Image of 8 black old world flycatcher birds flying towards the left, and 1 red bird facing right.
Image of 8 black old world flycatcher birds flying towards the left, and 1 red bird facing right.
Header Photo Found Here

For anyone creating a database whether through Rails or any other language, ensuring that there are no duplicates is extremely important. Imagine signing up for a service using a username, and learning later on that another user also has the same username. Not only would this be confusing and concerning for the user, but this could (and more than likely would) prevent a myriad of problems for your database.

If you have ever created a database through rails, you have more than likely used the Active Record helper uniqueness to check if an attribute is unique before saving it to…


I’ve been a part of the Flatiron community for almost two years now, first as a student, then as a Software Engineering coach at the Brooklyn campus, and now as a Technical Interview Coach for both Software Engineering and Cyber Security Analytics. I’ve done over 300+ (three hundred! 😱) technical interviews, and these are some of the main things I look for when admitting prospective students.

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  1. Know Your Code! Despite what y’all may think, we know there have been solutions to our technical interviews posted online. When conducting a tech interview, I’m not looking at the code line by line…

Learning all the ins and outs of JS can be overwhelming, but especially when one starts to tackle data structures. In this series I will try to break down some of the basics, easing all of our pain with pictures of dogs, starting with Singly Linked Lists.

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In an array, elements are indexed based on their position.

One of the first data structures we learn to use as newbie coders is arrays. To recap, arrays are a list of items that are assigned an index, or a numeric value based on their place in the array. Think of an array like a staircase with a cute pupper sitting on each…


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source: react-js.us

If you’ve worked in React you’ve heard of the illusive Virtual DOM, but what actually is it, and how is it different from the regular DOM?

To start let’s take a step back and look at the DOM.

“The Document Object Model (DOM) is a programming interface for HTML and XML documents. It represents the page so that programs can change the document structure, style, and content. The DOM represents the document as nodes and objects. That way, programming languages can connect to the page.”

-MDN Web Docs

Essentially, we use JavaScript to work with and manipulate the node elements…


The initial visual impact of a project is paramount to its success, thus why type and design can be a great way to communicate a message. In most instances it can be useful to pair a striking header font with a small and simple body font. Font pairing isn’t a science and is subjective to the project, designer, and brand. Like most things in life there’s a fine line to walk; by following some basic typeface guidelines you can ensure that the project will come across to readers fluidly.

Pair a serif with a sans-serif

A good and simple place to start is to pair a…


The basic ways in which programmers interact are with CSS and HTML properties and tags, which work great but lead to subpar design. As programmers, we set out to write cohesive, interactively beautiful and fluid apps, software, web sites, you name it. Yet more often than not, basic design laws and standards are blatantly broken. After reading through several of the curriculums from top computer science programs and bootcamps, my theory was validated; programmers are not taught to design. …


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Over my extremely short tenure as a novice software engineer, I as, most students learning Ruby have installed a plethora of the elusive ‘gems.’ All I knew was gems were some code, written by another developer, that you can simply install to save time. Pretty much, the idea is don’t reinvent the wheel if you don’t have to. In the first few months I was learning to develop, I really leaned into some of the more magical aspects of software engineering; type this one thing and a million things happen? Rad. Mostly, I found myself so insanely overwhelmed by the…


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Growing up I was always told I was a “right brain thinker”; I excelled at reading, writing, art, and history, while my math and science skills were average at best. Being told that from a young age that we were either “left brain” or “right brain” systematically separated my peers and I into groups. The kids that were considered the “left brain” thinkers were quick to form friendships with each other, as were the other “right brain thinkers” and myself. …

Gracie McGuire

NYC based software engineer and designer. she/her/hers </racism> </patriarchy> graciemcguire.com

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