a blog by Sara Farquharson

what i'm reading: September 6

Oh no friends, I found a huge cache of unread links in my inbox. On average I spend four to eight hours putting together these posts, much of it reading articles that I’ve collected throughout the week. Time to be ruthless about what I consider interesting enough to give my attention to!

Hoping to resume streaming code on Twitch soon. Sundays seems like a likely time slot, so long as I can reign in my article reading to something manageable.


  • Instead of reading tech stuff I read four historical romances by Jeannie Lin last Tuesday. I often have trouble with romances outside of Regencies, which I imprinted on as a teen, but one of my favourite historical romance authors Courtney Milan was promoting Lin’s Lotus Palace mysteries, a wuxia-inspired series set in Tang-dynasty China. It has all the delicious clothing details and elaborate etiquette rituals I want in a lighthearted read, and murder mysteries to boot. Sometimes a little thin, but fun!


  • Bringing the Web Up to Speed with WebAssembly is an introduction to Wasm that is maybe not quite a technical paper, but definitely not easy reading either. I’m glad I got through it, because I keep hearing about WebAssembly and wanting to know more about it, but I didn’t understand pretty much anything in section 3, and now I need a nap.


  • Jessie Frazelle’s column on the history of storage media contained a lot of factoids I didn’t know, including the existence of hand-woven rope memory in space?!

Performance engineering

Career moves

System architecture

Tools for developers

  • Katie Sylor-Miller wrote a piece about Bullet Journalling for software engineers which is very close to my own experience with BuJo. I will fall off it for weeks or months at a time, but find it easier to pick back up again than any other organizational system. When I’m on top of my BuJo I get so much more done!

  • Monica Powell has a quick explanation of how to add sparkle typing effects to VS Code using the Power Mode extension, which I had been craving but hadn’t taken the time to look up how to add custom animations. Now my code is 90% sparklier!

Short technical dives

Leading engineers


  • The other day I did a short tech talk about GraphQL (which was terrible but I’ll talk about that another time), and one of the questions was how authorization is handled. I didn’t have a ready answer but it seems to be…up to whoever’s writing the server? Dominic Couture’s post about how to enumerate paths to validate authorization logic indicates that this is a running security concern with GraphQL implementations.

  • I pretty much never feel like watching talks, so I’m definitely missing context by reading the slides from Stefan Edwards and Bobby Tonic’s presentation on vulnerabilities in Go but I still learned some tips! Mostly that I don’t understand anything about defer.