• Continual learning and improving quality

    The bio that is on my GitHub and Sessionize profiles (amongst others) includes the following sentence:

    "I have a passion for continual learning and improving quality, and enjoy being in and creating environments where these happen."

    This isn’t just a throw-away line. I really do like being in that kind of place, but let’s dig a bit deeper:

    • I want to have a positive impact, leave things better than I found them.
    • Looks for ways to keep my skills current by learning from others and sharing what I’ve learned. Always be looking for better ways of doing things.
    • Be around people that challenge me - people with diverse opinions, experiences, ages, backgrounds.
    • Aiming to do things sustainably - trying to find the right balance between work and non-work.
    • Speak up for those that can’t (or don’t feel they are able to) speak for themselves. Looking for ways to use my position and privileges to lift others up.
    • Have a laugh. If you’ve ever had anything to do with me, you’ll almost certainly have experienced my sense of humour!

    These could be at work, at a user group, at a conference, in an online meeting, or a virtual community.

    Do I do these things all the time? No, sadly not!

    These are aspirational - they’re the things I’m aiming for. I’m not perfect, and I fail a lot. I hope I learn from my mistakes, and I hoping I’m heading in the right direction.

  • Speaking at DDD UK

    DDD UK Logo

    I just found out that my talk ‘Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger Builds’ has been accepted for Developer! Developer! Developer! Day in the United Kingdom on Saturday 12th December. I won’t be flying to the other side of the world, but rather this year the UK’s premier free developer conference is being run virtually.

    Given the time zone difference, I’ll be staying up into the early hours of Sunday morning to present my talk (12.30am my time, so manageable).

    They’re running 7 tracks of content, and given it’s virtual then everyone is invited to register and attend.

    See you there!

  • The case of the disappearing 'Debug' CodeLens in Visual Studio Code

    Or how to debug any Jest unit test in Visual Studio Code

    I’m trying to debug a TypeScript unit test which uses the Jest library. There’s a nice VS Code extension vs-jest that integrates with Jest and even adds CodeLens labels so you can click to debug a specific test. Except the debug label kept disappearing! It would show when I first loaded the folder in Code, but after the tests all ran then the label would go away. Even though the test is passing, I wanted to debug it so I could step through the code. What’s going on?

    Screenshot showing 'Debug' going away

    There’s some troubleshooting tips listed on the vscode-jest README. This gave me the hint that there are some config settings that can alter how the extension behaves. When I viewed my current settings.json, I saw this:

        "typescript.tsdk": "node_modules\\typescript\\lib",
        "eslint.packageManager": "yarn",
        "eslint.validate": [
            {"language": "typescript", "autoFix": true }
        "jest.debugCodeLens.showWhenTestStateIn": [

    That last setting caught my attention. Clicking inside that array and code completion offered two other values “pass” and “skip”.

        "jest.debugCodeLens.showWhenTestStateIn": [

    Adding those and hitting save, and then the ‘debug’ labels returned and stayed for all the tests!