Dave Hoover: The Human Apprenticeship

Life is not easy to live, it is highly complex. You have to figure out how to fail in a way that can allow you to succeed. Improvisation gives you skills and practices to make the idea that "the world is a problem" okay.
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Dave Hoover
Code Crafter

About the Guest

Mr. Hoover is a developer formally trained in child and family therapy, crafting open source code while working at Obtiva, Consensys, and using the Ethereum blockchain. He co-founded Dev Bootcamp, to empower anyone with skills useful in tech-related fields. He co-authored “Apprenticeship Patterns: Guidance for the Aspiring Software Craftsman” with Adewale Oshineye, a book about the learning skills needed to be come a great developer. Apprenticeship Patterns also approaches software development as a means to personal fulfillment, with advice on how to make the best of life and career. 

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Apprenticeship Patterns: Guidance for the Aspiring Software Craftsman

by Dave Hoover & Adewale Oshineye

Are you doing all you can to further your career as a software developer? With today’s rapidly changing and ever-expanding technologies, being successful requires more than technical expertise. To grow professionally, you also need soft skills and effective learning techniques. Honing those skills is what this book is all about. Authors Dave Hoover and Adewale Oshineye have cataloged dozens of behavior patterns to help you perfect essential aspects of your craft.

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Dave Hoover: The Human Apprenticeship

Transcript

Dave Hoover (guest): I would compare Ethereum to something more like Linux. This kind of strange thing that comes along and disrupts something like Microsoft. How does a company full of money fight against something that’s free and being built by people who aren’t getting paid? There’s thousands and thousands of installations use Ethereum privately already. We’ll be thinking of whatever successful thing is built on top of it. When we think about the Internet we don’t think about the web really. We think about Google. I think one interesting application of of blockchains is voting because it’s immutable and nothing can change it. It’s public. It’s you know, everyone can see without having to really reveal who did the vote and I know there’s there startups that are working on voting solutions that are already doing votes. Understand that like you’re not going to be able to stop block chains. You can. You can try, but it just won’t. They will not be stopped. 

Simone Salis (host): I am Simone Salis and this is Hoomans with today’s guest, Dave Hoover. Dave Hoover is a code crafter interested in understanding code development and how people can become great software developers. Formerly trained in psychology and family therapy, Mr Hoover left this career in child and family therapy to code, releasing many open source projects while working at companies like Optiva and ConsenSys using technologies like the Ethereum Blockchain. He co-founded Dev Bootcamp, a project…

…to empower anyone with skilsl useful in tech related fields.  He also coauthored Apprentice Patterns: Guidance for the Aspiring Software Craftsmen with well ocean at book about learning the skills needed to become a great developer. Apprenticeship patterns also approaches software development as a means to personal fulfillment with advise on how to make the best of life. And that’s a lot because you are a person that comes from a background and again, informal training in humanities. So that’s where you started as probably a college and then I think also a master’s degree in family therapy. That’s right. But you work with the tech and in tech. How did the change happen in your mind and in your life from one career shifting through the outer, how did the code surface 

Dave Hoover: in your life actually started? Very early. I mean, it does that, that’s a lot of people’s stories is like I’ve been, you know, I was coding when I was 12 or something and um, and I did have that same interest when I was very young. I just didn’t know anybody who had done it before and when I tried to teach myself when I was told I tried to teach myself basic on my apple two e first I saw tron and on the Disney channel when I was a kid I, they played it over and over again and I’ve watched it over and over and I’m like, oh, I want to be like that guy. Like in the computer doing cool stuff because I’ve already even. Yeah, I mean as soon as I grew up, right when video games were coming out, like in like Pong and, and the arcade games and I would ask my parents for quarters, you know, um, so I was fascinated by computers and then I was like, all right, I’m going to teach myself. 

Dave Hoover: I got a book on basic when I was 12 and I try to teach myself in and I learned some things and then I gave up because I couldn’t make cool looking games and I didn’t know anybody who could like take me over to the next step. So like I had no one asked questions of what did your family do, what did your dad and mom do? Because sometimes kids have that coders have caught her family. So she’s. Exactly. No, it’s true. I mean it’s a natural thing with families tend to. You have mentors around, you know, my dad was, he worked in retail, he worked at Eddie Bauer and uh, he was into like, uh, especially like outdoor hardware, like backpacks and knives and all sorts of stuff like that. And my mom growing up was home with us raising my brother and sister and I and later got into psychology and ended up getting a similar master’s degree that I had or have a family therapy and then got her phd in psychology later. 

Dave Hoover: Sparked your interest in psychology. I think my mom and I have pretty similar personalities, um, at least that part of our personalities. I also have this natural interest in technology and computers. So for me that even though it was a strange transition when I was 25, 26 years old after getting all this education and training in working with children and working with their families and helping them through hard times to go from that to like coding was, seems like a very strange transition. But I had multiple times throughout my childhood and early adult years tried to dabble and I was interested in it. I’m in technology. Um, so that, so that transition for me happens from an attempt when I was 12 and then, uh, another attempt when I was around like 24, 25, I bought myself a programming or sorry, yeah, Java for dummies book or I just typed in all the code they had told me to type in and it kind of worked and sometimes it didn’t, but I didn’t that I wasn’t, I wasn’t actually learning anything. I was just kind of typing stuff in. Another movie again, kind of got me all fired up. I the Matrix in another movie about this. That’s where we are tagged by glitches in the Matrix. Um, but uh, yeah, that book or sorry, that movie got me excited. It was another, you know, exciting a movie about a guy always a guy who is kind of in a computer. 

Speaker 3: Well, well to be honest, trinity though is the one that she introduces into it. Yeah. So, so always a guy, but the girl was the one with the original at least that at least that there is that, 

Dave Hoover: there is that. But yeah, I was fired up about that and that Kinda that, that plus like the Dotcom mania basically. Okay. The time really pulled me into it and I was living in Seattle at the time. Perfect. Amazon was, there’s just a lot going on. So that just event of Nih, the NIH had a baby. Uh, my daughter was born in 1999 and I was 24 and I needed to earn a little extra money because I was in Grad school and so that’s when I was like, alright, necessity’s the mother of invention. I learned a little html, I got a side job and for a year I did both. I was a therapist by day and I would kind of like code up. It was really an advice column, but I had to know html in order to do it. Okay. It was on this website we just saying you, you, you started to write for a website? 

Dave Hoover: Yeah. But the fact that you had and middle skills helped you to have an html in order to get that side job, to do the advice column. And then after a year of doing that, I just could feel like I really, really enjoyed the html part of it and I had started learning a little bit of Java script and I was just like, hmm, I want to do this full time. I wonder if energy from it. Where do you think that comes from for you now? That’s how I refer to it back then. Now I just know what to dopamine. It’s the same chemical that gets released into my brain when I’m playing video games. It’s totally different. Programming is a lot more frustrated than video games usually, unless you get totally stuck. But like 

Speaker 3: how do you, how do you manage your dopamine intact? Like is, uh, do you also get a dopamine kick from twitter or facebook? 

Dave Hoover: Um, I used to, I mean I was, I was on twitter really early. It was written in rails be on rails and so, so that was really fun at the very beginning, uh, I really got into twitter these days. I don’t get much of a kick out of it. It’s not like this kind of game or you know, winning sort of feeling that I had in the past where I was like, oh my goodness, I got 50 retweets, I feel like I’m on top of the world. That would probably still feel good if that happened on a regular basis or something that, not that it ever did happen on a regular basis, but if it, if it happened, it would feel good, but I just don’t care about that right now for whatever reason, honestly, because I’m just having a lot of fun with a theory them. 

Dave Hoover: How do you program? Like, why, why is it different from a classic programming language? Why is it of public interest? Uh, yeah, lots of questions. Good questions. Um, we’ll start with that. Like why is it a public interest? I think it’s because money itself, the invention of money of currency like a from tens of thousands or thousands of years ago. I’m not much of a student of history, but that itself was a technology, right? We just take it for granted that money is just this thing that rules our lives are necessary evil or whatever, but it’s actually a technology in and of itself. It’s just kind of baked into our culture at this point in our mostly inarguable association. So bitcoin was a huge innovation in, in terms of creating a new form of money wasn’t controlled by anything other than software and Cryptography secured by distributed ledger things. There’s no bank, there’s no government can beat coin run apps. 

Dave Hoover: It’s really difficult to run, to create software and apps to run on top of the Bitcoin blockchain. It’s not what it was designed for. Um, and that’s why a theorem was invented that this young guy fatality buterin kind of grew up, uh, in Bitcoin as a teenager. His Dad was a software engineer, I believe in Russia and um, and kind of introduced him to it and metallic was wanting to build apps on bitcoin because he just was fascinated by this decentralized technology. And eventually he was like, it’s just too hard. I’m going to start from scratch and create my own block chain and that’s worth your name. Came From and so a theory is created. It has basically all the same properties of bitcoin excepted also as a programming language on top of it, a virtual machine, but you could just think of it as a programming language based. 

Dave Hoover: So it. Okay, here’s a virtual machine, so he runs other languages that you can run it. There’s, there’s a language called solidity. That’s the language I spent time in these days and many languages run on lithium virtual machine. But what the theory and brought was this more abstract concept of smart contracts that run. Yeah, well they already have those. I read about those. So they’re really just programs that you deployed the blockchain and the bizarre, strange thing about these things as they can’t decode can’t change. Once you’ve deployed it. You have to have very simple basic code and nothing. Try not to do too many things that are too fancy because that’s where bugs live is in like clever. Some elegance to it and if you want to create updates, you have to design your smart contracts to be updatable. What does that mean? Like where is the code? 

Dave Hoover: Is a code distributed and there is a copy of the program on each computer is connected to these etherium block chain, so if I have one at home, there’s one here at home and then my friend in Shanghai also is running, I don’t know, that has a copy of the blockchain of the atherium and it’s running in that part in the database. It doesn’t look too efficient. It’s incredibly enough fish. So. But is that how it works? This is how it works. So like when I deploy that code, when I say deploy that code, I just really just mean send the transaction into the network. There’s bitcoin. Say there’s one kind of transaction I’m sending you bitcoin and that’s pretty much with a theory of them. You can do three different kinds of transactions. I would say same thing. I can send you ether and we’re done or I can send a transaction into the network that deploys a smart contract and the third kind of transaction is I can interact with a smart contract that’s on the blockchain. 

Dave Hoover: So once it’s out there, it’s almost like a website that has an address and now it’s like, and I can interact with it. So the second transaction is you deploying the code and the third transaction is a user interacting with the code names would send, correct and you can send it money in that contract can hold money. The reason why it’s an advantage or like an innovation is because now I can, that contract can hold money. Okay. And it’s secure. Assuming the code is secure, it doesn’t have bugs. Um, and so you can create these smart contracts. These, like you and I are gonna have a contract that says I’m going to pay you three, a ether, ether a after these other three people agree that you’ve done this service for me. And so I put the ether in there. You can see that it’s there and you can see that it’s going to. 

Dave Hoover: You can read the code and you can see that it’s going to go to you. And now all that has to happen as these three other people have to interact with the contract and give their thumbs up. And then it’ll get released to you. So at the very least it would be great for rental contracts with their roommates and it doesn’t even have to involve money. Really. Just the fact that like there’s contracts out there that hold hundreds of millions of dollars worth of money of ether is pretty interesting. I think one interesting application of, of blockchains is voting because it’s again, immutable, like once, once that boat’s put in there, nothing, nothing can change it. It’s public, it’s, you know, everyone can see what the votes are without having to really reveal who did the vote. And you can create any. I know there’s startups I’ve talked to them in the past that are working on voting solutions that are already doing boats. 

Dave Hoover: Steve was NIAC is hate. Like it’s going to be the next apple in the next layer. The next apple says that’s he’s only word that’s so interesting because like if apple is a big private company in the theory room is a big public, I think, I believe in protocol email with level of disruption. The field and innovation. I mean, I would, um, I mean to me, I would compare them to something more like Linux. Okay. That’s kind of strange thing that comes along and disrupts something like Microsoft and Microsoft. It’s interesting to see Microsoft to deploy Linux distributions in their own store. It was the most interesting thing in the nineties to watch Linux and in 2000 to watch the Linux, I’m just disrupt Microsoft and how do you, how does the big money or more money for company fight against something that’s free and being built by people who aren’t getting paid. You cannot stop it. It’s the same way with the people that understand the way linux works and like earliest kind of the economics of it understand that like you’re not gonna be able to stop block chains. You can, you can try lots of different ways, but it just won’t be one nappy start. 

Speaker 3: It’s going to be. If, if these analogy, and I think you might from my limited point of view because I’m not into this, but if there’s an allergy proves to be real. It’s going to be interesting also to see how private variations of it get deployed and used because Linux technology, open source, suppose ics systems, unix system send free BSD and that stuff ended up becoming my class or Ios or android. 

Dave Hoover: Yeah. All that stuff ends up underlying all sorts, like. Yeah, all sorts of very successful platforms. Yes, exactly. 

Simone Salis: Oh, 

Speaker 3: private there or privately developed and a Pine Lake. This kind of technology, so if the same thing happens with the different blockchains are principles behind that, it’s going to be interesting to see. Really good point. 

Dave Hoover: There’s thousands and thousands of installations have a theory in privately already, right? No, we don’t. We didn’t wait. We probably won’t think of a theory. We’ll be thinking of whatever successful thing is built on top of it. Yeah, that’s true. That might just like. I don’t think about the web really. We think about Google 

Simone Salis: for you, the listener is a human’s audible is offering a free audio book download with a free 30 day trial to give you the opportunity to check out their service. No strings attached. Since I started humans, I tend to eat at least one new book every week and that’s quite a lot if you’re a pc, but I just use audible to read Kelly Leonard’s a book, getting to yes and, and I read it onto train while I was working out and that’s pretty great. And their APP is great. It has a clip function to take notes and I use it to write questions and you know, you can get Kelly’s audio book for free today or really anything you want the Hobbit, Harry Potter. Just go to audible trial.com/humans. Again, that’s audible trial.com/humans. For your free audio book. I am Simona. Sal is synthesis humans with today’s guest, Dave Hoover, software developer and Co author of apprenticeship patterns in Code. Is there any, uh, ethical imperative to be followed or any ethical value should we start as a society to see code as a social commodity? Some things are, might in the future need to be public and open source to make sure that they, um, uh, war towards equality and they do not discriminate anybody. So to me 

Dave Hoover: it comes down to our government being more technically literate and savvy about not just delegating or deferring really to private institutions are like private companies to create these, create this technology that it where you really. I’m thinking of my friend Brian Ford who was running for Congress right now in California. He’s the crazy story, but like he’s actually the one that got me in to the blockchain. He was involved. He’s very much into, into that space. He understands the technology really well. He’s also just very passionate about our country and has decided to run for Congress and so we need more people like him involved too, can require the, the and, and, and understand that the best way to create responsible, transparent algorithms like that is by mandating that it’d be open source mandating that, that it’s, I mean it can be paid for by the government to have it developed, but it needs to be developed out in the open and take contributions from and that the open source community, to me the, the, the best way and honestly the only viable way to, to build like great, great software is by getting thousands of eyes and brains like looking at it as opposed to like trying to find like five people, lock them away, you know, and you know, the government building somewhere and like they’re going to go and build something really interesting and probably be innovative. 

Dave Hoover: We’ll have all these blind spots. Of course there is no, unlike a public peer check and yeah, and there’s only five people and they probably have their own bias into their hiring process. It might be five white guys, who knows, 

Simone Salis: have you had a chance to, um, to see, uh, what am I, where am I? The president of France, say it about ai and algorithms, but he just made a public statement and conference sane. Um, I put together a team of experts in ai and algorithms. We are going to deploy these technologies in the next two or three years gradually, and every time we do introduce them, we’re going out. The code is going to be open source. Anything that is developed by the French government, the French government 

Dave Hoover: is going to be open source and it’s going to be, everybody is going to be able to see it. And um, every time we introduce it, we’re going to explain what it is about. We’re going to make the code available. That’s great. Just so citizens. And that’s, that’s. And I was really impressed. It was like this guy has this guy knows where things are going and he wants to be a leader in making sure that people do not hate their government for being discriminated with. This technology is in your future. Now that’s, that’s leadership. That’s great. You know, I uh, I’m, I look forward to a day when we have a president who could understand something like that. What about the, you’re talking about the auditing process that a thousand eyes are better than five guys clothes in a basement and that is kind of the process that you have been a partially reviewing and writing your book. 

Dave Hoover: If I am wrong it, you started collecting information through a Wiki and then got a of loop feedback from the o’reilly forums. So Riley is the publisher of a book or you guys published and um, how did that go? When did you have the idea? How did the theme come out? I, I alluded earlier to the fact that I was a competitive. I’m very competitive person in a lot of different ways. I’m also, I also really love collaboration. It’s not like I just want to beat everybody all the time, but there is this part of me that loves winning or feeling like I’m doing well as a 26 year old who literally just wrote their first line of code. I’ve felt really behind and insecure about, like me compared to my peers, you know, the other 26 year olds who have been doing this since they were 18 or 16 or whatever they’ve been. 

Dave Hoover: They’ve been doing it for $10. I have imposter syndrome, big time. Big Time. Yeah. I worked really hard. I was obsessive, you know, I didn’t sleep very much for the first four years of learning this stuff and it was, it wasn’t necessarily healthy or good that wouldn’t necessarily recommend that, but um, but I did work really hard and I read a ton of books and I eventually wrote a book called software craftsmanship. I think one of the reasons are, I know one of the reasons that I got that book really resonated with me was the fact that it used the terms apprentice, journeyman and master when I, when people will talk about soft, sorry, computer scientists or software engineers. I always felt like that didn’t apply to me. I, how could I be a computer scientist? I am not really into science. I don’t know much about computers. 

Dave Hoover: Um, I just know how to code a little bit and I’m not really an engineer. That sounds like a very disciplined, high know, high, highly educated person and, but then when I heard apprentice and journeyman and master I was like, hmm, that sounds nice. That sounds like, like kind of medieval, like and I kind of like medieval stuff. And also it’s just, it gave me a title. It gives me a progression, right? Computer scientists just like you either are or not, but I could be an apprentice [inaudible] that means eventually that can be a journeyman, journeyman. You talk about this in your book too late to choose your own title and. Oh sure. Yeah. But, but that label just like it was something I could grab onto and be like, yes, that’s what I am. I was, I had been looking at for a couple of years of like, where am I? 

Dave Hoover: I’m not either of these things. I’m not educated in this formally. So apprentice like really hit me and I and I, and I really, it gave me a lot of energy, I guess you could say. Yeah. And I was, I’ve always been into writing and so I ended up getting asked through just me like getting out there and blogging and stuff, getting ended up getting asked to write a column for this random website called sticky minds. And uh, the, the, the mindboggling thing to me was that they had also just asked these two guys, I’m Dave Thomas and Andy Hunt, the coauthors of a very famous programming book called the pragmatic programmer. They asked them to write the, also a column on the website. And I was like, so those guys are writing a column and you asked me to write a column. And they wrote a book called the pragmatic programmer journeyman to master. 

Dave Hoover: And I’m like, oh, what am I qualified to write about it? I’ve only been writing, I’ve only been in this for like four years at this point, who am I? Or three years, I can’t remember. I was like, oh, okay. I am qualified to write about one thing being an apprentice because that’s what I am. Uh, so. So at that started it off. And then I, um, and I’d also been reading, like I said, a lot of different books and I read a book called a pattern language by Christopher Alexander nonsecular texture. Yeah, it’s an architectural book, very long book. It’s like a thousand pages of just basically like architectural and kind of societal and cultural recipes. A 255 of them to kind of build pat, like use these patterns to build a society or a house or a bathroom. These are, these are the common solutions to common problems. 

Dave Hoover: That’s where I ended up combining a pattern language with apprenticeship in like seeing my experiences from the four or five years, first four or five years of my career, um, as a, as a series of recipes that I could potentially put together and share with people. And it all kind of one of the catalysts was this, this column that these people had asked me to, to contribute to. Anyhow. So yeah, I got connected to and because I worked at a company like that works. So it was full of very passionate. I’m intellectually curious. People, they have a good number of them. Started giving me feedback on like what I was writing and one of them day who ended up becoming my coauthor was prolific in his feedback and eventually I’m like, this guy is so much to say like he just needs to see you just connected. 

Dave Hoover: Jump into this with remotely. Yeah. We’ve met three or four times in real life ever come to Chicago where he’s, he’s, he lives in London. Okay. Um, and yeah, we both worked at that works at time. He, he’s, he’s been at Google ever since and I’ve done a million things ever since. I can’t stay still. So anyway, that was thankfully because it was a hopefully not time sensitive book. Yeah. Like I was able to come back to it and we were able to publish it later. Now I wouldn’t say that it’s entirely timeless. Sure. Yes. I do think it’s eight know even just now, I think it’s already showing its age in the fact that there was a lot of unexamined privilege in the book. Okay. What do you mean by that? Yeah, I mean especially, yeah, like in the tech field, I would just say like in the last five to 10 years, the demographics has started changing finally in software development and there’s many more women and people of Color in, in the field, uh, interestingly, uh, a is of African descent and as a black man and uh, but I still feel like he and I both didn’t really spend quite enough time or maybe we just weren’t thinking in the future now for hopefulness about the future to, to spend enough time thinking about some of the privilege that a pattern like. 

Dave Hoover: So there’s a apprenticeship pattern called exposure ignorance, which is a really great pattern. It’s one of my favorites about, you know, sometimes the fastest way to learn something is to let people around you know, that you don’t know this thing. But that’s really hard for most of us. We want to hide or ignorance in like, okay, I’ll go figure this out later. Or maybe you don’t, you just keep faking it, you know, indefinitely. But that’s the. Then you don’t ever learn the thing, but the fastest way to learn it. And there’s also a really great way of showing people that you can learn fast is by exposing your ignorance and just leaning into it that. But that’s really so much easier to do if you look like a stereotypical software developer and all your doing is confirming someone else’s bias. If you don’t look like a software developer, like a stereotypical one, you’re exposing your ignorance and they’re like, of course you don’t know that, you know, as soon as it can become a prejudice, you can become to confirmation of a prejudice in a person with a prejudice is mine. 

Dave Hoover: It took me a while to, to like have that hit me, that like expose your ignorance and it, it really didn’t. It really wasn’t until I had some, some female students at Dev bootcamp. They tell you where it came up. Yeah. There’s this one fantastic alumni from Dev bootcamp named Lauren Scott, who is now creating apprenticeship programs at brain tree here in Chicago who, yeah, she’s given some talks at conferences about, not specifically about my book but just about like be careful of the advice you give to people, you know. And that’s what’s really, really started waking me up to it. It was like it’d be really interesting to go back through and have it be critiqued powder you. What is a skill or a set of skills that you learned in therapy that you use in your current jobs here? So within the first year or two, I discovered this amazing author named Gerry Weinberg and he wrote a book called the psychology of computer programming. 

Dave Hoover: Okay. And he was writing about people writing software using punch cards and things. But it’s still resonated like what he was talking about, like. And so that was very inspiring to me to know that someone had already done this long ago before I got here, that there was already this interesting connection between family therapy in software development. At first, there wasn’t a ton of, of application of my, of my previous training. Probably the first most obvious one was just crisis management. Um, one of my first paid job post college in psychology was being a crisis counselor. Like we’re adding, I’d wear a pager and I’d, and there’d be a crisis at some kid’s house, uh, who’s kind of in the system in some way. Got It. And I would show up and try to descent, um, at the centralized. 

Speaker 3: But yes, decentralize emotion, deescalate, deescalate the situation. And I was pretty good at that. 

Dave Hoover: I can, I can, I’m, I’m pretty calm under pressure. And so I had had a pretty intense job up until the moment I switched careers. And I remember the first crisis that happened at my first job where like a server went down and some people were kind of free, 

Speaker 3: you know, I was just like, why are they, why nobody’s going to kill themselves? No one in physically in danger. No one’s headed to the hospital. It’s going to be okay, you know? So it helped because I kept my wits about me even though I didn’t really know what, 

Dave Hoover: what was going on because I was technically pretty incompetent point. I still was just like, oh, well we’re just going to go solve the problem. It’s just 

Speaker 3: going. Yeah. But you can keep like a cold minded a will in a good way because then appoint a person that he’s able to retain his mental abilities. This is the one that can bring or. So that’s. 

Dave Hoover: That’s always helped to some extent. Not that I haven’t lost my cool at times or whatever, but yeah, that was one thing that really struck me hard when it first happened. All of all of those things were totally helped by my previous training and experience as a therapist. Just listening, being empathetic. Yeah. Just looking at things from other people’s perspectives, asking, asking open ended questions, you know, because that’s all therapists do is just ask questions and don’t tell you what to do. 

Simone Salis: I am alice and this is humans. Every Thursday there is a new free episode really for you to download on your favorite podcast app with a full transcript are available on [inaudible] dot org, but not just that. I’m often looking for book recommendations, Nsra asking to each guest to share the books that made them introspect the most. Something that they wanted to share with the listeners and now you can download their book recommendations every Tuesday in a new conversation. Sure. There than 10 minutes. And you can also find the list from each guest on books that humans dot Org. Today’s guest is Dave Hoover software developer using the etherium blockchain. 

Speaker 3: Are you, so you, you say to, you have been noticing and before we started I read the introduction to you and you were like, I don’t think craftsmen is the proper lay the appropriate terminology because we’re past a moment that we use like gender specific words and so we use the word crafter and um, are you seeing disruption as well? You talked about things changing, but are you seeing specific disruption? Organics? I noticed that the reason women in Blockchain Association, um, there, there is definitely a couple of websites that are, it’s just I’m female women coders, a cutter and sharing lots of those experiences. I’ll be lucky enough to, to speak to a director of photography at Pixar soon. And she mostly a, her, you know, she’s a physics lighting and she’s great and are used. How do you think we’re doing and where do you think are we gonna go with this? Is there room to grow? I mean, the reason for up? Yeah, for sure. Yeah. 

Dave Hoover: I mean we still have a long way to go. I’m going back to my Dev bootcamp kind of motivation story. I mean, one of the reasons I wanted to get into education was I was frustrated by the, just the people that the monotony I guess you could say of the first 12 years of my career and you know, watching the few women that are applied and got into our apprenticeship program at Optiva, watching that not really stick for them. And of course the vast majority of the applicant of people who applied and went through our apprentice program were men, white men. Uh, and then. And that was all at a fairly small scale though. And then I got to groupon. We were acquired by them and so I went and worked there for a year and from 2011, 2012 and then I could see the, like the same demographics scaled up like 10 x. 

Dave Hoover: and I was just kind of appalled and just kind of sad about the very, very, like less than five, probably women in this group of 100 engineers and um, so that just, it honestly at some level just angered me. Um, and so that kind of, that was definitely a big driving factor in wanting to get into some sort of education that would allow more people, the people that are currently not part of the talent pool into the talent pool because certainly there’s, if, if I’m looking at 100 engineers and five of them are women, that means there’s a lot of women out there that could be good at this and aren’t either here or they’re not doing it. There is no people. Um, so, so that was definitely motivating. I didn’t really know what to do about it other than just get involved and do my best and try to be thoughtful about it. 

Dave Hoover: Um, and then, yeah, I mean, like certainly we had a weird, uh, I would probably say a statistically significant, more a higher level of, of um, diversity in our, our applicants and in our students still. It was majority white men, um, but it, it was, it was a tick up, you know, instead of being five or 10 percent women, we had like a, you know, a quarter at, in, in our, in our kind of most diverse cohorts. Um, but then I hear a statistic from last year, and this is just anecdotal, but I did hear that 40, 46 percent of bootcamp grads last year were women. And I hope that’s true. I want that to be true. Even if it’s 30 percent, that’s still a lot of women who are coming into this field, uh, that, you know, wouldn’t be if it weren’t for a educational opportunities like this and programs like this. 

Dave Hoover: So I, I think there’s going to be interesting and probably difficult transition for this. The culture unity is ecosystem of an aging group of men like me who grew up to some extent in this field with a certain demographic. And we’re going to be getting disrupted by a group of people that are coming up with an incredibly bigger, to have like a, a wider diversity of experiences and obviously like a more diverse demographics. Uh, and it’ll be interesting to see, and you can see it today, it’s already starting, of course, with like culture clashes I think. But the interesting thing is, you know, at first, you know, in order to like the first few years of this phenomenon, you know, all the diversity was in the junior people, right? And there were, there weren’t enough senior people who are diverse and that’s going to start changing in the next. It’s already changing and it’ll keep changing. Um, as we’re not just talking about like more diverse people who have two years of experience now, they have six years of experience and assume they’ll have 10 years of experience in soon. There’ll be us every state different results. 

Dave Hoover: I’m feeling hopeful and hopefully we’ve reached a point where it’s just kind of a flywheel and there’s enough examples out there of women and people of color and transgender people who are examples to other people that are inspired to do this. And it’s not all rainbows and sunshine because there’s a million, um, you know, kind of war stories of people being discriminated against and you know, in the worst situations, you know, assaulted or docs or whatever. And it’s just, it’s terrible. Um, that said, I, it’s, it does feel like there’s really good momentum and interestingly like going, like diving straight from bootcamps, which had this made this nice tick forward, I think in diversity, uh, jumping into blockchain, it was like stepping back 20 years really a demographically, especially in the first couple of years, I think it’s starting to get better. Uh, it probably get better faster than the general software development ecosystem did. But in maybe it was incredibly white male. I’m a or an Asian male or just or just men in general. Um, and yeah, 

Speaker 3: that’s also the kind of the peop like, you know, there is the, there is developers, then there is the active part of this. And then there is the passive investor part. Well, not passive, but I mean, you know, there’s the investing side and there’s the technology. Let’s take a. yes, exactly. I have no interest in the investment, um, but I think that if you for five minutes try to look into it, you realize like, oh, this is all white males like Shane on this. Most of it. I’m Dave, are you? Um, 

Dave Hoover: it’s, I, I will, I will say it’s not all white males because that’s almost a self fulfilling prophecy if you save, if we say that you want to acknowledge that there’s a diversity problem in blockchain, but the beautiful thing is there’s, there’s, there’s all sorts of people learning this stuff at this point and, and also the access to good materials for learning is getting better and better. It was really rough a couple of years ago and it’s just gotten so much better. So the wider and more 

Speaker 3: wide accessibility to the materials will eventually bring like more different minds with different experiences to technology field and more people 

Dave Hoover: for just putting diversity as a priority. You know, at first it just wasn’t. There’s people just trying to make it work and it just wasn’t. But are you already noticing a difference in this process? I have. I was in California a couple months ago working in the pivotal office there and um, bizarrely just like someone who was sitting two seats away at the lunch table was just there and she didn’t work there, but she was also just hanging out. She was sitting there, she was a boot Camp Grad. She’s learning solidity for insert great. It was great. And now she’s blogging and learning all and she’s, I think she just got her first job, 

Speaker 3: you know, and hopefully we started with the right food better, faster than I think it’ll change. Are you a spiritual 

Dave Hoover: person? I am. Are you a religious person? Uh, I definitely, I was raised very religious and I’m going through a lot of. I’m going through a very transitional time. What, which religion were you raised? I was raised Christian Evangelical. Okay. Yeah, 

Speaker 3: yeah. That’s all I have to say. An America and it wasn’t bad. 

Dave Hoover: Uh, it was, it taught a lot and it was, it was good in a lot of ways, but I hit like 2004 and, and I worked at thoughtworks and I started having some friends who really started challenging me more politically than spiritually, but, you know, as a Christian evangelical politics and spirituality, overland tend to be very fused, at least for me, uh, coming out of like, well then I just, if you’re for abortion and I’m going to vote against you, you know, that that was just the way I was raised. A one issue voter. And uh, yeah. And so that was, that was an interesting transition to start opening my mind to graze. And it just started starting with politics and then in the last two or three years starting to let go. And this is, this is difficult and I’ve been really open with my family and friends about this, about letting go of kind of the one true way to heaven, let’s say, uh, you know, the way I was raised, that’s Jesus. 

Dave Hoover: Everyone else is out of luck. And um, and kind of embracing the fact that I’m not okay with that philosophy anymore, um, that there’s still much to learn and for certain, for many Christians that’s, you know, that probably means that I don’t know what I’m talking about or I’ve lost it at this point. I’ve just seen enough of the world and met enough people to know that, that I just can’t reconcile damning, you know, billions of people because they, especially when when I just so happened to be raised in that environment. And so how it, how convenient is that that I was raised in an environment that says that the religion that my parents practiced is, is the one true religion. And I’ve, I’ve had to start. I’ve definitely gotten through grappling with that, but I’m not, I don’t have a religion at this point. 

Dave Hoover: I will just very spiritually curious and actually have read some books the last, a year or two that had pretty big impact on me. Well then there is going to be a good conversation for hours. Most segment leader, this one just so you don’t identify with anything specific, but what do you mean? Give in, I would still say, do you identify with Christianity? Okay. Yeah, I mean, uh, I take my kids to church. Okay. Um, my kids, certainly my, my youngest son is just finishing up at a Christian middle school. Yeah. So I mean I have a lot of family who, who hold strong Christian beliefs and I certainly still mostly I know that religion and that kind of philosophy better than anything else, but I’m educating myself in like Yogi Yogi Yoga, but like tradition Buddhism. So I feel like I’m in like a very, um, I’m in a place of curiosity and self education when it comes to religion. So what do I believe I’m about to ask your question. Let’s see it. Let’s put it this way. Do you hold 

Simone Salis: onto any principal senior life that you think are like something that makes you navigate it more easily? Especially towards the others? What is one thing that you do that you hope everyone else did and he would make the world a better place? 

Dave Hoover: That’s easy. So I wouldn’t want to push this on anybody because I’m past that. Not that I was ever very good at that in the first place. Um, so I was so shy. I was. The other thing about being a Christian that you’re supposed to make everybody else Christians, but I’m, I was so shy and introverted, I could never do it, um, or wouldn’t ever do it, but the one thing that has profoundly changed my life and I think the many, many, many people if not everybody would benefit from is meditation. I meditate for an hour everyday. Which, which kind of meditation or how do you, how do you specifically meditate? Yeah. So that’s been an evolution. Um, and I and I, I wrote a blog post last year about the first hundred days that I practice meditation everyday for an hour. Um, so some, some put some thoughts in there these days. 

Dave Hoover: The way I meditate is a, it’s basically in three, 20 minute chunks on the days that I can do it for an hour straight, right. Certain days you have to chunk it up. I mean, I can’t literally do an hour straight every single day because life, do you have a favorite position? So yes, I sit on the floor, I’m on my butt and you’re like, just, you know, cross legged. I like if I can, I like having a candle around. I like having some water next to me, like obviously like being next to the ocean or something, but I have a bottle of water so I can drink while I’m doing this. That’s a bottle of ocean. I am the ocean and. But yeah, but the, the, the 3:20 minute kind of chunks are. I have three different focuses. One is the first is, is pretty straightforward. 

Dave Hoover: It’s a mantra and I’m trying for 20 minutes to do a mantra and just say a word in my head more audibly like, but basically in my head over and over again and just breathing and just trying to let my thoughts play out. I don’t try to quiet my thoughts, they just have to keep going and work themselves out. And then an intent I tend. But when you really do focus on your breathing, that does tend to quiet. And then the third, the second 20 minutes is open awareness. Open your eyes, meditate on the raw input of your census, let it was. So it’s an easier meditation. So you focus on whatever sounds sensations come to you. Yeah. So it’s a little bit less than in some ways less intense, which is good because the third 20 minutes is the feel your feelings meditation, particularly the negative ones, uh, which is really hard at times and has been very life changing for me because my biggest problem I would say, as you know, in, in my character is in your Avatar is I’m already in my personality or whatever it is, a denial or avoidance of what problems. 

Dave Hoover: I’m very good at it. Yeah. I can, I can avoid or deny or ignore some very big problems in my life. That’s great. You can read a book. It’s not terrible. It’s terrible. And it’s unfortunate how good I became at that. And this third part of the meditation just I like, I couldn’t do it the for like the first until I started confronting some of the problems that were in my life. I couldn’t get through it. And the first time, the first practice that have this form of meditation they did was six, 10 minutes, such a sections with those three kind of repeated twice. And I, and I was like, in the last six months I’ve switched it to three slash 20 minute sections because why not 20 minutes? It’s kind of a good time for my mind to start to get quiet. It’s just a little less frenetic. 

Dave Hoover: It’s, I dunno, just felt like the next step for me. But that third section of focus on how, how you’re doing, like feel your feelings. And that was really, that’s really been my, my focus over the last year and a half is like actually let myself feel my feelings and deal with it. Um, including like for the, for long periods of time. No Caffeine, like let myself feel tired. Like just feel it, like be tired, deal with it there. Of course I can, you know, there’s certain times in your life when you can afford that rate, you know, like having a baby is not one of those times. Right? Like, or the, or you’re in Grad school or whatever thing. Things to do and you need that caffeine or whatever in order to power through this this time. But um, the age of my kids and the situation I was in, like I could afford to feel my feelings and really start working through it. 

Dave Hoover: I’m in that part of the meditation is the real thing that’s, that makes the biggest difference. What’s one big problem that you’d started to acknowledge and not deny to yourself through this process for you? Yeah, man. Some personal stuff. I talk about it though. I’m not, I’m not. You don’t have to talk to. It’s not a happy topic. No, I will. I will. Uh, I made a good amount of money through a series of acquisitions that happened, uh, between 2011 and 2014 I got. And so the problem with acquisitions or getting money like that is they don’t just take the taxes out. You got to pay the tax. Yeah. And I did this really stupid thing where. Oh No, I just didn’t even do my taxes. Not that I didn’t save it. Right. You didn’t think about, but I just, I just like didn’t do my taxes for years. 

Dave Hoover: Okay. And then just, and nobody comes and gets you and there’s nothing like no bill comes and says, Hey, pay this for bill had come. I will eventually. Yeah. I mean eventually they do, but years went by and like I remember getting a letter or something and be like, oh, whatever. I don’t. I just share with us right now. And so that was the biggest thing was like I would try to do this meditation the first time, like I can’t do this because there’s this thing that’s constantly hanging over my head that I basically ignore. Yeah. And that kicked off the process of dealing with that, which was really painful and complicated, I’m sure. And it. But it got to figure it out. Okay. But um, and then I didn’t have any habit hanging over my head anymore, you know, but there was all sorts of damage done and you know, like just yeah, it’s just, it’s, it’s embarrassing. 

Dave Hoover: Sure. Adults are supposed to pay their taxes and I eventually did, but like it shouldn’t take years to, to acknowledge on that stuff. So yeah, so that, that was like one big, huge step. Yeah. And you were not able to fully meditate until I couldn’t do this form of meditation until I did that. So, so at that point, you know, after I saw that, that was a sticking point for me in that actually changing my behavior allowed me to do this kind of meditation. I was like, well that’s, that’s good. That’s a good thing to not be in denial about things. And so a lot of things have changed in the last year, uh, as I’ve continued to practice that. Hey Dave, I’m here, is to you acknowledging more smaller things, more personal in the future through that day, who were a code crafter and a meditator who pays taxes today. And thank you so much for chatting here. Thanks. Thanks. 

Simone Salis: Dave. Hoover is a code craft are formally trained in psychology and family therapy. Mr Hoover is also a software developer using theater theater in block chain and coauthor of the book apprenticeship patterns. Guidance for the aspiring software craftsmen, he also cofounded the Dev bootcamp to enable anyone to learn software development skills in a matter of weeks. 

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