The Sweet Spot
On software development, engineering leadership, machine learning and all things shiny.


The following are talks that I've given or presented at various events, meetups or conferences:

CascadiaJS: Let’s Go Fast! Creating a Culture of Frontend Performance

What do Liberian tailors and Xerox field techs have in common? They co-create learning communities - more famously known as “Communities of Practice” - to spread best practices, share learnings and upskill newcomers.

If you’re looking to enact sociotechnical change within your org, this is worth a watch. A talk about culture change, and how it can be driven from the bottom-up from the practitioners themselves.


React Summit 2021: Platform-powered: Building a Frontend Platform that Scales

I shared how Lyft was upgrading its frontend platform stack to Next.js - and gave insights on how tooling was the secret lever to move all 100+ services to the next generation stack. A talk relevant to any company looking to spin up platform teams and looking for high-leverage places to build products.


ProductWorld 2020: We are All Product Owners

A talk about how the engineers on my team, with the departure of our then-product manager, developed the mindset of product owners with an empowered model of discovering, planning and executing impactful projects.

I turned this into a tweet and a series of blog articles (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4).

PyGotham 2019: Can Neural Networks Make Me a Better Parent?

A talk about my Deep Learning Baby Monitor project, which I used to prove some greater insights into the need to incorporate human feedback loops into our ML pipelines. I wrote about this project in several other posts on this blog and on Medium.


Elixir Mix 053 - “Building beautiful systems with Phoenix Contexts and DDD with Andrew Hao”

I appeared on the Elixir Mix podcast with hosts Mark Ericksen and Josh Adams to discuss Domain-Driven Design and how it can be used with Phoenix contexts. We even go into an exercise I love called Context Mapping. Listen to the episode on Elixir Mix or on Apple Podcasts.

Namegames - Solving the Hardest Problem in Computer Science

A deep dive into the linguistic origins of naming with a detour into semiotics and communication theory. If you get through this, you’ll be better able to understand why Domain-Driven Design leans so hard into the linguistic connotations of systems.

Fog City Ruby: The Slow-Cooked Side Project

This was a fun talk about my experience building Wejoinin as a side project. Lots of pointers, especially for junior engineers and people looking to get started in the field.

Elixir Daze 2018: Building Beautiful Systems with Phoenix Contexts and DDD

A slightly tweaked version of my Empex talk. Discussing how Phoenix’s Context modules have their design roots in DDD, and giving examples for how one can use DDD principles to design flexible systems!


Empex LA 2018: Building Beautiful Systems with Phoenix

Taking the lessons learned from applying DDD bounded context design patterns in Rails, but applying it to Elixir’s Phoenix framework.

Railsconf 2017: Built to last: A domain-driven approach to beautiful systems

In which I discuss the application of DDD techniques to break up a Rails monolith.


Fog City Ruby (Feb 2017): Highly Cohesive, Loosely Coupled (& Very Awesome)

A discussion on how to design systems that are loosely coupled and highly cohesive. (Feb 2016): Reactive Programming for Couch Potatoes

A gentle primer to reactive programming by way of RxJS and CycleJS.


Carbon Five Talk Night (Oct 2015): DDD-rail Your Monorail

A community talk around applying DDD principles to Rails


See more:

Other talks (of no less import!) are on my Speakerdeck profile: