310 reputation
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location United Kingdom
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visits member for 1 year, 7 months
seen Jul 8 at 7:51

Feb
4
comment Why should passwords be encrypted if they are being stored in a secure database?
+1 for the fact that as a developer/admin you should not have access to your users' passwords. That in itself is reason enough.
Jan
2
comment Do we have any special design considerations for maintaining anonymity in an application?
Don't forget, if you're showing aggregated numbers, it may be possible to identify people by comparing various totals and using a process of elimination. When working with healthcare data in the UK, totals less than five are not shown in order to reduce the risk of this. The necessity and level at which small numbers are suppressed depends on the number and sensitivity of the data.
Nov
18
comment Why not expose a primary key
+1 exposing it to users adds implicit requirements (e.g. remain static)
Oct
26
comment Implementing new required feature after software release
Null is the ideal value here, if the class is unknown then it should be null, not some other generic value. There is already data with unknown classes, so if you can't change that then leave the values as null and require new records to have a class value in the UI.
Sep
16
comment Planning relational database - one or two tables?
-1 for assuming this is a one-to-one relationship. "a vehicle can be advertised multiple times over its lifespan".
Sep
16
comment Planning relational database - one or two tables?
+1 I'd definitely go for the second option. As this answer eludes to, you can probably get by with the first if you don't have performance pressures, but it's not the ideal design.
Aug
31
comment Is it safe to transmit access tokens via HTTP headers?
You can't guarantee client side security if you don't control the client, but that's true of just about anything.
Jul
29
comment If the spec is flawed, should it still be followed?
+1 for the paper trail, and also be careful if you are involved in the deployment. While it's unlikely to come to it, there are plenty of laws (the Data Protection Act in the UK for example) which mean negligent handling of personal data can become serious offence.
May
30
comment Should I “Fight” to use development environment I want to use and how?
+1 for accepting that it's not always up to you. Also, if you leave and have used a second language, your replacement now needs to be familiar with both.
May
30
comment Clever way to license/obfuscate web applications until the client has paid for it
No problem, good luck with the contracts!
May
15
comment Is there any way to get faster at solving bugs? I've just had a warning from my boss
+1 for visible, positive action: "put a plan together with your boss as to how you are going to close that gap"
May
5
comment Representing a parent/child hierarchy in a Relational Database
+1 This is a fairly well established (and effective) method for storing data in a flexible and scalable hierarchy.
Apr
20
comment How common is it for a team to write everything in-house?
Many big companies make extensive use of open source code in various forms (including libs), often improving on/contributing to the relevant projects. The points are mostly irrelevant or incorrect.
Mar
17
comment When to confront a good project leader or boss
Great answer. Also consider that if your genius boss is happy to explain his complex decisions you have a brilliant opportunity to learn.
Mar
15
comment What's the right balance between code consistency and code improvement?
Good answer and good comment from Giorgio. Maybe worth considering that in this example, depending on the team/culture, it’s possible to have a coordinated team adoption rather than starting alone. This reduces some of the risk around maintenance (as everyone's on board). (i.e. place more emphasis on the team's actual skills at the moment, rather than the code they've written in the past.)
Mar
11
comment Should we have a database independent SQL like query language in Django?
There is a lot of fear at my workplace about being "tied to" a specific platform. I get it, and in some situations it makes sense... but in others it's an absurdly expensive insurance policy against one vendor hiking their prices etc., resulting in huge volumes of work and under utilisation of the tools available.
Feb
14
comment Have there been disputes when software identifies genders with a boolean?
To add weight, I work with data from the NHS in England, this is national data covering the whole population. Gender is stored as an int, 1 for male or 2 for female which would raise the same sudo-ethical questions. Here an int is used over a Boolean because other values are used (e.g. unknown, transgender, etc.) but there's no hesitation about using a coding system where it improves efficiency. You wouldn't hesitate about coding other values, so why hesitate here?
Nov
18
comment Best Practices: Database app programming patterns
Putting data validation rules into the application's code is fine, but they should also always be implemented at the database level regardless of what's going on with the application. As HLGEM says, one day, someone will come along and modify the data without using the application, either directly executing SQL against the db or with another app which uses the same db (which was never expected when the original app was created, but now exists).