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Poly-passionate. Coder, writer, technical lead, coach. Also into mindset, fitness, productivity, finance and personal development.

Poly-passionate. Coder, writer, technical lead, coach. Also into mindset, fitness, productivity, finance and personal development.

That’s what my 160-character bio says. I think it’s the shortest way I’ve ever introduced myself. And as such, it falls horribly short of doing a proper job.

Not that I think I do much better, really. Or more proper. But that’s just me.

Me. Photo by my wife.

Hi! I’m Erik, and I have pretty terrible self-confidence (as should be apparent from the look on my face in the photo above). And I’m a perfectionist, which is about the worse combination you can find, IMHO. …

A short story

Photo by Yves Moret on Unsplash

I looked at the passing landscape. Greenfields, almost endless, still damp with morning dew, although it was already noon. The sun did not give warmth, not much, but the light made the foggy fields seem almost unreal. We entered a small town and I turned away from the window, looking at my fellow travelers.

It was noon and few traveled at noon. I had effortlessly secured a seat for myself alone and made myself comfortable. The people who entered the wagon ignored me, no one asking me whether the three seats around me were taken. They didn’t need to.


Writing a mature CLI on .NET Core doesn’t have to be difficult.

Photo by Safar Safarov on Unsplash

The other day, I had a requirement to create a simple command-line application to do some database housekeeping. I’m a bit of a perfectionist (hum hum) so to me, a simple CLI should have at least the following features:

  • Robust argument parsing and validation
  • Logging
  • Testability

The last one, Testability, to me is almost synonymous with Dependency Injection. I love how DI helps to set things up in a modular fashion and therefore allows you to write proper, isolated Unit Tests for everything you do.

.NET Core comes with a very simple DI framework. While some say it isn’t “powerful…

And how I’m making sure they will not stop me from trying.

Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

Lately, I’ve been seeing more and more of them: 30 day challenges.

They’re everywhere. On YouTube, where they range from “100 push-ups for 30 days” to “waking up at 4:30AM for 30 days” to the more esoteric “drinking a tall glass of lemon water while in a handstand for 30 days,” all of which claim the most wondrous effects.

The last one? Increased fat burning, better handstands and no more hiccups, all at once. Imagine if you’d do all of them: wake up at 4:30AM to do handstand push-ups while drinking a tall glass of lemon water. …

Before you say something is impossible, consider this.

Photo by Leon on Unsplash

As a software engineer in a bigger organisation, it often amuses and sometimes frustrates me to find out I am actually more knowledgeable than the people working at the Service Desk.

In one instance, I was requesting file share permissions for two new colleagues. Considering the sheer amount of shares available (and being too lazy to list them all even if I knew them) I asked for them to get the same permissions as I had.

The answer was that “it was not possible for them to see the permissions I had” and therefore they needed me to list every…

And it deserves your attention.

Photo by nikko macaspac on Unsplash

I have a condition.

It’s a condition that has been heavily affecting my well-being for the past month or so.

It’s affected my sleep. It’s affected every waking hour of every day.

I always thought I was alone in this. Now I know I am not. There're dozens, hundreds, maybe thousands of us out there. And we’re growing in number every day.

This condition is pervasive. It’s insidious. It’s highly contagious and there’s an actual possibility you’re carrying it as well. Maybe even spreading it to others unknowingly.

It’s almost impossible to avoid if you are frequenting in certain circles…

A poem

Photo by Rosie Fraser on Unsplash

It’s OK,
To feel like you’re broken.

It’s OK,
To feel something’s not quite right.

It’s OK to feel lonely.

It’s OK,
To be tired,
To want to quit the fight.

It’s OK,
If you’re not being yourself,
To be hiding in plain sight.

It’s OK to feel there’s More.
More to you.
More to others.
More to… this.

If you’re struggling,
Or stuck,
Or when there're monsters
Trapped inside.

It’s OK.
It’s really OK.

It’s OK,
Not to be OK.

Erik is a father of two, husband of one. Engineer and coach by day, at…

As a freelancer, it literally pays to be lazy.

My ideal working day. Photo by Ales Maze on Unsplash

I’m lazy. Like, as lazy as they come. If I can choose not to do something, I’ll take that choice in a heartbeat.

And that’s actually my super power.

My laziness has fueled some of my best work as a software engineer. I have a motto: if I need to do the same task more than twice, I should automate it. That motto has led me to some of the most creative timesaving solutions in my career and has allowed me to do much, much more in much less time.

But that’s not the point of this article.

My laziness…

Use this classic tale to affect lasting change.

A Christmas Carol by Dawn Hudson. From PublicDomainPictures.

Personal development is hard. That’s because personal development requires us to change. And people resist change for many reasons. It’s scary. It’s a lot of work. It may require you to be different. You might need to sweat in public. Or hug people who smell.

If you’d summarize all these reasons in a single word, it’d be pain.

Here’s the problem: most people won’t change until the pain of not changing becomes too great. A classic story illustrates this:

A farmer was on his way home when he passed his neighbor who was sitting on the porch of his home…

Focus on your code, nothing else.

Photo by Ferenc Almasi on Unsplash

This is a highly opinionated list of my favorite (and in my opinion, essential) Visual Studio Code extensions.

As much as possible, I’ve grouped them according to the various workloads I use them for most.

General code editing

Peacock (link)

Peacock is a super useful little extension that allows you to color label your VSCode workspace. If you are used to having multiple workspaces open, you’ll love Peacock.

Erik Burger

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