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Things have been a little too quiet on my side here, so its time for an exciting new series:
practiseSafeHex's new life as a manager.
Episode 1: Dealing with the new backend team
It's great to be back folks. Since our last series where we delved into the mind numbing idiocy of former colleagues, a lot has changed. I've moved to a new company and taken a step up as a Dev manager / Tech lead. Now I know what you are all thinking, sounds more dull and boring right? Well it wouldn't be a practiseSafeHex series if we weren't ...
DEALING! ... WITH! ... IDIOTS!
Bingo! so lets jump right in and kick us off with a good one.
So for the past few months i've been on an on-boarding / fact finding / figuring out this shit-storm, mission to understand more about what it is i'm suppose to do and how to do it. Last week, as part of this, I had the esteemed pleasure of meeting face to face with the remote backend team i've been working with. Lets rattle off a few facts to catch us all up:
- 8 hour time difference to me
- No documentation other than a non-maintained swagger doc
- Swagger is reporting errors and several of the input models are just `Type: String`
- The one model that seems accurate, has every property listed as optional, including what must be the primary key
- Properties go missing and get removed at the drop of a hat and we are never told.
- First email I sent them took 27 days to reply, my response to that hasn't been answered so far 31 days later (new record! way to go team, I knew we could do it!!!)
- I deal directly with 2 of them, the manager and the tech lead. Based on how things have gone so far, i've nick named them:
So lets look at some example of their work:
- I was trying to test the new backend, I saw no data in QA. They said it wouldn't show up until mid day their time, which is middle of the night for us. I said we need data in our timezone and I was told: a) "You don't understand how big this system is" (which is their new catch phrase) b) "Your timezone is not my concern"
- The whole org started testing 2 days later. The next day a member from each team was on a call and I was asked to give an update of how the testing was going on the mobile side. I said I was completely blocked because I can't get test data. Backend were asked to respond. They acknowledged they were aware, but that mobile don't understand how big the system is, and that the mobile team need to come up with ideas for the backend team, as to how mobile can test it. I said we can't do anything without test data, they said ... can you guess what? ... correct "you don't understand how big the system is"
- We eventually got something going and I noticed that only 1 of the 5 API changes due on their side was done. Opened tickets. 2 days later asked them for progress and was told that "new findings" always go to the bottom of the backlog, and they are busy with other things. I said these were suppose to be done days ago. They said you can't give us 2 days notice and expect everything done. I said the original ticket was opened a month a go *sends link* ......... *long silence* ...... "ok, but you don't understand how big the system is, this is a lot of work"
- We were on a call. Product was asking the backend manager (aka "Ass") a question about a slight upgrade to the new feature. While trying to talk, the tech lead (aka "Hole") kept cutting everyone off by saying loudly "but thats not in scope". The question was "is this possible in the future" and "how long would it take", coming from management and product development. Hole just kept saying "its not in scope", until he was told to be quiet by several people.
- An API was sending down JSON with a string containing a message for the user with 2 bits of data inside it. We asked for one of those pieces to also come down as a property as the string can change and we needed it client side. We got that. A few days later we found an edge case and asked for the second piece of data to be a property too. Now keep in mind, they clearly already have access to them in order to make the string. We were told "If you keep requesting changes like this, you are going to delay the release of the backend by up to 2 weeks"
Yes folks, there you have it, the most minuscule JSON modifications, can delay your release by up to 2 weeks ........ maybe I should just tell product, that they don't understand how big the app is, and claim we can't build it on our side? Seems to work for them
Thats all the time we have for today,
Tune in for more, where we'll be looking into such topics as:
- If god himself was an iOS developer ... not
- Why automate when you can spend all day doing it by hand
- Its more time-efficient to just give everything a story point of 5
- Why waste time replying to emails ... when you can do nothing instead
See you all next week,
Yesterday (or the day before that depending on your timezone and day-night schedule - this Friday) my OnePlus 6T arrived. After only 2 days of time between placing the order and actually getting the phone, quite impressive!
The DHL guy asked me upon receipt - is it the OnePlus 6T? - Yes it is!! - "An amazing device it is!", he said. And honestly.. he couldn't be more right.
I might be a bit biased on this because after all I did just spend €630 on this phone. But it feels so snappy, high quality, the 8GB of RAM is just.. it blows my mind. But I'm sure that the other reviews did this sort of jazz already.
The things that set this phone apart for me though were the following.
When I get a new phone or tablet, usually the first thing I do is rooting it. This one was no different, about an hour after receipt it was successfully rooted and loaded with Magisk. Currently I'm still in the phase of "getting to know the phone", wherein fuckups are usual. This time again being no different - I removed some apps and apparently did something to it that the search engines - both Google and DuckDuckGo - didn't quite like, as both of them would crash upon application launch. Me in full panic mode of course, desperately trying to find the stock ROM (which doesn't seem to be present in its usual form) or a new set of GApps (which didn't resolve the issue). OnePlus does seem to offer its OTA updates in zip archives though. So I downloaded its latest update (same as what was on the device) and applied it.
That's when the nerdgasm happened.
The "update" was simply a matter of going into the settings, tapping this and that and applying the update. No recovery, no unrooting, no nothing. The update just went like that despite the phone being rooted and just having had TWRP flashed to it. I always wanted this sort of thing, which even the Nexus couldn't offer - having the cake and eating it too. Being able to root the device and muck around with it while still being able to update the device timely without too many hurdles. This fucking thing does it!!!
That is to say, after my initial nerdgasm I did find that it bulldozed over my su binary (effectively unrooting the thing), custom emoji I've set (iOS 12 because fuck Google's most recent emoji set) and some other things. But those are easy to install back, much more so than it would've been to download a whole Android release and dirty flash it, as it was on the Nexus.
Other than that, battery life, dash charging (edit: on that topic, it does remain cool like a cucumber despite getting 15-20W of power jammed into it, quite impressive!), snappiness, the usual jazz.. eh, as I said earlier that's the usual reviewer stuff. But this feature of being able to upgrade the phone while it's modified, that's something which seems to be severely underrated by those.
Oh and during kernel builds, I couldn't quite get the source to work - probably due to my lack of experience with builds of Android kernels - but I did find that this phone actually exposes its kernel config through /proc/config.gz as it should. None of my MediaTek devices do this, so that's something that I found really appealing. Always nice to see when a manufacturer exposes this information to give you a stock sort of config that you can be rest assured will work configuration-wise. And it allows you to see what the stock kernel is actually built with, which again is really nice. I quite like this! It really encourages further development.11
# Only works if new distro is available, otherwise you have to find another way to break ubuntu
!rant && story
tl;dr I lost my path, learned to a lot about linux and found true love.
So because of the recent news about wpa2, I thought about learning to do some things network penetration with kali. My roommate and I took an old 8gb usb and turned it into a bootable usb with persistent storage. Maybe not the best choice, but atleast we know how to do that now.
Anyway, we started with a kali.iso from 2015, because we thought it would be faster than downloading it with a 150kpbs connection. Learned a lot from that mistake while waiting apt-get update/upgrade.
Next day I got access to some faster connection, downloaded a new release build and put the 2015 version out it's misery. Finally some signs of progress. But that was not enough. We wanted more. We (well atleast I) wanted to try i3, because one of my friends showed me to /r/unixporn (btw, pornhub is deprecated now). So after researching what i3 is, what a wm is AND what a dm is, we replaced gdm3 with lightdm and set i3 as standard wm. With the user guide on an other screen we started playing with i3. Apparently heaven is written with two characters only. Now I want to free myself from windows and have linux (Maybe arch) as my main system, but for now we continue to use thus kali usb to learn about how to set uo a nice desktop environment. Wait, why did we choose to install kali? 😂
I feel kinda sorry for that, but I want to experiment on there before until I feel confident. (Please hit me up with tips about i3)
Still gotta use Windows as a subsystem for gaming. 😥3
Anti climactic story time (as in there's no promotion in this story):
Sometime ago there were some organizational changes happening in my company that put me in a very tricky place. Theoretically, I was put on a level that was supposed to be an upgrade from my previous level. Practically, it didn't come with any benefits and it was actually a downgrade because anyone who joined the company in the six months before these changes was in the same level as me (who'd been in for roughly 2 years).
It felt really insulting because I was about to be actually promoted. My manager and his manager tried to gaslight me into believing that I'm not at all affected in any way, before giving in and agreeing that a mistake was made. I was promised that next year it'll be corrected and I'll be promoted two levels. Even the HR assured me of that. I knew it was too good to be true but I was too demotivated to find another job.
Fast forward one year. My bosses are all praises for the work I put in. But, no two level promotion. Reason? They tried but couldn't get the management to agree. The boss apologized to me and asked me if I wanted him to try again. What an insolent arse!
Fast forward one more, extremely glum year.
This time I am part of a different team so the team lead is different but the manager is same. The team lead really went all out with showing appreciation for me. He talked for almost an hour(!) about how I exceeded his expectations and went on to claim that his app's release would have been impossible if it weren't for me, the new team member. It was really humbling and satisfying. But what did I get? A limp handshake from the manager with fucking loose change.
Silver lining. At least the manager did away with the 'well wisher, on your side' pretense this time. No mentions of failed promises, just regular empty promises for the future.
Fast forward 3 months.
Still here. Recovering. I am mulling over a much better offer than what my current boss can give me. Thinking about how long it takes before I'm in the dumpster again. I have stopped giving any fucks about anything here. I try to do the minimum required unless it benefits me in some way.