AboutMagical processor fairy; part-time misanthropic bane of idiots. 🧚♀️🏹 Ergo sum miseriae
SkillsRuby ❤, js/es6, css, react, sql. VB and PHP can die in a fire; .NET can go, too.
LocationDying on the altar of lunacy.
Joined devRant on 2/25/2017
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🎶 Fixing production issues 🎶
🎶 Fixing production issues 🎶
🎶 In other people’s code! 🎶
Seriously, how am I still in a good mood when I have to deal with this?14
Literally just a sidebar.
And yes, this was in Hell.
Its code was spread across at least 40 files, and it used a bunch of freaking global variables to unfurl accordion sections, hide other sections/items, highlight the active item, etc. These were set (and unset!) in controller actions, so if you didn’t unset one, it remained open and highlighted until another action unset it.
Some of the global variable checks (and permissions checks) were done in the individual views, some outside of the `render` statements that include them. Some of them inherited variables from the parent, some from the controller, some from globals. Getting a view to work was trial and error. Oh, and some had their own inline css, some used css classes.
Subsections were separate views, so were some individual items, both sometimes rendered using shared templates, and all of the views and templates had the exact. same. filename. (They were located in different directories, and thus located automagically via implicit relative paths.) So, it was a virtually endless parade of`render partial => “sidebar”`. Which file does that point to? Good luck figuring it out!
Also, comments in several places said adding a new section required a database migration. I never did figure out why.
Anyway, I discovered this because I had an innocuous-sounding ticket to rearrange the sidebar, group some sections/items under different permissions, move some items to another menu, and nest some others differently.
It took me two bloody weeks, and this was when I was extremely productive every day.
Afterward, I was so disgusted by it that I took a day and removed every trace of the sidebar I could find, and rewrote it. I defined the sidebar in a hash, and wrote a simple recursive builder to generate the markup. It supported optional icons, n-level nesting, automatic highlighting of the current item and all parent nodes, compound and inherited permissions, wrapping of long names, hover and unfurl animations, etc. Took me a couple hundred lines of Ruby at the most, plus about the same of css.
Felt so good to remove that blight.4
Back in Hell, we had a “company summit” where everyone flew in for an all hands meeting.
It was three days long in a tiny office with very lacking air conditioning in the middle of a Las Vegas summer. Basically the entire thing was the CEO / goblin salesman king chewing at us and expounding about / proselytizing his latest and greatest sales ideas and how they’ll change the world. And randomly asking “which of you are HUNGRY?! Which of you want to be FILTHY FUCKING RICH?!” etc.
One good thing came out of it, which was that any and all new endeavors needed a “co-signer” and a sign off from development before we (developers, or more accurate: just me) would work on it. It reduced the growth rate of my backlog by like 80%, which was nice.
While dreading the “summit,” I hated him more than I had in quite awhile.
During the summit, I hated him more and even flipped him off.
After the summit, I swore to leave the revolting wreckage that was the company.
(And months later, I did just that —after becoming the sole dev and the only person holding the damned company afloat. When I gave him my two weeks’ notice, I absolutely relished his terror. And my time spent writing my 43 page no-sugarcoat handoff document that was guaranteed to scare off any hapless dev he might find. 😇)
But I digress, three 10-hour days with him and the rest of the sales team, the sleazy lawyer, the CTO who mentally checked out years ago, the yes-man contractor, and me. The only good thing that came out of that meeting was one good idea that he dismissed, and the sign off idea that saved my backlog a bit.
One of the sales people quit shortly thereafter. So it was a huge expense that wasted everyone’s time and added absolutely nothing of value to the company. GG!
Oh, it was also in the “totally better” office — meaning… cheaper, unfinished (literally plywood floors), and was one room in another company’s office, who often locked the door leading to their offices because they trusted him so much. But it was in downtown Las Vegas, with no parking at all, where gang members were hanging out almost every day, and it was next to low-income housing and weird no-service restaurants with shockingly high prices.
Weird and scary.
Totally carried pepper spray every time Mr. Goblin asshole forced me to go into the office. Didn’t get raped, though, or my laptop or car stolen. So that was nice.5
Best: the tool that works for the job.
Worst: the tool that doesn’t.
Example: Ruby is great for scripts and web dev, but simply doesn’t work for graphics engines.
Example: SQL is great for fetching data (etc.), but it is absolutely terrible for business logic.
Example: XSLT is great for lowering your faith and your will to live, but it is absolutely awful for literally every other purpose.22
I could bitch about XSLT again, as that was certainly painful, but that’s less about learning a skill and more about understanding someone else’s mental diarrhea, so let me pick something else.
My most painful learning experience was probably pointers, but not pointers in the usual sense of `char *ptr` in C and how they’re totally confusing at first. I mean, it was that too, but in addition it was how I had absolutely none of the background needed to understand them, not having any learning material (nor guidance), nor even a typical compiler to tell me what i was doing wrong — and on top of all of that, only being able to run code on a device that would crash/halt/freak out whenever i made a mistake. It was an absolute nightmare.
Here’s the story:
Someone gave me the game RACE for my TI-83 calculator, but it turned out to be an unlocked version, which means I could edit it and see the code. I discovered this later on by accident while trying to play it during class, and when I looked at it, all I saw was incomprehensible garbage. I closed it, and the game no longer worked. Looking back I must have changed something, but then I thought it was just magic. It took me a long time to get curious enough to look at it again.
But in the meantime, I ended up played with these “programs” a little, and made some really simple ones, and later some somewhat complex ones. So the next time I opened RACE again I kind of understood what it was doing.
Moving on, I spent a year learning TI-Basic, and eventually reached the limit of what it could do. Along the way, I learned that all of the really amazing games/utilities that were incredibly fast, had greyscale graphics, lowercase text, no runtime indicator, etc. were written in “Assembly,” so naturally I wanted to use that, too.
I had no idea what it was, but it was the obvious next step for me, so I started teaching myself. It was z80 Assembly, and there was practically no documents, resources, nothing helpful online.
I found the specs, and a few terrible docs and other sources, but with only one year of programming experience, I didn’t really understand what they were telling me. This was before stackoverflow, etc., too, so what little help I found was mostly from forum posts, IRC (mostly got ignored or made fun of), and reading other people’s source when I could find it. And usually that was less than clear.
And here’s where we dive into the specifics. Starting with so little experience, and in TI-Basic of all things, meant I had zero understanding of pointers, memory and addresses, the stack, heap, data structures, interrupts, clocks, etc. I had mastered everything TI-Basic offered, which astoundingly included arrays and matrices (six of each), but it hid everything else except basic logic and flow control. (No, there weren’t even functions; it has labels and goto.) It has 27 numeric variables (A-Z and theta, can store either float or complex numbers), 8 Lists (numeric arrays), 6 matricies (2d numeric arrays), 10 strings, and a few other things like “equations” and literal bitmap pictures.
Soo… I went from knowing only that to learning pointers. And pointer math. And data structures. And pointers to pointers, and the stack, and function calls, and all that goodness. And remember, I was learning and writing all of this in plain Assembly, in notepad (or on paper at school), not in C or C++ with a teacher, a textbook, SO, and an intelligent compiler with its incredibly helpful type checking and warnings. Just raw trial and error. I learned what I could from whatever cryptic sources I could find (and understand) online, and applied it.
But actually using what I learned? If a pointer was wrong, it resulted in unexpected behavior, memory corruption, freezes, etc. I didn’t have a debugger, an emulator, etc. I had notepad, the barebones compiler, and my calculator.
Also, iterating meant changing my code, recompiling, factory resetting my calculator (removing the battery for 30+ sec) because bugs usually froze it or corrupted something, then transferring the new program over, and finally running it. It was soo slowwwww. But I made steady progress.
Painful learning experience? Check.
Pointer hell? Absolutely.4
There’s this Indian chick at work that I really, really do not get along with. Fortunately she’s on a different team so we have practically zero interactions. Her code was always decent, maybe upper junior level? but I went away fuming almost every time we talked.
However, I did a release security review today (I’m down from five/six per month to one) and read through quite a bit of her code. It was clean and easy to read with good separation, clear naming and intentions, nothing was confusing, etc. It was almost beautiful. Had I any emotions I might have shed a tear. I sent her a message and let her know :) I actually learned a better way of doing a couple of things from it.
She has grown so much as a dev.34
Tired, went to bed early. Took two melatonin because I haven’t been sleeping well. Layed down at 9:30pm, tried to sleep for hours, couldn’t, and ended up feeling wide awake at like 11:30. Memories of my parents and their endless shit resurfaced and flooded into my mind, and made me various combinations of livid and sad and distraught. Got up and sat in the closet at 2am to try and clear my head, and eventually gave up and started my work day at 2:45. Got quite a bit done, and it cleared my head. Yay!
But it’s now 6:25am and I have standup at 10:30, and a day full of meetings. :<
… and plenty of memories I would very much rather not remember.11
Adventures in security land, part II:
I’m getting pulled off the security review team and instead relegated to part-time security tickets alongside my usual dev work. (So, someone else finds them, i fix them.)
Guess I found and debated too many problems with the lead dev’s code. 🙄13
Adventures in security land.
The “legendary” lead dev authored a ticket that logs raw credentials for a third-party tool we’re using, and logs partially-obscured consumer passwords. His reasoning: “for debugging. And customer service!” And then argued with me over why that’s bad! Seriously?
Then in the release channel, he and the release manager are talking like I’m pestering them with my findings. Things like “I have some Root-induced changes coming” and “Fixed those, but she’ll probably have more...” etc.
Like come on.
I’m even being nice here, but you seriously need to stop screwing this up.
They also didn’t bother merging the fixes into the release branch, so I needed to re-review the entire (large) ticket on its own branch. Doubles the effort since I can’t easily see what changed.
The lead dev also only updated a few of the specs (despite me sending him a list), so there’s a bunch of failing ones now. Makes me unsure if he actually fixed everything.
Maybe I’m just being touchy, but ugh. Freaking annoying people.
At least he owned up to being the author this time instead of saying someone else (who wasn’t in the history...) wrote it. -.-9
I used to measure my performance in features per day (or week, depending on their scope), or tasks/day or loc/day for huge projects. My usual was two to three small features a day, and some progress on a larger one.
Now I’m so burned out and depressed that i measure my progress in the amount of days per week that aren’t “zeros” — as in days where i get literally nothing done. Now any day where i get _anything_ done, no matter how little, is a “good day.” I partially refactored about fifty lines of json builder spaghetti on Tuesday. That was a great day.
This week I’ve had two zeros, and it’s Thursday morning. I think it’s going to be a three zero week.
Worse: performance reviews were due weeks ago. I still haven’t written mine, and have no idea what i would even write. How can i make myself sound good when i can barely even force myself to eat or take a shower?52
I need a vacation.
I’m horribly depressed and burned out, every day for months has been a little harder than the last, and really doing anything at all is a monumental challenge, work or otherwise. Let alone working on the fucking screwdriver.
I told my boss last night and requested time off.
> Oh no, but the new screwdriver! We were all really really hoping to get it out by the end of the month!
I’m a crumpled wreck and all you care about is the fucking screwdriver that PRACTICALLY NOBODY WILL FUCKING USE? Seriously dude, go to hell.43
After a little bit, I land on their “Do not sell my data” page and discover that, not only does it have 175+ trackers,
it doesn’t even fucking work. Also, on the desktop version of the site, the very control allowing the user to opt out of having their data shared/sold doesn’t even render.
These are all absolutely inexcusable.20
Example #1 of ??? Explaining why I dislike my coworkers.
VP: VP of Engineering; my boss’s boss. Founded the company, picked the CEO, etc.
LD: Lead dev; literally wrote the first line of code at the company, and has been here ever since.
CISO: Chief Information Security Officer — my boss when I’m doing security work.
Three weeks ago (private zoom call):
> VP to me: I want you to know that anything you say, while wearing your security hat, goes. You can even override me. If you need to hold a release for whatever reason, you have that power. If I happen to disagree with a security issue you bring up, that’s okay. You are in charge of release security. I won’t be mad or hold it against you. I just want you to do your job well.
Last week (engineering-wide meeting):
> CISO: From now on we should only use external IDs in urls to prevent a malicious actor from scraping data or automating attacks.
> LD: That’s great, and we should only use normal IDs in logging so they differ. Sounds more secure, right?
> CISO: Absolutely. That way they’re orthogonal.
> VP: Good idea, I think we should do this going forward.
Last weekend (in the security channel):
> LD: We should ONLY use external IDs in urls, and ONLY normal IDs in logging — in other words, orthogonal.
> VP: I agree. It’s better in every way.
Today (in the same security channel):
> Me: I found an instance of using a plain ID in a url that cancels a payment. A malicious user with or who gained access to <user_role> could very easily abuse this to cause substantial damage. Please change this instance and others to using external IDs.
> LD: Whoa, that goes way beyond <user_role>
> VP: You can’t make that decision, that’s engineering-wide!
Not only is this sane security practice, you literally. just. agreed. with this on three separate occasions in the past week, and your own head of security also posed this before I brought it up! And need I remind you that it is still standard security practice!?
But nooo, I’m overstepping my boundaries by doing my job.
Fucking hell I hate dealing with these people.14
I’m going to fucking kill my boss.
He’s known about how I’ve been writing this fucking ticket (screwdriver followup) for four fucking weeks, and on the last fucking day (yesterday) he tells me it’s not the correct fucking architecture and to rewrite basically all of it using <unknown bullshit> instead, and that i must have it done by today — by this fucking morning — so it can make the release.
WHY THE FUCK DIDN’T YOU TELL ME ABOUT THIS AT ANY POINT IN THE LAST FUCKING MONTH WHILE YOU WERE BUSY NITPICKING MY FUCKING CODE YOU FUCKING CUNT?!31
Hey, you know that screwdriver followup ticket you’ve been working on for several weeks? Yeah, I want it to use <feature> that I’ve never told you about and I know you’ve never used, and it looks like that means rewriting most of it! Also, I still want it done by tonight.
Soo not happening.10
Finally finished the screwdriver followup ticket. I think.
I spent almost two full days (14 hours) on a seemingly simple bug on Friday, and then another four hours yesterday. Worse yet: I can’t test this locally due to how Apple notifications work, so I can only debug this on one particular server that lives outside of our VPN — which is ofc in high demand. And the servers are unreliable, often have incorrect configuration, missing data, random 504s, and ssh likes to disconnect. Especially while running setup scripts, hence the above. So it’s difficult to know if things are failing because there’s a bug or the server is just a piece of shit, or just doesn’t like you that day.
But the worst fucking part of all? The bug appeared different on Monday than it did on Friday. Like, significantly different.
On Friday, a particular event killed all notifications for all subsequent events thereafter, even unrelated ones, and nothing would cause them to work again. This had me diving through the bowels of several systems, scouring the application logs, replicating the issue across multiple devices, etc. I verified the exact same behavior several times over, and it made absolutely no sense. I wrote specs to verify the screwdriver code worked as expected, and it always did. But an integration test that used consumer-facing controller actions exhibited the behavior, so it wasn’t in my code.
On Monday while someone else was watching: That particular event killed all notifications but ONLY FOR RELATED EVENTS, AND THEY RESUMED AFTER ANOTHER EVENT. All other events and their notifications worked perfectly.
I think I fixed it — waiting on verification — and if it is indeed fixed, it was because two fucking push event records were treated as unique and silently failing to save, run callbacks, etc.
BUT THIS DOESN’T MATCH WHAT I VERIFIED MULTIPLE TIMES! ASDFJ;AKLSDF
I’m so fucking done with this bs.8
When I was in 7th grade, my neighbor (a DoD programmer) challenged me to write a sorting algorithm for a hypothetical super limited environment (he said a satellite). It didn’t have any built-in sorting methods, had very limited memory, slow processor, etc. so I needed to be clever about it.
It took me a few nights before i found a solution he liked. The method I came up with counted the number of occurrences of each number in the array and put them in the appropriate spots in a new array. This way it only required O(2n) running time and 2n memory.
I just learned today that this is called the “counting sort” 😄
I’m proud of little 11 year old me.20
So this chick has been super nice to me for the past few months, and has been trying to push me towards a role in security. She said nothing but wonderful things about it. It’s easy, it’s not much work, it’s relaxing, etc.
I eventually decided I’m burned out enough that something, anything different would be good, and went for it. I’m now officially doing both dev and security. The day I started, she announced that she was leaving the security team and wouldn’t join any other calls. Just flat-out left.
She trained me on doing a security review of this release, which basically amounted to a zoom call where I did all of the work and she directed me on what to do next, ignored everything I said, and treated me like an idiot. It’s apparently an easy release. The work itself? Not difficult, but it’s very involved, very time consuming, and requires a lot of paper trail — copying the same crap to three different places, tagging lots of people, copying their responses and pasting them elsewhere, filing tickets, linking tickets, copying info back and forth to slack, signing off on things, tagging tickets in a specific way, writing up security notes in a very specific format etc. etc. etc. It’s apparently usually very hectic with lots of last-minute changes, devs who simply ignore security requests, etc.
I asked her at the end for a quick writeup because I’m not going to remember everything and we didn’t cover everything that might happen.
Her response: Just remember what you did here, and do it again!
I asked again for her to write up some notes. She said “I would recommend.. you watch the new release’s channel starting Thursday, and then review what we did here, and just do all that again. Oh, and if you have any questions, talk to <security boss> so you get in the habit of asking him instead of me. Okay, bye!”
No handoff doc?
Not willing to answer questions after a day and a half of training?
• She was friendly.
• She pushed me towards security.
• She said the security role was easy and laid-back.
• I eventually accepted.
• She quit the same day.
• The “easy release” took a day and a half of work with her watching, and it has a two-day deadline.
• She treated (and still treats) me like a burden and ignores everything I said or asked.
• The work is anything but laid-back.
• She refuses to spend any extra time on this or write up any notes.
• She refuses to answer any further questions because (quote) “I should get in the habit of asking <security boss> instead of her”
So she smiled, lied, and stabbed me in the back. Now she’s treating me like an annoyance she just wants to go away.
I get that she’s burned out from this, but still, what a fucking bitch. I almost can’t believe she’s acting this way, but I’ve grown to expect it from everyone.
But hey, at least I’m doing something different now, which is what I wanted. The speed at which she showed her true colors, though, holy shit.
“I’m more of a personal motivator than anything,” she says, “and I’m first and foremost a supporter of women developers!” Exactly wrong, every single word of it.
God I hate people like this.21
THREE FREAKING DAYS ON THIS SAME FREAKING SPEC AND I FINALLY GOT IT TO PASS!
That’s the most beautiful bit of green I’ve seen in months.3
Eh ehe hehe he eh ehehe
On top of burnout, codebase issues, spec issues, burnout, the product butt that keeps on crapping, burnout, burnout, loathing for my employer... My local Apple SSL cert expired. I can’t finish this and push it anywhere for testing. I can’t even run my own specs anymore. And I don’t have permissions to make a new one. I can’t do anything at all.
Ehe he hehe
Deadline is in two days, and I’m just sitting here laughing quietly to myself. I might finally be going crazy
I found a loose bit of tangle, started to pull, and the world decided it was time to fall apart. Reality said it’s time to go. And I wasn’t even a good screwdriver dev. Byeee ~12
Ruby’s fanciness bit me in the butt today. It’s pretty rare, but often confusing AF when it happens.
array = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]
array.count +1 +2
# => 1
What the fuck?
array.count +1 +2 +3
# => 1
What the fuck?
+1 +2 +3
# => 6
(array.count +1 +2 +3)
# => 1
What the fuck?
(7 +1 +2 +3)
# => 13
array.count + 1 + 2 + 3
# => 13
Alright, so spaces matter here...?
((array.count) +1 +2 +3)
# => 13
But not here!? ... Oh. I think I know what’s going on.
Returns the number of elements. If an argument is given, counts the number of elements which equal it using ==
Well fuck me.
Ruby is seeing `array.count(+1+2+3)` instead of `array.count()+1+2+3` since `+1` is a value, not an operator followed by a value as is the case with `+ 1`.
Now, why was I using +1 +2 instead of adding some spaces like I normally would? So they would match what was in the comment next to them for easier reference. Heh.
Future dev, I did this for you! So this is all your fault. :|36
My .pryrc and a Ruby script it loaded (in another directory) both disappeared seemingly without cause. I lost days of work including a bunch of debugging and performance utilities I wrote over the past year.
But I have no clue how this happened. Neither the .pryrc file nor the script’s folder are tracked by git, so it wouldn’t have been deleted, overwritten, stashed and dropped, etc. None of the other dot files are missing, and the folder is still present, albeit with one fewer files. I wouldn’t delete them, and commands that would delete them do not appear in my zsh history. So I’m at a loss. Figuratively and literally.
They’re just. Gone.
Is there any way to recover missing files on OSX?
I never thought I’d need a backup solution for local scripts.9
Had a great day yesterday. Productive, happy, felt great, and was focused despite a lot of cute distractions. Finished a third of my feature.
Today, I wanted to start work early because I had planned out what I wanted to work on next and how to approach it. I felt motivated. I’d jump out of bed, get ready, and start early. No breakfast but maybe some coffee.
Woke up to two hours of constant distractions, irritations, and time wasting instead. Anger. Everything sought to prevent me from starting.
When I finally got to work, the first thing I saw: political warmongering bullshit.
Guess I’m not getting much done today.16