Dylan Roy
Engineer & Side Project Junkie sharing what I am working on so readers like you can benefit from my experiences. Subscribe here for even more (dylanroy.com)

Building Your Python Robot Fleet

An Automation With Only Two Python Libraries

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Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

Backstory

Over the past couple of years I had seen a number of compilation meme videos where they showed political figures repeating words or phrases or have contradicted themselves. On top of that there’s been instances such as YouTubers click-baiting their video where it would take me a significant amount of time to search for this reference.

Recently a Python library called Youtube-DL was taken down from Github, after quickly being restored. …


An Exploration Into Papers With Code

Breathe New Life Into Your Photos With A 3D Ken Burns Effect

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Image by Author

Some Backstory

After looking through some photos from a recent camping trip that I had taken a couple of weeks ago. I decided to take some of my old vacation photos, and turn them into a slideshow with some Python. Don’t worry I undertook this endeavor with the understanding that Google Photos, and the Apple equivalent do this really well already. This was really just intended to feed my addiction to building out side projects.

When looking through the available options I stumbled across a paper with some code that would take your photos, and add a transition that applies a 3D Ken Burns Effect to your photos. The Ken Burns Effect gets the 3D aspect for free with video obviously, but is less compelling with photos due to that missing dimension. …


Hands-on Tutorials

Stop spending time manually tweaking misaligned arrows

A sample diagram built with the python library called Diagrams
A sample diagram built with the python library called Diagrams
Build with the code from the gist linked here.

Some Backstory

Earlier this week I stumbled across a Python library with a pretty compelling value proposition. This library is called Diagrams, and as its namesake states it creates diagrams. These diagrams that are produced are generally what I would create by clumsily pasting images into draw.io or Google Diagrams after which I would wasting hours aligning everything correctly. In addition to that exhausting process when I later needed to update these diagrams needing to lift and shift more than half of the components just for a few changes to the architecture. …


Four Key Metrics to Measure Your Team’s Performance

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Photo by Christina Morillo

If you manage one or more engineering teams like me you likely struggle with the following question. How can I help guide my team to continually improve? Recently I stumbled across some research from the DevOps Research and Assessment (DORA). This assessment has findings from its over six years of research into this topic.

Amongst its findings were a set of common characteristics that appeared in elite performing teams. When compared against the low performing teams it was discovered that these elite performing teams actually had some very measurable differences appear:

  • Execute 208 times as many code deployments
  • Maintain lead times, from commit to deploy, that are 106 times…


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Photo by Adil Alimbetov from Pexels

BUILDING A BRAND

10 Take Aways You Can Apply Too

Background

Earlier this last month I decided to start expanding how I would building out my personal brand. I wanted to expand past just delivering talks at conferences, and Meetups. My new target was to start expanding my exposure through distributing web content that would be relevant to peers in my field.

I have tried this in the past, but usually gave up as it required quite a bit of ongoing work. I figured that the only way that could something that I actually do in my free time every day. …


Hands-on Tutorials

A CI/CD Solution That Scales To Zero With Actions And Cloud Run

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Image by Author

Background

There’s a lot of overlap between the projects I work on in my own time, and when I am on the clock working with the team to develop solutions when it comes to two aspects. Due to my limited free time when developing on my own, and our team’s smaller size the solutions I will always favor are ones that are simple, and scale down to zero with no operational effort.

So when looking for a CI/CD solution that would support one of my favorite products that Google Cloud Platform (GCP) offers called Cloud Run I wanted to take a look at Github Actions. …


Hands-on Tutorials

Showcase Your Skills Through Automating Your Profile Readme

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Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

Background

Lately, I have been seeing an increasing number of developers on Github with a profile level README.md, and I wanted to create the same thing. I saw this as another opportunity to communicate what I am about. I also feel like it’s a great place to funnel a technical audience towards things that are important to me, which right now are these articles that I have been working on over these past few weeks. Also, if you as a reader are currently looking increase your authority amongst your peers, clients or potential employer this could be yet another opportunity to impress. …


Find A Song Just By Humming the Melody

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Photo by Mohammad Metri on Unsplash

Google has just released a product this last week that actually will likely become something that I use frequently. There’s been a number of instances where I have had a song melody stuck in my head, but no way to recall the lyrics where sadly Shazam wouldn’t just wouldn’t cut it to discover the song that I am trying to recall. This is where Google’s new Hum to Search functionality comes into play.

Google has taken their music identification app even further than being able to identify a song from a recording. They have been able to advance past the Shazam like identification of a song by providing their machine learning model with a variety of audio sources, everyday people singing, whistling or humming, and not just studio recordings that would only allow the identification of a song playing on the radio. …


Hands-on Tutorials

In Less Than 10 Lines Of Python — Preserving The History of Notable CEOs

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Photo by Kevin Ku from Pexels

Background

A couple days ago stumbled across an article about the concept the author coined “git scraping”. The most compelling aspect of this process was that I, as developer, don’t have to maintain servers or a large codebase to achieve an up-to-date versioned dataset. I could actually take advantage of the version control capabilities of git, and Actions from Github. This process was so interesting to me that I had to try it for myself. So here is my journey documented so that you can do the same for your own datasets.

Finding My Dataset

To fully take advantage of git versioning for my dataset I wanted to look for a dataset where there would be added value in seeing the changes to it over time. I also didn’t want these changes to be frequent so that the commits would be sparse so that the individual updates are easier to identify for this exercise. …


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I have a few goals I want to accomplish in the near future. Actually, I have more than a few 😅. Like many others I have an ever growing list of side project ideas that I want to explore, books I want to read, and blog posts that I want to attempt to write.

Being a competitive person I believe that I have found a way to make this backlog of goals dwindle, and achieve these goals before I miss out on being able to achieve these objectives before I die. …

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