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Compiler is on a holiday break and will return in January 2023—but we're sharing an episode made by our friends at CodeNewbie that we think you'll like: To welcome back our show for Season 22, we talk with a familiar face to the CodeNewbie Podcast, Chris Ferdinandi. Chris is the author of the Vanilla JS Pocket Guide series and the creator of the Vanilla JS Academy training program. On today's episode, Chris talks about what he's learned since coming on the show in 2020, how he sees the future of frontend development evolving over the next few years, and what tools might help in your next job search. Check out the CodeNewbie site for complete show notes and more episodes:
While working in a software stack, IT professionals may have to bridge gaps in practical knowledge, institutional knowledge, and communication. Teams may be located in different countries or backgrounds, and may even work in different areas of the stack. The practice of building software is deeply technical, but it’s also deeply human. In the final episode of Stack/Unstuck, we discuss how bridging gaps in communication and expertise helps teams come together from across a software stack to build something great. The Compiler team would like to thank everyone they spoke with in the making of Stack/Unstuck. Earlier in this series, we mentioned how building software was like building a house. One of our guests, Ryan Singer, made a great video where he discusses the similarities. Check out his explanation here. And to check out what David Van Duzer and his team are up to, you can visit the Open Up official webpage.
We reach our penultimate episode for Stack/Unstuck, and arrive on the topic of testing. Testing isn’t necessarily part of any technology stack, but it is a vital part of building software. Sometimes, it can feel like testing is an afterthought, or just a box for busy coders to tick once completed.We hear from our guests about how testing doesn’t need to be saved for a curtain call. It can have a starring role when identifying problems within different components of a software stack. And as we include it more in discussions and planning, and as we start thinking about it earlier in development cycles, testing can further an application’s potential, and help teams build software better.
The operating system wars are over. We’re still left with Windows, Linux, and MacOS—along with Android and iOS. Many argue that there’s little left to accomplish with the bottom of the software stack. But work on the OS is far from over. The kernel and user space provide the literal foundation for the rest of the software stack. Drivers, networking, and countless other features are abstracted away as common resources so the other layers of the stack can focus on their own functions. So when the overlooked layer gets an upgrade, it can really make a difference. 



Writing data is easy. You take in the information and put it away for future use. It’s remembering exactly what you wrote and where you put it that’s the challenge. Just like having to look for your keys as you try to rush out the door, getting that data quickly makes all the difference. And when your database is your bestie, it can serve that information faster than you could imagine. Getting a database into shape takes specialized skills. From planning and development to maintenance and rebuilding, it’s a layer of the stack that needs constant attention and evaluation. It can be a performance booster—or an efficiency bottleneck. What does it take to keep your database and the information it stores available to the stack?
Frameworks exist to make building apps easier, and there are a lot to choose from. We hear from one long-time Java developer about his passion project, an app designed to remind users of important deadlines and appointments. We explore his app’s framework—how he chose it, and how things changed along the way.While they are there to help developers build applications very quickly, frameworks shouldn’t be seen as a salve or a substitute for basic knowledge. When things go awry, that’s when knowing the fundamentals can help, whether you are building applications on your own, or working on a larger team.
Front-end development can be complex—and that means a front-end developer’s skills are essential, albeit constantly shifting. But a humble web search can produce various memes and jokes about how the front end isn’t as much of an endeavor as other parts of an application can be. Expanding knowledge beyond one’s area of the software stack can strengthen the skills they have, but negative perceptions can become a barrier to building those necessary relationships. As communities and companies grow, though, attitudes can begin to change. How can front-end developers communicate their expertise to their peers, and learn new talents along the way?
The Great Stack Debate

The Great Stack Debate


The software stack is like an onion. Or a sheet cake. Or lasagna. Or is it? It’s often described as having layers that sit on top of each other. The reality is much more complicated—and learning about it can help any tech career. The Great Stack Debate is the first episode in Compiler’s series on the software stack. We call it Stack/Unstuck. We explore each layer of the stack, what it’s like to work on them, and how they come together into a whole application.  
Mistakes are part of growth. If we’re lucky, we’re in an environment where they’re not punished harshly. That lets us fix the problem, learn to do better, and move on—but also to tell the story once the sting has passed.Last episode, we heard three stories of people blundering into trouble and coming out the other side a little bit wiser. This episode adds three more stories of mistakes being made—but the culprit isn’t always as clear. 
Oops. We all make mistakes. Most of the time, they’re small enough no one notices. But every now and then, we do something that makes us break into a cold sweat. The “Oops” becomes a curse, desperate pleas—or horrified silence as we process what just happened. In the moment, they’re panic-inducing. But once the dust settles, are those big mistakes that big of a deal?On this episode of Compiler, we hear three stories of people who wish they had an easy undo button. But making those mistakes taught them all something important—and changed how they do their jobs. Because those big mistakes end up being valuable lessons for the rest of their careers. 
Movies are culturally important. They transform language and communication. Motion pictures present fantasy worlds we can get lost in, helping us understand the world differently. Discussing data and movies can make the fantasy seem…a little less fantastic. It can feel sterile, mass produced, and devoid of imagination. But data is vital, both for those behind the camera and those sitting in theaters (or at home). This episode will cover some ways data science and machine learning can inform filmmaking, from conception to post-production.
Updates. They take time out of your day and your devices out of commission. That’s about the extent of it for an end user. But for organizations? Updating their systems is a big deal. And forgoing regular updates is a recipe for disaster. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” isn’t a good option for enterprise IT. Your system may keep running but if you haven’t updated in awhile, you may be missing some stability and performance improvements—and probably some security patches too. Regularly updating is a good habit. How do we make it less annoying? 
When Should Data Die?

When Should Data Die?


We have a finite time on earth. But the data we generate? It can last much, much longer. We have limited control over what happens to our data during our lives. And while you might not care about anything when you’re gone, you and your loved ones might have an interest in how your information is used after you pass. So we wondered: When should data die? It’s a tricky question. In the digital age, individuals generate mountains of data over their lifetimes. But who has the right to decide whether that data remains, or when it is deleted? How should IT organizations handle their datasets given the complexities of privacy, legacy, and ownership that they need to consider?
Technologists are often asked to make decisions based on future industry advancements—or basically, things that haven’t happened yet. It’s already difficult to choose the right path for a project without the pressure to be clairvoyant. But everyone wants to feel like they are leading the pack on the next big thing. What do we need to know to make a good prediction for where technology is headed? Alternatively, what do we need to know to avoid the wrong choice? We speak to experts in the DevOps space about betting wrong on the future, how development projects go awry, and what teams can do to get things back on track.  
We live in what some call a “distraction economy.” There are countless messages, emails, tickets, bugs to fix, and meetings to attend. For those who have to build software, platforms, and services, as well as those who maintain them and keep them running, it can be difficult to decide what to focus on first. The immense pressure to be productive is challenging to balance with passion projects, personal responsibilities, or just with the need to rest. Our team spoke with tech-minded creators in the productivity space on how to achieve full focus, and how to make time for work, relaxation, and creativity. We would love to see you (virtually) at Red Hat Summit. Register for the virtual experience of Red Hat Summit at
It’s about time we asked a question about compilers. It’s been a scary proposition. Compilers have a reputation for density, complexity, and a fair bit of mysticism. But when we looked into them, we learned they’re really just like any other program. So we wondered: Who’s afraid of compilers? In this episode of Compiler, we start to break down the reputation by opening up the black box. What do compilers do? How do they work? And what can you gain by learning more about the inner workings of compilers? 
Traffic jams and congested streets are an annoyance many people have to endure. Turns out, the same technology keeping us constantly connected—the Internet of Things—can also improve how we move people and things from place to place. But what are the considerations for technologists? Connectivity can’t be the only piece of the puzzle. Smart road technology can make travel safer, easier, and more efficient. But how can it make travel enjoyable?
Computer literacy is supposedly coming naturally to younger generations who seem to be born with smartphones in their hands. But there’s a difference between tech familiarity and actually knowing how technology works. And when kids learn about the wide world of IT, what else are they learning? Kids know tech is everywhere. In this episode of Compiler, we spoke to middle school, high school, and college educators about what it is their students are hoping to learn—and what skills they pick up on the way. 
Hey listeners—we’ve got something different for you to try. If you enjoyed our Caturday episode and want more stories about security, we think you’ll like Season 9 of Command Line Heroes. It’s Red Hat’s tech history show, and this new season is all about malware. Here’s the first episode:Computer viruses and worms haunt the internet. They worm their way into a system, replicate, and spread again. It’s a simple process—with devastating consequences. But there’s a whole industry of people that rose up to fight back. Craig Schmugar recalls how he and his team responded to MyDoom, one of the fastest-spreading worms ever. Dr. Nur Zincir-Heywood reveals the inner workings of viruses and worms, and how they draw their names from the world of biology. And security expert Mikko Hypponen shares advice on avoiding malware. But he also warns that we’re in an arms race against malware developers.
Memes are goofy. They’re easily recognizable. And they’re often used to make a point. So it’s no wonder that people on both sides of the InfoSec community are not only familiar with memes, but often use them in their endless games of cat and mouse. Consequently, memes are often a sign of a breach of security. Because there’s little as satisfying as leaving a meme as proof of your security prowess. On this episode of Compiler, we hear from a couple of Red Hatters who rose to an unusual security challenge. And while intentions were good, the memes could have easily been something much more nefarious. 
Comments (5)

Philip C

really great podcast, especially for IT beginners such as myself...thank you, and keep up the good work :)

Oct 25th

Pedram Parsian

Great talk! Thanks. Is there any open-source alternative to that I can use on Ubuntu?

Jul 24th

otsen dorman

thank you guys for such wonderful topic great job.

Nov 15th



Aug 22nd

Thanks for sharing. I found a lot of interesting information here.

Aug 16th
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