Issue 124

Lori M Olson Lori M Olson Follow Jan 11, 2023 · 9 mins read
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DRD124: The Best of 2022

OPED — Lori’s Unvarnished Opinion

The Year in Review

Welcome to the DragonRuby Dispatch’s yearly review and roundup of some of our (and your!) favourite pieces from 2022. I hope you have as much fun reading these, as we had putting it together.


It’s been almost five years (May 2018, to be precise) since Lori and her husband Trever had a real vacation. As such, they have taken off for a well-deserved, three week celebration of their 20th anniversary. Check out Lori’s Instagram for highlights!

What with the holiday and all, and with your forbearance, we’ll skip the January 25th edition and return to our regular biweekly newsletter schedule on February 8th!


Just before we get to the ‘best of’ stuff, there is one piece of current breaking news: DragonRuby Game Toolkit V4.0 has been released! That’s a pretty great start to 2023!


Impostor Club
DRD108: June 1, 2022

A recent tweet by David Bock tipped me off to a great essay by Chad Fowler entitled Welcome to Impostor Club. (Think Fight Club as in “The first rule of Fight Club is…” It’s in that vein, I think.)

In any event, a lot of people experience this feeling. The feeling that what they know, what they have learned, is just scratching the surface of some deeper learning, that only real experts have.

I remember a fun discussion I had, when I was a member of TeamB (unofficial dev rel group for Borland IDE products, when Borland still existed). At the annual TeamB conference, we had finished all our group meetings for the day, and were sitting around having a couple of drinks with the Borland developers. I thought, at this time, that these people were operating at a development level far above where I was, even though I was one of the people out there in their discussion groups, answering questions about how to use their products.

Then the conversation came around to a bug that I and one of the other TeamB devs had experienced in JBuilder, the Java IDE. We were able to describe it precisely, and repeatably. The lead developer, who’s name escapes me now, was a German expat (trust me that’s relevant) and he looked at us in confusion and said, “That’s really weird” (say that in your head, in a German accent, it’s way more funny). Anyway, we all burst out laughing, and I suddenly realized that these people were ‘just developers’ like me, and for that moment in time, my imposter syndrome was busted.

Here’s a thought for you to practice, when you have that imposter feeling. What you know is always more than what some other subset of people know. Your Knowledge, Your Experience, Your Aptitude. And the people that know more than you? At one time, they had to learn it all too.

Look Closely
DRD105: March 23, 2022

When you look at things very closely—they can be so beautiful…even the humble moth (at 6000 frames-per-second, that is). I’ve been doing a lot of this lately, working around my eye issues. But on the bright side, I finally finished the content for the complete 6 Pack Apps for Entrepreneurs course. I’m pretty proud of the result, but it will remain behind the veil until I am back in the saddle, when my waitlist people will get first crack at it. If you know anyone who could benefit from this course, please share the link!

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Top Games Made with Dragonruby GTK
DRD100: December 12, 2021

Did you know BuzzFeed was founded on a single, simple idea: curated lists of things of one sort or another…there’s obviously no denying the eternal appeal of the list, so here’s one more: Top Games Made with DragonRuby GTK.

The Ruby DSL Handbook
DRD108: June 1, 2022

I was off camping last week (it was a lovely week to camp, with only one cold day), so I don’t have a lot of new stuff going on in the school (branding changes are still in progress). So when I saw this tweet I thought I would highlight someone else’s work I have found immensely useful: Jim Gay’s Ruby DSL Handbook. This is the ebook about creating Ruby code that speaks your language while avoiding metaprogramming hell.

Give a 💩
DRD105: March 23, 2022

Lori was laid up with eye surgery this past year, but that’s okay because she provided some homework while she was away: “Be good! And by that I actually mean read and follow these guidelines: Understanding Success Criterion 6.1.1: Give a Shit.” ‘Nuff said.

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Kitty on the Keyboard
DRD117: October 05, 2022

</a>If you spent a lot of time at home during you-know-what, you may have gotten used to the household kitty making mischief as you were trying to get work done. Well if you’re back in the office now, you may be dealing with separation anxiety. Yours, that is—the cat is just glad to have you out of the house. But help is near at hand, you can add an animated kitty cat (or puppy or whatever) to the Dynamic Island on the iPhone 14 Pro.

Olde Worlde Animation
DRD103: February 23, 2022

Ever notice that in olde worlde animation (long, long before Pixar and the like) that there were major parts of the animated scene which were just static images over which a few animated elements were projected? That’s because it was prohibitively expensive to do anything other than that. Animation was a completely analogue process consisting of painted cels each of which was lovingly created by a real human being. Turns out that while we’re not likely to return to painted cels any time soon (sadly?) the idea of statically projecting portions of an animated scene for efficiency’s sake is an old idea that’s new again. To wit Static Outputs as described by Justin Collins.

Psychology for App Creators
DRD111: July 12, 2022

I found this on Twitter last week and I truly think these 15 visuals can be specifically applied to many situations, and not just to life in general. For instance…when creating apps.

RubyMotion 8.8
DRD122: December 14, 2022

What with Lori’s recent bout of COVID and her attendance at RubyConf, it’s forgivable that the yellow sticky note with RubyMotion 8.8 released! scratched on it somehow got ‘misplaced’. We’ll take responsibility for that. But in any event, it was. Released, that is.

Finite Element Motorcycle
DRD110: June 29, 2022

We’re going to sum up the first [Discord] thread we selected with three things: it’s a discussion about 1) finite element analysis 🤯 which was kicked off by 2) a PhD in aerospace 🤯 with a specialty in 3) computational fluid dynamics 🤯. Must make developing ‘Tinder but for cats’ seem a little lame by comparison, no?</li>

A Typical Day...
DRD116: September 21, 2022

…for a senior software engineer. You’ll either laugh because it’s true or cry—also because it’s true. Click the image for the punchline.

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“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” — Søren Kierkegaard (1813—1841)