Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Clean Code Presentation Recorded Live at Nebraska.Code()

I've been traveling quite a bit recently. Last week, I had the opportunity to go to Nebraska.Code() -- previously the Nebraska Code Camp now expanded into a larger event. A big thanks to Adam Barney and Ken Versaw for organizing a great event.

Clean Code Video
I made a recording of my presentation at the event: "Clean Code: Homicidal Maniacs Read Code, Too!" Watch the video on YouTube (or here): Clean Code

If you watch the presentation, you'll see that I have way too much fun doing this. I want to thank everyone who came because you are the people who give me this opportunity. I hope that you get some good information and are inspired to think about things is a bit of a different way.

Publishing The Watcher
As part of the presentation, I show a little helper application that encourages me to write code that is readable and maintainable. This application is called The Watcher, and every five minutes, it gives a pop-up as a reminder:

This is the homicidal maniac who takes over support for the code I write (and he knows where I live). I want to keep him happy. (BTW, there's a thread on Twitter talking about who originated the idea of the homicidal maniac developer. I'm trying to hunt down the origin so that I can give credit where it is due.)

Lots of folks have asked if they could have a copy of this application. I've been a bit embarrassed to publish it, though: the code is in pretty bad shape. I took an existing application (that showed a marquee on the screen) and modified it for the new functionality. In doing that, I didn't clean it up as I went (not a good example for a Clean Code presentation).

Well, I'm publishing it anyway. You can treat this as an exercise -- download the code and clean it up yourself to practice your new skills. And if you want to contribute back, feel free to make a pull request on the GitHub repo.

The code is available on GitHub, so check it out here: (If you aren't a "git" person, just click the "Download ZIP" button on the right side of the screen.)

Meeting New People
I had a really awesome time at Nebraska.Code(). This is my first time speaking in the Midwest, so I got to meet a lot of new people, and spend some time with folks who I've only met in passing. I formed a lot of great relationships, and I'm looking forward to building on them in the future.

I can't emphasize enough how valuable talking to other developers has been for me. (And yes, I did meet new people in the lunch line at the event.) Just at this one event, I talked to people from Nebraska, Michigan, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Iowa, Connecticut, Arizona, British Columbia, and several other places.

If you need some encouragement to talk to strangers at events, check out my article: Becoming a Social Developer: A Guide for Introverts.

I'll look forward to going to this event again next year, and I also look forward to speaking at a bunch of new events. It's a great opportunity to travel to new places and meet lots of new people.

Happy Coding!


  1. Great Video & Tool! Shared it at my company.

    FYI, according to stackoverflow, this quote is attributed to John F. Woods:

    1. I've actually collected information in another article:
      John F. Woods is on the list, but I still haven't found anything conclusive.