DHH, type safety, and community drama
David Heinemeier Hansson (known as DHH)—who is the creator of Ruby on Rails (among many other things)—approved a PR that removes Typescript from turbo framework.
This decision upset a lot of people, and created a big controversy. It even reached trolling inside the project’s issues/pull requests sections on GitHub. Many people, some of them never even heard about turbo, were really upset.
There are 3 lessons we can learn for all this.
Lesson one: caring less. Following DHH statement, many people ran to abandon types from their codebases. But like anyone, DHH is just a regular guy with his opinions. The fact that he is a known figure in the tech world—should not be a motivator for you to change your development preferences.
Lesson two: how to treat the community. Many people were upset, and rightfully so, because this change rendered their unmerged PRs—obsolete. I think we all need to remember that OSS depends on the community that maintains it, and this community deserves respect.
Lesson three: types are important. I disagree with DHH. Types, even at compile time, are extremely important. It’s a guarantee for maintainable, and correct code. To read more about it, checkout one of my older blog posts: It’s better to be (type)safe than sorry.
In the meantime, stay safe (pun intended) and enjoy the weekend.
Type safe code—is not the only form of writing you will have to do during your software engineering career. Many engineers, in order to grow, are required to write technical documents such as design reviews. And many struggle with technical writing.
If you struggle with technical writing, consider purchasing my latest e-book: Technical Writing for Software Engineers - A Handbook.