Author Archives: Robin Johnson

About Robin Johnson

SendGrid Devangelist. London based polyglot hacker, mainly playing with Golang and Ruby. Musical Hacker, Hardware hacker, Hackathon lover, API abuser and NoSQL user.

Robin Johnson on Twitter

Articles Posted by Robin


How I Value Open Source (Part 1)

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This article is a personal look at Open Source, and how I value it. Part 2 will be a deeper dive into Open Source. Its true values, success stories, horror stories, licenses, and much more. Make sure you come back to read that one! I gave a talk last week at WXG 2014 on “The Value of Open Source.” This topic is something near and dear to all of our hearts here at SendGrid, and was definitely an eye opener for me; revealing a lack of Open Source uptake in the developer community. Around 1/3 of my audience didn’t embrace Open Source

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Young Rewired State & Code on the Road

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“It was a sea of Blue SendGrid T-Shirts. Everywhere I looked, I saw SendGrid! You guys rock!” My first answer when asked the question “What do Developer Evangelists do?” is always: We empower and nurture developers. In previous talks I’ve given and articles I’ve written, I’ve described how teaching, mentoring, empowering, and nurturing are the most important parts of my job, and there’s no age limit to which this help is confined. In the many hackathons I (and the rest of the Developer Evangelist team) travel to, I see developers of all ages and I’m never more impressed, and quite

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Intro to Golang

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An Introduction to the Go Programming Language (And Why I Love It) If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll no doubt know that I’m a huge fan of Go. You may have read my endless stream of Tweets ogling its brilliance, complaining about its few pitfalls, and bathing in the sweet, sweet light that is the over-indulgent default package set. But why? Why am I constantly marveling over this language, and frequently choosing it above others? I hope to clear that point up in this blog, introduce you to Golang, its wonders, its pitfalls, and introduce you to how SendGrid is

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What is NoSQL? Four Things, Actually

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I’m almost certain the majority of you will have heard the term “NoSQL.” I’m sure many of you know exactly what it means, and some of you already use it in production! But for those who are unfamiliar–what is NoSQL? This is an overview of the many different options across four types of NoSQL databases. NoSQL is a Database? Yes, it is! But you knew that already, right? In the Database world, we have almost always been accustomed to a type of database known as a relational database. These include the very common MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite and MSSQL. In the

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Build a Scheduled News Reader with Golang, Reddit and SendGrid

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I have too many good things to say about Go. I absolutely love the language. I could write a full article just on how much I love it and why. Instead, I’ll use Go to help you learn more about Go. Very meta. Luckily, I am not the only person on our Developer Relations team that loves Go. Yamil is a keen Gopher, and has already written a basic Golang wrapper for the SendGrid API. But especially since the engineering team is adopting Go, we need more examples. As the title states, we will be building a Scheduled News Reader

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How to Survive as a Developer Evangelist

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If you’re here, you already know (roughly) what a developer evangelist is. You know that we’re Globetrotters, Hackers, Hustlers, Teachers, Mentors and Frequent-Flyer Mile Collectors. You have an idea of what a developer evangelist does. If you’re interested in becoming a developer evangelist, good on you. It’s the best job in the world; it truly is. HOWEVER, as you’re sure to find out, it is exhausting. In this post, I’m hoping to help minimise that exhaustion, and help you to avoid the dreaded burn-out. I’m recently back from Paris. I was there for Music Hackday (one of my favourite events),

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Selfies With Buscemeyes Using Inbound Email

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My favourite part of SendGrid is the Parse Webhook for incoming email. The webhook posts new emails right to your server. Since it includes attachments, I often show that off at hackathons. I usually share a classic use case: the expense application that needs to get images of receipts. That’s perfect for the Parse Webhook. But then I also like to have a little fun. That’s when I show the audience “Selfies with Buscemeyes.” Getting Steve Buscemeyed The idea behind this hack came from a rather funny Tumblr blog of women Photoshopped to have the eyes of actor Steve Buscemi.

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