In this interview, Kalen sits down with Damien Retzinger, the Founder of Graycore, a software engineering firm specializing in ecommerce, as well as a member of the Magento Open Source Task Force.

[00:00:00] Damien: Are you, you familiar with code spaces?

[00:00:01] Kalen: no, I don’t think so.

[00:00:04] Damien: But no code space is you click on that big green button. And if you have it set up for your GitHub account you can actually just open up vs code in your browser and it’ll run Magento on servers at GitHub.

And it’s just set up for you. So you don’t have to know anything about setting up infrastructure. You don’t know anything about running setup install, but you can just go from zero to development environment in like 30 seconds.

[00:00:26] Kalen: Uh, that’s

[00:00:27] Damien: So

[00:00:28] Kalen: Hey, what’s up guys, Kalin here. And, um, got another, uh, amazing episode here for you. I did want to apologize in advance because my audio is a little garbage on this [00:01:00] particular episode. If you have listened to may talk for any length of time, you know that my mic technique tends to be somewhat garbage, but it is something I’m actively working on.

I have a super fancy. , which is half of the problem, because there’s all sorts of weird stuff that happens with it. And I wasn’t able to use it because it was doing some weird stuff in Riverside, and this is inside baseball, but, uh, I’m gonna, I’m telling you anyways. Okay. Um, Anyway. So it was doing a bunch of weird stuff and I had to fall back to the basic, uh, AirPod earbuds.

All right. But I wanted you to hear the DCE tones, uh, here on a proper mic setup, which, which happens to be working here. Just so just, just because I know you might have missed that and I’m gonna work on this for the next one to. Top tier as Damien would say, you’re gonna enjoy this episode. I promise you, Damien is, has the calmest voice of any human [00:02:00] being I’ve yet to encounter.

And, um, we get into some fun Magento and non Magento topics, um, that, uh, I think, I think you’re gonna enjoy so strap on your seatbelt and I hope you enjoy.

What did you do today? What walk me through, walk me through the morning. The fires that you put out.

[00:02:20] Damien: Okay.

[00:02:21] Kalen: me a, give me a paint, APIC, paint a picture for me

[00:02:24] Damien: uh, so this


[00:02:26] Kalen: explain it. Explain it slowly because I’m old. You understand that I’m old and just walk me through it. Nice and easily.

[00:02:35] Damien: All right. So, uh, there are these things they’re called computers. Um,

they, they connect to each other

and we could upload cat photos on them. It’s like this really big thing that everybody does. They upload cat photos.

[00:02:49] Kalen: No, no I’ve seen yeah. The cats. No, I’ve see the, I see the cats. No, no, I, I see. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:02:54] Damien: Yeah. They’re called memes. Like, like me, M E right,

[00:02:59] Kalen: M E M [00:03:00] E. Right.

[00:03:00] Damien: Yeah.

Not, not my No.

[00:03:03] Kalen: I always call ’em MES. My nephew told me once that that’s how you pronounce it.

[00:03:09] Damien: yeah. You should ask him if he plays Fortnite. We, uh, we can play

[00:03:13] Kalen: Okay. Now, is that a multiple mass, multiple RPG? Is that an mm or PPG?

[00:03:21] Damien: no, it’s a, uh, it’s a, it’s a real time strategy game. Um, you, you, you connect your, uh, your VR machine. Um, which, yeah,

[00:03:30] Kalen: kinda like, okay. okay.

[00:03:33] Damien: I tried, I tried desperately. I couldn’t keep a straight face.

[00:03:36] Kalen: Are you, are you a big fortnight guy by the way, cuz I hear about actually do oh, okay.

[00:03:42] Damien: no, not at all. I, I was a, I was a PUBG guy, so I played some PUBG. Uh, I think I got top two 50 in PUBG at like, I don’t know, first, like six months of launch.

[00:03:53] Kalen: I don’t actually know what PUBG is that, is that a game or is that a, like a, like a platform?

[00:03:58] Damien: it is a [00:04:00] player, unknown player, unknowns, battlegrounds. So it was the pseudo precursor to Fortnite. Uh, it was kind of like around the same time as Fortnite.

I was built by a studio out of South Korea and, uh, they just didn’t really have the dev quality at the time. So what came out was really, it was really fun, but the quality was really poor. So the moment epic came out with Fortnite, same, same exact game just looked different.

[00:04:25] Kalen: So you’re, you’re basically saying you were into Fortnite before. It was cool.

[00:04:29] Damien: yeah, I’m a, I’m a Fortnite hipster, right?

[00:04:31] Kalen: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,

[00:04:33] Damien: you know, I’m drinking my I’m drinking my cold brew and, you know,

[00:04:36] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:04:37] Damien: rubbing my beard

[00:04:39] Kalen: yeah, what’s the deal with cold brew? I don’t, I don’t understand. I don’t understand it at all. You know,

[00:04:45] Damien: Well, cold brew. Well, you gotta do. You gotta, what you have to do, Kalin is the cold brew, hot bloom. You ever that.

[00:04:54] Kalen: no, what does that mean?

[00:04:55] Damien: All right. So what you do is you, [00:05:00] you, you make the coffee, you distill the coffee cold, and then you heat it up

[00:05:05] Kalen: Okay.

[00:05:06] Damien: and then you drink it.

[00:05:08] Kalen: Okay. Okay.

[00:05:10] Damien: So instead of,

[00:05:11] Kalen: ridiculous.

[00:05:12] Damien: instead of the whole process being hot, it becomes initially cold and then hot.

[00:05:18] Kalen: Initially cold and, and hot, but all of any coffee process in the world is initially cold and then hot. I promise you that.

[00:05:26] Damien: Well, it starts Luke warm, cold brew starts cold.

[00:05:29] Kalen: Well, there is a time. There is, there is a moment in time when the coffee beans are in the ground, that it’s. There’s

[00:05:39] Damien: I don’t know enough. I can’t contest.

[00:05:42] Kalen: there’s definitely a moment where it’s it’s, you know where I’m not saying like freezing temperatures, but I’m saying, you know, the, the, the Chilean guy on the coffee fields, there’s a moment where he is like, you know, I think I’m gonna put on a long sleeve,

[00:05:58] Damien: Yeah,

[00:05:59] Kalen: [00:06:00] it’s, it’s a bit chilly

[00:06:03] Damien: I get it.

[00:06:04] Kalen: at some point in the process, it gets hot.

[00:06:06] Damien: Yeah. I think really hot.

[00:06:09] Kalen: Okay. So, so cat means, um,

[00:06:12] Damien: beams. Uh, so what, how does my day begin? So this

[00:06:15] Kalen: yes,

[00:06:16] Damien: uh, this morning, the day began with, uh, seven o’clock. I woke up to my phone going off because, uh, a Kubernetes cluster that I, that I run that runs Magento had too many pending pods, which means there was a lot of traffic and we weren’t able to spin out more magenta instances to handle the traffic because for cost reasons, the particular merchant said we don’t want more than a hundred servers.

So if we get up to a hundred, uh, you know, call us first. And what that means


[00:06:51] Kalen: you did.

[00:06:52] Damien: yeah. I had to call the client.

[00:06:54] Kalen: That’s brutal.

[00:06:56] Damien: So that was

[00:06:56] Kalen: How, much traffic, how much traffic is a lot of traffic.[00:07:00]

[00:07:00] Damien: uh, 1400 requests per second.

[00:07:05] Kalen: Okay.

[00:07:06] Damien: So that’s, I don’t have any idea how many current concurrent users that is 30,000

[00:07:14] Kalen: Okay.

[00:07:14] Damien: concurrent users or so,

[00:07:17] Kalen: Yeah. So more than a few, more than

[00:07:19] Damien: uh, yeah, yeah, yeah. More than a few. Um, so I mean, good for them. Right. Great for them actually. But, uh, yeah, it’s a, it’s kind of one of those things. So that was my first two hours of my day.

Uh, and then I, I had.

[00:07:35] Kalen: you sound remarkably calm overall for that having been the way you woke up at 7:00 AM. I wanna applaud you for remaining cool. Under pressure,

[00:07:48] Damien: Yeah. Yeah. It’s, it’s more about, uh, becoming numb

[00:07:53] Kalen: right?

[00:07:53] Damien: to, to everything. Uh, so no, you just kind of, you just kind of move past it and you say, yeah, this [00:08:00] is, this is today. The whole world is burning down.

[00:08:04] Kalen: right. I, I actually, I kind of want to offer a developer therapist as a service offering is something I’m I’m kicking around. So.

[00:08:15] Damien: yeah.

[00:08:16] Kalen: So we can talk about this, you know, the feeling of the, the feelings of numbness, the feelings of feeling empty inside, just let it all out. And, um, and I, I, I can walk you through it.

I can walk you through it and you know, we’ll, we’ll get to a better place together.

[00:08:33] Damien: Yeah. Have you, uh, are you familiar with, um, Bo Burnham? You know who that is?

[00:08:38] Kalen: Feel, oh, wait,

[00:08:39] Damien: when

[00:08:40] Kalen: wait. I think literally just yesterday, my buddy told me about, about it and sent me a link. He has like a Netflix, uh, a Netflix show.

[00:08:50] Damien: Yeah, he’s, he’s a guy, you know, my generation. Um,

[00:08:55] Kalen: Good Lord with the, my generation the way you [00:09:00] okay, Proceed.

[00:09:04] Damien: I don’t like the way that you’re saying my generation.

[00:09:08] Kalen: I, I really don’t. I really, really don’t like the way you’re saying my generation. Okay.

[00:09:15] Damien: uh, no, so, so he’s, my generation is, is extraordinarily talented. Um, so he has a Netflix series called inside, uh, where, so he, he does standup comedy. Um, that’s very, very musical. So he he’s been an actor. He’s been a director.

He’s very, very capable person. Um, and there was a period of time for a while where he would actually have panic attacks on stage. And as a result. Yeah. And it wasn’t like intentional. He just kind of, you know, that, that happens to people. Um, and he stopped performing comedy. And then during the pandemic, because he was at home, he was extremely bored.

He recorded a [00:10:00] whole special in his shed behind his house and put it up on Netflix. Uh, and it is in my opinion, like one of the most influential pieces of art of my generation that exists

[00:10:16] Kalen: That’s wild. Literally just yesterday. I was talking to a buddy who, by the way is four years my senior.

[00:10:25] Damien: Mm.

[00:10:25] Kalen: Okay.

[00:10:26] Damien: So he’s a true boomer

[00:10:30] Kalen: it’s do you, do you even know about generation X? Have they, do you, or is anything five months older than you a boomer? Do you, are you, have you even seen a list of all the generations? Have you studied the lists?

[00:10:48] Damien: No, that’s I can’t, I can’t find that on the internet.

[00:10:52] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:10:53] Damien: That’s like, uh, I tried, I tried to find a dial tone the other day. Couldn’t find one.

[00:10:58] Kalen: yeah, no, I [00:11:00] understand. I understand.

[00:11:01] Damien: Did, did you have, uh, did you have eight track tapes? Is that

[00:11:05] Kalen: No, I didn’t, I didn’t, no, I didn’t have eight track tapes.

You know, I had regular cassette. I did have cassettes. You’ve prob you probably have never had a cassette tape. Right.

[00:11:14] Damien: Uh, maybe when I was like four,

[00:11:17] Kalen: Okay. You probably don’t know the difference between a cassette tape and an eight track tape.

[00:11:22] Damien: I have no clue. Yeah. Not an idea.

[00:11:24] Kalen: idea. Yeah. Right, right, right. Hang on. I just messed up my, okay. I think I got you. Do I have you on my headset here?

[00:11:33] Damien: Uh,

[00:11:34] Kalen: Yes. Yes I do. I just, I just hot swapped out my, um, my, uh, my air. Oh, no.

Wrong here. Wrong here. Wrong here. We’ll edit that out. We’re we’ll edit that out. We’re professionals here. Um,

[00:11:49] Damien: That cut that

[00:11:50] Kalen: yeah, but I, um, no, my Bluetooth, uh, earphones, which my nephews bought for me are, um, [00:12:00] They, uh, they have this super annoying thing where, when I talk, if I like get loud, which I do a lot, they like buzz.

They like, they’re just like,

[00:12:11] Damien: mm-hmm

[00:12:12] Kalen: so I had to swap ’em out. But, um, anyways. Yeah, no, no, no. My buddy told me about this yesterday and um, so I’m gonna have to check it out.

[00:12:21] Damien: no. It’s it is, it is amazing. Um, but he talks a lot about if you’re a developer and you work from home all day and you stay inside all day. Like it really resonates. So

[00:12:34] Kalen: Have you,

[00:12:35] Damien: appropriate.

[00:12:36] Kalen: yeah. Do you think you’ve ever had a panic attack? Because sometimes I, I don’t know if I have, but I sometimes think maybe I did, you know,

[00:12:47] Damien: uh, I don’t know if I’ve had a panic attack, but the only kind of similar thing I can say is that I’ve had like a retinal migraine, which happened when I was extremely, extremely stressed out exactly. One [00:13:00] time in my life.

[00:13:01] Kalen: Oh, my God. I’m always every time I think about getting migraines, it, I get so scared when I imagine like people that have migraines all the time. Cause I don’t, I don’t think I could do it. I think, I don’t think I could. I would just I’d run into oncoming traffic. I don’t, I just too. I get like a regular headache and I’m just out of it.

[00:13:24] Damien: Yeah. Well,

[00:13:27] Kalen: By the way, I don’t know if I’ve told you this before, but you have one of the most calm voices of anyone I’ve ever talked to.

[00:13:35] Damien: Well, thank

[00:13:36] Kalen: you get that a lot?

[00:13:37] Damien: I don’t, nobody, nobody tells me that. No,

[00:13:40] Kalen: really? Yeah. You have it. You have a super calm voice.

[00:13:45] Damien: Well, I will try my best to not Lu you to sleep.

[00:13:53] Kalen: yeah, you’re gonna, I just took my, um, I just took my blood pressure meds. So I’ll probably be [00:14:00] fine. I’ll sleep pretty soon here.

[00:14:01] Damien: Yeah. You need some, you need some drama mean maybe, uh, maybe some coffee.

[00:14:06] Kalen: Yeah, no. And act actually I’m pretty hyped up right now. Ready to rock and roll.

[00:14:12] Damien: Yeah. It’s cuz I’m here. Come on.

[00:14:14] Kalen: Yeah. Yeah. Um, okay, so you wake up

[00:14:18] Damien: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:14:19] Kalen: cluster falls over a hundred instances. Customer didn’t want to pay for ’em.

[00:14:24] Damien: Yeah. Um, and, and importantly, you know, for, for me, I just run the clusters. So like the cost perspective, we don’t build a customer extra for the servers. That’s Microsoft. Right. So they set up like a cap in, in, in Azure or AWS or whatever. Um, and they say, we only want maximally a hundred and you know, most of the time it’s a good idea, but some people as they scale or like their business gets bigger, they, they kind of like forget about it and then only deal with it when it becomes a problem.


[00:14:55] Kalen: Totally. Totally.

[00:14:57] Damien: yeah.

[00:14:57] Kalen: Yeah. I’ve I’ve thought, like, I think there [00:15:00] are actually like cer I always think of these niche business ideas, and I think there’s, there’s one for like optimizing your AWS bill. It just, it seems like, like you said, most people probably just it’s complicated enough that they, and they’re probably making enough money that they’re just like, whatever, but you could probably make an entire business outta just going in and looking at people’s bills and helping them save money.

[00:15:25] Damien: Yeah, there’s a, there’s a lovely button in Azure. Um, which says like advisor recommendations, which tells you like how to save money on your bill. Like Microsoft is telling you, Hey, you’re wasting money.

[00:15:36] Kalen: Right. But, but how good is that gonna be really? Because

[00:15:40] Damien: substantial. Yeah. So

[00:15:43] Kalen: they’re not that incentivized

[00:15:45] Damien: they are, I swear. So there’s a, there’s one of the important things that they offer is reservations or reservations.

So if you can kind of project your baseline traffic, you can get a 66% reduction on your

[00:15:58] Kalen: Totally. Yeah, yeah, yeah, totally. That’s [00:16:00] like one of the most straight that’s like one of the most standard ways to save money is with the, with the reserved, reserved instances, right?

[00:16:07] Damien: Yeah. Which is great. I like.

[00:16:09] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:16:10] Damien: My clients always get like all super excited that like I save the money and I’m like, I honestly did nothing.

[00:16:15] Kalen: Yeah. I feel like that was, that was easy, but they’re all boomers. So they’re like, oh my gosh, how did you do that? That was amazing.

[00:16:23] Damien: Indeed? It’s true. All right. So now we’re at nine o’clock, right? So nine o’clock rolls around.

[00:16:29] Kalen: a wild ride for two hours.

[00:16:30] Damien: And I get a call and I get a call from a Devon Poland. And the Devon Poland says, uh, this, this microservice that, uh, you wrote is responding with like the wrong content. So, um, again, a call with them and we go over it for about 45 minutes and eventually resolves to, uh, yeah, there was indeed a bug in my code, so I fixed it.

[00:16:58] Kalen: I

[00:16:59] Damien: I wrote a [00:17:00] test. I pushed the test, deployed the microservice. The dev was happy. So that’s 9 45. and then, uh, standup. Right? So we do kind of a, I kind of do a standup per client. So depending upon which client I’m working with, uh, any given day, I do a standup with that particular client, and that was that’s that’s typically pretty boring.

Um, and then 2.4 0.5, right? Magento 2.4 0.5 came out yesterday where it was publicly released yesterday. So I have spent a fair chunk of the day. So probably let’s say 10 45 till one ish. Uh, I have a GitHub actions, repo, which people are using to, uh, run unit tests and integration tests and, and installation tests on their Magento instances and their Magento modules that are GitHub.

[00:17:56] Kalen: Oh, cool. So you have like an open source repo for doing [00:18:00] GitHub actions that

[00:18:01] Damien: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Um, so it came, it actually stems out in an idea of, um, Christoff and Simon, uh, from TDN,

[00:18:12] Kalen: mm-hmm

[00:18:13] Damien: uh, they, they had a, or they have a GitHub action repo, um, but importantly it didn’t support matrixing. So if you’ve ever used GitHub actions, um, ma matrixing is just a basic idea of if you wanna test this particular code on multiple versions of PHP and multiple versions of Megento and multiple versions of my equal, for example, that that forms a matrix of, of vert things, uh, and their actions didn’t support that at all, which means for me, I’m trying to kind of just improve the quality of not only our packages kind of, but more broadly the magenta ecosystem.

Um, and. Uh, I, I sat down, I don’t know, maybe six weeks ago on one weekend [00:19:00] and hammered out a basic idea over the weekend. Got it set up by, I think, Sunday at midnight and started deploying it to all of great cores, uh, actions or sorry, uh, all our, all of our modules emergence. Um, and it’s been working fantastically until

[00:19:23] Kalen: to all your modules, are you talking about like extensions that

[00:19:29] Damien: yeah. All of our extensions.

[00:19:31] Kalen: and then, so you basically can have, like, you can take an extension, like what’s one, what’s one of them, for example?

[00:19:39] Damien: my most famous extension is our core extension. So cross origin resource sharing.

[00:19:44] Kalen: Uh, yes, yes, yes, yes. Okay. So, so you can, you can basically take that and then just test, test it against all the different versions.

[00:19:54] Damien: Yep. Yep. So whenever we do any changes, it actually [00:20:00] runs 21 parallelized actions.

[00:20:03] Kalen: That’s pretty cool.

[00:20:04] Damien: Yeah. So, uh, that was that I’ve been trying to get support for that, uh, for 2.4 0.5, because that came out yesterday. Um, and for, for me, uh, the nice thing about majors, which I’ve kind of gotten more and more involved with over the past couple months is that their, uh, their repo doesn’t require composer authentication, which means the barrier to entry is like, use my action and go it’s.

[00:20:36] Kalen: mm-hmm

[00:20:37] Damien: Go get Magento credentials, figure out where to put them in GitHub and then use my action. Um, so we moved the actions over to, to use major west by default and major west doesn’t have support for 2.45 yet. So I spent the early morning and then late in the afternoon today working with Vanai and discord, trying to get two, 4.5 set up in major west.[00:21:00]

[00:21:00] Kalen: oh, cool. And how, how, um, how long does it usually take ma OS to get, to get caught up to the latest

[00:21:08] Damien: This is the first instance. Yeah, this is the first time it’s happened. So in theory it should be within hours. Um, but at the moment it’s taken, uh, until I think that they’re still working on it right now, I’m looking at discord and I can see that and I still screen sharing. So I think it’s still ongoing.

[00:21:26] Kalen: Okay. Okay. Now I’m a little outta a loop on, um, oh, so this is the Mosca one. Okay. Cause I know there’s a couple different of the couple of the different open source, um, Magento, um, kind of projects

[00:21:45] Damien: Mm-hmm

[00:21:46] Kalen: one cuz there’s um, gosh, what is it? There’s the, what are the other ones I’m doing? So Googling is this one kind of emerging as the, kind of the main, [00:22:00] the main one that you’re that?

What am I thinking of? What are the other

[00:22:03] Damien: like the


[00:22:05] Kalen: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. The forks. Yeah.

[00:22:07] Damien: Yeah. Um, I think, uh, at the moment, major west is less of a fork and more of just like a mirror, but it’s like,

um, at the moment it’s trying to be, how do we replicate all of the internal, uh, non-public, uh, tooling that goes around Magento so that in the event we have to fork, you know, we can be consistent with, um, the same things that Magento provides from like a quality assurance perspective.

So my get up actions, happenstance happen to be the best way to test majors because they have, I mean, they provide essentially what internal Adobe, uh, C I C D provides. So, um, then I reached out to me, I don’t know, a couple weeks back and said, Hey, can you please try [00:23:00] this and, and see how it works. So I’ve been, I’ve been quite happy with it.

Um, majors is, I mean, it’s just a mirror, so it’s essentially just mainline Magento. Um, but it’s got some good stuff. I mean, it’s, it’s going in the right direction.

[00:23:14] Kalen: That’s cool. That’s cool. That’s neat to see. That’s that’s moved along.

[00:23:18] Damien: Yeah. So that, that was until, let’s say one o’clock

[00:23:22] Kalen: mm-hmm

[00:23:22] Damien: uh, and then let’s see one o’clock until three. Uh, so in Dato land, in PWA land, um, we.

We are trying to support more payment providers. So we needed to revisit our payments API just from a, like an interface perspective. Um, so I did some, I did some, uh, kind of high level discussions and architecture diagrams with, uh, some of my team members.

And that was from one to three. And then at three o’clock I resumed to working with until four. At which point in time [00:24:00] we started talking,

[00:24:02] Kalen: Cool. All right. Good stuff. Good stuff. Are you, um, are you using, uh, hi Hova much

[00:24:11] Damien: no, I am, I am not a monolith fanboy.

[00:24:16] Kalen: Okay. Okay.

[00:24:18] Damien: Yeah. I don’t anti anti’s not the right word. Cause I think Hova definitely has a place in the ecosystem. Um, I just, I there’s a reason. Decoupling the front end is a good idea. And I’ve worked on some pretty big Magento projects. I’ve worked on some fairly large, you know, projects with, you know, a hundred developers on the project.

Hova Hova for me, does not fit the bill for that kind of project. You have too many moving parts and the better you can decouple the front end from the back end, the less the teams have to communicate and collaborate. Um, it just makes certain kinds of things better, but, but it’s [00:25:00] just a function of scale, right?

If you’re a small company, Hova makes sense for you. If you’re a big company, PWA makes probably more sense, but even if even I will contest, even if you’re a big company doing a hundred million dollars in revenue a year,

[00:25:16] Kalen: Mm-hmm

[00:25:17] Damien: that doesn’t mean PWA works for you. Right? So the only

[00:25:20] Kalen: yeah, yeah,

[00:25:22] Damien: PWA is a model fits businesses that deploy frequently.

That change a lot. That change quickly. If you’re, if you’re a business that’s doing high volume, but you don’t change very often, don’t do a PWA,

[00:25:35] Kalen: right. Um, yeah, I mean, yeah. I mean, you could be a hundred million dollar business and beyond like regular Shopify, if you’re just, you know, like selling yeah. Like your needs, aren’t very complicated or whatever.

[00:25:49] Damien: right? Like if you, if you sell a t-shirt, if you’re Kanye west and you, shall you sell exactly one white t-shirt the Yeezus


[00:25:58] Kalen: actually am Kanye west. I was, [00:26:00] I was gonna make that announcement. I was gonna, I was gonna make that announcement today. Yeah.

[00:26:04] Damien: Are you, uh, you

[00:26:06] Kalen: Not a lot of people know that.

[00:26:07] Damien: you happy that your wife got divorced or ex-wife?

[00:26:10] Kalen: Well, that was tough. That was not easy. But, um, but I heard that Kim, and to, to digress a little bit here, I heard that Kim and Pete broke up. Did you hear about

[00:26:20] Damien: I, I did. That’s what I was asking. Are you, are you excited about.

[00:26:23] Kalen: Okay. Wait, did you say they got divorced or you just, they just broke

[00:26:26] Damien: Didn’t they get married.

[00:26:28] Kalen: They didn’t get married. They got married.

[00:26:30] Damien: thought they did. I don’t


[00:26:32] Kalen: they didn’t.

[00:26:33] Damien: I

don’t know.

[00:26:34] Kalen: you’re spending too much time with GitHub actions.

[00:26:37] Damien: celebrities and, and, and getting together and weddings, they all seem like the same thing to me.

[00:26:42] Kalen: they all see , they’re all basically the same they get in and out of marriages just as fast as they get in and

[00:26:47] Damien: Yeah. I mean, they all sign some prenup that says I’m not gonna take your money and then they do whatever they’re gonna do.

[00:26:53] Kalen: Right. Exactly. Exactly.

[00:26:55] Damien: And, uh, and

[00:26:55] Kalen: yeah, that was that I have to admit, I do from, from time to time, see [00:27:00] that, uh, that drama show up in social, in my, in my social media feeds

[00:27:05] Damien: yeah.

[00:27:05] Kalen: and, uh, it’s it’s wild, man.

[00:27:09] Damien: Do they, do they have social media feeds on like Nikons, like the old, uh, the brick phones?

[00:27:14] Kalen: No, they . By the way Annik icon is actually a camera little, little, little known fact, but, um, but yeah, no, I have a flip phone and, um, there’s a great little TikTok integration in my flip phone.

[00:27:31] Damien: Yeah.


[00:27:32] Kalen: you do actually is you just flip it up and down in order to swipe through. So you just, you just, it works out nicely.

[00:27:40] Damien: I see.

[00:27:41] Kalen: Yeah. No, it’s, it’s, uh, it’s fun. It’s, it’s a good time. But, um, yeah, like if you’re kinde west, you’re just selling t-shirts then

[00:27:52] Damien: might Hova might work for

[00:27:54] Kalen: who am I might work? Yeah, we’ll get ’em on. We’ll get ’em on ho eventually.

[00:27:58] Damien: indeed.

[00:27:59] Kalen: we’ll get ’em [00:28:00] on there.

[00:28:00] Damien: Yeah.

[00:28:01] Kalen: Um, but, uh, so this, this, so I thought of this just when you said, um, if, if your site changes frequently, there was a, um, I was thinking, I’ve been thinking the last two days a lot about like measuring developer productivity and it’s something I’ve thought about for a long time on and off, but. I saw this talk, uh, this guy, uh, I, I, I Googled it and there was this talk, this dude who was at GitHub gave on it, and it was a pretty good talk. He talked about a lot of the bad ways to do it. And he actually spent like four years, um, working on this as a, as a product manager at GitHub and measuring things and coming up with different metrics and stuff like that. And, um, one of the things he said that was pretty universal was that it’s better. Well, he talked about like measuring productivity, but also he, he also talked about like, what, what are best [00:29:00] practices or what things can you look at? Like, one of the things he said was that it was pretty universally accepted was that frequent, smaller commits are better than bigger in less frequent commits.

[00:29:12] Damien: mm-hmm

[00:29:13] Kalen: Um, so like, I, I thought that made sense. Do you, would you think you’d agree with that?

[00:29:18] Damien: yeah. So this is a, this is a strong reason. If you ever work with me on, um, I will disclose PRS that are over 500 lines.

[00:29:30] Kalen: Nice.

[00:29:31] Damien: even bother.

[00:29:33] Kalen: Okay.

[00:29:34] Damien: The instant close, the reason being it’s like it’s I can’t review that. I’m I’m gonna gloss it over the best. The best, the best commit I’ve seen is one line.

And the description of the commit is like 40 lines. Like the, the actual, like body of the commit message.

[00:29:50] Kalen: that’s a bit much,

[00:29:51] Damien: I disagree. It’s

[00:29:53] Kalen: over. That’s a bit overkill

[00:29:55] Damien: not for me. It, it all depends on your scale Kalin, right? It depends if, if you’re [00:30:00] working on,

if you’re working on windows and like the windows current, or like the Linux kernel, and you need to be able to, to go back in history to understand why a line of code was changed. It’s really, really powerful to be able to analyze with that level of clarity and that level of depth versus a couple of Magental projects that I’ve worked on that have like a large number of devs.

And some of the devs are a little bit more junior. You end up with like, test commit, like, uh, fixed


[00:30:30] Kalen: I’m saying is they could have gotten away with 38 lines of, of commentary

[00:30:38] Damien: maybe, maybe, maybe

[00:30:40] Kalen: within the ramble possibility.

[00:30:42] Damien: there’s a, there’s a lovely repo by the us government that talks about the federal design system. Um, it’s on GitHub and they, they do something very similar. They have very long body commit messages and they’re, they’re quite nice,

[00:30:57] Kalen: Yeah. Um, I kind of want [00:31:00] to, I kind of want to read through this commit that you’re talking about.

[00:31:03] Damien: which,

[00:31:04] Kalen: believe I don’t, I don’t even believe it’s real. The 40 lines. The 40 lines to describe one line of

[00:31:10] Damien: oh, a hundred percent. It was, uh, it was quite involved. It was about a race condition that occurs, um, in a given circumstance. So it described how the race condition could be replicated, how, uh, the race condition was discovered. And then ultimately how the lines of code fixed it.

[00:31:28] Kalen: Okay. Actually, you know what that make that completely makes sense because like, I’ve, I’ve definitely been down some like rabbit holes with weird Magento session bugs, or may, maybe they were race conditions or maybe not. And then like, it, it comes down to one line of code. You change it. You have no idea why it fixes it, but it does.

So would in those cases it would be better if you had. Yeah, that makes sense. That makes sense. I get it.

[00:31:54] Damien: There was a wonderful hacker news article the other day about, uh, a, like [00:32:00] a, a real programmer. And it talked about how there was a guy who essentially just coded in straight Hess, like, and that’s it. And he did all sorts of crazy techniques to shift. Uh, to, to shift the micro code, to like become a go-to to this line and then adjust the register to move this line of memory into like here.

And it was crazy. Cool. Right. It’s really fast. It does everything that the guy exactly wants to do, but nobody could read the guy’s code.

[00:32:31] Kalen: Shocker.

[00:32:32] Damien: Yeah. So

[00:32:33] Kalen: Yeah. That’s a real shocker guy writes code and a hex editor. It’s it’s not easy to read.

[00:32:41] Damien: yeah,

[00:32:42] Kalen: Not self-documenting.

[00:32:43] Damien: it is not okay.

[00:32:45] Kalen: Yeah, no, that’s funny. Um, but so, okay. So smaller commits, um, Uh, smaller frequent commits are better. Do you think that there are other [00:33:00] like hard, like, are there other, um, hard black and white ways to, to determine whether like develop a productivity or, you know, just to determine code quality, for example, I mean, obviously there’s things like code quality, checkers and stuff like that, but what I’m saying is are there rules of like, are there rules of thumb to, that are pretty, that are pretty firm

[00:33:28] Damien: uh,

[00:33:29] Kalen: if somebody’s on the right path?

[00:33:34] Damien: it’s, it’s really hard. Um, it’s really hard. I, I don’t think there is currently a known measure as far as I understand it, that will, that will kind of make you determine whether code is high quality. I know there are code quality tools. We actually use them in Dail. They tell you very little, um, they tell you very little, I know like some people like to use code coverage as a measure that only does so much.

[00:34:00] Um, and most of the time you’re never gonna get a hundred percent code coverage. You really don’t need a hundred percent code coverage. What you really need is like 70% code coverage.

[00:34:07] Kalen: right,

[00:34:08] Damien: Um,

[00:34:09] Kalen: right. Right. With, with obviously like certain exceptions that are,

[00:34:13] Damien: yeah, but, uh,

[00:34:15] Kalen: you know, you know, when you see it kind of a thing

[00:34:17] Damien: yeah, but I, I, to me, I think the, the small commits and the clarity of the commit message speaks volumes to me about the person that I’m working. If it’s not myself, because it tells me that they’re thinking beyond just themselves right now. So not only, not only have you step two, I’ve solved the problem.

You’ve step two. I now have to explain this problem to someone else. And I’m also going to give them enough information so that they don’t necessarily need me they ever have to revisit this code. And, and that for me is like how I determine not necessarily the productivity of the developer, but whether or not they’re of like, there’s like [00:35:00] a there’s levels.

There’s like levels of developers, right. But seniority for me is kind of that switch where you go from thinking solely from, I need to get this task done today because my PM is on my back, uh, to, I need to prevent code base from collapsing on itself over time.

[00:35:21] Kalen: yeah, yeah, totally.

[00:35:23] Damien: So product productivity. I think that’s a hard thing to measure. I have not done a great job with it. Um, because you can have one line of code, like a one line of code change that takes 24 hours to do that is very impactful. Or you can have a one line of code change that takes one hour to do that. No one’s ever gonna see ever.

[00:35:44] Kalen: Yeah,

[00:35:44] Damien: And.

[00:35:46] Kalen: The other, the other metric. Now this is, this was a more of an overall team metric. And actually one of, one of the things he said was that you should basically focus on [00:36:00] metrics that affect the entire team as opposed to metrics, uh, from an indivi, like an individual’s metrics. Um, but one of the ones that he said ended up being a good signal was, um, the average time for code review to be completed.

[00:36:19] Damien: uh, that’s so the, I will say

I’m probably the worst

[00:36:24] Kalen: me for what’s

[00:36:27] Damien: I’m probably the worst offender when it comes to not reviewing code.

[00:36:30] Kalen: Okay. Um, But for me, something like I was thinking back to like the last time I was on a dev team and, um, was, you know, waiting for code review and stuff like that. And I thought, um, there, there is a very, there’s something that feels healthy about you, you, you push the thing through you. Code review comes back, you get feedback.

Like there’s a, there’s a quick feedback cycle versus when [00:37:00] things are slow, it could, it, you know, a lot of times it’s like maybe your, maybe your poll request is too complex. The person trying to review review it doesn’t really understand it. So they kind of push it off and then time goes by, and now it’s like getting foggy and foggy in your mind and in their mind.

So I there’s something about that, that, um, kind of intuitively made sense for me.

[00:37:22] Damien: Uh, I would say definitely. Yes. Um, but that’s a, that’s a thing that scales with money, right? So the more devs you have, the more money you have, the faster you can get code review. Uh, but when you’re a small team and you’re working on a, a wide variety of things just to make ends meet, it’s not, it’s not really like in an open source context, for example, uh, when the devs, like, you know, there, Magento’s a great example.


[00:37:52] Kalen: They got stuff. Just, just dying on the vine.

[00:37:55] Damien: that’s a, that’s a slightly different problem. That’s almost like intentionally I’m ignoring you. [00:38:00] Uh, but when you have a, a large product and you have a large number of, and you have a small number of people looking at it, or you have an UN, uh, you, you aren’t allocating enough resources, uh, that becomes a problem, right?

That’s a, that’s a resourcing problem to me. And not a, not necessarily a code productivity problem. That’s more of like a managerial issue than less of a, a developer individual productivity issue. So to me, that’s something that can be fixed by like operations. People are like product managers, because they know there’s probably some measure.

That’s probably very valuable at least for measuring productivity and determining whether or not things are going smoothly. And I think time to code review is a good measure, but that’s not a measure of productivity that I think the dev team can fix. Right. Yeah.

[00:38:50] Kalen: Well, yeah. I mean, it’s kind of suit you mean, but these things are all kind of interrelated, like, and that’s, that’s kind of the. [00:39:00] That’s kind of the problem too, is that you can say, well, the dev team themselves can’t fix it or this individual developer can’t fix it. And so then you kind of have to look at the, the, the company or the team as a whole and go like, where’s the bottleneck, where’s the where, you know, cause like if you’ve been a developer, like it you’ve, it’s like, it’s hard.

You, it’s hard to, um, articulate specifically the, like, these are the things that are bad. These are things that are good and to define them. Absolutely. But it’s like, you know it, when you see it, you know, like when you see like a PM, that’s just slowing things down or like not, or like when you see a client, that’s just a mess.

Like you, you know, you just know it when you see it, you know, when you see like, like one developer, that’s way more productive than other developers, you, you know it when you see it and sometimes, you [00:40:00] know, And maybe you don’t want to make a big deal out of it cause you don’t want to be rude or whatever, but, um, it’s yeah, it’s just, it’s kind of one of those to me.

It’s kind of one of those things you kind of know when you see it.

[00:40:14] Damien: Yeah, I will say for, uh, for PMs, like in productivity, like the, the biggest tell for me about a PM that is not good or is, should not be in the role that they’re in, uh, is if they start asking about like, can we change the button to being read

[00:40:37] Kalen: Mm-hmm

[00:40:37] Damien: and they don’t actually have, you know, AB test to prove it and they don’t have any data actually to make the claim.

They just want it to be read because they wanna feel like they make an. . Um, and that, that for me is the same thing with clients, clients who want to have a say in the matter, even though they have no idea what’s being spoken about. Um, and that’s not like a, it’s not a job against them. It’s just that they’re, it’s not their area of [00:41:00] expertise.

Right. And they want to feel like their part of the process. They wanna feel like their input is valued. Um, which I fully respect, but there are times when it just doesn’t doesn’t, it is not the role for you. Right? You, you have other strengths leverage your strengths. Don’t,

[00:41:16] Kalen: yeah.

[00:41:18] Damien: don’t kind of like cycle into other people’s.

It’s like the it’s like the CEO who walks into the, uh, the mechanic shop at a car factory. Like, so like when Elon Musk walks into his Tesla factory and the factory’s running smoothly. And when he starts yelling at people,

[00:41:34] Kalen: Are you anti EMS getting the sense? You’re anti Elon Musk.

[00:41:37] Damien: I I’m not pro or ante. I just, there are, there are things that people do that

[00:41:41] Kalen: Everyone’s pro or anti Elon Musk.

[00:41:44] Damien: I, I, I am smooth sailing middle of the road. Cool and collected.

[00:41:50] Kalen: Cool. Okay.

[00:41:51] Damien: No, no.

[00:41:52] Kalen: dig into that a little bit. So, but here, but here’s the thing about, here’s the thing, here’s the unique thing that. I feel like I’ve heard a lot [00:42:00] about, about Elon Musk specifically is that he, the wild thing about him is that he will go toe to toe with en like on an, on a, on a, into the weeds, on the engineering details of rocket science and like all of the, all of the gut nuts and bolts of all the engineering stuff, he, he just goes right into it, which is like, when you give the example of like the CEO going into the, into the shop like that tip, I see what you mean.

Like a typical, not super technical CEO, but that I feel like that’s one of the things I hear over and over about him. That’s so impressive.

[00:42:39] Damien: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I wholly agree with that. There’s a lovely letter. I mean, on a, on a, to move off the Elon Musk topic, there’s a lovely letter, um, by bill gates.

[00:42:49] Kalen: off the Elon must topic quick. I knew you were an, I knew you were anti

[00:42:54] Damien: uh, there there’s a lovely letter by bill gates to, uh, an internal team at Microsoft [00:43:00] talking about how complicated it was for him to install a certain windows program.

And he goes down this winding road of, I clicked this, I read this, I did this. And then it ultimately ends up with where did, like, what happened? How did we get here? Like how. uh, like he tries like a hundred different ways. All of, some of them more technical than others, and he’s every single time unable to install what he’s trying to install.

And he, he gets frustrated by the end of it. Um, but that’s a person who’s willing to go the distance. Right. So for me, it’s less about like the CEO who steps into the room and starts asking about colors. That’s not going the distance. Right. You’re just,

you’re, you’re staying peripheral. And you’re saying I’m

[00:43:41] Kalen: surface

[00:43:42] Damien: exactly,

[00:43:43] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:43:44] Damien: I don’t want to be, you know, Disney Hercules here, but you gotta go the distance.

[00:43:48] Kalen: Okay. I think that’s a that’s. Is that a gen Z? I think that’s a gen Z reference that I, that I

[00:43:55] Damien: No Hercules. The, the, the old Disney, uh, [00:44:00] the old Disney movie.

[00:44:02] Kalen: You’re calling me a boomer. I’m gonna call you gen

[00:44:04] Damien: Oh, okay. All right. Yeah. Hmm.

[00:44:09] Kalen: with your, to dances.

[00:44:10] Damien: I don’t even have TikTok

[00:44:12] Kalen: Yeah, you’re too. You’re already too cool for TikTok. That’s how the gen Zers are. I get

[00:44:18] Damien: Yeah. We’re I only use Hova talk

[00:44:23] Kalen: right? Yeah. Yeah, no, they need to launch, they need to launch a little something in that department.

Um, um, yeah, no, it’s it’s um, it’s, it’s, it’s something that every like software, every company that builds software, you know, deals with on some level. But it’s and everybody has their perspective. That’s the kind of the funny thing is that, you know, then the, the CEO and the business people, they have their perspective on how the developers are too hard to deal [00:45:00] with.

And you know what I mean? Don’t get it. Don’t get the big picture.

[00:45:04] Damien: oh, uh,

[00:45:05] Kalen: you see?

[00:45:08] Damien: I don’t, uh, like I don’t think people understand like a developer’s job is to model your. Like they formulate, they take your ideas the way you explain it. And they turn that into something a computer can understand, but the only way they can build the thing that computer understands well is if you explain it well, which means if they don’t get the business, you’re not explaining it well enough.

[00:45:32] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:45:33] Damien: So, so

[00:45:34] Kalen: Yeah.

[00:45:35] Damien: I, I also am, you know, I’m extremely biased, right? I’m an, I’m an engineer. So I, I,

[00:45:40] Kalen: I didn’t notice. I didn’t, I didn’t, I didn’t notice at all that you were extreme

[00:45:44] Damien: you didn’t.

[00:45:45] Kalen: No, no, no, not at all. Not at all. I thought, uh,

[00:45:48] Damien: I just figured we’d Bitcoin, the blockchain, and, uh, maybe add in some AI, I, uh, why don’t we have, why don’t we have an internal newsletter about Bitcoins?[00:46:00]

[00:46:04] Kalen: solve it. I think that’ll solve everything.

[00:46:07] Damien: Yeah, I need a Steve. I, I need you to publish a report. It needs to be in, by, in my inbox every morning about how we can leverage AI and blockchain.

[00:46:19] Kalen: Yes. A hundred percent. Um, yeah, God, it’s so funny. I was, uh, I was in the sauna today and some guys started getting popping off about getting tired of crypto

[00:46:34] Damien: Yeah.

[00:46:36] Kalen: It was like, oh, what is he saying? Yeah. Like, yeah, they’re gonna, they’re gonna, the government’s gonna regulate all of crypto. Um, all the crypto exchanges, they’re gonna have it go through the government.

I’m like, well, the cool thing about Bitcoin is they can’t really do that. He’s like, Bitcoin’s trash.

[00:46:53] Damien: Okay. All right.

[00:46:55] Kalen: He’s like, he he’s like Bitcoin’s trash. The government [00:47:00] started

[00:47:00] Damien: Yeah. Only, only car Cardo or whatever meme coin of the day. It

[00:47:04] Kalen: yeah. He had one. I can’t remember what it’s called, but he had one. I, he had one that he’s like, yeah, you gotta check this one out. It’s da, da.

[00:47:14] Damien: Yeah. I’m I’m good, buddy. I’m good.

[00:47:17] Kalen: yeah. It’s like, all right. But, um,

[00:47:20] Damien: So are you, so, you know, you were in the sauna, are you like the, the old guy in the, in the, in the background walking around with no, no towel

[00:47:27] Kalen: yeah, yeah, no, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. No, I’m the old guy. Yeah. I’m the old, like awkward guy in the sauna that. you know, actually there was there was this, this dude, little bit of an older gentleman that, um, retired guy that, uh, in the, in the sauna that would always just go and naked

[00:47:47] Damien: Hmm.

[00:47:48] Kalen: and, um, and everybody else, you know, would have some shorts on or something, but I guess maybe back in the day, that was how you did it.

You just go and make it, you know, but

[00:47:59] Damien: It

[00:47:59] Kalen: it always [00:48:00] made me super uncomfortable.

[00:48:01] Damien: Yeah. It’s like, uh, it’s kind of funny. There was a, like, there’s been a, somewhat of a pivot in culture and American culture specifically where like men become more clothed and women become less clothed. It’s like a, there’s like a, a tipping balance which keeps moving,

[00:48:17] Kalen: interesting.

[00:48:18] Damien: moves back and forth.

[00:48:19] Kalen: Yeah. That’s interesting. That’s funny. I, I hadn’t ever thought about it in that, in those terms. Um, I think that. Guys are gonna be wearing yoga pants within the next 10

[00:48:37] Damien: I, I wear yoga pants every day.

[00:48:39] Kalen: There you

[00:48:40] Damien: I wear Lulu lemons, every.

[00:48:42] Kalen: It’s gen Z. My understanding and I don’t, I’ve never gone to a Lululemon store, but my understanding is that it start Lululemon started just yoga pants, but it, they have all sorts of like, I think guys do actually buy different types of stuff from Lulu lemon.

I could be wrong about that,

[00:48:59] Damien: I will, [00:49:00] as a, as a

[00:49:00] Kalen: they’ve diversified their

[00:49:02] Damien: Yeah. As a, as a Lululemon knoe. Uh, yeah, for sure. They have kungfu pants, which are great. Uh

[00:49:09] Kalen: Right.

[00:49:10] Damien: they’re they’re great. Uh, also there’s another brand, uh, VOR it’s California brand. They’re pretty good. Check them out.

[00:49:17] Kalen: I keep hearing that when I, uh, I, I was hearing that one on the Tim Ferris podcast. Do you ever listen to Tim

[00:49:23] Damien: I don’t,

I don’t know who that

[00:49:24] Kalen: Ugh.

[00:49:26] Damien: You

[00:49:26] Kalen: You don’t know who Tim Ferris

[00:49:27] Damien: No. is?

he a developer? No.

All right.

[00:49:32] Kalen: no. He’s a, uh, ever heard of the four hour work week

[00:49:35] Damien: I have,

[00:49:36] Kalen: to, he wrote that book.

[00:49:38] Damien: okay.

[00:49:39] Kalen: He’s the guy. Yeah, he’s the

[00:49:41] Damien: Got it.

[00:49:42] Kalen: but, um, no, he’s a, he was, uh, he did that book and he, and he, he has a big podcast, probably the number one or two podcasts in the world.

I’d say something like that, but, um,

[00:49:55] Damien: That’s pretty good.

Speaking of, uh, speaking of podcasts, have you [00:50:00] seen the, the it’s always sunny in Philadelphia podcast?

[00:50:03] Kalen: no,

[00:50:04] Damien: it is. It is great. Charlie day is a, is a, is an amazing, amazing comic.

[00:50:12] Kalen: Okay.

[00:50:12] Damien: it.

[00:50:14] Kalen: I’ve tr I think I’ve tried to get into that show. I’ve had quite a few people tell me that it’s a really good show, but I, I, um, I haven’t really gotten into it. So is it like the, is the podcast totally like decoupled from the show itself? Or is it like clips from the show or?

[00:50:34] Damien: Uh, so they’re, they have been rewatching every single episode. And then they go into the podcast talking about the episode. They just watched.

[00:50:41] Kalen: Oh,

[00:50:42] Damien: they, they use it as kind of a, a, a platform for just conversation. So they’ll talk about things that are in the

show. So like on the one that I just watched, they talked about how in season three, the, the, the, the floor of the set was different [00:51:00] because it was more expensive.

Uh, they had moved sets from building to building, and it was too expensive to like, get the same floor reinstalled. So they had to like, change the


[00:51:08] Kalen: so cool. Yeah.

[00:51:10] Damien: and it, and it really made them all upset.

[00:51:13] Kalen: That’s

[00:51:13] Damien: Yeah.

[00:51:15] Kalen: That’s a cool idea for a podcast.

[00:51:17] Damien: Yeah. It was it’s pretty


[00:51:18] Kalen: the actors, the actor, the main actors themselves are the ones that are, that are doing, that are doing the podcast.

[00:51:25] Damien: it’s, uh, I mean, they, Rob McElheny, uh, and Charlie day and, uh, LA guy plays Dennis. I can’t remember his name slipping away from me, unfortunately.

[00:51:38] Kalen: a boom. He’s probably a boomer anyways. I’m sure.

[00:51:40] Damien: Yeah, I dunno. He might be a little younger than you, so not quite, almost,

[00:51:47] Kalen: maybe,

[00:51:48] Damien: but what’s going on. What’s going on in Kalin world. What’s new. How is, how is commerce hero,

[00:51:56] Kalen: I, um, [00:52:00] woke up yesterday, so I woke up yesterday and I was li I woke up at like 3:00 AM and I was like, I gotta do something else. I gotta, I gotta find a new gig. This is. I think I’m, I think it’s time to start phasing it out. So,

[00:52:19] Damien: hero? It’s going the way of the, the email.

[00:52:24] Kalen: well we’ll, we’ll see. We’ll see. Um, but yeah, I think, I think I need to, I think I need to find a new gig

[00:52:32] Damien: Yeah. What any, any ideas of what you want to do? Do you wanna just like me meme on Twitter? All.

[00:52:39] Kalen: that’s ha that’s honestly, if I could get some sponsors or something like that, just do that all day. That’d be pretty

[00:52:45] Damien: what, what would you mean about

[00:52:48] Kalen: you know, it’s just the same random shit that I am memeing about now, you know, just random stuff, dude, whatever comes to mind, you know, whatever the dude, whatever the bros are talking about in the [00:53:00] sauna any particular day,

[00:53:01] Damien: like Dolly, they gonna, you gonna find some Dolly memes?

[00:53:04] Kalen: So I still don’t understand what your tweet meant about me having two hour scheduled from Dali.

What, what did you, what did that even mean?

[00:53:14] Damien: I was, uh, I was claiming because you tweet, so, so damn often, uh, that you have a meme generator and you just plug in random, random words,

[00:53:26] Kalen: there’s no memes. They’re not

[00:53:28] Damien: They’re they’re text only. they’re text only memes

[00:53:31] Kalen: They’re they’re text only. That’s not what Dolly does.

[00:53:35] Damien: Well, sometimes you post

[00:53:36] Kalen: explicitly the opposite of what do I never post pictures.

[00:53:40] Damien: sometimes, maybe, maybe, and I don’t know this, maybe, you know, maybe you have like, you’re super smart and not, not so old.

Uh, and you take Dolly images and then you have like something which interprets the image and then post that.

[00:53:56] Kalen: Okay.

[00:53:57] Damien: Okay.

[00:53:57] Kalen: Okay. At least. Okay. And now I [00:54:00] understand that was actually bothering me. I was like, I need to understand what you meant by that. basically what you’re saying is I tweet too often. It’s all garbage, which was,

[00:54:10] Damien: not always. There are there, there are,

uh, there are I don’t, I don’t know. There’s probably let’s see, I think on average, I think you you’ve been tweeting like 12 times a day. Uh, so I’d, I’d say two and 12 is, is, is good. Two and 12 of

[00:54:27] Kalen: two and 12 are

[00:54:28] Damien: are not, not just decent.

[00:54:29] Kalen: It’s a, here’s the thing. Okay. Thank you. See, I appreciate that. I appreciate that. Um, and the thing is you gotta remember TWIs TWIs tweets are, it’s a hit driven business. Okay. It’s like, it’s like being a musician, you know, two outta 12 is a decent ratio. If you’re, if you’re a musician, right.

For getting, getting an actual hit, you just, you gotta shovel enough garbage out there. every once in a while, [00:55:00] you know, something

[00:55:00] Damien: what’s your, what’s your conversion? What’s your target? What are you? What are you, what are you aiming for?

[00:55:04] Kalen: this is what cracks me up is that I get asked the same question, a variety of ways from everybody. Like it’s, it’s like, what are you doing? Like what, like what, what do you do? Like, is, is commerce hero still alive? Like, are you like, what’s the point of it all? And, um, I, I don’t know. I really don’t. I just putting, I’m just putting stuff out, posting things that I think are funny and, uh, or interesting.

[00:55:35] Damien: I think, uh, I think you’re still rolling that, that ma male money. I think you’re just like figuring out how do I, I think you have some, like my, my, you know, don’t, don’t correct me, cuz I love the, uh, the legend that I’m forming. Uh,

[00:55:48] Kalen: I appreciate it. No, let’s keep the

[00:55:50] Damien: you, uh, you made some great investments and now you’re like, okay, Costa Rica.

That’s like the goal. We’re gonna go Costa Rica every year, like [00:56:00] for the summer. And then I queue up tweets money. Don’t know how but money. And then

[00:56:10] Kalen: right.

[00:56:11] Damien: you get on podcasts, the Tim Ferris podcast even,

[00:56:14] Kalen: right, right,

[00:56:15] Damien: and then even more money.

[00:56:17] Kalen: right, right, right.

[00:56:20] Damien: It’s it’s like, uh, it’s like those it’s like those guys who try to do those tutorials and like draw a circle, draw the rest of the owl.

[00:56:27] Kalen: Right, right, right. that’s a decent, that’s a decent theory. No, I I’ve made some investments of time and, um, Time and money and, and, uh, I was just, just riding them out, man, just riding them out until, until China takes over. And we all become, um, slaves to, uh, some sort of a matrix type situation we’re plugged in and farmed for our [00:57:00] biological energy.

And, you know, we float off into the sunset.

[00:57:05] Damien: you, if you had a VR headset, would you tweet in three?

[00:57:14] Kalen: I’m actually thinking I’m taking sips as I’m talking. And I, I almost spit that out. I don’t know why that was so funny. I probably would. I do have a VR headset actually believe it or not. Um, but I totally tweet 3d, man. That’d be wild. Do you, are, do you, uh, are you a VR guy? Do you have a VR

[00:57:32] Damien: I am not. I’m strictly 2d,

[00:57:36] Kalen: Okay. Okay.

[00:57:39] Damien: strictly

[00:57:40] Kalen: 3d. You mean as far as your life goes or 2d, as far as your digital, digital life,

[00:57:47] Damien: Mm

[00:57:48] Kalen: digital interactions, strictly 2d

[00:57:50] Damien: digital’s. More of like, yeah, digital’s probably more of a 2d physical life. Mm. One day

[00:57:59] Kalen: each [00:58:00] you walk to the fridge and walk back in a straight line. Um, but yeah, no, I, um, you know, commerce hero is kind of, uh, in a, um, bit of a main maintenance mode. And, um, so yeah, I think, um, I may just continue chugging along at it. I woke up the other day and I was like, I gotta do something else. So I, one of the things I, I was thinking about is this idea of developer productivity.

And, um, you’re like, what the hell do you know Kalin about Del developer productivity? Well, I’m glad

[00:58:49] Damien: I, I, I was gonna.

[00:58:51] Kalen: you, I know. No, I know. I know I can, I can see the judgemental thoughts as they go as they cross your mind, um, [00:59:00] even without the video, but, um, yeah, no, it’s something that it’s, it’s kind of the flip side of recruiting, which is recruiting is you’re not having your current job or it’s suboptimal in some way.

So go find another place that’s better in, in some collection of ways. Usually it’s

[00:59:21] Damien: more

[00:59:21] Kalen: more money, but also, you know, uh, in general it’s probably a better environment. Maybe it’s. Maybe the culture’s better. Maybe the tools are better. Maybe the stack that they’re working in is better. Right. Um, and the flip side of that is how do you make developers happier or more productive where they are?


[00:59:47] Damien: It’s

[00:59:47] Kalen: and it’s something I’ve thought about a lot randomly over the years. And, um, whether it’s like productivity or happiness, or I just feel like I have so many, like we just talked [01:00:00] about your perspective and the CEO that comes in with the red button button color change. Right. And I feel like I hear that kind of thing, a hundred different ways and I’ve lived it myself too.

Although it has been a little while and

[01:00:15] Damien: I

[01:00:15] Kalen: I just feel like, and then I also know. Agency owners, CEOs, which you’re an agency owner too, but you’re like a rare, like super, super technical developer guy. And

[01:00:29] Damien: thank you.

[01:00:30] Kalen: there’s also like agency owners that are like more businessy. And I feel like I could help somehow bridge that gap, you know, and

[01:00:42] Damien: definitely. Definitely. There’s there’s so much the, the vacuum there is immense

[01:00:50] Kalen: Yeah. And, and the thing is like, even though from the developer’s perspective, like the client or the CEO, the business person, whoever the person is, even though they [01:01:00] like, at the end of the day, everybody wants the same thing. Like you don’t have the same experience of it. Um, and sometimes the things you want are, are in conflict.

And sometimes you’re not on the same page, but like they want, you know, like if I’m talking to a. Uh, an agency owner who knows that their developer isn’t super happy and they’re kind of just, they’d like to fix it if they could. They don’t exactly know how to the developer has a lot of frustrations.

They’re not necessarily communicating or, um, expressing maybe because they don’t wanna rock the boat. Maybe cuz they don’t know exactly how to fix it. Maybe cuz they tried before and it didn’t go so well. And so they’re kind of just chugging along doing their thing, not rocking the boat, but like if, if, if, if there’s a relatively straightforward way to fix the problem, like everybody would wanna do that.

Like the CEO wants them to be happy. He doesn’t want them to leave, you know? Um, and I, I don’t know. I feel like there’s [01:02:00] something that could be done

[01:02:01] Damien: there’s there’s if, if you want a suggestion, uh I’ll I’ll a GitHub of course, cuz this is something that I’ve been, uh, aggressively working on, um, for my dev teams. So I, for me these days, I’m I. less of a, uh, day in, day out developer. And I’m more of a, how do I improve total team productivity? So I find that if you ask me to write a feature, it will get written in about 12 months because I get bored.

It’s not, it’s not something that I enjoy doing. Um, but if you ask me to, Hey, how can you help the rest of the team write tests and improve code quality, or, Hey, how can we, uh, you know, finish this by this goal and how can we measure how much we, we can actually get done by the goal? Um, and how can we allocate that across the team more efficiently?

That’s like where I enjoy things, right? So, uh, one of [01:03:00] the things that we’ve done and I actually took this to Adobe and tried to get them to listen to me, um, was build code spaces for Magento. Are you, you familiar with code spaces?

[01:03:10] Kalen: no, I don’t think so.

[01:03:13] Damien: so the basic idea of code spaces is a GitHub product.

[01:03:16] Kalen: a

[01:03:17] Damien: Yeah. It’s a GitHub product. It allows you to click on a repo. Like we know when the, on the repo where the big green button is and you click clone,

[01:03:25] Kalen: is that with the blue E button? Do you have to click the blue E first?

[01:03:29] Damien: uh, uh,

[01:03:30] Kalen: The big, the blue internet?

[01:03:33] Damien: oh yeah, yeah,

[01:03:33] Kalen: you click yeah. The blue. Okay.

[01:03:35] Damien: yeah. I don’t know. I don’t know if you know, but that big blue E is dead.

[01:03:39] Kalen: Oh,

[01:03:41] Damien: they got rid of it. It’s uh, it’s now called Netscape navigator. I don’t know if you, you know, that one.

[01:03:46] Kalen: Got right. Right, right, right, right, right, right.

[01:03:49] Damien: Yeah. Um, but no code space is, uh, you click on that big green button. And if you, if you have it set up for your GitHub account, um, you can actually just open up vs code in your browser and it’ll run, [01:04:00] um, Magento on servers at GitHub.

And it’s just set up for you. So you don’t have to know anything about setting up infrastructure. You don’t know anything about like running setup install, but you can just go from zero to development environment in like 30 seconds.

[01:04:16] Kalen: Uh, that’s

[01:04:17] Damien: So, uh, one of, uh, one of the devs that we onboarded, um, you know, he’s worked with Magento a lot in the past and at all the other companies that he’s worked with and all the times he’s worked with Magento, you know, it typically takes one, maybe two days to set up Magento,

[01:04:32] Kalen: absolutely. Yeah, definitely. That’s always a huge pain point. And then you gotta have some more senior team member. That’s helping out this, the guy that’s starting and it’s, it’s just, it’s super time intensive.

[01:04:43] Damien: So we’ve, we actually got it down to, uh, 30 seconds. So we we’ve had junior dev start from nothing and be onboarded with the Magento store in 30 seconds, you know? Same thing with, with daddle, right? So you have the same kind of setup, so you can be [01:05:00] onboarded onto a client, um, making, making changes and seeing them change in your browser, uh, without having to download a thing on your computer, uh, and all, all in the cloud.

And it’s wonderful.

[01:05:13] Kalen: pretty cool. That’s really cool. Yeah. I feel like you could take specific things like that, like, right. Like that’s like a workflow tool. It’s a, it’s a tool, right? It’s like a tool slash workflow improvement. I feel like you could take things like that and just help, like, like I could go in and help like agencies or whatever companies adopt that.

And that’s, that could be part of like, whatever the package and

[01:05:47] Damien: so you want to be, you wanna be a developer advocate for GitHub?

[01:05:51] Kalen: yes, yes. Yes. I think like a developer, a that’s actually, that was the word. That was the phrase that came to mind this morning. And, [01:06:00] um, you know, so you could go in right help. ’em get that set up. and now your developers are happier.

They’re more productive. CEO dude is happier because you know, he’s saving, they’re saving time and stuff like that. And then maybe you just find more and more things like that to, you know, to, to try to get people to do some, like, some things are gonna take, like the challenge of course, is that some things will be like quick wins and then other things will be like, oh yeah, if you want to do this, it’s gonna take a lot of time.

Investment it’ll pay off eventually. Right. And those are the types of things people don’t like to hear. Cause they’re like, well, we have other, we, we have bigger fish to fry. It’s like you said, in the beginning of the conversation, we gotta make ends meet. Like we don’t have time to be, do you know, we gotta like get things done.

So that’s that like tricky balance to, and everybody and every company’s different, different scales, different sizes. [01:07:00] But I think maybe there’s a sweet spot of kind of a type of a company that I could help with that

[01:07:04] Damien: Yeah. Like code space. I mean, everything’s a matter of like marginal benefit and marginal cost. Right? So, um, for, for developer productivity, the marginal benefit of code spaces for one dev is limited. But if, and I, this is main thing I’ve been working on the marginal benefit of code spaces for everyone in the Magento ecosystem.

[01:07:25] Kalen: Fuck

[01:07:25] Damien: It’s incredible. Right. The value prop is immense.

[01:07:29] Kalen: Yeah.

[01:07:30] Damien: that’s kind of what I, that’s kind of, those are the things that I I’ve been working on. Those are the things that I find interesting.

[01:07:36] Kalen: right. Yeah. No, that’s, that’s super interesting. And it’s like, you know, getting Adobe to do something is gonna be complicated. Like I feel like if. You know, like it’s, it’s like, again, like what I just heard from you is the same thing I hear at different levels, which is, here’s a thing. It’s a good idea.

I [01:08:00] understand. I totally understand why it’s a good idea. It’s like, oh, I asked this person to do it. I try to get this person or entity to do it. And they said, no, and I’m like, ha, I’m like, there’s gotta be a way to get them to understand the importance of it, you

[01:08:15] Damien: Well, it’s, this is, this is for me the fundamental problem. Um, so I have a lot of very good ideas that for my clients generate just ridiculous amounts of value. So whether or not it’s in cost savings or it’s in developer productivity, or it’s in conversion rate on their sites, like they’re all things that generate tremendous value.

But getting someone to believe me is the hardest thing as a developer, right? This is just for me as a developer, not as a CEO or anything, getting someone to believe that I know what I’m talking about is extremely difficult

[01:08:57] Kalen: Yep.

[01:08:58] Damien: because I actually had a client the [01:09:00] other day. Um, the guy works for VC firm, um, and he’s kind of like a CTO for hire.

So he goes and works with companies for hire, uh, and the, you know, he, he probably oversees probably a billion dollars worth of various companies, right. As a, as a kind of a CTO for hire. And he, he, he called me and we got on the call with him and the CEO and the CMO of this company. And, uh, by the end of the call, he hopped off.

And at the end of the call, he talked to, uh, one of my friends who was the CMO of the company. And he said, man, Damien sounds expensive.

[01:09:40] Kalen: mm-hmm mm-hmm

[01:09:42] Damien: And I’m like, well, what, what do you want from me? And he wasn’t, he wasn’t saying like that. I, my rate sounds expensive. He was just saying that, cuz I didn’t tell a rate. I didn’t say anything about a rate.

He just said that what I’m talking about and like the ideas that I’m talking about are expensive, right? There, there are things that are not simple solutions where [01:10:00] you click a button and everything works together. It’s, it’s complicated ideas that will generate lots of value. But you know, in order for me to give you the ideas, uh, you know, it’s gonna take me time and energy and effort and that’s expensive.

[01:10:16] Kalen: mm-hmm

[01:10:18] Damien: Like I, I think tests like writing tests is probably one of the most intelligent things that a business can do. And I I’ve had many, many lectures on the topic over the, over the years at this point. And it’s all about. You know, if you, if you can imagine a graph of like people who write tests and people who don’t write tests.

So imagine like this total developer velocity over time, uh, at the very beginning of time, the developers who don’t write tests are gonna be much faster, right? They’re absolutely because they’re not spending this time writing code, but you can imagine as time goes on, developer productivity is gonna slowly decay, right?

So the question you have to ask yourself is

[01:10:59] Kalen: [01:11:00] That’s the story of my life by the way.

[01:11:02] Damien: why do people write tests? And the answer is that unlike their non-test writing counterparts teams that write tests, maintain constant velocity over time, their, their velocity does not decay.

[01:11:17] Kalen: right,

[01:11:18] Damien: that’s the value proposition. You can get consistent throughput consistent and re expected through.

[01:11:23] Kalen: Right. Right. And, and, and, but then at the, but then still, it still becomes one of those devils in the details as far as how it’s implemented. Um, because for example, I think it, if it was the Magento test automation framework or something like that, one of the right where somebody started with what you’re saying, which I, I believe, and it was implemented in a certain way, across a whole team and a whole bunch of people and da, da, da to where it was so bloated, it took so long to use.

Nobody really used it. And then like, you [01:12:00] know, if, if let’s say you were the guy that had that conversation with the CEO or whichever leader, right. How three years ago, and you, and you got him to sign on, and then it was implemented in a certain way. And then fast forward three years. And he goes, Damien, I thought you said this was gonna work.

It’s not working. Right. And that’s where. It’s like it’s complicated. Right. And you kind of, you know it when you see it and it’s like,

[01:12:23] Damien: Yeah. I mean there’s

[01:12:24] Kalen: know what I mean?

[01:12:25] Damien: so for me, like these aren’t, these aren’t problems that are, that have never been visited before. Right? So Martin Fowler, right. Has a lovely, lovely diagram talking about the test pyramid, right? Talks about how most of your tests, like over 50% of your tests should be unit tests because they’re very fast and you can run them with very little configuration, which means for a large code base, that’s extremely valuable.

You’re smallest tests should be, uh, acceptance tests, right? Cuz those are slow and they take long time to run and they require lots of [01:13:00] different tools and they, the whole system to be up. And it takes a lot of effort.

[01:13:03] Kalen: mm-hmm

[01:13:04] Damien: If you invert that pyramid, if you flips that upside down and you make no unit tests, Magento, and you make everything acceptance tests, Magento, guess who never gets their tests run Magento.

[01:13:18] Kalen: Magento . Yeah, yeah, yeah, totally. Yeah. I mean you just, and it, and, and it’s, and it’s in some sense, it’s not that, like you’re saying it’s not that complicated. Like there are some standards here and then there’s probably like, you probably just wanna keep the total run time under some certain number so that it’s like usable.

Um, but, but you know, these things get tricky as you like implement them in larger organizations, by the way I, you go to the bathroom, I’ll be right back. Whew. Um, Yeah, I’m the, there’s this, uh, there’s this app called, uh, script, um, which is for podcast editing and, um, I’ve been using it and it makes it really easy [01:14:00] to like edit stuff out. And so it’s pretty cool. It’s pretty sick.

[01:14:06] Damien: Yeah. Are you, uh, is it, is it hella cool?

[01:14:11] Kalen: Hello? Cool. Yeah. Tele cool.

[01:14:13] Damien: I know. I know. You’re, uh, your Cali. So

[01:14:17] Kalen: yeah,

[01:14:19] Damien: I had a, I had an opportunity to visit, uh, LA for the first time in my life, a couple months back. Um,

[01:14:26] Kalen: I’m sorry to hear that.

[01:14:27] Damien: yeah, me. It was, uh, no, I was, uh, what was it? San, uh, Santa Monica. Yeah. How did you know?

[01:14:37] Kalen: I’m a CIE, bro. I

[01:14:38] Damien: Wow. Yeah, it was Santa Monica cuz my, my brother lives in Santa Monica.

Um, and it was, it was cool. Uh, it was, it was surprisingly cold, right? Yeah. I like LA apparently like, you know, if you’re in the shade, you’re cold. If you’re in the sun, you’re hot, but if you’re in the shade, oh, bring, bring a park up.

[01:14:59] Kalen: parka. [01:15:00] Yeah. Yeah, no. I mean, and if it’s also also on the, at, on the beach, you know, you get that wind,

[01:15:07] Damien: yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

[01:15:08] Kalen: kicking up and, um, yeah, no, that’s cool. No, Santa Monica is nice, man. I lived kind of more on the east side of, uh, LA more inland, but, um, but Santa Monica is still actually, I used to work for a company actually.

The last Megento merchant I worked for was based in Santa Monica. And, um, I mostly worked remote, but I’d go to the office from time to time. And it was always, we’d always, it was always a blast. We’d do some work and then go, um, they had a really cool office and we’d go out to eat, play some basketball or do something like that.

It was super cool.

[01:15:45] Damien: Nice nice on a, on the topic

[01:15:49] Kalen: long were you in? Yeah.

[01:15:51] Damien: oh, sorry. How long was I there? I was there for two days. Uh, and then my wife and I went on our honeymoon to, uh, [01:16:00] Tahiti.

[01:16:01] Kalen: what, wait, wait, wait, wait, when did you get married?

[01:16:04] Damien: Uh, 20, 20, 20, 20.

[01:16:07] Kalen: Nice,

[01:16:08] Damien: we, we had a, we had a honeymoon in, uh, in scheduled in 2020 that of course got pushed because of, uh, you know, the dark times. Um, and then got rescheduled.

We extended as far as we could into the future. And that happened to be happened to be in April. And we had a lovely time. Uh,

[01:16:30] Kalen: That’s amazing,

[01:16:32] Damien: Tahiti is a, is a, is a magical place.

[01:16:35] Kalen: Yeah.

[01:16:36] Damien: It’s,


[01:16:38] Kalen: that’s so

[01:16:38] Damien: it’s, uh, really, really, I mean, those, those like overwater bungalows, mm. Top tier,

[01:16:45] Kalen: Oh my God, dude. I always see pictures of those. And, um, I’ve always wanted to stay in one of those. That’s so cool.

[01:16:53] Damien: Top tier though, on a, on a slightly different topic, more related to, uh, [01:17:00] ageist considerations. I, uh, I just turned 30.

[01:17:04] Kalen: It, you just turned okay. For some reason, I thought you were more like, um, I thought you were like 33 or something

[01:17:12] Damien: no, I I’m a, I’m a, I’m very nearly a Zoomer.

[01:17:16] Kalen: So you were in your twenties the last time we talked. Okay. Wow. No wonder you think I’m so old? Yeah,

[01:17:25] Damien: yeah.

[01:17:25] Kalen: sense. That makes sense.

[01:17:28] Damien: yeah. This is

[01:17:29] Kalen: together. I was like, I was like, Damien’s really overplaying this old, old card

[01:17:34] Damien: yeah,

[01:17:35] Kalen: it makes sense.

[01:17:36] Damien: this, this is, this is the, uh, this is the youth’s bounce, I think is the word, right? We call them bat. Yeah. Yeah. Not pants, pants like banter.

[01:17:47] Kalen: that word before. Ah, banter. Okay. Gotcha. Gotcha. Gotcha.

[01:17:51] Damien: Yeah. Or I think what, what are they? There’s another term that I keep hearing people say, uh, it’s a, oh, these are, this is like true Zoomer [01:18:00] terms that I can’t remember.

Uh, Oh, I can’t believe I’m forgetting it. It’s like a, it’s like a word that has nothing to do with anything.

[01:18:11] Kalen: you’re. You’re gonna lose your Zoomer card

[01:18:13] Damien: I know it’s a word that has nothing to do with anything.

And it’s like a, it’s like an abbreviation of a word, but I can’t I’ll I’ll remember it then I’ll meme at you on Twitter.

[01:18:26] Kalen: Yeah, no, no, that makes sense. So it’s a, it’s kind of like a word, but it’s more like an abbreviation of a word. Got it. Got it.

[01:18:31] Damien: Yeah. It’s like one of those word things, you know?

[01:18:34] Kalen: Right. One of those like word type deals. No, no, no, no. I We’re on the same

[01:18:38] Damien: Oh, okay. Yeah.

[01:18:39] Kalen: You’re you’re pretty mature. I have to say you’re pretty mature for an, for a recently X, 20 year old,

[01:18:45] Damien: Thank you. Thank you. I, I feel bad now because you know, I’ve been, let’s see what I’ve called you old. Uh, I, I, I said that’s about it though.

[01:18:54] Kalen: should. Yeah. You should feel, you should feel a little

[01:18:57] Damien: but no, you’ve been, you’ve been so kind, you said, uh, [01:19:00] you

[01:19:00] Kalen: I have, I’m a nice guy.

[01:19:02] Damien: I’m mature. I have a calm,


[01:19:04] Kalen: but ni been nothing but nice to you this whole time. I’ve known you and, um, and you know, and then you come at me and, you know, quite frankly, uh, it, it was, uh, you know, I, I think you owe me an apology.

I’m being completely

[01:19:21] Damien: I am so sorry.

[01:19:26] Kalen: but are you deeply, are you deeply sorry, or just so sorry.

[01:19:30] Damien: Mm,

[01:19:32] Kalen: Are you deeply aggrieved.

[01:19:35] Damien: no more, more, more peripheral. Sorry. Right.

[01:19:39] Kalen: no, see, I see, I knew this. I knew this was a sham. I knew this. I knew this apology was a sham. Um,

[01:19:46] Damien: on a, on a, on a different topic. Are you going to, uh, meet Magento New York? Because I saw that

[01:19:52] Kalen: everybody everybody’s talking about this. Are you going,

[01:19:56] Damien: I don’t know, this is like, I, I would go like, I, they[01:20:00]

[01:20:00] Kalen: I thought I’ll be honest. I thought this whole meat and Magento business was dead. I thought nobody cared. And then I get, um, somebody added me on LinkedIn. Like somebody like LinkedIn spammed, me who, I guess one of the people that was organizing it. And I was like, all right, here we go with the, we go with the conference promotion.

But, um, but, but yeah, the Will’s all into it and you’re into it.

[01:20:27] Damien: well, they, they, I think the conference for promoters ask the open source task force to, uh, to talk about kind of what we’re doing.

[01:20:36] Kalen: Mm-hmm

[01:20:36] Damien: Um,

[01:20:38] Kalen: are you on the open source task

[01:20:39] Damien: I am. I am.

[01:20:41] Kalen: What is, remind me again, what’s the difference between the open source task force, the association and all these things?

[01:20:47] Damien: Uh, so the Magento association is obviously this nonprofit organization that is, yeah. Yeah. Given some power to [01:21:00] oversee the magenta ecosystem. I think it’s, in my opinion, fairly limited granted, I’m, I’m a peripheral, ah, uh, I wouldn’t say it’s a sham. I don’t think

[01:21:10] Kalen: side show. It’s a side show.

[01:21:13] Damien: I’m not so sure about that. I was once of that opinion, I once thought everybody was like calling it in and nobody cared.

Um, and I think for the original, some, some of the original board members, I think that’s true. Um,

[01:21:30] Kalen: Gito to mention any

[01:21:32] Damien: yeah. Yeah. Not gonna mention any names, but


[01:21:36] Kalen: Guido by name, but yes. Okay.

[01:21:39] Damien: He’s at big commerce now, right?

[01:21:41] Kalen: No, no, no. He’s at, uh, striker.

[01:21:43] Damien: oh, that’s like big commerce, but not.

[01:21:46] Kalen: It’s basically big commerce.

[01:21:49] Damien: Um, no, I think, I think there were definitely some people in

[01:21:51] Kalen: it’s the German version of big commerce, which is even worse.

[01:21:55] Damien: Yeah. Hmm.

[01:21:57] Kalen: So the task force is,[01:22:00]

[01:22:00] Damien: Magento association, separate entity. The task force is a subcommittee of, uh, of the Magento association.

Now for

[01:22:09] Kalen: ah, okay.

[01:22:09] Damien: for me, Yeah, yes. Uh, not only are we, uh, less relevant, we’re also, we have no say or power or insight or anything. Uh, no, that’s, that’s not, that’s not fair to say. Um, there’s a couple of things I want to specifically point out because I think people, you know, think people care about the task force.

I think what it stood for and what it stands for matters. Um, but what people have to understand is that we don’t have a lot of power, right? So the, the Magento association itself is limited in scope. And unfortunately the Magento association is not full of developers. It’s full of agency owners or business owners, which means they’re not in the trenches.

Now I would say of, uh, of the people who. part [01:23:00] of the association. I think the task force is way more of the people who are in the drenches. Right? So these are the people who are, who are, you know, it’s vena. It was Christoff myself E uh, your CS. I can’t say his last name. Unfortunately. It’s like Veev. Um, and then, uh, like Willum, um, Yesa actually for a time was on the task force.

I don’t know if he stepped down, but he was there originally. Uh, others, I unfortunately am forgetting their names. Um, but there, you know, it’s not, it’s a it’s people who are, you know, people who submit PRS. Right. And a lot of what we did and still continue to do is advocate that PRS and the open source ecosystem is dying.

Right. It’s not, dying’s not the right word. Uh, maybe it is, but it’s, it’s weakening.

[01:23:56] Kalen: nothing ever dies. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Things weaken. We say that they [01:24:00] die because it’s

[01:24:01] Damien: we’re yeah, we’re dramatic, but it’s, it’s weakening and it feels like, uh, you know, putting effort in is less valuable. Right. You put effort in, so there’s a lovely PR by the way, uh, it’s the highest uploaded PR in the whole magenta repo at the moment, been there for like three years.

It, it essentially makes Magento 10% faster for no, no cost.

[01:24:25] Kalen: Oh my God.

[01:24:26] Damien: but nobody cares to review it really. Yeah.

Uh, but these are the kinds of things that we advocate for. Right. We advocate for change. We, we try to make people at Adobe C and we had an kind of an unfortunate thing, which was, uh, you know, Eric stepped away from the company, um, which meant, and he was a big player.

Yeah. He was a big player in the open source task force. So. I kind of lost a lot of, uh, a lot of weight. [01:25:00] So, which is why I think you’ll see like a lot of the people who are on the task force now very much invested in MageOS because that’s where we’re gonna try and direct focus and, and attention right.

Control what you can control

[01:25:14] Kalen: but in the case of, for example, that one particular fix that would speed things up by 10%. Um, since ma Joss is just a mirror, that’s not you guys. I mean, that’s, you guys are not gonna merge that in obviously on your

[01:25:28] Damien: at the moment.

[01:25:28] Kalen: I feel, I feel like, I feel like, I feel like at some point the scales are gonna tip Willam was going to ascend as the God king and

[01:25:40] Damien: I feel bad about.

[01:25:42] Kalen: will.

Um, and, and then you guys will start to make some of those changes into the major majors, like as a fork or whatever, you’ll have enough momentum that you’ll just roll with it. You know what I mean?

[01:25:55] Damien: Yeah, I think

[01:25:56] Kalen: will continue to be less and less connected [01:26:00] and care less and less about the original magenta they’ll be into their microservices architecture or whatever.

And then it’ll just split off and it’ll be glorious,

[01:26:09] Damien: uh, you know, you know, what makes me really sad. So like, I’m, you know, I’m your Kubernetes buff, I’m your microservices guy, right? Like that’s my,

[01:26:18] Kalen: right, right.

[01:26:19] Damien: niche in the Magento ecosystem.

[01:26:20] Kalen: the non monolith guy.

[01:26:22] Damien: Right. And kind of what I’m doing. Right. So I think I’ve talked to you about this before. Right? I have a, a home chart for Magento that I license out to clients for a, a modest sum.


[01:26:35] Kalen: you say a hum chart?

[01:26:37] Damien: H E L M uh, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a package manager of a Kubernetes ecosystem.

Um, and essentially allows you to deploy Magento onto Kubernetes kinda like code spaces. Right. So instead of you click a button, you get a dev environment, you get, you click a button, you get a production grade

[01:26:54] Kalen: Wait, so was this sort of the thing that was like, I, that we talked about [01:27:00] that was sort of the thing you were pro wanting to productize, like it was

[01:27:02] Damien: So I successfully successfully productized it.

[01:27:06] Kalen: Oh, that’s awesome.

[01:27:08] Damien: Uh, yeah. So it’s, it’s something that we’ve been working on for like three years. Um,

[01:27:14] Kalen: So you have a few clients that are, that are in production on

[01:27:17] Damien: Yeah, absolutely. Mm-hmm

[01:27:18] Kalen: That’s fantastic,

[01:27:19] Damien: one of those, uh, one of those at the beginning of the conversation and I woke up at 7:00 AM.

That’s one of them

[01:27:26] Kalen: Nice.

[01:27:28] Damien: So, so, uh, Uh, so kind of the thing I see, right, there was a way for Adobe to go the microservices route in a open source fashion. Like that was, that was, that was a decision that could have been made

[01:27:45] Kalen: mm-hmm

[01:27:46] Damien: and they chose not to.

[01:27:48] Kalen: they’ve fumbled the bag. This is a, that’s a, that’s a gen Z phrase too. Fumbled the

[01:27:54] Damien: Yeah. I don’t know what, where

[01:27:56] Kalen: see it on it’s. I see it on TikTok a lot. It, it means they [01:28:00] screwed it up and lost the money.

[01:28:01] Damien: Oh, I, I remember the word.

[01:28:04] Kalen: Yeah.

[01:28:04] Damien: I remember the word bet.

[01:28:06] Kalen: Oh, the word bet. Oh yeah. Yeah. Bet. No, it’s not an acronym. It’s like bet as

[01:28:10] Damien: like you, you bet. Yeah, but I didn’t, I, I had a conversation with the Zoomer and they kept saying bet, and I had no idea what was going on.

[01:28:20] Kalen: you’re like, wait, what? You’re like, wait, what’s happening. Does this say, are we betting on something or,

[01:28:26] Damien: Yeah. That’s actually thought that’s actually, I thought what they meant. I thought they said like, bet.

[01:28:30] Kalen: how much are we

[01:28:32] Damien: So I said, I said $20. That’s actually, I’m serious. That’s what I said. And, and they had no idea what I was talking about.

[01:28:40] Kalen: they’re like, what with you’re like, what are they’re like, are you old

[01:28:43] Damien: Yeah. I don’t know. Then they actually called me a boomer. That’s what happened? True story.

[01:28:49] Kalen: right,

[01:28:50] Damien: person’s name was Rohan.

[01:28:53] Kalen: Ruined,

[01:28:54] Damien: Yeah. True story. That happened,

[01:28:56] Kalen: shout out to Rowan.

[01:28:58] Damien: Yeah.

[01:28:59] Kalen: [01:29:00] Um, Yeah, that’s wild. But so, but, so basically you were saying that you’re the Kubernetes guy they’re they could have gone about this. They could have done a real open source approach to microservices, and instead they just are going this super let’s make everything sass and, and, and CR like, let’s like a very opposite of open source ethos type of approach to it

[01:29:30] Damien: Exactly. It’s like a, it’s like a polar opposite to what Magento has historically been. Right. The way, the way I perceive Magento is like the Linux kernel of e-commerce. Right. That’s how, like, I kind of perceive magenta. It’s this large system that has had thousands of developers working on it. Most of them have no idea who each other are.

Uh, a lot of them, you know, if you put them in a room would hate each other. Um, but

[01:29:58] Kalen: Absolutely.[01:30:00]

[01:30:00] Damien: managed to build something. Works for a lot of businesses and all of a sudden, not only is like the, the, the thing being, I don’t know. I think the, I think Igor Min’s statement was like, we’re applying the strangler pattern so we could say it’s being choked to death.

Um, not only is it being choked to death, it’s like not even gracefully choked to death, like they’re straight up ringing it for all it’s worth and

[01:30:31] Kalen: Wait. So he said that literally

[01:30:34] Damien: Yeah. There was a, there was a talk, there was a talk. Um, I think it was whatever the big Adobe conference is I don’t remember what it’s called, uh, where they talked about applying the strangler pattern, which is a real design pattern.

So it’s not


[01:30:46] Kalen: just Googling it. Yeah. It’s one in which an old system’s put behind an intermittent intermediary facade, then over time, external replacement services for the old system are added that’s hysterical.

[01:30:59] Damien: Right. So, I mean, [01:31:00] clearly you are STR like, I mean, if we wanna apply the idea, it’s like, you’re literally strangling businesses to death with your decisions.


[01:31:08] Kalen: and, and I mean, and to be fair, they’re just, they’re just trying to build something that works for their particular customer base and their particular, uh, you know, sta like their business goals, as far as the type of stack they want to build and stuff like, they’re just trying to streamline stuff and it’s not like they’re going out trying to hurt businesses.

It’s, it’s more of the like creative destruction of the economy that, you know,

[01:31:37] Damien: creative description.

[01:31:39] Kalen: have you heard that

[01:31:40] Damien: I have not, I love it though. I’m gonna use that.

[01:31:43] Kalen: Yeah. Yeah, no, it’s a good Zoomer. It’s a good boomer phrase. There’s the boomers, you know, they they’ve come up with a thing or two, you know, they they’ve

[01:31:54] Damien: Yeah, the cotton G

[01:31:56] Kalen: they [01:32:00] yeah. That all that might have been pre boomer. Um, not technically sure. But, um, you know, they, they they’ve built some things. They put some things that respect your elders. Um, yeah. No, that’s, that’s inter that’s. That’s interesting. Um, but I, yeah, I just think that I, I, I’m almost looking forward to when it forks and I know a lot of people talk about forking it forever, but for that to realistically happen, And I know I’m, you know, I’m sure that, you know, you’re gonna, like, I can just, I, I can just imagine, will saying like, no, we, we don’t wanna do that.

We wanna work with Adobe and da da, but I don’t, I don’t have to, you know,

[01:32:44] Damien: yeah.

[01:32:45] Kalen: I can just say wild things, which is

[01:32:47] Damien: I, I am probably the most of that group of people. I, I probably shoot the straightest. Um, so I, I, I, I would argue, yeah, it’s, it’s getting forked. Like they don’t, like, there’s [01:33:00] not, there’s not like a, it’s not a question

[01:33:02] Kalen: not gonna end well,

[01:33:03] Damien: Well, it’s not it’s it’ll end well for us.

[01:33:09] Kalen: yeah. I, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. But like the, but in terms of the, the harmonious coexistence of the two in some, in some compatible form is not gonna, is not gonna ha live forever,

[01:33:26] Damien: Yeah. That’s a hard one. I don’t know. I don’t know the answer to that. I, I think there may be some way for them to live harmoniously. Um, you know, one of the things that’s been said is, uh, a reference was made, um, , I’m not gonna name any name. I’m not even gonna say it. The reference was made to, to, uh, kind of what we do in the open source ecosystem as, as not, you know, not real.


[01:33:55] Kalen: mm-hmm

[01:33:55] Damien: and I, I think there, there are businesses [01:34:00] that rely heavily on magenta, open source. Um, not all of them are small. Many of them are in the, you know, if, if you’re make, if you’re a business and you’re online and you’re doing 40 million plus a year like that, that might not seem big to Adobe, but to that

[01:34:15] Kalen: It’s all

[01:34:16] Damien: yeah.

To that, to that business and to those people who are employed by, you know, the op the operations staff of that company, the customer support staff, the marketing staff, the CEO himself, the sales people, those people are all real.

[01:34:33] Kalen: yeah, yeah.

[01:34:34] Damien: And there’s a level of inhumanity that happens. between like the dis the, the cognitive dissonance between the decisions that you make, uh, with software and the side effects of what those decisions actually incur.

[01:34:50] Kalen: yeah. I mean, and it’s like the word dead too. Like we say the word dead, it’s a dramatization, the word they’re not real. That’s also similar, you know, for all I know they’re looking at a chart, you know [01:35:00] what I mean? And they’ve got on they’ve, they’re charting out by business size and they’re going for a certain segment of the chart, which is huge.

And then they’re, and then they’re looking at the long tail of it and going, it’s not real, like it, it not literally, but it relatively speaking, it’s not significant, you know, and I’m not saying it’s, but, but I I’m just imagining how they would

[01:35:21] Damien: yeah, I mean, sure. But there’s a, there’s a lovely,

[01:35:24] Kalen: of us that are in the long tail, it’s, it’s everything like, right?

Like you could have an entire livelihood for lots and lots of people that are in that long tail.

[01:35:33] Damien: I, I, I see it more of, um, there was a lovely case. Done by Google talking about, uh, bundle size. Was it, was it, yeah, I think it was Google, uh, talking about bundle size on, you know, browser applications. Right.

[01:35:49] Kalen: Mm-hmm

[01:35:50] Damien: And

[01:35:51] Kalen: I feel like I get smarter by just talking to

[01:35:53] Damien: it was, it was actually YouTube. No, it was, it was actually early day YouTube. And they were talking about the bundle size [01:36:00] of like the YouTube client, like how many kilobytes of JavaScript the application was.

[01:36:04] Kalen: Mm-hmm

[01:36:05] Damien: And, uh, some developers made some changes and they reduced bundle size by 50% a result, they saw their app go from 0% usage in Uganda to something like 70% of the population of Uganda using it.

[01:36:25] Kalen: Wow.

[01:36:27] Damien: And. that is not small tale, right? I mean, that is, if you, if you look at it in that, in that perspective of, we have clearly no customers in Uganda, we’re not gonna put any effort into it.

[01:36:38] Kalen: right,

[01:36:38] Damien: There’s a reason for that. It’s not because those people don’t want your product

[01:36:44] Kalen: right,

[01:36:44] Damien: because you haven’t figured out how to get it to them.

[01:36:47] Kalen: right, right.

[01:36:48] Damien: Right. So I, this is like, this is like a fundamental thing about the economy. Most of the value of society, uh, is in like the 1%, right. There’s a lot [01:37:00] of, there’s a 1% of, yeah.

But the most value, the total like total amount of dollars in, in the economy are in the long tail. Right. It might be, it might look like the smallest because it’s the hardest to get access to. But that’s where the money actually is or where at large,

[01:37:17] Kalen: it’s a long ass tail.

[01:37:18] Damien: it’s a long tail, right? The, the, the area under the curve, you would, right.

The, uh, the integral of that area is quite large.

[01:37:25] Kalen: yeah. Yeah. Well, that note, um, this has been a fun little conversation. I I’m gonna, I’m gonna wait for that sincere deep apology from you. Um, perhaps on a follow up episode, you can, you can gather your thoughts. Um,

[01:37:51] Damien: the title title of this podcast could be the gang get, sorry.

[01:37:59] Kalen: [01:38:00] sorry. I like that. I like that. That’s pretty good. It’s pretty decent. Um, good times, Damien. So, uh, anything else? Any, any last.

[01:38:14] Damien: I think, uh, I think there was one final thing, which was, are you going to, uh, meet magendo New York?

[01:38:19] Kalen: All right. Thanks everybody for listening. And , I, you know, it, when will first asked me about it, I was not at all interested, but, but, uh, but then I was kind of thinking maybe so I guess I’m, I guess I’m warming up to the idea. What, what about you?

[01:38:36] Damien: uh, I’ll go if, if will goes and van IGOs, I’m definitely going a hundred percent.

[01:38:41] Kalen: Well, I think William’s going for sure.

[01:38:44] Damien: I don’t know. I think he said, he said he had to scrummage some Hoover money to go, right?

[01:38:49] Kalen: Oh, he’s swimming in the Hova money. He’s he’s swimming it. They don’t call him Scrooge MC Willum for nothing, [01:39:00] but I don’t know about VEI. We’ll have to, we’ll have to ask him. Well, cool.

[01:39:03] Damien: yep.

[01:39:04] Kalen: Good times.

[01:39:04] Damien: Well,

we’ll, we’ll see if we, if we see you, we see you. Right.

[01:39:08] Kalen: Absolutely.

[01:39:10] Damien: All right.

[01:39:10] Kalen: absolutely.

[01:39:11] Damien: Well, thanks for chatting Kalin.

[01:39:13] Kalen: Thanks, man. Thanks for teaching me so much about bundle sizes.

[01:39:17] Damien: you know, it.

[01:39:19] Kalen: All right.