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Giving 100% – Working Towards Shared Goals with Ryan Bahan

Relicans host, Aaron Bassett, talks to Software Dev at Shopify and Turing School alum, Ryan Bahan about being comfortable being uncomfortable while figuring out what error messages mean, the application process when applying to a bootcamp and belonging to a post-pandemic remote cohort, and making important (& fun!) design decisions.

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Jonan Scheffler: Hello and welcome to Polyglot, proudly brought to you by New Relic's developer relations team, The Relicans. Polyglot is about software design. It's about looking beyond languages to the patterns and methods that we as developers use to do our best work. You can join us every week to hear from developers who have stories to share about what has worked for them and may have some opinions about how best to write quality software. We may not always agree, but we are certainly going to have fun, and we will always do our best to level up together. You can find the show notes for this episode and all of The Relicans podcasts on Thank you so much for joining us. Enjoy the show.

Aaron Bassett: Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of the Polyglot Podcast. I am your host, Aaron Bassett. I am a Principal Developer Relations Engineer here at New Relic. And I am joined on the show today by Ryan. Ryan is a Front-End Dev at Shopify. He is also a graduate of the Turing School of Software and Design. As we've covered a few times, I think on the show before; we're all big fans of bootcamps here. So I'm sure we will have a lot to talk about there. Welcome to the show, Ryan. Good to meet you.

Ryan Bahan: Yeah, thanks so much for having me. It's great to be here.

Aaron: No, no, thank you for coming on the show. It's always fun to meet a graduate from Turing School. I know I mentioned in our lead-up conversations that we have two of them currently on my team here at New Relic. Our Director of Developer Relations, Jonan, is a graduate as is one of our associates, Danny. Do you happen to know Danny? I don't when it was you graduated. [laughs]

Ryan: Yeah, we've chatted a couple of times. I don't think we've ever met in person because my cohort was post-pandemic, so more so just acquaintances, but he's a great dude.

Aaron: So you're saying your cohort was post-pandemic. So it was all virtual then, or?

Ryan: So we were square in the middle. So Turing has four modules for people who don't know. I did my first two in person, moved to Denver from Burlington, Vermont. And then yeah, the world got a little bit crazy. And we heard Mod 3 is going to be remote. And we're like, okay. This is when there were still thoughts of like, this will maybe be over soon and then not remote, and now it's permanently remote. But I think it's awesome to see that so many more people can be positively impacted by Turing now, and that opportunity is not relegated to Denver.

Aaron: Yeah, it was one of those things. When the whole pandemic was starting, I remember my partner and I were both booked to talk at a conference in Italy in May. And we were like; it will be fine. It will all blow over by May, not a problem. Little did we know.

So yeah, I'm sorry I jumped straight into the whole Turing stuff there. People on the podcast may not know what Turing is. Do you want to give them just a quick outline of what the bootcamp is all about?

Ryan: Yeah, for sure. Turing is a seven-month program to transition into software development. There are two sections, the frontend and the backend section, independent of one another. So you do seven months in either or. Backend is focused primarily on Ruby on Rails development. Frontend is focused on HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and then moves into React in the later modules. And then, by the end, there's quite a bit more collaboration between the cohorts. And yeah, it was a wonderful, wonderful program to learn the foundations of software development.

Aaron: You already were kind of in programming a little bit before you started at Turing.

Ryan: Yeah, I was a little bit tech adjacent for a lot of my life, I guess. I came from a very DIY background. I grew up skateboarding and got really into filming when that was still on MiniDV, and I had to save up money for tapes.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: And then got into editing and music production that way. And by the time I graduated college, I was thinking I was going to be a college professor but then got offered my first adjunct role, and I couldn't afford to pay back my student loans. So I was like, okay, something else needs to be done here and got into building CMS-based websites. So I was always touching the outskirts of development.

After a couple of years of working in an agency and doing PHP-related stuff a little bit but never really knowing what the heck I was doing, I finally took the dive and decided it was time to actually learn what some of those words meant.

Aaron: [laughs] Was it beneficial to have that background before you started Turing, or did you have bad habits you had to unlearn?

Ryan: Probably a little bit of both. I think it was definitely beneficial in the sense that once I started doing front-end development, quote, unquote, "for real," I had already experienced a lot of failure points. I think that was maybe the most important one is just being comfortable when everything breaks and falls apart and you have no idea what's going on. [laughs] So having that background and like, what does this error message even mean at all? And being comfortable being uncomfortable, I think, was probably the main benefit.

Aaron: Yeah, it's one of the things that does come with experience as well in programming, especially around debugging and when things are going wrong. My partner is also a bootcamp graduate. She went to Ada in Seattle, so second career dev, was a teacher for a very long time before getting into tech. And whenever she has a bug or is trying to debug something or trying to figure out what's going wrong, she was like, "How do you know where to look, or how do you know that it was going to be this?"

And it's like, "Because I have broken my code in this way many, many times before." [laughs] It is the experience of going through that, as you said, that kind of turmoil and problem solving a lot that it's like, okay, no panic, we can solve this. We can figure out what's going on. And you were working in agencies before, did you say?

Ryan: Yeah, so I was freelancing for quite a bit after I graduated college. I had a consistent gig producing a podcast for a startup space. And then I was doing the website thing and turned 26, and no longer had the option to be on my parent's insurance. So I was like, I need a real job now and was lucky enough to get hired by an agency doing mostly non-profit fundraising.

So it was like Drupal sites and lots and lots of email marketing, and I did that for about three years. And that's where I got hired as a content strategist but ended up wearing many hats and doing a lot of templated emails and, yeah, CMS stuff. So that was my more formal intro to the world of tech.

And yeah, I got unfortunately laid off when we lost a big client and was looking for marketing-related jobs and had a couple of friends suggest just doing development full time. And I brushed it off for quite a bit, actually, because I was like, I'm not, I don't know, I just never saw myself as a developer, which is kind of so silly in hindsight.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: But yeah, it just didn't seem like it was something I'd be good at at the time, or I don't know what it was. I had that I'm not good at math type of outlook because I thought that's what development was. And I got the push to apply to Turing, and I was like, all right, I'll take the qualification test and see what happens, and it went super well. And yeah, I decided to make the move out, and it was awesome. It really changed my life and changed the way that I looked at what I could be capable of doing.

Aaron: That's wonderful. So for people who are thinking about going to a bootcamp or a code school, what was the actual application process like?

Ryan: I'm trying to recall this. I think it was a lot of logic questions so similar to when you take the bar from what I've heard of just logic-based problem-solving. And then there's like a culture interview type thing. I guess it does match the tech interview, and there's a tactical challenge and a culture challenge. Who would have thought? Almost unintentional, one might say. And then there's a culture fit. And that was pretty much the process when I had applied. This was a couple of years ago, so it might have changed now.

But yeah, you talk with a couple of different people. They ask you why you want to get into it and do some problem-solving. And then you go into they call it Mod 0 or they did at the time. I think they still call it that, though, which is like a pre-course where after you've been accepted, before you really get into the meat of things, you make a GitHub account, learn a little bit about Git and some command line basics and then dive right in for seven months.

Aaron: [laughs] You're saying it's Ruby. So how was that transition for you from doing Drupal, WordPress, and PHP work to making the switch to Ruby?

Ryan: So I did the front-end program. So I was out doing JavaScript most of the time. But I didn't know enough about PHP, or we were using a lot of Twig at the time for templating stuff. We literally, like me and another content strategist, had a text file full of snippets. And we would just paste stuff together and then move it around until it looked right in the browser.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: And then every now and then, someone would be like, "Actually, I'm on Outlook," and we'd hit up the tech lead, and he'd give us like the Outlook code snippet to fix things in that client. So it was pretty hacky. I guess I had one overall big bad habit rather than a lot of them. So it was lucky that I felt like I got to learn things from scratch with a little bit of CSS understanding.

Aaron: So it was mostly just like front-end scripting then.

Ryan: Mm-hmm.

Aaron: So you have to make the choice between whether you want to focus on backend or frontend whenever you join Turing.

Ryan: Mm-hmm. That was actually a pretty difficult choice for me. I was stressing a lot. And it's unfortunate that people think this way, but I was thinking this way as well, like, well, backend is probably like for real developers and frontend is less real for some reason.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: I talked to a lot of alumni, and I talked with teachers. And they basically said, "You're going to be able to get a job no matter which one you do. You're going to eventually learn both if you're interested in it. And your skills in learning one language will transfer pretty well. So do what you enjoy more." And that's what I did.

Aaron: That's pretty good advice.

Ryan: I tried both out, and I did really come to like both. But I thought that my experience and what I'd done in the past and enjoyed doing lended itself more to frontend, so sort of hit the ground running with that.

Aaron: [laughs] I cut my teeth in agencies during the Netscape and Internet Explorer browser war days. So I'm terrified of the frontend now. And I much more like running my code on a server that I control rather than somebody else's browser. [laughs] Things are better these days.

I started off as a front-end developer and then made the switch to backend because I perceived it as being more straightforward. I think that's pretty common that people will look at the one that they don't do and say, "Oh, yeah, that one looks more straightforward. I should do that one." [laughs]

Ryan: Yeah, I remember. It was pretty funny. Once you get towards the latter end of the program and you're collaborating more with the other side of the stack, it was such an odd feeling looking at Rails and being like, "Wait, you run a command and get all of that for free?"

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: And then the Rails people being like, "What? It's just JavaScript in the wild. This is pure chaos," which actually having done a lot of TypeScript, now I do look back at Vanilla JavaScript like it is just the Wild West of code.

Aaron: [laughs] I'm still interested about that choice when people are coming in. You obviously had a little bit of experience previously. So you knew a little bit about programming. And it sounds like you had some great mentors who were able to help you make that decision. But it just seems like it is such a significant choice to put on people who are coming in who may not really know anything about programming at all. What's the level of knowledge of the average person joining somewhere like Turing?

Ryan: I would say probably pretty low. There's definitely diversity there. But I think most people have some technological literacy. But myself and a couple of others were definitely in the minority of people who had maybe written a couple of lines of code beforehand. So they do try coding sessions where you get to do a little bit of frontend and a little bit of backend and see which one you like more.

Most people seem pretty happy with their decision, in my experience. So there are a handful of people who have switched in the early stages or in the middle, but Mod 0 also gives you a chance to get your hands on a keyboard and see are you having more fun messing around with command line stuff, or is making something on a browser change really exciting you right now?

Aaron: [laughs] I know at least for some of the bootcamps or the code schools, they really insist that for certain programs that you can't have any background. Everybody's coming in at the same kind of level. So you don't have people who are racing ahead, or people feeling they're getting left behind. And I think that's a really interesting part of it as well.

My partner has talked about it often that you would get people in class who their husband or their wife or somebody at home would be a programmer. And they were always so...jealous is not the right term but envious of the fact they had somebody at home they could go home and talk programming to. Did you have somebody like that in your life outside of the Turing School that you could talk tech with?

Ryan: That's a good question. My partner is a product manager, so talking tech realm and culture. And she has helped me in a number of ways, and that support has been amazing. I had a couple of friends of friends who were developers, so a little bit. But it was mostly our cohort. Turing actually gets a lot of their incoming students from being partners of graduates because you go and you get a tech job, and you love it. And then you're like, "Hey, you should just do this now."

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: So there were a couple of developer partners in our cohort. But really, they told us at the very beginning your cohorts relationship with one another is really going to define how successful you all are and lifting the people up around you, providing support, listening, especially because there are so many peaks and troughs in the journey of learning software development that you might be crushing it on learning the basics of HTML and then learning array methods is just really messing you up.

And it can be really nice if you were helping other people previously to get some help back and pass the knowledge and support around. So I was very lucky to have an awesome cohort of people. And we did as much as we could to lift one another up from the learning journey to the job hunt journey as well.

Aaron: That's great. Was it impacted at all by the fact that you did have to go partially online? Does that have an impact on the cohesion as a cohort?

Ryan: I think it was tough for us because it was the beginning of the pandemic. It was the first shot at doing this stuff remotely. So there definitely was a bit of a morale hit, especially because the job market was not good for those couple of months. But yeah, I think that we all did the best we could with the cards we were dealt, as did Turing, and we got through it.

Aaron: Great. And indeed, you're now a front-end developer at Shopify.

Ryan: Yes. I managed to trick them into letting me in. [laughter]

Aaron: Did you come straight from Turing into Shopify? What was that journey like?

Ryan: So I graduated Turing in June 2020. It was not an easy market to be in. I basically did a couple of months of contracting for a small agency working in React. We were basically working on like a DoorDash clone for beaches because, again, in Florida, people were still going to beaches at this time.

Aaron: Oh, we never stopped in Florida. Like, it never stopped. It didn't even pause. As somebody from Europe, this being my first introduction to living in the U.S., being in Florida during this time has been interesting is the best way I can describe it. [laughter]

Ryan: Yeah, that is a hard entry point into the United States.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: But yeah, I did that for a couple of months and then got hired at Shopify in September 2020, so about three months out of Turing.

Aaron: That's really good going, as you said, especially that time with everything that was going on. So you moved to go to Turing or at least for part of the time. I know some of the schools make the attendees write letters to their loved ones, basically going, "Hey, you're not going to see me much for the next 16 weeks." Did you have to do anything like that with it, or how did that impact your personal relationships?

Ryan: I've never heard of the letters thing. That seems intense. I didn't have to do anything like that. Me and my partner were both, I think, over living in Vermont at the time. She's from Vermont; I'm from Connecticut, so still New England. But the winters there were getting pretty exhausting to deal with. And so, I think we were excited about moving to Denver.

We had been prepared. We had a couple of friends who graduated Turing. So they were like, "It's going to be a lot." I think they were saying between 60 and 75 hours a week easily to do things for seven months. So we had prepared for that. It was tough being away from my partner. And I had already been away from most of my family when I moved to Vermont, so trying to keep in touch on the weekends. But it definitely is a commitment, certainly.

Aaron: The change of tide in your direction and in your career. And thanks to Shopify now, it seems like it's a commitment that was worth doing.

Ryan: Yeah. I think it's probably the best decision I've ever made in my entire life, which at some points was a lower bar than others to reach.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: I don't know the best way to say this, but I guess I considered myself sort of like a B-plus person for a long time of like; I never gave 100% into things and always just finagled my way into doing decently. And I came to realize that it was completely out of just fear of failing. And Turing was the first time that I moved across the country. I had a fixed amount of money that was whittling away as time went on. I really didn't have any sort of backup plan. It was just like, this needs to work.

And it was the first time I really gave 100% into something. And it really taught me so much about myself and what I was capable of, and what other people were capable of. And it was just really inspiring to see so many people working towards a shared goal and being fully invested in something. And yeah, I love programming. It's so much fun being able to build things for people. And it's been an amazing journey certainly.

Aaron: Yeah, definitely something almost kind of magical about being able to conjure something out of essentially nothing and getting it in front of other people. So with your cohort then, I know you mentioned they were really supportive throughout the actual course itself but then also in the job hunt and things afterwards. Do you all still keep in touch, or have people grown apart as they've moved on to their development roles? What's the alumni network like?

Ryan: I think that when we were in person, that was sort of the closest we could be. One of my best friends I met in the program, and we talk all the time and hang out all the time. And there are a couple of people that I'm still very, very close with. I think as we've all moved states and jobs, we've all kept in touch. It's like graduating college or high school, where it splinters a bit. Like, you're not the one unit, but you get in touch and build the subgroups of people, and then those subgroups meet up every now and then.

Overall, the alumni network is super strong. People are chatting all the time. And the job network is really amazing to be a part of. So that was actually one of the reasons I chose Turing as well and chose to do that program because I had heard such great things about the alumni network and the people you get to meet and the opportunities present there.

Aaron: So we've talked a fair bit about Turing. So let's talk a little bit about what you've been doing at Shopify. You are a front-end developer there. I think you mentioned you do a lot of work in TypeScript. Is that right?

Ryan: Yeah. So I spent the last year and a half working on Shopify Balance pretty much from the ground up, which actually released last week to general audience, which is super, super exciting. And it's basically our response to traditional banks. So now, if you're in the United States and you sign up for Shopify, you can have a business account and physical and virtual cards and be able to manage all of your money inside of Shopify and get insights and rewards.

Aaron: Wow.

Ryan: And same-day payouts and a bunch of awesome stuff that we're able to provide because we have the ecosystem with us. So it was really amazing to work on. I think it's something like over 60% of merchants are using their personal bank accounts to manage their funds. So being able to provide simple ways for them to like, make your taxes easier, make their lives easier, and hopefully make some more money along the way was an amazing journey.

Funnily enough, we finished that up and moved into developer experience. It's been like two and a half weeks on a new team. And I'm super excited to be focusing on the developer experience for our Shopify partners and third-party app developers now.

Aaron: So with that the right name of the product? Am I getting that right?

Ryan: Yep.

Aaron: So, what was your favorite part of that that you worked on then?

Ryan: Just, generally speaking, being able to basically work at a startup but inside of a well-funded company with a bunch of resources was pretty sweet because we got to move quickly, build things from scratch, and experiment with all this stuff. But we were still inside of a company that has a bunch of best-in-class tooling and support. To be more specific, I got to build the card designer. So when you get a physical card, you can put a name or a logo on it.

Aaron: Awesome.

Ryan: So I got to do an SVG project of building the actual card designer, which was my first deep dive into how images work on the web. And that was pretty interesting, and wild, and crazy to be a part of.

Aaron: I remember a few years, well, more than a few years ago now, and there was a Twitter account I think called @NeedADebitCard. When the banks first started launching the ability to customize your cards, you could get whatever you wanted printed on the cards. And people were then so proud of the card they had custom printed. They were taking photographs of them and posting them on their Twitter.

Ryan: Oh geez.

Aaron: And there was a Twitter account that would just retweet these photographs of people's debit cards [laughs] called; I think it was something like @NeedADebitCard or some like that. But yeah, hopefully, people are a little bit more sensible now.

Ryan: So funnily enough, we actually made a bunch of design decisions around that. And it's something that's much more popular now where all the card details are on the back of the card. So then people put their branding and custom stuff, whatever, on the front and can take pictures for the Gram or TikTok or wherever the youth are congregating these days.

Aaron: [laughs] See, I have a couple of cards that are that way where it's just all printed on the back on them, and it's nothing on the front or not like the embossed that you used to get. And I just thought it was because they were just going a little bit cheap and didn't want to pay for the different kind of printing. [laughs] But now I can see yeah, maybe it's a security feature if they want to show off their shiny front cards. So how is it're essentially working in a fintech startup then inside of Spotify.

Ryan: It was really interesting coming from not knowing much about how finance works at all to dig into the different flows. I think from a product and experience perspective, one of the most interesting and challenging parts was the amount of branching flows that can happen, especially during like, take, for example, signing up for the product.

I don't know how familiar you are with KYC verification. It's Know Your Customer, and it's basically protocols in place to verify someone's identity if they are who they say they are. And there are a number of reasons it could fail. And depending on the way that it fails, you may need to provide identity documents or just a little bit more information about yourself.

So with our signups, trying to think about how can we make this secure, prevent people's fraud risk from going up but also get people to sign up? Because if something fails on step one, most people are probably just going to go away and be like, "Well, I have a bank account, so whatever."

Aaron: [laughs] Yeah.

Ryan: So it was really, really interesting trying to think through the number of branches that any typical flow could have, especially once we got into suggesting people set up multi-factor auth. A lot of our part of the product was completely barricaded behind multi-factor auth just because of the risk involved. So yeah, getting the average person to commit to MFA is not an easy task. It was a lot of fun. It was a very unique challenge to be a part of.

Aaron: I know my banking app on my phone has on a couple of occasions made me do selfie videos while reading out certain phrases and holding my ID to verify who I am. Is that the kind of thing we're talking about or not quite that extreme? [laughs]

Ryan: So I don't believe we ever had to do anything that extreme. We got to a point for our release where I think it was like above 75% of people were able to just do the regular form and signup flow and then go through, which I think it's just your SSN that you need. But I think we did have some people that needed to submit a photo ID but never anything like video recording and speaking.

Aaron: So what you're telling me is the customer service agents on the chat version of my app were just having a good giggle on my behalf, really. [laughs]

Ryan: You never know.

Aaron: This is not an actual protocol that's being used in fintech. [laughs]

Ryan: Well, depending on what sentences they made you say, you may or may not be able to deduce whether or not they're having fun.

Aaron: Yeah, I'm not going to go Google them on YouTube in case it's...[laughs]I don't want to know that. I don't want to know if I'm a TikTok sensation. [laughs] So how is the change then from doing...was it just straight JavaScript at Turing? You're now on TypeScript. How has that been for you? Are you enjoying it more? I know you said it made JavaScript feel a bit like the Wild Wild West. What are the benefits you're seeing with TypeScript?

Ryan: Yeah. So we did React at Turing for a couple of months. And I was lucky enough that a lot of the stuff taught at Turing translated. Shopify is a well-known Ruby on Rails shop. They use React in the frontend. I think the big differences for me were TypeScript and GraphQL, both of which I've come to really, really love.

I mean, I think static typing has become such a powerful tool. Apollo has done a really fantastic job of leveraging the fact that you can print the shape of an entire app to do some really, really cool things with IntelliSense and auto-generating code and stuff. So it's been wonderful. And yeah, it is hard to imagine.

I do a bit of mentoring at Turing, and outside of that and looking at JavaScript and React projects, which I do think you should learn those things without TypeScript for a number of reasons, if not just to reduce the complexity of learning another thing. But yeah, looking at a React component, and you're like, how do you know those props are going to come in?

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: You just put them there and roll the dice. But yeah, it's been wonderful, and our environments at Shopify are really amazing. That's what made me fall in love with DX was coming from in a very short time span, being at a bootcamp where I had not set up a linter, so I'm still manually formatting my code, to the amount of lookahead and IntelliSense and things that just make your life easy. It was like; this should be everywhere. [laughs]

Aaron: Yeah, I do a lot of work in Python and in JavaScript, and I don't know what I would do without auto-formatting now. And I have to admit; I'm kind of one of those certainly older school people who was a bit of a hold out for a while on the auto-formatting. I was like, no, I've been formatting my code myself for the last two decades. I know how I like my code formatted. And these formatters don't format the exact way that I want.

You know what? They get it like 90% of the way there, and they save me so much time. It's like I can deal with a 10% that [laughs] they don't format exactly the way that I would want it to. I've been using Black, is the Python one, for so long now. I can't actually remember which bits of it I don't like. [laughter] My convictions obviously weren't that strongly held after all if I can't remember what they were now. It makes it so much easier to write, and also, it is so much easier to read other people's code as well.

Ryan: Yeah, for sure. For me personally, learning TypeScript really helped my other parallel learnings. I've done just a little bit of mobile and backend work, and going into Swift or Kotlin having similar sort of IntelliSense type features was just amazing. It's like, oh, perfect. It's all right here in front of me. And then, we use Sorbet at Shopify, which has similar functionality for Rails. So it's one of those things that it feels like as an industry, that's just there now for the better.

Aaron: Yeah, it definitely is coming along. I know there are, at least in Python, there are still a few projects, Django being one who's waiting for Black to hit version one. We said that once Black hits version one, then we would run Django through Black from that point onwards. Then Django, too, will be autoformatted, which I'm not sure if it has just happened or it's just about to happen. I'm not sure. We have a board meeting next week. I'm sure I'll find out then [laughs], or it happened weeks ago if you're listening to this podcast in the future.

It really is something that, for a while, there was a lot of pushback against, and it was a very small set of developers who were using these kinds of tools. And now it's like, yeah, I'm shocked if I come into a project that is not using some kind of autoformatter. And you can tell pretty quickly I feel as well.

Ryan: I think we're sort of in a renaissance moment of developer experience, and I'm super excited for it. I think for a long time, there might have been some underlying sense of if it's harder, it makes you smarter, which may or may not be true in certain situations.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: And it just feels like in more recent memory, Netlify and Vercel and some companies really made things so ridiculously ergonomic and easy to make and deploy apps. I think it makes us all better. We can understand what a good product looks and feels like better. We can be more inclusive to people at different stages of their journey and get people up and running much faster. So yeah, I'm absolutely all for it.

Aaron: Yeah, because there was a moment there where the complexity of the tooling had increased substantially. Getting started in programming was you had a text editor, and you wrote your HTML and CSS into a file and maybe a little bit of PHP. And you FTP-ed it up into the server, and it just worked. It ran, and you could see it in your browser, and all was good. And now I feel bad for people just starting it and looking at okay, well, all of your different transpilers and pre-compilers and version control.

And it seems like you need to learn a substantial number of things just to render a Hello World in the browser. So anything we can do to help with that kind of developer experience in the tooling and make it, so there's a lower barrier to entry again for people. Because obviously, it's going to be a lot more inclusive, bring a lot more people on board. Does that feed into your new team at Shopify, and what you're hoping to do there?

Ryan: Yeah, I think I'm still very new. So I will be probably not the best person in this moment to give the TLDR. But yeah, there are so many world-class people and Shopify partners building amazing extensions and apps and things like that. And I think as an org, we're looking for the best way to make all of that more ergonomic for them and to give them the tools have reduced barriers to entry and to build exactly what it is they want to build, where they want to build it, no matter where that is.

Aaron: That's great. The more people we can remove these barriers from and get involved in any of this, the more viewpoints and the better the products and services are going to become for all the rest of us as well. So this is in everybody's best interests, not to be gatekeeper-y about this kind of stuff and to try and make it as straightforward for people to get started as we can.

But that is us almost out of time. I've really enjoyed this conversation. I feel so deeply involved in the whole bootcamp and code schools despite never attending one myself [laughs] just because I hear my wife talking about it so much and friends and things at work. So it's always a pleasure to speak to someone who's gone through a different one as well than what my partner has.

So thank you for indulging me on that and talking about Turing with me. I just want to give you a few moments at the end here. Where can people find you online? What are you working on that you think people should go check out? If you got any kind of links you want me to drop in the podcast description?

Ryan: Yeah, for sure. It's been an absolute pleasure to be here. I am pretty much only on Twitter these days. You can find me at @ryan_bahan, also, Now that I've said that, I have to redo my site that's like two years old.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: So sort of making a forcing function there.

Aaron: [laughs]

Ryan: But yeah, Shopify is hiring. And selfishly, I want to bring as many people there as I can because I think it's an amazing org, and also selfishly, if you are a Shopify partner or you're interested in it or anything like that, please feel free to hit me up. If you're interested in getting into programming as well, I'd love to chat. So yeah, working on getting to know as many people as I can and learning about their experiences, and hopefully making Shopify a place that they want to either work for or work on top of.

Aaron: [laughs] I know they always have a big presence at the Ruby conferences, so hopefully, we'll get to meet in person at one of those in the near future. But yeah, I've had a blast chatting. Thank you so much for being on the show. For everybody else, this has been another episode of the Polyglot Podcast.

Jonan: Thank you so much for joining us. We really appreciate it. You can find the show notes for this episode along with all of the rest of The Relicans podcasts on In fact, most anything The Relicans get up to online will be on that site. We'll see you next week. Take care.

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