I've been a fan of the Software Engineering Daily podcast for several years. When I learned that the creator, Jeff Meyerson, was releasing a book and it was just $0.99 on Kindle I couldn't pass it up. That book was Move Fast: How Facebook Builds Software.
In general, I liked the book. Short, to the point, and pretty well written. The book could do with one less mention of how HTML5 wasn't enough for Facebook. Here are a few ideas from the book that I liked:
- "From its early days, Google has had more of an air of “computer science,” an academic bent that emphasizes proofs, correctness, and seriousness. Facebook engineers are self-deprecating hackers who just want to build cool stuff. Facebook engineers are comfortable with the fact that sometimes things break, and sometimes mistakes are made"
- "Tom [a notable engineering manager at FB] believes that engineers should be spending 75 percent of their time at work on things that they are passionate about, because engineers do their best work when they are creatively satisfied."
- Bootcamp is FB's on boarding process. Fix real bugs on day one, find your team after several weeks.
- "At Facebook, nobody forces an engineer to join a team. The managers who can’t sell their projects end up with bad teams and have trouble succeeding. This causes bad managers to get weeded out quickly."
- "A clique will form around an influencer engineer. Influencers can win over the hearts and minds of other engineers, single-handedly changing the technical direction of a company for better or worse."
- Push Karma - "a four-star rating system that tracked how responsible individual developers were in their management of software releases"
- "Every engineering organization needs to decide how much time they’re going to spend cutting down the trees and how much time they’re going to spend sharpening their saws. Facebook had spent many years cutting down trees, and now it was time to sharpen their saws."
- "When you work at Facebook, your work identity is kept seamlessly consistent across every tool, from video conferencing to code review. The uniformly integrated toolset makes the experience of being a Facebook employee totally unique. "
- "Facebook invests so heavily in its infrastructure that most product engineers feel like they have effectively infinite resources. As they push the bounds of those resources, the infrastructure engineers respond by improving low-level abstractions such as compilers, databases, and networking protocols."