Software Engineering Unlocked

Finding fulfillment through humor in tech with Cassidy Williams

Episode Summary

In this episode, I talk with Cassidy Williams, a senior software engineer that works for the fully-remote company CodePen. CodePen is a social development environment for front-end designers and developers. We talk about: - working remote for a small startup - how to find fulfillment in your career and through side projects - how to port an application from one technology to another - how humor can make tech a more welcoming place - and how she interviewed for CodePen.

Episode Notes


To allow you to find interesting places here are the beginnings of some conversations:

We start with how she found herself working remote for CodePen. (1:35)

How it is for Cassidy to working remotely for CodePen (3:15)

What is Cassidy's responsibility at CodePen (6:11)

She is responsible for changing their web application from Ruby Rails and Redux to Apollo and GraphQL

Cassidy talks about how she interviewed with CodePen (9:40)

How the team learns a new technology together as a team (13:20)

CodePen's inclusive environment and women in tech (15:45)

Why does Cassidy spend time on making jokes and funny videos (19:50)

How does Cassidy approach problems? (24:15)

How do they communicate in a remote team? (27:00)

Do they use Code Reviews at CodePen? (29:35)

Cassidy explains that they also invest now more into testing (31:30)

How are decisions done at CodePen? Who decides which features are delivered? (32:15)

Cassidy talks about how they covert CodPen to a more consolidated state using React and Appollo (38:15)

We talk about if you should re-write your code from scratch? (44:15)

CodePen is rewritten piece by piece, reminding Michaela about how Slack UI was modernized.

Now we talk about Cassidy's side projects and how she integrates that into her life (45:50)

Why she isn't a developer evangelist anymore (46:30)

What is up with Cassidy and her keyboards? (48:45)

Cassidy's advice for others on side projects: figure out why you do that (51)

A song that stuck with her and has some solid career advise (52:30)


The day is short.
The night is long.
Why do we work so hard, to get what we don't even want?

(From the song: The Day Is Short - Jearlyn Steele)

Career advice: You should know what you like and what you dislike (55:00)

Rebecca Gracia: When you build your personal career or your personal brand, it's just as important to know what you like as it is what you dislike.