Join us at our monthly gathering where we present topics of interest to Rubyists and aspiring programmers.
Doors open at 5:30pm, where you can hangout and socialize with other Boulder Ruby members. We have food and beverages available to add to the enjoyment.
At 6:30, we do announcements before getting to our presentations.
Talk 1: How we Teach Human Bias to Machines, and What To Do About It by Ursula Moreno-Vanderlaan from Techtonic
Often described as impartial decision making tools, we rely on computational decision making in every aspect of our daily lives. From credit scores to sentencing terms, home loans to medical diagnoses, the modern world runs on algorithms. As these mechanisms become more and more abstracted, and tech conceived of as an unbiased partner in our business, our ability to remove human bias weakens. The consequences range from soap dispensers that don't recognize Black hands, to a contemporary version of redlining, to incorrect cancer screening results. Many of these problems are institutional, but there are paths available for individual contributors and companies to mitigate the worst effects with approaches both personal and technical. This talk highlights the urgent need to bring these conversations to the table, and the solutions available to address them.
Ursula got her start in tech at a bootcamp learning Ruby on Rails. She currently works as a technical lead at a local agency, with a professional background in back end and DevOps engineering despite the degree in art history. She reads and writes extensively on the social impact of technology, and the pitfalls of relying on black box AI/ML. She wants individual contributors to not only ask if they're writing good code, but also if they're writing Good code.
Talk 2: The WAFL: An MVP alternative that will bring your team joy by Kate Catlin from CircleCI
Our UI at CircleCI needed a major redesign. Yes, we still wanted a nimble approach and fast feedback. But we’d seen that early over-reliance on an MVP mentality didn’t scale well– The code architecture was irrevocably fickle and the UI looked like a tiny home with 6 bedroom additions and 12 different wallpapers. So we invented our own MVP alternative: The WAFL.
WAFL stands for “Well Architected, Functionally Limited.” The idea behind a WAFL is to create (or recreate) the basic functionality of a project in a codebase that can scale. You architect your new front-end codebase with the robust framing, pervasive testing, accessibility, and responsiveness to service the world. However, you only add back in one functionality at a time. Are there other, more precise, acronyms we could have come up with? Possibly, but making WAFLs pun jokes all day makes our team smile a waffle lot (get it?).
This will be a talk about our lessons learned with this approach: The right recipe for success, serving it up half-baked, savoring the feedback, and lots and lots of groan-worthy puns.
Kate is a Product Manager on the Developer Experience team at CircleCI. She is leading the overhaul of the frontend codebase, tackling both UX and codebase issues. In her spare time she runs and rides around in the mountains ad nauseum.
If you would like to present at this meeting, or at upcoming events, reach out to the organizers on this meetup or ping us at @boulderruby (https://twitter.com/boulderruby) on Twitter.