/ About 4 min reading time

I watched

I took my son to the cinema to see Detective Pikachu. I was never into Pokemon as a kid (although I remember quite enjoying the cartoons as a teenager), and I’ve never got into the many video games that have been released since. I did, however, enjoy a few card battles with my boy when he got into collecting a few years ago, and the Pokemon Go iOS app proved a great bonding opportunity. What I’m saying was that I was familiar with the concept and the characters of Pokemon before stepping into the cinema. Beyond that I had no idea what to expect. Turns out it’s brilliantly funny. So cleverly written and the lead characters hilariously portrayed by Justice Smith (The Get Down) and Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool). It’s a very funny film. I haven’t lol’d so much in a cinema for a long time.

Somehow I’d never seen John Wick before. The Boy was showing interest prior to the third chapter getting a theatrical release. He ended up watching 1&2 back to back in the day then going to the pictures with his friends that night to see 3. He didn’t mind rewatching though, so we ordered a pizza at the weekend and settled in for some comic book violence and rip-roaring action.

I listened

My brother sent me a link last week to a radio play on the BBC Sounds app. Ladhood - by Liam Williams is an autobiographical telling of growing up in Garforth. Williams is about 8 years younger than me and was brought up a massive 22 miles away, but our experiences seem to map very closely. This funny, erudite retelling of his teenage journey and beyond had me chirping little laughs as the author’s clever phrasing and fourth-wall-breaking nods twanged at my nostalgia strings.

Playing music

I’m on the bill for a charity gig in early August; a fundraiser for Cancer Research. I’ve got a 30 minute set in the early evening and this will be my first ‘real’ solo gig. I’ve played in bands sporadically for years but it’s only recently with this year’s open mic efforts, where I’ve been playing 15 minutes max, that I’ve been putting it out on my own. I’m pretty nervous about this, especially as the majority of the songs I play are about death, suicide or great loss. I might need to add some livelier numbers to my repertoire.

At the moment I’m playing covers. They’re pretty obscure covers as far as a provincial English audience is concerned (The Avett Brothers, Tom T Hall, Gregory Alan Isakov, Jason Isbel, etc) so it’s not like I’m looking for a singalong. I’d like to write some originals like I did when I was a teenager. I keep trying to write but never really get beyond an idea, or if I’m lucky, a verse or a chorus. When I was a teenager I had angst. Now I’m a happily married middle-class white man who drinks with moderation. This is obviously a lovely position to be in but these tunes would come a bit easier if only I had a little heartbreak or if I drank bourbon straight from the bottle.

Hiring

At Logikcull we’re currently recruiting Frontend Engineers (Come and work with me!) and I’m quite involved in the process. One of the tools we’ve been using in the early stages is CodeSignal which lets us set a small coding challenge for applicants. Most mornings for the last few weeks I’ve been logging into CodeSignal and reviewing candidates’ challenges and it’s been absolutely fascinating. Being able to watch a playback of how somebody completed the test gives a real insight into how somebody thinks. This has been backed up by my 1:1 interviews with those who got through to the next stage, where we’ve had great discussions about code semantics, accessibility and technology in general.

It’s not a case of looking for perfection at this stage in the process - just a matter of sniffing out bad code smells and making a call on whether we’d like to talk in person.

It’s been a learning experience for me, not only because I’ve never been this involved in hiring before, but also because I’ve got to see how other people work - how many different approaches can be taken to complete the same goal. In the same way that I love to see other people’s desk setups, their iPhone home screens and their .dotfiles, watching how somebody writes their code is fascinating, even if at times it’s a little infuriating.

But we haven’t found the right person for the job yet, so if you’re a Frontend Engineer who loves being a Frontend Engineer, drop us a line. Logikcull - Frontend Engineer.

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