← Previous · All Episodes · Next →
An Exceptional Week At Honeybadger S5E8

An Exceptional Week At Honeybadger

· 36:34


Ben: So, Josh, did you buy Vision Pro?

Josh: I did not, I'm still not sure if it was the right. Call or not. 'cause I was listening to the latest episode of Dithering, with Ben and John Gruber, and John was talking about how,like the first half of the episode was like, it's not, not quite there for productivity.

I was like, whew. I. Dodged a bullet. But the second half of the episode, he just spent raving about the, just the entertainment, experience. he said he has a, like a seventy-seven inch TV in his living room. And the Vision Pro makes it feel like a, you know, whatever, like a 13 inch box from the nineties, after watching a movie or a, like a game in the Vision Pro.

So, um, yeah, I'm, I don't know. I'm feeling a little FOMO now.[00:01:00]

Ben: Yeah. Yeah. Same i, initially I was thinking, that I didn't, when I first saw, I think it was like early, I can't remember exactly when I read this, but I was like, when I realized that it couldn't do multiple Mac windows. Space that you only had your desktop in the space. And I was like, I'm not so interested because what I really want is to really bring the different windows in different spots.

But then I was thinking about some more after listening to that podcast episode you just talked about and, looking at Marques Brownlee's review, which was fantastic on YouTube. after watching those and listening to that, I thought, actually, that actually would be fine because I would, if I had my Mac desktop as a window, then I would also have Slack over on the side and whatever other, like VisionOS apps in the different places.

And then the Mac window that I would have would probably just be my editor. And that would be fine. Like I could have Sari.

Josh: it makes like the mac just becomes like another window in the vision pro os that how it works. Okay.

Ben: Yeah, so I sold myself on it [00:02:00] when I had, before I had pretty much decided I didn't want it. So yeah, I kind of flip flopped there, but I haven't purchased one yet.

Josh: Well, you know, we have our next, quarterly Conclave,strategy session coming up. And normally we, meet up in person, but this would be a great time to, to try the remote in person,the, conference board meeting of the future.

Right, exactly. With those personas. yeah, they have a vault environment?

Ben: I guess we could, justify this as a business expense, right? If we, if we buy them for meetings.

Josh: I am sure we could, yeah.

Ben: Now on, on the meetings though, one thing that I really liked about, Marquez's video was he showed, having the FaceTime with the persona with multiple people and as he would turn to one person or turn to the other person, they could tell that he was looking at them.

And then the other person who he is not looking at could tell he was looking away. And I thought that was super cool. 'cause on, on Zoom, when you have multiple people. They don't really know what you're looking at. 'cause it's all in one spot. So I thought that

Josh: much more impersonal.

Ben: yeah. Of course. Everyone has to have a vision pro, but you [00:03:00] know.

Josh: That's the thing. Yeah. Yeah. It's got, I've heard it's a very different experience if one person has it and the other person doesn't.

Ben: Right, right.

Josh: but yeah. we'll see. I don't know. It probably doesn't fit within our current, plans for,uh, whatever making money.

so maybe it'll be like the reward for achieving our goal of a hundred customers, spending a hundred dollars by March thirty-first, just to reiterate.

that's a definite carrot we can use to motivate ourselves. Or who knows? Maybe we'll just treat ourselves. we can still do that, right?

Ben: So if we get our goal, then we can buy Vision Pros. If we don't meet our goal, then I guess we can just go get ice cream.

Josh: I like ice cream.

Ben: Yeah. I like ice cream too.

Josh: a win. It's a win-win.

Ben: on that note, I had a little bit of news yesterday, had a inquiry from someone about insights, that's a customer that got access to insights a month or two ago. I can't remember how long now, and I haven't heard from them since they first got access. And so they just dropped in my inbox yesterday and they're all like, Hey.

Josh: Can you, take a look at these things and found four things that we [00:04:00] could address. And then the fifth item in their email was, and what's the pricing on this? I was like, yes. I just love it when people ask for the pricing. it's nice they're expecting that,

Ben: yeah. Yeah.

Josh: they don't just think they're gonna get it for free forever.

Ben: and that they're interested enough that they're signaling that they're willing to pay.

that's huge. And we all know that willingness to pay, is not necessarily the same as actually paying. because those people, those are sometimes different. But when it's an existing customer and you're got this new thing and they're, yeah, I think that's a good sign.


Josh: totally right. Yeah. You, the other thing that tells me is that, that they know something about the pricing for these things, potentially. And, I think, that sounds like they are aware of maybe like competitor pricing. Maybe they're using a competitor and this is compelling enough to switch.

which is, I think that's at the point when I would be like, okay, let's see. Let's see how much this is actually gonna cost, like in comparison to what I'm currently using. So that's very positive.

Ben: Yeah. Yeah. So this is encouraging me to go and talk to more [00:05:00] customers and,do some of that sales outreach that we talked about before that can help us get to our goal.

Josh: Yeah, that's great. let's do it.

Ben: But you had some big news in the past few days too.

Josh: Well, this week it was a nice, I think it was Monday, right? it was

Ben: Or Sunday night. What? Monday night?

I can't remember what

Josh: yeah, it was Sunday night, but our project, exceptional Creatures, which you can go look at exceptional creatures.com, it's a,a, like a little bit like a pokedex of. Ruby exceptions. so it's like we have, little creatures like character designs for, specific Ruby exceptions in the Ruby standard library.

And we've illustrated them and we've done, fun technical content based around this like world of whimsical creatures. And this was a project, of mine from, I don't know, gosh, was it like 20? I wanna say like 2018 or 2019,

Ben: I looked it up. It's seven years old.

Josh: was it before? Wow. So it's been around a while now.

or I guess we've been around a while now. we did it and it's been sitting there, but it. [00:06:00] Showed up on the front page of Hacker News on Sunday night and had a, resurgence of interest. and since then it's been, getting a lot of attention on social media and, we just found out it was, um, top of, uh, Ruby Weekly,the newsletter by Cooper Press that's very popular, this week.

So that was a really nice, nice way to start the week.

Ben: Yeah, that was pretty cool. Like some random person found it and posted Hacker news and people loved it. And yeah, I had a friend like text me on Sunday night like, Hey, you're number one on Hacker News. Like, oh, that's weird.

Josh: it was some random person named Ben. I don't know. you said it wasn't a sock puppet, but I'm not convinced.

Ben: you it was not me.

Josh: in any case, thank you, Ben. if you're out there, if you're listening or not, thank you.

Ben: Yeah, that was a lot of fun.

Josh: yeah, that, that made our week and, it makes me wonder, like what's next for exceptional creatures? it's been something that like I always. Think about when I'm like, that would be a really cool project to keep going, but of course, juggling everything that we do.

Um, but it's making me think there's probably still some, potential there, to keep working on it.

Ben: You. [00:07:00] You triggered a thought. I just had this idea. What if we take the exceptional creatures? I think we have like 12 or 16 of them, whatever it is, we take them and we make a little booklet. We get it printed up and we actually hand it out at conferences. I.

Josh: My dream has been to make a book out of exceptional creatures. But I think every time I think about it, it's been like I have this grand vision of what it could be. and then but the easy thing to do would be to like do take what we have and put it into a book and do like a, a quick Kind of conference swag book. But what I'm envisioning is like a Kickstarter for,like a bespoke, like hand illustrated,like story about Ruby creatures for kids that would like introduce them to the wonderful world of programming. And I just think that would be awesome.

I would love to do that. and of course now like exceptional creatures was before the, like sea change of generative ai. And, like when chat GPT and mid journey and everything started to blow up, I actually ex like played with the concept of generating, like creatures,'cause chap [00:08:00] GPT can generate character sheets, for example, if you like, give it some inspiration and then you can go and generate like.

Creatures based on those character sheets with, whatever mid journey or chat GPT now. but I don't think I'd go that direction. I think I'd double down on the like. the hand drawn or hand like illustrated. have an artist like my wife did, the creatures we've talked about.

Um, maybe like giving them a refresh or doing some more. But I just think it would be really cool to have like just, have an artist continue to do these, and not go down the AI route. just because like it's so much better. It was fun to do, to generate the things and it's very fast and you get kind of like, you know, it's like pretty good, like in quotation marks.

but it just doesn't compare to like actually putting in the work and like doing it yourself.

Ben: Yeah. No school, like the old school.

Josh: So I think we'll continue to work with artists at Honey Badger.

Ben: Oh yeah. Yeah. we are definitely a handcrafted artisanal shop, [00:09:00] honey

Josh: That's right.

Ben: it's our Pacific Northwest roots, right.

Josh: Plus yeah. I don't know. My, my wife would probably leave me if I replaced her with a, with an AI bot.

Ben: I think that's fair reason for divorce ai,

Josh: I'm sure it won't be the, yeah, I'm sure it's not the first one.

Ben: right? I,

Josh: it seems like they're taking it pretty seriously down there in Silicon Valley.

Ben: the age in which we live.

Josh: Yeah,

Ben: since we're recording later this week than we use a record, we have actually a, I think a bumper crop of news. So also this week I sat and chatted with, um. And a podcast, the Rubber Duck Dev podcast. that was a fun chat. we talked about, ops for developers. Uh, I just, I've been thinking a lot lately about, our mission in life for Honey Badger is to help developers have a better day, right?

To manage, see what their application is doing in production, and to help their customers have a good experience by, knowing if. Errors are being thrown or whatever. And I've just been thinking a lot about how, we get to help developers level up and not [00:10:00] just, you know, write the code and throw it over the wall, but actually run the code and know what's going on and making sure it's a good experience.

And so I think part of that is the op scene and,DevOps in particular like a developer doing ops is how I think about DevOps. I know there's a variety of definitions out there for DevOps, but. So we talked about that on the podcast. And one of the things as I was getting ready for that podcast, I was thinking about, DHH has been saying like, Rails is a single developer framework.

And and so the thought that I had was, okay, that's cool. Like you can build a great app. As a single developer, but you also should be able to run the app as a single developer, right? and for a lot of developers it's just, okay, push it to Heroku and I'm done. Uh, but you know, when you might outgrow Heroku, and so at that point you need to know like, how do I get this thing onto a server?

How do I, Get it out to the world. And you know, Kamal is really helpful for that and making it easy to, you know, push your Docker container out there. And Rails 7.1 has some great improvements for Docker there. So I just think like in general, as we, as a species, as developers, as we get [00:11:00] better at running our apps, then you know, we'll be happier.

Josh: Right? we can be more self-sufficient. Like the framework of one promises, Yeah. Yeah. It seems like Docker is really kind of having its moment in, um, like on the smaller end of, the development spectrum, like in our world, a lot of developers like those, the whatever single developer apps, or the small apps. would've just pushed to Roku.

but it seems like People are maybe moving more back towards the idea of running it on your own, hardware or whatever. And of course, I'm sure DHH, you know, he's been kind of evangelizing that approach ever since they've did that with, Basecamp and Hey

Ben: Mm-Hmm.

Josh: and everything.

So, yeah, it's interesting to see that people moving away from the, like platform as a service, to like running your own, like open source, infrastructure. even when you're small. That's, I think that's the key. And even for DevOps. Yeah, you make a good point.

Like DevOps, it's a thing for big companies. Like it's, that's where the revolution was, like in the large organizations that were stuck in the IT age, of having IT [00:12:00] departments and having this wall of separation between IT and Dev. but like our. Our goal has always been to like, take that and take some of the, like good ideas from that world and bring it to the smaller teams to make them even more efficient, and responsive.

So, um, I think like for us, it makes sense to think. Think of devs doing ops because we're like heavily focused on the dev side of things. And we're also focused on the smaller end of the team. So most of the teams that we're working with are not like the kind of large companies that have like multiple ops teams that are separate from the devs that have to work together with 'em.

usually people are kind of juggling both roles in the same seat, or in a very small team.

Ben: Yeah. And, you know, with the tech layoffs that we've had in the past year, we're gonna keep seeing, I think doing more with less. And that means, the individuals in that seat doing more things right. managing more tasks and taking more responsibilities.

So yeah, I think we'll see more of that trend in the future.

Josh: That could be a [00:13:00] marketing opportunity for us. 'cause that's been our marketing language for a while now. I'll have to go, check out that episode of the rubber duck. Developer podcast. I was gonna ask, what is it like podcasting with a rubber duck?

Ben: Because normally, like you have a host that interacts with you, but it just, it's gotta be weird, just, I'm, I assume it's just you show up and talk, right? That, that would be kind of fun actually.

Josh: I, I think it would be, like a little rough to do that to your guests. but I could see if you were a single dev. And that was your format where it's like, you know, a format where you're just monologuing Anyway, make it the Rubber Duck podcast.

And have a quote unquote co-host. But the cohost is just like a rubber duck. with a camera.

Ben: Yeah, that'd be awesome. Yeah, I've been interested in the idea of a Monologuing podcast recently. I don't know if that would be something that would be long-term listenable, you know? 'cause I think the conversation between people is really where I think the dynamic is great.

So I just don't know if that'd actually be good or not, but I just think it's an interesting idea of, oh, I'm just gonna chat [00:14:00] at you for a while about things that I think are interesting, you know.

Josh: It can be good.

You know, who has an awesome, like single person monologue, like daily podcast is, Lex Friedman.

And this isn't the big Lex Friedman. This is Lex Friedman, who, I think he, he worked with, podcasting mid roll.

Ben: Mm-Hmm. Yep.

Josh: we worked with him back in the day, but, he has this podcast called, your, I think it's called Your Daily Lex. and he's he's like a total character. like he records music with his kid and does like publishes albums on Spotify and stuff and has his own jingles and things.

And he is like really good at recording because he's from the podcasting industry. so he's got this really short, like usually five or 10 minute podcasts that is just like him, like just monologuing about some story from his life recently or like, just kind of a, here's a, thought for you to think about.

but he's just really, he has a really good like broadcaster presence. and it's fun. So I know you the format, could definitely work.

Ben: hmm. I'll check it out. Obviously I'm not a podcast aficionado.[00:15:00]

Josh: Yeah, I probably listened to too many podcasts.

Ben: when we're not listening to podcasts and not, being number one in Hacker News for our awesomeness, we're also shipping stuff and you ship some pretty cool stuff this week.

Josh: Well, you shipped some pretty cool stuff this

Ben: Hey, we both ship some pretty cool stuff this week. Oh.

Josh: you beat me this week. so I guess we'll talk about your thing first, but, you shipped, our new search backend, right?

Ben: Yeah. Yeah. So we talked to, I think a couple times now about replacing our Elasticsearch cluster with Clickhouse for doing our search and, got that deployed. I think maybe you didn't realize we were racing, but we were racing and yesterday when I got my merge in first and I like celebrated in Slack and I appreciate your congratulations, but,

Josh: I mean, I have kind of learned in the past never to like agree to a race with, Ben Curtis on a Git branch.

Ben: so it was a lot of work. I was more than I was expecting, of course, as per usual. but it was a lot of fun. I got to play with Clickhouse and,find some of the sharp edges there. And that was cool. One of the, one of the main goals was, to not have any like visible change to the customer.

So, uh, our [00:16:00] search syntax didn't change. none of the interactions changed. It's, it all is. Completely invisible. And, uh, so I wrote this, kind of abstraction inside of our code that separates the query language from the back end and then inserted click house there with the feature flag.

So right now it's deployed only for a few customers. I just wanna test it out and make sure that it works. But,and I don't want any surprises. Like if people are searching for things,and they had something match yesterday, I don't want them to not match today. Right? So, um. I was looking through, I was actually sitting down, last night looking at our search documentation and like our search documentation is pretty lengthy actually.

And I'm like, you know what? I think this is because search is pretty important in our application, right? It's a big deal to have a search work. Well, and that's something that I think for a long time we sold as a selling point, versus some of our competitors. Our search is freaking awesome, right?


Josh: still is.

Ben: It still is it is freaking awesome, and I didn't want to break that in any way. so yeah, it's there. It's deployed. I'm so [00:17:00] relieved. there's a hell's a lot of work and I'm nice. I'm glad to have that branch, like not a branch anymore.

Josh: so you're saying our search is still, it's not only freaking awesome, but it's now like way faster or soon to be way faster. 'cause wasn't there a big like performance, boost from click house over elastic search? Is that what we're thinking?

Ben: I was seeing literally 10 x improvement in search results. Yeah. Instead of something taking like 1.2 seconds, it's taking 120 milliseconds.

Josh: That sounds like the best of both worlds, then an awesome search and fast search, Yeah. that's very cool. I reviewed that PR and it. It did look like a, just a like massive amount of work, especially like working with a new,database system and everything. and I'm sure like working out, like how to translate, the nuances of Elasticsearch to make it work the same way in ClickHouse was no small feat.

so nice work


I will say that,whatever best practices we used for,using small objects and, like factoring some of the backend, like how we construct our search queries and things must've come in [00:18:00] handy. I. Because you could like just adapt.

You know, you have a elastic search version of an object and you create a click house version of that object and it plugs right into the system. Kind of a, speaking of ducks, like a duck type, basically.

Ben: Exactly. Yep.


And shout out to the ClickHouse active record gem for making it easy to talk to ClickHouse with, you know, sugary sweet syntax of active record. That was pretty handy.

Josh: That was the other thing that was really cool. Um, I guess this is getting fairly technical, but for the Rails people, yeah,'cause like our elastic search stuff has always been a little bit mystifying to me, just because it's like, doesn't follow the rails standards and we're kind of just constructing query strings on the fly.

Um, so having like, actually being able to like plug the. click house into the application, just like another database. 'cause you can have like multiple active record databases in Rails. it just makes the whole thing much more approachable to me, because it's just another database you're querying almost.

even though it's technically it's more of a search index than a database, [00:19:00] but same idea. so yeah, I'm really excited about that change actually.

Ben: Yeah. Yeah. It's definitely nicer to be able to work with SQL syntax than it is working with the random JSON payloads that Elasticsearch likes.


Josh: Yeah, I think it, it was the payloads that, yeah. it didn't feel like real querying,

Ben: Yeah, I could never remember like the structure of stuff and every time I would have to go back and like, how do I do this thing in Elasticsearch? I just have to like, go look it up. and recently, now that OpenAI is around, now I can ask Chad GPT and that's so much better.

'cause it actually, it can just tell me, boom. There it is. And I guess it came on a little late considering we were moving away from Elasticsearch. But, highly recommend it for creating Elasticsearch queries.

Josh: Yeah, I'm sure it can help with click house queries too,

Ben: Yeah, probably.

Josh: or at least it will.

Ben: But, uh, you know, my, my stuff is all invisible. Your stuff was all very visible.

Josh: Yeah, um, last episode. We talked about launching the UI, behind a, feature flag, and,sent out an email to our customers. We got a lot of good feedback and we spent the last week working through that feedback, fixing bugs, making [00:20:00] improvements.

We actually made some significant, changes to the UI based on that feedback and it made everything kind of just click into place a little bit better, I think. So just made the whole thing better overall. And the best part is that feedback actually came from real.

Users who are familiar with our app and have been using it for a long time. so it's valuable to sit down with someone in front of a screen and have them like, look through the app and give you. Give you feedback, but when it's an actual user that is familiar, that's a user of it for real.

It's just, all the better. So that, I think that worked really well. And,I'm really happy with the re result. And so yeah, we got through all that and we didn't ship it Tuesday. We were shooting for Tuesday, which was earlier this week. It's Thursday now, but we got to it Wednesday, so we were one day, one day late.

So I think that's pretty good, especially for us.

Ben: Yeah, definitely for a company that's not big on deadlines, yeah, only missing it by a day is pretty, pretty good.

Josh: Yeah. yeah. Go us. This is, um, anyway,one of the things that we, added, this didn't come, I think this came [00:21:00] from, uh, well, I think we all kind of had some ideas around this separately and then like we realized it, um, like we should totally do that. But, so basically we added, a, random quote generator.

To the app, to basically just like spit out some fun, Developer quotes that are, that we like basically our favorites. and we put it in our, new like navigation, like sidebar that like, it's not visible all the time, but when you go to like, navigate to like a top-level page, you open it.

so we kind of had this extra space and I was like, what should I do with this space? Like other, companies will put a copyright or something boring. so we were like, why don't we just have a little fun and introduce some more whimsy into the, your otherwise scary experience of dealing with, the errors and outages and whatever else you're coming to Honey Badger for.

so I think that's my favorite change,that we made is,we've got some quotes from Matt's. We've got some Chris quotes from Sandy Metz. We've got some of favorite movie quotes and TV quotes. We've got some office, uh, you know, [00:22:00] bears, beats Battlestar Galactica and, uh, uh, hack the planet.

Um, so, uh, yeah, it's pretty fun. If you are a Honey Badger user, you should definitely just refresh it a bunch of times and see what pops up.

Ben: Yeah, that, that was totally fun feature. I'm glad you tossed that in there at the very end. I don't, I guess that was probably my number one feature, but my number two, I think of the change was, changing the top. Color. And you reminded me of that. You reminded me that just now when you said, you know, sometimes it's scary, we're gonna hand your badger because somebody wrote in and said, oh, I like the new header color 'cause it's not as scary.

I'm like, yep, I feel the same way.

Josh: We had this, like the, our brash orange honey badger orange color is the, like the top nav bar in the past. And now we have a soft, like light color. and it, yeah, you're right. Like it totally just changed the vibe of being in the app. and it really, like some of the other changes we made, like really simplified the environment even more while introducing new.

Things. like we have global [00:23:00] views of more things now across projects and, and it gives us like, there's a lot more room to put things now as we're like introducing insights and some, you know, I, we have ideas for where we wanna take the app and this is kind of like the foundation for that. So, um. I think we did a good job of keeping that simplicity that we're going for while giving ourselves more space,to make it more complicated. it's always a balancing act. but yeah, like when I have to go, 'cause we have like our, On-prem, separate Honey Badger instance that we use for, monitoring Honey Badger. because you don't wanna monitor your service with your service. and we haven't deployed the new UI update there yet.

And every time I go back there, I'm like, what is this like ancient archaic app from 10 years ago? so it's really once you, yeah, it's really hard to go back once you get into the new, once you get into the new look.

Ben: my, number three favorite new change is the, overview of, the, at-a-glance of being able to see which, sites and check-ins are failing. When you [00:24:00] look at the projects list, that's, to me, it's huge, like not, you know, before you could just see what the status of your errors were, and now you can see the status of all the things we monitor.

So I think that's pretty cool.

Josh: Yeah. I love some of those, like small, like just quality of life improvements you made, across the whole, basically across the whole app. And I think we have even more things we can do there. and I think the main thing is just, I love that we're thinking about this and just doing the work.

so sometimes it's good to work on the product and not just do marketing. I know that I've had that thought a little bit, just because that's you hear that advice from a lot of people, like, oh, don't work on product. You don't need to work on product. you just need to do marketing.

'cause. It's true, like a lot of people, especially like developers who are doing the developer founder thing, their first instinct is not to do marketing and so they don't do any marketing. But like I think in the past we took that to heart and really like we do a lot, we did a lot of marketing and we do a lot of marketing.

but. There's a balance. You still should work on your product.

Ben: Yeah.

Josh: if there's anyone [00:25:00] listening that, that feels bad about shipping features, like still ship your features.

Ben: and to add one thing there, I think, and work on your product in visible ways, I think, a lot of the work that we do on Honey Badger is not very visible to the customer. Like, we do performance improvements or we do a feature here that only a few people are gonna use, you know? Um, yeah.

and I think that having visible updates to your app over time, just, it just helps people feel like, oh, this is not abandonware. they're still taking care of it. They're still, in there. It's not, yeah. You know

Josh: you like the, I mean, you, it. You get what the wisdom is saying. you, you don't want to just keep adding things and adding things to the app, over and over, because then you just end up with an app that is full of random features and things. But if you do it intentionally, um, something I'm excited about, for this year that we've done a little bit as a part of this update and I want to continue doing is just re redesigning things in the app or rebuilding them like existing features.

Like [00:26:00] rethink them and make them better, and see if they see if it still makes sense to fit in where they do. Or can we, can we like change how it works? it's not necessarily adding a new feature, but like reimagining a feature that gets a lot of use and and finding ways that we can either improve it or even just polish it up a little bit.

I think that's what I wanna spend more time on later this year.

Ben: Yeah, that's it. It just makes it feel better and everyone's happy when you know when it's better. I,back to the marketing bit. I noticed when,you posted, I guess it was to Macedon and you,you poked, Matz. you referenced Matz because you were showing his quote.

I'm like, oh, that's some pretty clever marketing going on there, Josh.

Josh: That one. Yeah, that the one that he, so he retweeted me on Twitter. I don't know if he got, I did, I mentioned him everywhere. 'cause that, you know, I have to post to like five, whatever I post to all the different networks now. but yeah, I posted it, one of the, was to Twitter. He is a little more active on Twitter it seems.

But yeah, he retweeted us on Twitter, which was really nice of him. but yeah,I, one of his quotes popped up and I took a screenshot and [00:27:00] thought that would be a good one. Good one to share.

Ben: Yeah, that was awesome.

Josh: yeah, I think that's it's not, it's a, it's a. It's a tiny thing like, a, just a quote in the app.

But the reason that it's my favorite is just because one, it's, it's so much fun. it inspires joy. It makes people happy. and two, it's good. it's good for us. It's marketing, it's viral marketing because,I'm sure I'm not the last one to screenshot one of the quotes and post it to social media or where, whatever, or like share it somewhere, even if it's in your company's Slack or whatever.

so I think it's another win-win situation that is just, it's just fun. it's good marketing.

Ben: and from a product is marketing point of view, that it plays, it, it goes along with our brand, right? We are not just the button down corporate, you know, triple seven cockpit kind of application, right? We are, we have a little bit of whimsy. We have a little bit of fun. We have weird colors, you know?

Uh, yeah.

Josh: You remind me. one of the ideas we've had over the years was to, have exceptional creatures. In the [00:28:00] app somehow. And I think I'm going to do that after this call, or at least I'm gonna give myself a note, another note. because I think it doesn't have to be like dramatic, but we could totally, because like, you know.

There's specific Ruby errors on exceptional creatures that have the class names and everything. We could match this up really easily, just for the handful of the most popular ones and just put a little, like a little character, a little like link to it, that isn't gonna get in your way, but does that again, like just, it's like a fun little thing, or Easter egg.

I gotta do that.

Ben: Here's what I'm, here's what I'm thinking. All right, so let's say it's a no method error or whatever. One of the popular, exceptional creatures and you're looking at the detail and you see the summary. You imagine the box, right? And on the right-hand side of the box, after, I don't know, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, whatever, a little delay, it slides out from behind the box and just peaks at you, right?

And waves or something. And then you can click on it and go over Exceptional creatures.

Josh: Yeah, that would be awesome. Yeah, we, we totally have to put it in there.

Ben: [00:29:00] Yeah, so look for that next week when Josh deploys,

Josh: Yeah. Yeah, I think the tension between doing things like that, is always in a, in an app like ours is just that the workflow, like you don't wanna like interrupt people's workflow with whimsy, because.

Ben: I.

Josh: so there's like a balance of figuring out how to like, make it, visible and it hit people in the right moments, but not when it's gonna frustrate them basically.

and yeah, but I'm sure we can, I'm sure we'll figure it out. And there are, there's, there are ways to do it.

Ben: Yeah. So I, one thing I'm excited to work on next, since I'm not cool with the whole CSS bits that make little creatures pop out of windows. what I'm gonna work on next is, testing ClickHouse bit with science. So for those of you who are Ruby people, you might be familiar with GitHub's Science Library, which allows you to run two code paths.

Or actually more than two, you can do more than two. But typically it makes sense to do two where one is the code path [00:30:00] that's in production that's live, and the other is a code path that you're trying out for new, and it's called the candidate, right? And so then you measure the difference between these two paths and, you can measure the performance difference.

You can measure the results, make sure they result the, you know, return the same thing. So that's what I'm looking forward to doing over the next week or so is I'm gonna put science out there and, for the customers who are still using the Elasticsearch backend who don't have the feature flag, I will run an experiment, a science experiment, that will, compare how much faster hopefully the click House results are and try to ensure that the click House results are also exactly the same as the ones that we're getting back from Elasticsearch today.

Josh: That's awesome. I remember that coming out now. Like I had, when you said science, I was thinking, oh, that's, you're just gonna use the scientific method and develop some experiments and do some like random controlled studies or something. but I do remember that, I remember that coming out now and that's, I always wanted to have a, a way to use that.

so I'm looking forward to seeing the results of our science experiments.

Ben: yeah, [00:31:00] we'll put a link in the show notes to it. One, one of the things that's always been like, I've always wanted to use science and I've never really had a good reason to use it. One, one. one reason for that is because we always just we just ship it here at Honey Badger, right?

It's oh, it's gonna be great. But in this case, I guess I wanna be a little more cautious. But one of the, one of the whole things that held me back from using science in the past was that,it's, it works great, but seeing the results is difficult because science doesn't have a built in way of actually reporting the results of the experiments.

they give you some code examples of how to do it, but you basically, it's you gotta. You gotta assemble yourself, right? It's the IKEA bookshelf. and so that's just kinda a hassle. it's not, you can't just add water and it does it, but there's another gym that we'll link in the show notes.

It's called Lab Tech, which actually does, like, it's a, it's an engine for rails that, Re records the results in an active record table. So it has a couple, a table or two that it generates for you. And then, it gives you nice little actually terminal UI for seeing the results of your experiments, which is really cool.

But as I was, Googling for this, for I don't know, it feels like the [00:32:00] umpteenth time where every time I've, before I've tried to find this thing, it didn't exist and now it exists and I'm excited. But as I was Googling, I was like, you know what, this could be a service, right? This could be a new app, a new product, right?

That's. I was like, had to hold myself back there, as

Josh: No. Yeah, like this is me holding Ben back,

Ben: As the entrepreneurial a, d,

Josh: do it.

Ben: So if anybody wants a project idea, there you go. There's, a service that can get, re take results from, scientists. And there's also, it's not just, it's not just Ruby. There are a bunch of variations out there.

If you go to scientists, you scroll down to the bottom of the readme, you'll see there's a PHP, there's a Python, blah, blah, blah. Anyway, so there's my idea. Build a service that takes payloads from. Science experiments and then gives a nice visual UI so you can see the results. That actually would be a good fit for us, right?

Because we're pretty good at handling a bunch of incoming payloads, right? That's what we do. So, you know, that's kind of in our wheelhouse, but, yeah.

Josh: never know. Yeah. or we could talk John at Flipper into building it. 'cause that's a similar, he runs the whatever cloud service for, for

Ben: Yeah. And he is way into that sort of thing too, the scientist and [00:33:00] metrics and stuff, so yeah, it's kind of his alley

Josh: I don't know. maybe we'll have to, we'll have to, flip a coin for it or

Ben: Yeah.

Josh: Maybe we'll have 'em on.

Ben: Yeah.

Josh: Cool. yeah, I think that's, uh, for me, I'm working on, landing pages. and, we'll see if I get to our homepage redesign, but I'm definitely going to be working on continuing the work that you started on the landing page for insights.

And, we'll have a, like a feature tour and that will be part of our launch hopefully. So be good to have it on the website at some point.

Ben: Yeah. Yeah, I, the other day I was, commenting on the, there's a Rails issue for Rails eight. They want to add some structured logging. As part of Rails eight release and someone made a comment and I had to respond because I just had opinions. Right. And I so badly wanted to link to our insight landing page that is currently only on a branch, right?

It's not on our website. I was like, oh, this would be awesome. But, uh, you know, someday I'll be able to share

Josh: you can go back and edit your comment when it's live or something for future people who land there.

But [00:34:00] I suppose people who are commenting on that thread would appreciate not having an advertisement, linked to insights. So it's probably better, that way, Yeah. You gotta work it in. you gotta be subtle about it, yeah. you gotta be like a ninja working those links into your, comments.

Ben: But,on the topic of the Insight Signing page, I think we should put a little pin in the conversation and come back to it maybe in a few weeks or maybe a few months, as we figure out how we're going to display pricing for insights. 'cause right now our pricing page is, does not include insights at all.

And do we wanna make that more complicated or do we wanna have a separate pricing page for insights or, yeah. So I think that's gonna be interesting to figure out over the next few weeks.

Josh: That's relevant. I was just starting on like the hero section or a hero section for the new landing page. And we have this like mock-up that we did last year with nurture, our designers or our design team that we worked with. And one of the things it has in there is a pricing button. So I was also thinking about that, like where, what's this button gonna do?

'cause I have [00:35:00] no idea, but I'm gonna build it anyway.

Ben: yeah.

Josh: So yeah, that'll be good to talk about.

Ben: yeah. I'm curious to see what you do with that.

Josh: I think it's time to wrap it up,unless you have anything else to, anything else you wanna chat about.

Ben: I got nothing.

Josh: All right, this has been FounderQuest. Visit us at Founderquestpodcast.com.

Go check out you follow us on the socials and whatnot. give us some, happy reviews at the podcasting apps. or at least give us a rating. It would help us, get in front of more people and bring our message of, helping developers and helping developers, customers, to the world. And, we'll see you next week.

Outro_1: Founder Quest is a weekly podcast by the founders of Honey Badger Zero Instrumentation, 360 degree coverage of errors, outages, and service degradations for your web apps. If you have a web app, you need it available@honeybadger.io. One more from the founders. Go to founder quest podcast.com. That's one [00:36:00] word where you can access our huge back catalog of episodes.

Founder Quest is available on iTunes, Spotify, and other purveyors of fine podcasts. We'll see you next week!

View episode details


Listen to FounderQuest using one of many popular podcasting apps or directories.

Apple Podcasts Spotify Overcast Pocket Casts Amazon Music YouTube
← Previous · All Episodes · Next →