Imagine working on projects that last for two weeks or less. This is what today’s guest, Jason Etcovich, gets to do all the time! Jason is a Senior Software Engineer at GitHub, where he is part of the Special Projects team. He is also involved in the Paper Cuts project, which works directly with the community to fix small to medium workflow problems. In this episode, Jason sheds light on how he became a software engineer having come from a design background. While this may sound like a drastic shift, it was gradual, which made the transition smoother. We talk about some of the exciting happenings at GitHub, like GitHub Pilot, Paper Cut, and Codespaces, and what these projects will offer the community. Our conversation also touches on automation and where it goes right and wrong, how to use software to make our lives better, and as usual, we get into some classic developer debates. Tune in to hear it all.
Key Points From This Episode:
- Get to know today’s guest, Jason Etcovitch, and want he does.
- How Jason went from graphic design to working at GitHub.
- Hear more about the work that Jason does through Paper Cuts.
- Insights into Paper Cuts’ research and how they decide which projects to take on.
- The importance of having a design thinking mindset when you problem solve.
- A high-level view of GitHub Pilot, GitHub’s new machine learning feature.
- What it is like working on projects that do not last longer than two weeks.
- The open graph image generator project Jason is excited about.
- How to justify projects without necessarily having the data to back up projects.
- Some of the ways we can make our lives better with software, according to Jason.
- Common pitfalls Jason sees when trying to set up automations.
- Everyone’s take on Prettier and Standard JS.
- Getting into the semicolon debate: everyone weighs in.
- What everyone thinks about the age-old tabs versus spaces fight.
- A look at one of GitHub’s latest releases, Codespaces.
- Hear what the picks for the week are.
“Part of learning that design mindset is understanding like, how does a person approach this thing? What are the various touch points that they have to consider?” — @JasonEtco [0:10:03]
“How do you say like, ‘Oh, yes. This is important,” If you don't have the data to back it up.” How do you get the data to back it up, if you don't prioritize that project? Where in that loop does it fit to get all of that data?” — @JasonEtco [0:19:57]
“If you build your automation tool in an inflexible way, you'll really regret it later.” — @JasonEtco [0:27:13]
Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:
- Github Feedback
- Alex Tweets at Nat
- Jason on Twitter
- Jason's Website
- Wyze Camera
- She-Ra and the Princesses of Power (Netflix)
- Marple (puzzle game)
- VSCode in the browser, Joel Califa
- The Matrix
Special Guest: Jason Etcovitch.