Welcome to Niche Software, a MicroISV based in Wellington, New Zealand.

The primary goal of the site is as a host to my writing - mostly entries in my blog, but also including more detailed articles and the occasional highly opinionated editorial. A secondary, but still important, goal is to be a place to post some tools, utilities and toys that I have written. As I tend to develop applications that "scratch my own itch," most of these are fairly technical in nature. Please check out the license on any item you download - while many are free, some are not.

Fixing GitHub Authentication

Nov 28 2021 samaritan

Returning to a project that had lain fallow for several months, I found I was unable to push changes from my work in progress branch up to GitHub.

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Sharpen The Saw - August 2021

Jul 31 2021 sharpen-the-saw

In today’s post: An obsession with primitive types can be a problem; Ways to refactor to introduce semantic types; WSL now supports GUI apps and it’s wonderful; Lessons from Japanese martial arts; How to prepare to break a habit; Spam blogs; Why your sleep excuses are wrong; Morning habits and happiness; and Phil Haack’s most excellent CodeMania 2012 keynote.

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Gesticulation Driven Development (GDD)

Jul 24 2021 other-methodologies

Imagine this: While tackling a subtle bug in a complex application, you make a simple change that you think will address the issue. But when you run the tests, a whole bunch of seemingly unrelated tests start to fail. You reverse the change, and they pass again, so it’s most certainly your change causing the problem.

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Mandelbrot Screensaver

Mandelbrot Screensaver is a screensaver that automatically generates images from Mandelbrot fractal, generating a never ending display of fractal images on your screen.

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WordTutor

WordTutor, a tool for running interactive spelling drills: the easy way to improve your spelling.

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OOS Alarm

OOS Alarm is a repeating alarm clock which pops up regularly to remind you to appropriate breaks during your work each day.

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Becoming a Better Developer

In this talk I pass on some of the things I've learnt about being a better developer.

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Static Analysis for the Win

We all know that the earlier we find a bug, the cheaper it is to fix. Shouldn't we therefore be doing everything we can to identify bugs as early as possible?

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The Pragmatic Programmer

Unusually for a technical book published in 1999, The Pragmatic Programmer remains thoroughly relevant to the modern developer. I present a review of this book, looking at how it is relevant to the modern developer.

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Writing Maintainable Code

One core skill that every developer should cultivate is the ability to write Maintainable Code - code that can be easily understood.

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Geek Communication

In June 2014, presenting to the first cohort of the Enspiral Devacademy talking about the nature of "geeks" and how to communicate effectively with them.

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Unit Testing 101

A beginners introduction to unit testing, based on Roy Oscherove's book Art of Unit Testing. Presented to both Software Quality New Zealand and to Statistics New Zealand.

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