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Maggie's Room Posts

What I look for in code reviews?

Over the past few weeks, I was asked multiple times how do I do code reviews. At first, I was puzzled by the question. “What do you mean? I do them as everyone else does them. I just do it”. I didn’t realize I had a systematic approach until I verbalized it. Once I said it out loud, it became clear to me I DO in fact follow a pattern. So here it is, in case someone finds it useful. Is this reviewable at all? Before I spend time reviewing code, I will have a quick look to see if…

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Graduation Day

I graduated from university on this day 10 years ago. I’ve been an engineer for ten years. One-third of a lifetime. It’s a nice milestone. Ten years ago I was preparing a graduation party. That night at the party my friends will give me a Thriller record as the first record for my future vinyl collection. It’s only fair the song Beat It would become a signature song of my future career. Sometime during that day, someone will have taken this photo: The girl in the photo is smiling, but it’s a reserved smile. She is happy to have finished…

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Bittersweet Symphony

This day started with a nasty fight with my partner. Slamming the door shut and all the accompanying drama. It continued with my friend telling me he had a brain tumor. Finally, it ended with having a glass of wine in the sun with a dear friend. And we don’t get those often here (sunny days, not friends). This day overall? It was nothing special. Just a regular day in the life. Filled with happy, sad and hurtful moments alike. Somebody asked me the other day if I was happy. My answer was that I was perfectly unhappy. I used…

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The Story of Grandmother

Today my dad told me how neither my brother nor I cried a lot when grandma died. I was shocked at first, but giving it a second thought, I think it’s because grandma was largely a mystery to me. So today I decided to tell her story, the way it was told and retold to me. The story begins sometime during World War ||. The birthplace of my grandma, a small Mediterranean island, falls under Italian occupation. She and her family are forced to flee and are transferred to a refugee camp in Egypt. There she meets a young, wounded…

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Computer Science Barbie aka Fake It til You Make It

The best career advice I ever got was: Fake it ’til you make it. I don’t remember the name of the lady who said that, it was at an Amazon internal conference a few years back, but here is a public thank you to that amazing woman. My entire life I had felt like I wasn’t good enough. No matter how well I was doing in life, I always felt it wasn’t deserved. The fact that I was a woman in a man’s industry and working at some very hostile environments did not help that feeling. I realized that no matter…

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