Here is an essay I liked a lot:
I’m going to be honest: I’ve had a hell of a time getting my head around React. More than any other technology I’ve touched over the last 10 years of my career, I just haven’t had it click for me. It’s very frustrating as I really want to learn it, and it’s clear the library has legs.
Honestly, I like the idea of the essay more than I like the essay itself. Which is not to say that the writing isn’t crisp and honest — it is! — but I want the genre to proliferate, to spread like wildfire. I want to wake up to a smattering of “Why it took so long for GraphQL to click” and “What I got wrong about Swift for three years.” So much technical writing is focused on the mountaintop view, rather than the steep uphill climb and the missteps along the way.
I spent a long time (well, like six months, which in the Grand Technology Timeline is like four years) thinking that React was just bad. I think my boneheaded take was encapsulated in this tweet:
It is very terrifying to have your knowledge, your assumptions about what is good and what is right to be invalidated and evolved past! This is true of all things, but I think technology is a landscape where we are prone to no small doses of co-mingling our skillset with our identity. Things move so quickly, and the surface area of what we know is so small, that you are tempted to take a lot of ownership in what you know, to wear your tech stack like armor.
And the rumble of sands shifting underfoot can conjure the broader reality: that the nuts and bolts of what you’re doing in 2018 might be completely obviated in 2028.
If I was being really intellectually honest, though, I’d take a look at some of the things that I currently reject with almost a visceral disgust — cryptocurrencies, kombucha, crossfit, Node, bespoke machine learning — and try to extrapolate which ones I’ll be proven wrong about, as if to pre-empt the process.
(But that’s a different newsletter.)
I hope you spend some time on a rooftop deck.