of different technologies, seeing the different options. We talk about what he uses, the evolution of front end development, and his various projects.

Talking to just different people it's always good to get where they're coming from because something that works for Google at their scale is going to be different than what you're doing with one of your smaller projects.

[00:00:31] Victor: Yeah, the context. Of course in direct conflict with that statement, I definitely use Google technology despite not needing to at all right? Like, you know, 99% of people who are doing like people like to call it indiehacking or building small products could probably get by with just Dokku. If you know Dokku or like CapRover. Are two projects that'll be like, Oh, you can just push your code here, we'll build it up like a little mini Heroku PaaS thing and just go on one big server, right? Like 99% of the people could just use that. But of course I'm not doing that. So I'm a bit of a hypocrite in that sense.

I know what I should be doing, but I'm not doing that. I am writing a Kubernetes cluster with like five nodes for no reason. Uh, yeah, I dunno, people don't normally count the controllers.

[00:01:24] Jeremy: Dokku and CapRover, I think those are where it's supposed to create a heroku like experience I think it's based off of the heroku buildpacks right? At least Dokku is?

[00:01:36] Victor: Yeah Buildpacks has actually been spun out into like a community thing so like pivotal and heroku, it's like, they're trying to build a wider standard around it so that more people can get involved.

And buildpacks are actually obviously fantastic as a technology and as a a process piece. There's not much else like them and you know, that's obvious from like Heroku's success and everything. I know Dokku uses that. I don't know that Caprover does, but I haven't, I haven't really run Caprover that much.

They, they probably do. Like at this point if you're going to support building from code, it seems silly to try and build your own buildpacks. Cause that's what you will do, eventually. So you might as well use what's there.

Anyway, this is like just getting to like my personal opinions at this point, but like, if you think containers are a bad idea in 2022, You're wrong, you should, you should stop. Like you should, you should stop. Think about it. I mean, obviously there's not, um, I got a really great question at an interview once, which is, where are containers a bad idea?

That's probably one of the best like recent interview questions I've ever gotten cause I was like, Oh yeah, I mean, like, you can't, it can't be perfect everywhere, right? Nothing's perfect everywhere. So it's like, where is it? Uh, and of course the answer was networking, right? (unintelligible)

So if you need absolute performance, but like for just about everything else. Containers are kind of it at this point. Like, time has born it out, I think. So yeah, I always just like bias at taking containers at this point. So I'm probably more of a CapRover person than a Dokku person, even though I have not used, I don't use CapRover.

[00:03:09] Jeremy: Well, like something that I've heard with containers, and maybe it's changed recently, but, but something that was kind of holdout was when people would host a database sometimes they would oh we just don't wanna put this in a container and I wonder if like that matches with your thinking or if things have changed.

[00:03:27] Victor: I am not a database administrator right like I read postgres docs and I read the, uh, the Postgres documentation, and I think I know a bit about postgres but I don't commit right like so and I also haven't, like, oh, managed X terabytes on one server that you are making sure never goes down kind of deal.

But the stickiness for me, at least from when I've run, So I've done a lot of tests with like ZFS and Postgres and like, um, and also like just trying to figure out, and I run Postgres in Kubernetes of course, like on my cluster and a lot of the stuff I found around is, is like fiddly kernel things like sort of base kernel settings that you need to have set.

Like, you know, stuff like should you be using transparent huge pages, like stuff like that. But once you have that settled. Containers are just processes with name spacing and resource control, right? Like, that's it. there are some other ins and outs, but for the most part, if you're fine running a process, so people ran processes, right?

And they were just completely like unprotected. Then people made users for the processes and they limited the users and ran the processes, right? Then the next step is now you can run a process and then do the limiting the name spaces in cgroups dynamically. Like there, there's, there's sort of not a humongous difference, unless you're hitting something very specific.

Uh, but yeah, databases have been a point of contention, but I think, Kelsey Hightower had that tweet yeah. That was like, um, don't run databases in Kubernetes. And I think he called it back.

[00:04:56] Victor: I don't know, but I, I know that was uh, was one of those things that people were really unsure about at first, but then after people sort of like felt it out, they were like, Oh, it's actually fine. Yeah.

[00:05:06] Jeremy: Yeah I vaguely remember one of the concerns having to do with persistent storage. Like there were challenges with Kubernetes and needing to keep that storage around and I don't know if that's changed yeah or if that's still a concern.

[00:05:18] Victor: Uh, I'd say that definitely has changed. Uh, and it was, it was a concern, depending on where you were. Mostly people who are running AKS or EKS or you know, all those other managed Kubernetes, they're just using EBS or like whatever storage provider is like offering for storage.

Most of those people don't actually have that much of a problem with, storage in general.

Now, high performance storage is obviously different, right? So like, so you'll, you're gonna have to start doing manual, like local volume management and stuff like that. it was a problem, because obviously CSI (Kubernetes Container Storage Interface) didn't exist for some period of time, and like there was, it was hard to know what to do for if you were just running a Kubernetes cluster. I think a lot of people were just using local, first of all, local didn't even exist for a bit.

Um, they were just using host path, right? And just like, Oh, it's on the disk somewhere. Where do we, we have to go get it right? Or we have to like, sort of manage that. So that was something most people weren't ready for, especially if you were just, if you weren't like sort of a, a, a traditional sysadmin and used to doing that stuff.

And then of course local volumes came out, but I think they still had to be, um, pre-provisioned. So that's sysadmin stuff that most people, you know, maybe aren't, aren't necessarily ready for. Uh, and then most of the general solutions were slow. So like, I used Longhorn ( for a long time and Longhorn, Longhorn's great. And super easy to set up, but it can be slower and you can have some, like, delays in mount time. it wasn't ideal for, for most people.

So yeah, I, overall it's true. Databases, Databases in Kubernetes were kind of fraught with peril for a while, but it wasn't for the reason that, it wasn't for the fundamental reason that Kubernetes was just wrong or like, it wasn't the reason most people think of, which is just like, Oh, you're gonna break your database.

It's more like, running a database is hard and Kubernetes hasn't solved all the hard problems. Like, cuz that's what Kubernetes does. It basically solves a lot of problems in a very generic way. Right. So it just hadn't solved all those problems yet at this point. I think it's got decent answers on a lot of them.

So I, I mean, I don't know. I I do it. Don't, don't take what I'm saying to your, you know, PM meeting or your standup meeting, uh, anyone who's listening. But it's more like if you could solve the problems with databases in the sense before. You could probably solve 'em on Kubernetes now with a good understanding of Kubernetes.

Cause at the end of the day, it's all the same stuff. Just Kubernetes makes it a little easier to, uh, do it dynamically.

[00:07:50] Jeremy: It sounds like you could do it before, but some of the, I guess the tools or the ways of doing persistent storage were not quite there yet, or they were difficult to use. And so that was why people at the start were like, Okay, maybe it's not a good idea, but, now maybe there's some established practices for how you should run a database in Kubernetes.

And I, I suppose the other aspect too is that, like you were saying, Kubernetes is its own thing. You gotta learn Kubernetes and all its intricacies. And then running a database is also its own challenge. So if you stack the two of them together and, and the path was not really clear then maybe at the start it wasn't the best idea. Um, uh, if somebody was going to try it out now, was there like a specific resource you looked at or a specific path to where like okay this is is how I'm going to do it.

[00:08:55] Victor: I'll just say what I normally recommend to everybody.

Cause it depends on which path you wanna go right? If you wanna go down like running a database path first and figure that out, fill out that skill tree. Like go read the Postgres docs.

Well, first of all, use Postgres. That's the first tip there. But like, read those documents. And obviously you don't have to understand everything. You won't understand everything. But knowing the big pieces and sort of letting your brain see the mention of like a whole bunch of things, like what is toast?

Oh, you can do compression on columns. Like, you can do some, some things concurrently. Um, you know, what ALTER TABLE looks like. You get all that stuff kind of in your head. Um, and then I personally really believe in sort of learning by building and just like iterating. you won't get it right the first time. It's just like, it's not gonna happen. You're get, you can, you can get better the first time, right? By being really prepared and like, and leave yourself lots of outs, but you kind of have to like, get it out there. Do do your best to make sure that you can't fail, uh, catastrophically, right?

So this is like, goes back to that decision to like use ZFS as the bottom of this I'm just like, All right, well, I, I'm not a file systems expert, but if I. I could delegate some of that, you know, some of that, I can get some of that knowledge from someone else. Um, and I can make it easier for me to not fail catastrophically.

For the database side, actually read documentation on Postgres or the whatever database you're going to use, make sure you at least understand that. Then start running it like locally or whatever. Again, Docker use, use Docker locally.

It's, it's, it's fine. and then, you know, sort of graduate to running sort of more progressively, more complicated versions. what I would say for the Kubernetes side is actually similar. the Kubernetes docs are really good. they're very large. but they're good.

So you can actually go through and know all the, like, workload, workload resources, know, like what a config map is, what a secret is, right? Like what etcd is doing in this whole situation. you know, what a kublet is versus an API server, right? Like the, the general stuff, like if you go through all that, you should have like a whole bunch of ideas at least floating around in your head. And then once you try and start setting up a server, they will all start to pop up again, right? And they'll all start to like, you, like, Oh, okay, I need a CNI (Container Networking) plugin because something needs to make the services available, right? Or something needs to power the ingress, right? Like, if I wanna be able to get traffic, I need an ingress object.

But what listens, what does that, what makes that ingress object do anything? Oh, it's an ingress controller. nginx, you know, almost everyone's heard of nginx, so they're like, okay. Um, nginx, has an ingress control. Actually there's, there used to be two, I assume there's still two, but there's like one that's maintained by Kubernetes, one that's maintained by nginx, the company or whatever.

I use traefik, it's fantastic. but yeah, so I think those things kind of fall out and that is almost always my first way to explain it and to start building. And tinkering iteratively. So like, read the documentation, get a good first grasp of it, and then start building yourself because you'll, you'll get way more questions that way.

Like, you'll ask way more questions, you won't be able to make progress. Uh, and then of course you can, you know, hop into slacks or like start looking around and, and searching on the internet. oh, one of the things that really helped me out early learning Kubernetes was, Kelsey Hightower's, um, learn Kubernetes the hard way. I'm also a big believer in doing things the hard way, at least knowing what you're choosing to not know, right? distributing file system, Deltas, right? Or like changes to a file system over the network is not a new problem. Other people have solved it. There's a lot of complexity there. but if you at least know the sort of surface level of what the thing does and what it's supposed to do and how it's supposed to do it, you can make a decision on, Oh, how deep am I going to go?

Right? To prevent yourself from like, making a mistake or going too deep in the rabbit hole. If you have an idea of the sort of ecosystem and especially like, Oh, here, like the basics of how I can use this thing, that's generally very good. And doing things the hard way is a great way to get a, a feel for that, right?

Cause if you take some chunk and like, you know, the first level of doing things the hard way, uh, or, you know, Kelsey Hightower's guide is like, get a machine, right? Like, so, like, if you somehow were like, Oh, I wanna run a Kubernetes cluster. but, you know, I don't want use necessarily EKS and you wanna learn it the hard way.

You have to go get a machine, right? If you, if you're not familiar, if you run on Heroku the whole time, like you didn't manage your own machines, you gotta go like, figure out EC2, right? Or, I personally use, hetzner I love hetzner, so you have to go figure out hetzner, digital ocean, whatever.

Right. And then the next thing's like, you know, the guide's changed a lot, and I haven't, I haven't looked at it in like, in years, actually a while since I, since I've sort of been, I guess living it, but it's, it's like generate certificates, right? So if you've never dealt with SSL and like, sort of like, or I should say TLS uh, and generating certificates and how that whole dance works, right?

Which is fascinating because it's like, oh, right, nothing's secure on the internet, except that we distribute root certificates on computers that are deployed in every OS, right? Like, that's a sort of fundamental understanding you may not go deep enough to realize, but if you are fascinated by it, trying to do it manually would lead you down that path.

You'd be like, Oh, what, like what is this thing? What is a CSR? Like, why, who is signing my request? Right? And it's like, why do we trust those people? Right? And it's like, you know, that kind of thing comes out and I feel like you can only get there from trying to do it, you know, answering the questions you can.

Right. And again, it takes some judgment to know when you should not go down a rabbit hole. uh, and then iterating. of course there are people who are excellent at explaining. you can find some resources that are shortcuts. But, uh, I think particularly my bread and butter has been just to try and do it the hard way.

Avoid pitfalls or like rabbit holes when you can. But know that the rabbit hole is there, and then keep going. And sometimes if something's just too hard, you're not gonna get it the first time. Like maybe you'll have to wait like another three months, you'll try again and you'll know more sort of ambiently about everything else.

You get a little further that time. that's how I feel about that. Anyway.

[00:15:06] Jeremy: That makes sense to me. I think sometimes when people take on a project, they try to learn too many things at the same time. I, I think the example of Kubernetes and Postgres is pretty good example, where if you're not familiar with how do I install Postgres on bare metal or a vm, trying to make sense of that while you're trying to into is probably gonna be pretty difficult.

So, so splitting them up and learning them individually, that makes a lot of sense to me. And the whole deciding how deep you wanna go. That's interesting too, because I think that's very specific to the person right because sometimes you wanna go a little deeper because otherwise you don't understand how the two things connect together.

But other times it's just like with the example with certificates, some people they may go like, I just put in let's encrypt it gives me my cert I don't care right then, and then, and some people they wanna know like okay how does the whole certificate infrastructure work which I think is interesting, depending on who you are, maybe you go ahh maybe it doesn't really matter right.

[00:16:23] Victor: Yeah, and, you know, shout out to Let's Encrypt . It's, it's amazing, right? think Singlehandedly the most, most of the deployment of HTTPS that happens these days, right? so many so many of like internet providers and uh, sort of service providers will use it right?

Under the covers. Like, Hey, we've got you free SSL through Let's Encrypt, right? Like, kind of like under the, under the covers. which is awesome. And they, and they do it. So if you're listening to this, donate to them. I've done it. So now that, now the pressure is on whoever's listening, but yeah, and, and I, I wanna say I am that person as well, right?

Like, I use, Cert Manager on my cluster, right? So I'm just like, I don't wanna think about it, but I, you know, but I, I feel like I thought about it one time. I have a decent grasp. If something changes, then I guess I have to dive back in. I think it, you've heard the, um, innovation tokens idea, right?

I can't remember the site. It's like, um, do, like do boring tech or ( . Like it shows up on sort of hacker news from time to time, essentially. But it's like, you know, you have a certain amount of tokens and sort of, uh, we'll call them tokens, but tolerance for complexity or tolerance for new, new ideas or new ways of doing things, new processes.

Uh, and you spend those as you build any project, right? you can be devastatingly effective by just sticking to the stack, you know, and not introducing anything new, even if it's bad, right? and there's nothing wrong with LAMP stack, I don't wanna annoy anybody, but like if you, if you're running LAMP or if you run on a hostgator, right?

Like, if you run on so, you know, some, some service that's really old but really works for you isn't, you know, too terribly insecure or like, has the features you need, don't learn Kubernetes then, right? Especially if you wanna go fast. cuz you, you're spending tokens, right? You're spending, essentially brain power, right?

On learning whatever other thing. So, but yeah, like going back to that, databases versus databases on Kubernetes thing, you should probably know one of those before you, like, if you're gonna do that, do that thing. You either know Kubernetes and you like, at least feel comfortable, you know, knowing Kubernetes extremely difficult obviously, but you feel comfortable and you feel like you can debug.

Little bit of a tangent, but maybe that's even a better, sort of watermark if you know how to debug a thing. If, if it's gone wrong, maybe one or five or 10 or 20 times and you've gotten out. Not without documentation, of course, cuz well, if you did, you're superhuman.

But, um, but you've been able to sort of feel your way out, right? Like, Oh, this has gone wrong and you have enough of a model of the system in your head to be like, these are the three places that maybe have something wrong with them. Uh, and then like, oh, and then of course it's just like, you know, a mad dash to kind of like, find, find the thing that's wrong.

You should have confidence about probably one of those things before you try and do both when it's like, you know, complex things like databases and distributed systems management, uh, and orchestration.

[00:19:18] Jeremy: That's, that's so true in, in terms of you are comfortable enough being able to debug a problem because it's, I think when you are learning about something, a lot of times you start with some kind of guide or some kind of tutorial and you follow the steps. And if it all works, then great.

Right? But I think it's such a large leap from that to something went wrong and I have to figure it out. Right. Whether it's something's not right in my Dockerfile or my postgres instance uh, the queries are timing out. so many things that could go wrong, that is the moment where you're forced to figure out, okay, what do I really know about this not thing?

[00:20:10] Victor: Exactly. Yeah. Like the, the rubber's hitting the road it's uh you know the car's about to crash or has already crashed like if I open the bonnet, do I know what's happening right or am I just looking at (unintelligible).

And that's, it's, I feel sort a little sorry or sad for, for devs that start today because there's so much. Complexity that's been built up. And a lot of it has a point, but you need to kind of have seen the before to understand the point, right? So I like, I like to use front end as an example, right? Like the front end ecosystem is crazy, and it has been crazy for a very long time, but the steps are actually usually logical, right?

Like, so like you start with, you know, HTML, CSS and JavaScript, just plain, right? And like, and you can actually go in lots of directions. Like HTML has its own thing. CSS has its own sort of evolution sort of thing. But if we look at JavaScript, you're like, you're just writing JavaScript on every page, right?

And like, just like putting in script tags and putting in whatever, and it's, you get spaghetti, you get spaghetti, you start like writing, copying the same function on multiple pages, right? You just, it, it's not good. So then people, people make jquery, right? And now, now you've got like a, a bundled set of like good, good defaults that you can, you can go for, right?

And then like, you know, libraries like underscore come out for like, sort of like not dom related stuff that you do want, you do want everywhere. and then people go from there and they go to like backbone or whatever. it's because Jquery sort of also becomes spaghetti at some point and it becomes hard to manage and people are like, Okay, we need to sort of like encapsulate this stuff somehow, right?

And like the new tools or whatever is around at the same timeframe. And you, you, you like backbone views for example. and you have people who are kind of like, ah, but that's not really good. It's getting kind of slow.

Uh, and then you have, MVC stuff comes out, right? Like Angular comes out and it's like, okay, we're, we're gonna do this thing called dirty checking, and it's gonna be, it's gonna be faster and it's gonna be like, it's gonna be less sort of spaghetti and it's like a little bit more structured. And now you have sort of like the rails paradigm, but on the front end, and it takes people to get a while to get adjusted to that, but then that gets too heavy, right?

And then dirty checking is realized to be a mistake. And then, you get stuff like MVVM, right? So you get knockout, like knockout js and you got like Durandal, and like some, some other like sort of front end technologies that come up to address that problem. Uh, and then after that, like, you know, it just keeps going, right?

Like, and if you come in at the very end, you're just like, What is happening? Right? Like if it, if it, if someone doesn't sort of boil down the complexity and reduce it a little bit, you, you're just like, why, why do we do this like this? Right? and sometimes there's no good reason.

Sometimes the complexity is just like, is unnecessary, but having the steps helps you explain it, uh, or helps you understand how you got there. and, and so I feel like that is something younger people or, or newer devs don't necessarily get a chance to see. Cause it just, it would take, it would take very long right? And if you're like a new dev, let's say you jumped into like a coding bootcamp. I mean, I've got opinions on coding boot camps, but you know, it's just like, let's say you jumped into one and you, you came out, you, you made it. It's just, there's too much to know. sure, you could probably do like HTML in one month.

Well, okay, let's say like two weeks or whatever, right? If you were, if you're literally brand new, two weeks of like concerted effort almost, you know, class level, you know, work days right on, on html, you're probably decently comfortable with it. Very comfortable. CSS, a little harder because this is where things get hard.

Cause if you, if you give two weeks for, for HTML, CSS is harder than HTML kind of, right? Because the interactions are way more varied. Right? Like, and, and maybe it's one of those things where you just, like, you, you get somewhat comfortable and then just like know that in the future you're gonna see something you don't understand and have to figure it out. Uh, but then JavaScript, like, how many months do you give JavaScript? Because if you go through that first like, sort of progression that I, I I, I, I mentioned everyone would have a perfect sort of, not perfect but good understanding of the pieces, right? Like, why did we start transpiling at all? Right? Like, uh, or why did you know, why did we adopt libraries?

Like why did Bower exist? No one talks about Bower anymore, obviously, but like, Bower was like a way to distribute front end only packages, right? Um, what is it? Um, Uh, yes, there's grunt. There's like the whole build system thing, right? Once, once we decide we're gonna, we're gonna do stuff to files before we, before we push. So there's grunt, there's, uh, gulp, which is like grunt, but like, Oh, we're gonna do it all in memory. We're gonna pipe, we're gonna use this pipes thing to make sure everything goes fast. then there's like, of course that leads like the insanity that's webpack. And then there's like parcel, which did better.

There's vite there's like, there's all this, there's this progression, but how many months would it take to know that progression? It, it's too long. So they end up just like, Hey, you're gonna learn react. Which is the right thing because it's like, that's what people hire for, right? But then you're gonna be in react and be like, What's webpack, right?

And it's like, but you can't go down. You can't, you don't have the time. You, you can't sort of approach that problem from the other direction where you, which would give you better understanding cause you just don't have the time. I think it's hard for newer devs to overcome this.

Um, but I think there are some, there's some hope on the horizon cuz some things are simpler, right? Like some projects do reduce complexity, like, by watching another project sort of innovate so like react. Wasn't the first component, first framework, right? Like technically, I, I think, I think you, you might have to give that to like, to maybe backbone because like they had views and like marionette also went with that.

Like maybe, I don't know, someone, someone I'm sure will get in like, send me an angry email, uh, cuz I forgot you Moo tools or like, you know, Ember Ember. They've also, they've also been around, I used to be a huge Ember fan, still, still kind of am, but I don't use it. but if you have these, if you have these tools, right?

Like people aren't gonna know how to use them and Vue was able to realize that React had some inefficiencies, right? So React innovates the sort of component. So Reintroduces the component based model component first, uh, front end development model. Vue sees that and it's like, wait a second, if we just export this like data object, and of course that's not the only innovation of Vue, but if we just export this data object, you don't have to do this fine grained tracking yourself anymore, right?

You don't have to tell React or tell your the system which things change when other things change, right? Like you, you don't have to set up this watching and stuff, right? Um, and that's one of the reasons, like Vue is just, I, I, I remember picking up Vue and being like, Oh, I'm done. I'm done with React now.

Because it just doesn't make sense to use React because they Vue essentially either, you know, you could just say they learned from them or they, they realize a better way to do things that is simpler and it's much easier to write. Uh, and you know, functionally similar, right? Um, similar enough that it's just like, oh they boil down some of that complexity and we're a step forward and, you know, in other ways, I think.

Uh, so that's, that's awesome. Every once in a while you get like a compression in the complexity and then it starts to ramp up again and you get maybe another compression. So like joining the projects that do a compression. Or like starting to adopting those is really, can be really awesome. So there's, there's like, there's some hope, right?

Cause sometimes there is a compression in that complexity and you you might be lucky enough to, to use that instead of, the thing that's really complex after years of building on it.

[00:27:53] Jeremy: I think you're talking about newer developers having a tough time making sense of the current frameworks but the example you gave of somebody starting from HTML and JavaScript going to jquery backbone through the whole chain, that that's just by nature of you've put in a lot of time right you've done a lot of work working with each of these technologies you see the progression

as if someone is starting new just by nature of you being new you won't have been able to spend that time

[00:28:28] Victor: Do you think it could work? again, the, the, the time aspect is like really hard to get like how can you just avoid spending time um to to learn things that's like a general problem I think that problem is called education in the general sense.

But like, does it make sense for a, let's say a bootcamp or, or any, you know, school right? To attempt to guide people through the previous solutions that didn't work, right? Like in math, you don't start with calculus, right? It just wouldn't, it doesn't make sense, right? But we try and start with calculus in software, right?

We're just like, okay, here's the complexity. You've got all of it. Don't worry. Just look at this little bit. If, you know, if the compiler ever spits out a weird error uh oh, like, you're, you're, you're in for trouble cuz you, you just didn't get the. get the basics. And I think that's maybe some of what is missing.

And the thing is, it is like the constraints are hard, right? No one has infinite time, right? Or like, you know, even like, just tons of time to devote to learning, learning just front end, right? That's not even all of computing, That's not even the algorithm stuff that some companies love to throw at you, right?

Uh, or the computer sciencey stuff. I wonder if it makes more sense to spend some time taking people through the progression, right? Because discovering that we should do things via components, let's say, or, or at least encapsulate our functionality to components and compose that way, is something we, we not everyone knew, right?

Or, you know, we didn't know wild widely. And so it feels like it might make sense to touch on that sort of realization and sort of guide the student through, you know, maybe it's like make five projects in a week and you just get progressively more complex. But then again, that's also hard cause effort, right?

It's just like, it's a hard problem. But, but I think right now, uh, people who come in at the end and sort of like see a bunch of complexity and just don't know why it's there, right? Like, if you've like, sort of like, this is, this applies also very, this applies to general, but it applies very well to the Kubernetes problem as well.

Like if you've never managed nginx on more than one machine, or if you've never tried to set up a, like a, to format your file system on the machine you just rented because it just, you know, comes with nothing, right? Or like, maybe, maybe some stuff was installed, but, you know, if you had to like install LVM (Logical Volume Manager) yourself, if you've never done any of that, Kubernetes would be harder to understand.

It's just like, it's gonna be hard to understand. overlay networks are hard for everyone to understand, uh, except for network people who like really know networking stuff. I think it would be better. But unfortunately, it takes a lot of time for people to take a sort of more iterative approach to, to learning.

I try and write blog posts in this way sometimes, but it's really hard. And so like, I'll often have like an idea, like, so I call these, or I think of these as like onion, onion style posts, right? Where you either build up an onion sort of from the inside and kind of like go out and like add more and more layers or whatever.

Or you can, you can go from the outside and sort of take off like layers. Like, oh, uh, Kubernetes has a scheduler. Why do they need a scheduler? Like, and like, you know, kind of like, go, go down. but I think that might be one of the best ways to learn, but it just takes time. Or geniuses and geniuses who are good at two things, right?

Good at the actual technology and good at teaching. Cuz teaching is a skill and it's very hard. and, you know, shout out to teachers cuz that's, it's, it's very difficult, extremely frustrating. it's hard to find determinism in, in like methods and solutions.

And there's research of course, but it's like, yeah, that's, that's a lot harder than the computer being like, Nope, that doesn't work. Right? Like, if you can't, if you can't, like if you, if the function call doesn't work, it doesn't work. Right. If the person learned suboptimally, you won't know Right. Until like 10 years down the road when, when they can't answer some question or like, you know, when they, they don't understand. It's a missing fundamental piece anyway.

[00:32:24] Jeremy: I think with the example of front end, maybe you don't have time to walk through the whole history of every single library and framework that came but I think at the very least, if you show someone, or you teach someone how to work with css, and you have them, like you were talking about components before you have them build a site where there's a lot of stuff that gets reused, right? Maybe you have five pages and they all have the same nav bar.

[00:33:02] Victor: Yeah, you kind of like make them do it.

[00:33:04] Jeremy: Yeah. You make 'em do it and they make all the HTML files, they copy and paste it, and probably your students are thinking like, ah, this, this kind of sucks

[00:33:16] Victor: Yeah

[00:33:18] Jeremy: And yeah, so then you, you come to that realization, and then after you've done that, then you can bring in, okay, this is why we have components.

And similarly you brought up, manual dom manipulation with jQuery and things like that. I, I'm sure you could come up with an example of you don't even necessarily need to use jQuery. I think people can probably skip that step and just use the the, the API that comes with the browser.

But you can have them go in like, Oh, you gotta find this element by the id and you gotta change this based on this, and let them experience the. I don't know if I would call it pain, but let them experience like how it was. Right. And, and give them a complex enough task where they feel like something is wrong right. Or, or like, there, should be something better. And then you can go to you could go straight to vue or react. I'm not sure if we need to go like, Here's backbone, here's knockout.

[00:34:22] Victor: Yeah. Tha…

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