Johnny Winn on Kitchen Secrets and Beautiful Coding

About this Episode

Published September 10, 2020 | Duration: 50:38 | RSS Feed | Direct download
Transcript: English

No one cares about clever code. Instead, people want code that works. Code that they can read six months down the line. Today we speak with Johnny Winn, who avoids writing clever code by following a clear vision — “Make it work, then make it beautiful, then if you really, really have to, make it fast.”

A Renaissance man, Johnny’s career ranged from cheffing to design before he settled into software engineering. Reflecting his many interests, we spend the first section of the podcast chatting about cooking. Johnny shares his kitchen secrets before seamlessly transitioning into the topic of coding. After touching on why clever code is bad code, we explore the trend of ‘componentizing,’ when your views are taken over by an endless array of components and folders. Like Johanna Larsson, a previous guest, Johnny makes a case for umbrella projects and explains why many of us have been using them incorrectly this whole time.

An enemy of dogma, Johnny emphasizes that teams should use what works best for them, and not what conventional wisdom suggests. Following this, we dive into imposing patterns on our architecture bases, how design patterns serve as communication tools, and why tribal knowledge leads to communication issues. Johnny brings his experience to bear and shares how he structures projects while limiting component creation. Near the end of the episode, Johnny talks about how he learned the cardinal sins of coding before leaving us with his final hot take on living a balanced life. So, tune in for a dynamic conversation where Johnny is as likely to share his smoked pork recipe as he is to deliver key coding insights.

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Introducing Johnny Winn and why he’s been called a ‘Renaissance man.’
  • How to cook the perfect steak or burger — don’t share this with anyone.
  • Hear about what Johnny would cook if he needed to impress you.
  • A recipe for the perfect smoked pork shoulder brine.
  • Food wars; we debate what the best meat and sandwiches are.
  • The inter-industry virtue of keeping things simple and why clever code is bad code.
  • Exploring the trend of ‘componentizing’ everything to extreme levels.
  • The case for umbrella projects and why most people are doing it wrong.
  • Ignoring conventional wisdom and favoring approaches that best work for a team.
  • Winging it versus adding too many components and nested file structures.
  • How design patterns function as a way to communicate.
  • Why developing tribal knowledge can lead to communication issues.
  • Johnny’s mission when coding; “Make it work, make it beautiful, make it fast.”
  • The method that Johnny uses to structure a project.
  • Johnny’s advice for avoiding the cardinal sins of coding; write bad code in your side projects.
  • The importance of living a balanced life and spending time with loved ones.

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

SmartLogic —
Johnny Winn on Twitter —
Johnny Winn on LinkedIn —
Elixir Fountain —
Code Sync —
Code BEAM San Francisco —
Kerrygold —
Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Deluxe —
Annie’s Mac and Cheese —
Velveeta —
Shake Shack —
Dave Thomas —
Phoenix —
Chris McCord —
Johanna Larsson —
Johanna Larsson Episode —
The Pragmatic Bookshelf —
Ecto —
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl —
Joe Armstrong —

Johnny’s Smoked Pork Shoulder Brine Ingredients —
Hot Water
Coconut Sugar
Kosher Salt
Smoked Paprika
Chili Powder
Granulated Garlic
Bay Leaves

Special Guest: Johnny Winn.