A Byte of Coding

programming   newsletter

A Byte of Coding is a newsletter that I, Alex, put out four times a week, Monday through Thursday. Each issue consists of three articles that I personally curate from across the interwebs, relating to all things programming. Each article comes with a little summary that I write.

In spirit, it is a continuation of Morning Cup of Coding by Pek, and as a result, the ideals are similar. This newsletter aims to provide the newest (usually less than a month old), in depth, and diverse articles available. Even though I work primarily in web development, I believe that inspiration can be found in the most unexpected places, and try to include a wide range of articles that cover the broad spectrum that is programming.

Here's some example issues.

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
Hello peeps,

You know I'm getting pretty sick of the corona virus (ba-da--ba-bum-chhhh). Fortunately it hasn't had a major impact on my life, and I'm grateful for that. I know that it's not the case for a lot of people, and I hope that the majority (if not all) of you are getting on well. But some of the steps countries are taking in combating a disease that affects a minuscule part of the productive population seem to be doing more bad than good. I'm currently in the UK, and a new law is going into affect on Monday that will prohibit gatherings of more than six people. That's straight up whack to me. Humans are social creatures, and extended periods of isolation that have resulted from these policies are having/going to have a meaningful impact on the entire world. But I digress. If you feel like I'm being unfair in my judgement, or have data that proves me wrong, I'm all ears and always open to hearing the contradicting opinion, so let me know. Anyway, here's the issue, served hot, straight from the scalding oven of the interwebs.

How We Ended up with Git
10/09/20 - git, historical
Git has become a major part of most software development infrastructure. And it makes sense. It's a fantastic tool for keeping track of work from lots of people (most of the times). In this informative article, Dino Esposito talks about Git's history, explores the differences between distributed and centralized source code control systems, git's philosophy, and finally ending with an overview of all the different products available for source code control.

Notes About Compilers
10.09/20 - compilers
Maybe a lot of you have computer science degrees, and covered topics like compilers in classes. Personally, I don't, and never really spent time learning the basics or diving into the details. If you're in a similar position, or just slept through your compilers 101 class, this article is for you. Patrick Louis goes over some notes and interesting points he jotted down in regards to compilers. Patrick describes the general structure of a compiler and then focuses on explaining all of the key definitions, with code and textbook examples to bring the point across.

How Does a Database Load Balancer Work?
10/09/20 - databases, distributed systems
I was recently talking to a fellow programmer and asking questions about distributed systems. He said it was a nightmare, and one of the worst things to have to maintain. But that doesn't mean they're a nonessential piece of many large systems. In this introductory article by Agus Syafaat, Agus presents a load balancer's architecture, covers a couple of different load balancing algorithms, highlights a few advantages of using one, and then describes a couple of database replication methods. It's not super indepth, but it covers the basic essentials.

That's it for today. Have a lovely day.
Alex
*|MC:SUBJECT|*
Greetings peeps
It's kind of annoying for me to add boxes and buttons for additional articles, so I decided I'll just put out an issue on Friday this week instead of packing this one with six articles.

In accordance with what people wrote in, it seems the morning is the ideal time for most people to receive the issues. I'll try to figure out how to do that. I know Pek tried doing it with Mailchimp's built in system, but I'm not really sure how that would work without me asking you for your timezone on registration. I'll look into it some more.


Also I was pleasantly surprised when some people wrote in asking about how they could donate to help support the newsletter. I was planning on setting up a system for this, but your emails were really the motivational force I needed. So you'll notice a button at the bottom of the issue that mentions donating, which leads to the Pateron page I setup. I'll add some more options, like Paypal and some cryptocurrency addresses. If you have any suggestions or criticisms about donating/the Patreon page, let me know! Anyway here's the issue.

Why it is important to apply static analysis for open libraries that you add to your project

Published: 24 September 2020
Tags: cpp


"Modern applications are built from third-party libraries like a wall from bricks", and although you might not be an expert builder, I'm sure that you can image that not all bricks are equal. And neither are third-party libraries. In this article, Andrey Karpov presents a couple of errors he caught in third-party libraries using a static analyzer. Although it's kind of a sales pitch, the topics he covers are important and applicable to any developer.

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Leveraging Declarative Programming to Create Maintainable Web Apps

Published: 24 September 2020
Tags: javascript


So you know that I'm trying to delve more into design patterns and programming paradigms in order to improve my coding productivity. Declarative programming is one of the patterns I stumbled upon, and it focuses on the logic of a computer rather than its control flow. Peter Suggate's extensive article applies the principle to a web application, and exemplifies it by using a finite state machine to control front end UI processes.

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A Gentle Introduction to Using a Docker Container as a Dev Environment

Published: 24 September 2020
Tags: docker, javascript


If you haven't used Docker or are unfamiliar with containers as an idea, you're doing something wrong. Being able to launch an entire application in its own environment, independent of what's on your computer, is an amazing feature for programmers. Burke Holland's satirical writing explores how to run a web application in a remote container using VS Code. Although he uses the *cough* inferior *cough* OS known as Windows (fight me, I'm an Arch Linux user), I'll forgive him for the breadth of points he covers in regards to getting things running with containers.

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Thanks for your Support! 

This newsletter is provided to you for free, but if you'd like to show your support and help out, you can donate on the Patreon page. It's not necessary, but it lets me know that I'm doing a good job and that you're finding value in the content.
Donate Here
*|MC:SUBJECT|*
Greetings
Articles won't have summaries today. Feeling a little sad and tired. Been traveling a while and miss my girlfriend. Anyway, here's the issue!

Look Ma, No Data Structures!

Published: 26 September 2020
Tags: lisp, javascript

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Compiling a Lisp: If

Published: 7 October 2020
Tags: lisp

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Local File Inclusions, explained

Published: 7 October 2020
Tags: security,javascript, php

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Thanks for your Support! 

This newsletter is provided to you for free, but if you'd like to show your support and help out, you can donate on the Patreon page. It's not necessary, but it lets me know that I'm doing a good job and that you're finding value in the content.
Donate Here