What’s an API? An explanation for the layman

So working as a web developer, I work with a lot of APIs. I’m also frequently asked things by non-coders about our API and the APIs of other sites. The concept of API seems to be that of some magical coding device that solves problems. However, while this is an amusing concept, it’s not entirely correct. In trying to explain the details of this to a coworker the other day, it occurred to me that I needed a good parable. So here you go: Imagine if you would, a grouping of small islands in the middle of an ocean. Many … Continue reading What’s an API? An explanation for the layman

Mahalo 4.0 Launched

Last Tuesday morning, after 6 months of working on it, the Mahalo team launched our newest version of the site: Mahalo 4.0. I have a lot of thoughts on what went well and what could have been better during the whole process, but I’m going to save those for later. We had a nearly flawless cutover (technology-wise) It total our downtime was only about 3 hours, and for most of that it would have been¬†unnoticeable to most visitors.¬†¬†Not bad for a complete rewrite of our backend storage layer and our front-end js/css/html. We’re still working on some bugs, but that … Continue reading Mahalo 4.0 Launched

Lessons Learned from a Coding Sprint

We spent the month of October at Mahalo pushing really hard on the tech side of things to try to get some new products built. The plan was to set aggressive goals in the past few weeks of September and then spend October trying to complete those goals for every team. If we met the goals, then each team member would get a reward. It was a great chance for the team to really show what they were capable of and bond through their mutual struggles. (and from a more stoic standpoint, help them appreciate the times when they’re not … Continue reading Lessons Learned from a Coding Sprint