Coding Blocks

The Mathemachicken strikes again for this year’s shopping spree, while Allen just realized he was under a rock, Joe engages “no take backs”, and Michael ups his decor game.

The full show notes for this episode are available at


  • Datadog – Sign up today for a free 14 day trial and get a free Datadog t-shirt after creating your first dashboard.

Survey Says

What's your favorite feature on the new MacBook Pro?


  • Thank you to everyone that left a review!
    • iTunes: BoldAsLove88
    • Audible: Tammy

Joe’s List

Price Description  
“Fun” Answers
$3,499.95 Jura x8 (Williams and Sonoma)
$3,499.00 2021 Macbook Pro – 16″ Screen, M1 Max, 32GB RAM, 1TB drive (Apple)
$359.99 Lego Mindstorms (Amazon)
$149.99 Sphero BOLT (Amazon)
$499.99 Xbox Series X (Microsoft)
$180 Game Pass (Microsoft)
$179.00 Play Date (Website)
$929.99 Trek Dual Sport 3 (Trek)
$179.95 Fitbit Charge 5 (Amazon)
$921.22 Dorito Dust Supplies (Recipe)
Levelling Up
$199 / year (Website)
$159 / year LeetCode Subscription (Website)
$99 ACM Subscription (Sign Up)

Allen’s List

  Description Price
Honorable mention: Steam Deck (Steam) $399.00
Honorable mention: Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio 14.4″ (Amazon) $2,700.00
LG 48″ C1 OLED TV (Amazon) $1,297.00
Honorable mention: Aorus 48″ OLED Gaming Monitor (Newegg) $1,500.00
HTC Vive Pro 2 (Amazon) $799.00
Valve Index Controllers (Steam/Valve) $279.00
Kinesis Advantage 2 (Amazon) $339.00
Corsair MP600 NVME PCIE x4 2TB (Amazon) $240.00
Arduino Ultimate Starter Kit (Amazon) $63.00

Michael’s List

Price Description  
My smart home can beat up your smart home
$14.99 Kasa Smart Light Switch HS200 (Amazon)
$16.99 Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch HS220 (Amazon)
$26.99 Kasa Smart Plug Mini 15A 4-Pack EP10P4 (Amazon)
$17.99 Kasa Outdoor Smart Plug with 2 Sockets EP40 (Amazon)
For my health
$529.00 Apple Watch Series 7 GPS + Cellular (Amazon)
Need moar power!
$34.00 Apple MagSafe Charger (Amazon)
$12.99 elago W6 Apple Watch Stand (Amazon)
$10.99 Honorable mention: elago W3 Apple Watch Stand (Amazon)
$29.00 Honorable mention: Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Cable (0.3m) (Amazon)
When I lose my stuff
$98.99 Apple AirTag 4 Pack (Amazon)
$10.99 Protective Case for Airtags (Amazon)
$14.88 Honorable mention: Air Tags Airtag Holder for Dogs/Cat Pet Collar (Amazon)
I need to get some work done
$180.00 Code V3 104-Key Illuminated Mechanical Keyboard (Amazon)
$169.00 Honorable mention: Das Keyboard 4 Professional Wired Mechanical Keyboard (Amazon)
$280.00 Honorable mention: Drop SHIFT Mechanical Keyboard (Amazon)
$240.00 Honorable mention: Drop CTRL Mechanical Keyboard (Amazon)
If you insist on an ergo keyboard
$199.00 Honorable mention: KINESIS GAMING Freestyle Edge RGB Split Mechanical Keyboard (Amazon)
Turns out, keycaps matter
$29.99 Honorable mention: Razer Doubleshot PBT Keycap Upgrade Set (Amazon)
$24.99 Honorable mention: HyperX Pudding Keycaps (Amazon)
Things I need to buy again
$19.99 HyperX Wrist Rest (Amazon)
$28.99 Honorable mention: Glorious Gaming Wrist Pad/Rest (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: Razer Ergonomic Wrist Rest Pro (Amazon)
When things go wrong
$69.99 iFixit Pro Tech Toolkit (Amazon)
$64.99 Honorable mention: iFixit Manta Driver Kit (Amazon)
For all your calling needs
$599.00 Rode RODECaster Pro Podcast Production Studio (Amazon)
$549.99 Honorable mention: Zoom PodTrak P8 Podcast Recorder (Amazon)
$12.95 On-Stage DS7100B Desktop Microphone Stand (Amazon)
$199.99 Elgato Ring Light (Amazon)
$159.99 Elgato HD60 S+ Capture Card (Amazon)
Music to your ears
$148.49 Kali Audio LP-6 Studio Monitor (Amazon)
$189.00 Honorable mention: KRK RP5 Rokit G4 Studio Monitor (Amazon)
$379.99 Honorable mention: Yamaha HS7I Studio Monitor (Amazon)
$199.99 Honorable mention: ADAM Audio T5V Two-Way Active Nearfield Monitor (Amazon)
$155.00 Honorable mention: JBL Professional Studio Monitor (305PMKII) (Amazon)
$599.00 Kali Audio WS-12 12 inch Powered Subwoofer (Sweetwater)
$65.00 Palmer Audio Interface (PMONICON) (Amazon)
$169.99 Honorable mention: Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (3rd Gen) USB Audio Interface (Amazon)
For the decor
$34.99 Dumb and Dumber Canvas (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: The Big Lebowski Canvas (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: Pulp Fiction Canvas (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: Friday Canvas (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: Jurassic Park (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: Bridesmaids Canvas (Amazon)
$34.99 Honorable mention: There’s Something About Mary (Amazon)

Resources We Like

  • Security Now 834, Life: Hanging By A Pin (
  • Buyer Beware: Crucial Swaps P2 SSD’s TLC NAND for Slower Chips (
  • Samsung Is the Latest SSD Manufacturer Caught Cheating Its Customers (

Tip of the Week

  • VS Code … in the browser … just … there? Not all extensions work, but a lot do! (
  • Skaffold is a tool you can use to build and maintain Kubernetes environments that we’ve mentioned on the show several times and guess what!? You can make your life even easier with Skaffold with environment variables. It’s another great way to maintain flexibility for your environments … both local and CI/CD. (
  • K9s is a Kubernetes terminal UI that makes it easy to quickly search, browse, filter, and edit your clusters and it also has skins! The Solarized Light theme is particularly awesome for customizing your experience, especially for presenting. (GitHub)
Direct download: coding-blocks-episode-170.mp3
Category:Software Development -- posted at: 10:00pm EDT

We discuss the pros and cons of speaking at conferences and similar events, while Joe makes a verbal typo, Michael has turned over a new leaf, and Allen didn’t actually click the link.

The full show notes for this episode are available at


  • Datadog – Sign up today for a free 14 day trial and get a free Datadog t-shirt after creating your first dashboard.

Survey Says

How likely are you to give a presentation?

Take the survey at:


KINESIS GAMING Freestyle Edge RGB Split Mechanical Keyboard The Kinesis Gaming Freestyle Edge RGB Split Mechanical Keyboard might be the current favorite.
  • Thank you to everyone that left a review!
    • iTunes: dahol1337, Pesri
  • How long does it take to get the Moonlander? (
  • Is the Kinesis Gaming Freestyle the current favorite? (Amazon)
  • Atlanta Code Camp was fantastic, see you again next year! (

What kind of speaking are we talking about?

  • Conferences
  • Meetups
  • Does YouTube/Twitch count as tech presentations?
    • There are some similarities! Streaming has the engagement, but generally isn’t as rehearsed. Published videos are closer to the format but you have to make some assumptions about your audience and can get creative with the editing.

Why do people speak?

  • Can help you build an audience
  • Establish credibility
  • Promotional opportunities
  • Networking
  • Free travel/conferences
  • Great way to learn something
  • Become a better communicator
  • Is it fun?

Who speaks at conferences?

  • People speak at conferences for different reasons
  • Couple different archetypes of speakers:
    • Sponsored: the speakers are on the job, promoting their company and products
    • Practitioners: Talks from people in the trenches, usually more technical and focused on specific results or challenges
    • Idea people: People who have a strong belief in something that is controversial, may have an axe to grind or an idea that’s percolating into a product
    • Professionals: Some companies encourage speakers to bolster the company reputation, promotions and job descriptions might require this

How do you put together a talk?

  • How do you pick a talk?
  • Know who is selecting talks, go niche for larger conferences if you don’t have large credentials/backing
  • Sometimes conferences will encourage “tracks” certain themes for topics
  • What are some talks you like? What do they do differently?
  • Do you aim for something you know, or want to know?
  • How do you write your talks?
  • How do you practice for a talk?
  • Differences between digital and physical presentations?
  • How long does it take you?

Where can you find places to speak?

  • Is this the right question? What does this tell you about your motivation?
  • Meet new people who share your interests through online and in-person events. (Meetup)
  • Find your next tech conference (Confs.Tech)
  • Google for events in your area!

Final Questions

  • Is it worth the time and anxiety?
  • What do you want out of talks?
  • What are some alternatives?
    • Blogging
    • Videos
    • Open Source
    • Participating in communities


  • Is Speaking At A Conference Really Worth Your Time? (
  • We’re 93% certain that Burke Holland gave a great talk about a dishwasher and Vue.js. (Twitter)
  • Monitor you Netlify sites with Datadog (Datadog)
  • Netlify (
  • Risk Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up (Official Music Video) (YouTube)
  • Simple Minds – Don’t You (Forget About Me) (YouTube)
  • Foo Fighters With Rick Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up – London O2 Arena 19 September 2017 (YouTube)

Tip of the Week

  • Next Meeting is a free app for macOS that keeps a status message up in the top right of your toolbar so you know when your next meeting is. It does other stuff too, like making it easier to join meetings and see your day’s events but … the status is enough to warrant the install. Thanks MadVikingGod! (Mac App Store)
  • How do I disable “link preview” in iOS safari? (Stack Exchange)
  • Here is your new favorite YouTube channel, Rick Beato is a music professional who makes great videos about the music you love, focusing on what makes the songs and artists special. (YouTube)
  • Hot is a free app for macOS that shows you the temperate of your MacBook Pro … and the percentage of CPU you’re limited to because of the heat! Laptop feels slow? Maybe it’s too hot! (GitHubXS-Labs)
  • What is the meaning of $? in a shell script? (Stack Exchange)
  • Did you know…You can install brew on Linux? That’s right, the popular macOS packaging software is available on your favorite distro. (
Direct download: coding-blocks-episode-169.mp3
Category:Software Development -- posted at: 10:00pm EDT