Potluck - Beating Procrastination × Rollup vs Webpack × Leadership × Code Planning × Styled Components × More!


It’s another potluck! In this episode, Scott and Wes answer your questions about transitioning to backend dev, tips for beating procrastination, Rollup vs Webpack, code planning, growing as a leader and more!

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Show Notes

02:33 - I am a junior dev, coming up on two years at my current agency. I have been primarily on the frontend using Angular and templating with Handlebars and other HTML and CSS. I have been asked if I would be interested in moving more into backend, with a focus on Node.js. Outside of creating APIs, what else should I do to learn “backend”?

06:08 - I work as a web master and would like to be a frontend developer someday. Currently I am working on a MERN stack app on my own to enhance my skills, but have problems focusing and tend to procrastinate a lot. How do you tackle distractions and get things done? I would appreciate some tips.

11:00 - Rollup or Webpack? Webpack 5 still doesn’t seem to support ES6 module output, as described by Philip Walton, so instead of upgrading to Webpack 5, this might be a good time to think about switching to Rollup (or Parcel).

13:46 - I have been learning web development (HTML, CSS and JS) and am at a place where I can build simple websites for small businesses, but I feel like a beginner and am wondering if you have any recommendations on courses to get to a more intermediate/advanced level?

18:01 - Why should you choose Styled Components over other ways of writing CSS?

22:56 - What are your thoughts on companies that make senior developer roles require leadership responsibilities? A great technical person does not always make a great leader or visa versa.

26:36 - I am often not good at planning out code from the start. I find that it’s easier to start coding, write a few lines, run it to see where I’m at, and carry on. This technique doesn’t work when I need to wait for a deploy to finish before I can view the result, as it greatly increases dev time. Do you have any advice for what I can do better?

31:43 - I have a very random question. for context I’m a Mac and Linux user myself. However, recently while building our company application I’ve noticed that Windows does extremely weird things with font sizes. Since we have a pretty decent Windows user base, obviously this is something my partner and I want to solve. However I’m very unsure of the best way to handle it. It seems entirely different from user to user. How in the world do we as developers account for these inconsistencies? We have tried vertical media queries that more or less kick them to tablet mode. Obviously this is less than optimal.

37:50 - Are side projects common among developers? I recently mentioned to my boss that I have a few side projects - nothing serious, just for learning mostly - and he said he would rather I didn’t, and instead focus on my work. He said he hadn’t really heard of developers doing side projects, and that if I want to work on things that aren’t our work he has other things I can do.

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