The professional life of an experienced developer is not all sunshine and roses

person walking alone down an empty road
person walking alone down an empty road
Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

I’ve been working for one of the largest software companies in the world for more than a decade. With several hats on my head, I’ve seen many aspects of the business, ranging from rapid cowboy development to impactful acquisitions of competitors and startups.

1. Meetings

Most developers I know love their jobs. They are honestly fond of development, writing code, creating software, and maintaining the infrastructure that’s required for being able to push their code out into the world.

This implies that they often need to focus on what they are doing. There must be a reason for the popularity of noise-canceling…

A step-by-step guide for creating both the React front-end and our own GraphQL server.

What we will be creating today!

Note: all files (server and front-end) can be found at GitLab.


In this article we will:

  • Create our own custom GraphQL server with pagination
  • Create a React front-end with an infinite-scroll component

I’ve seen several articles about infinite scrolling in React, but very few go into the details and neither do they explain how to create the GraphQL server (most of them use an existing server such as the GitHub GraphQL API).

Low-level APIs that hook into the styling and layout process of your browser’s rendering engine

Chart showing if Houdini is ready for different browsers
Chart showing if Houdini is ready for different browsers

Note: The source code for the demo discussed in the second half of this article can be found on GitLab.


As I mentioned in my recent article about canvas animation inside React components, I love HTML canvas. So I couldn’t be more excited to learn about the new CSS Houdini APIs when I was reading a short article about it on, by Stephen Fulghum.

The main reason for my excitement is that the Painting API makes it possible to create custom CSS images by drawing onto a PaintRenderingContext2D (which is pretty much an exact copy of the 2D context…

Easily authenticate users in your React applications by using the Firebase SDKs

Final result
Final result
What we will create today! Image by the author.

Authenticating users in your applications used to be quite challenging. It was a big security hazard and only the experts would dare to implement and maintain solutions. But nowadays, we don’t have to anymore. There are countless external Identity Providers using secure authentication protocols such as OAuth 2.0 and OpenID Connect that we can utilize without writing code ourselves — and more importantly, without storing user credentials ourselves.

Firebase, “a platform developed by Google for creating mobile and web applications,” has a tremendous amount of features and is impressive in that regard. …

A brief history of the progression of web development in the last few decades and how I experienced it as a young developer

Man looking at data
Man looking at data
Photo by Cottonbro on Pexels.

I remember the exact location where I connected to the internet for the first time with a dial-up connection as quite a young boy. It must have been around 1993 — the year in which HTML was initially released.

The internet was brand new.

There were only a handful of websites available in my language and I remember visiting the website of the largest soccer team in our country. I was amazed and realized that the content I was looking at was coming from somewhere else. …

To move towards the next level, let’s focus on certain areas

Man walking down snowy, dimly lit path
Man walking down snowy, dimly lit path
Photo by Domen Mirtič Dolenec on Pexels.

I’ve walked a long road to get where I’m at. For more than two decades, I’ve been writing code, working for small and huge clients, and I’ve done everything from debugging to leading teams.

Today, I would like to share with you what I think are key ingredients for becoming a competent JavaScript developer.

JavaScript is hot and booming. It has been for quite some time already, and it’s a solid choice if you’re currently deciding what to focus on. But it can be a bit overwhelming at the same time.

This article is meant to provide you with something…

With some CSS and a small collection of simple React components, you can easily customize responsive tables

Example of responsive tables
Example of responsive tables
What we will create today! Photo by the author.

Popular frameworks like Bootstrap and Semantic UI all have components that you can use to create responsive tables or grids. But there are downsides to using those solutions. First of all, they’ll force you into using these frameworks — or at least parts of them — in your applications, with all the overhead that’s caused by that.

Even more importantly, it’s not always easy to customize the behavior of those out-of-the-box components.

Today, I’ll show you that it’s not hard to create responsive tables from scratch. With a bit of CSS (Flexbox), some media queries, and a handful of very…

There are so many kinds of software developers on the work floor. Here are some fun descriptions for a few of them

Diverse people laughing together
Diverse people laughing together
Photo by Naassom Azevedo on Unsplash

After working for more than two decades in the IT industry, I’ve encountered many, many different colleagues. And in retrospect, I’m quite sure I’ve been several of the different types described below — throughout the years. Perhaps you’ll recognize yourself as well.

Let’s have a look!

Eager Junior

The fresh one. They have just finished their studies (or never started them in the first place) and are ready to rumble. They are full of energy and prepared to conquer the world in the upcoming weeks.

When they enter the room on their first day — you know something is going to happen…

Let’s understand how virtualization works

Example of virtualization
Example of virtualization
What we will create today! Photo by the author.

Many years ago, I was part of a development team that was creating a Flash application that had to render a lot of data. We struggled with rendering it as a list. Scrolling the list was sluggish, but I managed to come up with a solution.

Today, I’ll explain what I created back then in ActionScript 3.0. Needless to say, we will use JavaScript instead. We’ll create a pretty advanced demo and I’ll guide you through all the steps so you’ll get a solid understanding of the logic behind this very performant solution. Rendering millions of items (!) is no…

An overview of libraries and tools that I keep coming back to

A selection of workers’ tools on a table
A selection of workers’ tools on a table
Photo by Todd Quackenbush on Unsplash


As some of you might know by now, I’ve been a full-stack senior developer for over 20 years. I’m in the fortunate position of working for one of the largest software companies in the world.

Today, I’ll list eleven of my favorite tools and libraries for working on React applications. Most of these are tools that I stumbled upon once and have never quit using.

I consider the list below to be my personal toolbox. They’re listed in no particular order.

Let’s take a look!


The tiny package classnames is one of my favorites. It helps you to define dynamic…

Gerard van der Put

Full-stack lead developer for a large industry-leading tech company and enjoys writing about development in his spare time.

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