Blog / Roundup: Action Mailbox, tech debt, doctors and computers, generative music primer, C/C++ problems

December 14, 2018

Introducing Action Mailbox for Rails 6 - Andrew W

https://weblog.rubyonrails.org/2018/12/13/introducing-action-mailbox-for-rails-6/

One popular feature of SaaS productivity apps is the ability to forward an email to a project-specific email address and then have it attached to the project for future reference/searching. Whilst Action Mailer has had the ability to read emails via POP/IMAP for years there’s always been a lot of additional plumbing to adding it to an app. Now you’ll be able to easily add that feature to a Rails app with the upcoming version 6.0 with the new Action Mailbox which has support for multiple email backends, cloud storage of the original emails and email incineration on by default - checkout the announcement and GItHub repo for more information. You can even start using it with Rails 5.2 if you want to try it out.

Cleaning up tech debt - Murray S

https://monzo.com/blog/2018/12/04/refactoring-old-code/

I’m always interested in hearing how teams deal with tech debt. I think it’s an unavoidable reality that no matter what you build, there’ll be some tech debt. The team doesn’t even need to conciously cut corners to ship something with the intention that they’ll clean it up later; sometimes requirements or “best practices” change and what made sense yesterday won’t make sense tomorrow. It’s nice to read about a dev team acknowledging this and taking steps to address their debt as an explicit choice. Taking a week off feature development to tidy things up can seem like pointless busy work, but it almost certainly isn’t.

Why Doctors hate their computers - Holly B

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/11/12/why-doctors-hate-their-computers

An in-depth read about the challenges of implementing and using software across massive organisations, where experiences are diluted by scale, leaving people feeling disempowered and frustrated.

A generative music primer - Murray S

https://teropa.info/loop/

This is an interactive presentation that acts as a primer on what generative music is, its history, and how some different ways of generating music work. I’m a sucker for interactive explainers about anything really, but I found this one particularly interesting because some of the examples are complete music generation frameworks, not just small components. I could play with this for ages creating a soundtrack to my day!

The Internet Has a Huge C/C++ Problem - Elena T

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/a3mgxb/the-internet-has-a-huge-cc-problem-and-developers-dont-want-to-deal-with-it

The consequences of “memory unsafety”, explained.

Track of the Week - Paul J

This track, for me, is 9 minutes and 23 seconds of pure auditory heaven. It always gives me a emotional lift and is one of my go to tracks when I need to get my creative groove on.

Miles Davis - So What