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Legend says if you use WSL you automatically become a hacker. Graphics courtesy of

I’ve been using the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) for a while now and let me tell ya, for Ruby development, it’s a life-saver.

The amount of time that it saves in making sure that your Ruby or Rails application works on Windows is just amazing! Gone are the days of work-around software like PuTTy and the Cygwin terminal to make things happen.

But (cue the shadows and torch light under my face) there is a dark side too. There’s the cryptic errors and frustrating troubleshooting. The long, sleepless nights getting WSL itself to work. …

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Stop using Enums. Graphics courtesy of

First things first, was that title clickbait? Yes. But, it was a lot catchier than “Stop using enums where they aren’t the best choice and a different data structure would do” — that was a bit of a mouthful.

Second, what are enums? According to this Wikipedia page, enums (or enumerators) are defined as:

… a data type consisting of a set of named values called elements, members, enumeral, or enumerators of the type.

If all that jargon left a bad taste in your mouth, here’s a simplified version: Essentially, enums are a rather strict data type, wherein you define a set of values that it can take and it will be limited to just those values. …

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“You’re a wizard Harry!”. Graphics courtesy of

I love using Ruby on Rails to code websites — being a well-established web framework, it makes the process quick and easy. Not to mention I find it a joy to code in Ruby! But we recently moved to a completely JavaScript stack at the office (Node.js on the backend and React on the front-end) and that’s opened my eyes to the ups and the downs of working in a Rails-based environment.


Rails works well if you need to bring something from idea to finished product fast. Use something like JavaScript, if you want more clarity and control.

What the heck is Rails Magic?

Coding is a science! …

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‘Let go your earthly tether’ — Guru Laghima. Graphics courtesy of

The company I work for recently started an education programme for our corporate clients and my boss posed this question to me as a potential idea for something we could help our clients with during this unprecedented time. We never actually created a course for it or ran it with our clients, but it got me thinking about what it is I actually do for this.

I scream 😐 (but only in my head 🙊)

Jokes aside, I think there are a few things that all come together to help me achieve this and I hope to break them down in this post. …

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Squashing bugs since 2015. Graphics courtesy of

I decided to create my blog using Ruby on Rails 6 — the latest version of Rails. Why Rails 6? Because of ActionText and ActiveStorage.

For the uninitiated, ActionText is a new feature of Rails that essentially embeds the Trix editor into Rails itself — allowing me to, theoretically, include a WYSIWYG editor (also known as a rich text editor, but I like saying WYSIWYG, so I’ll use that 😋) with minimal effort — more on that in a future blog post.

Similarly, ActiveStorage is a new Rails feature that makes it easier to manage file uploads — in my case, images in my blog posts. …

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Where are you most productive? Graphics courtesy of

I’ve been working from home everyday for the past 2–3 weeks. While working from home isn’t new to me (I used to do it an average of 2 days a week), working from home all the time certainly is. So, what have I learnt during this new and exciting period?

Well, for starters, The Witcher was a really good show!

Netflix aside, I’ve found that my productivity waxes and wanes in differing ways, based on where I work.

Let me explain.


During days when I would be at the office, I found myself to have fairly regular patterns of productivity — I could work quite well during the normal hours of 9–5. …

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Fulfilling downtime. Graphics courtesy of

OK, so I have a confession to make. I have an addiction to a certain red pill. I’ve thrown away hours because of this pill and never felt good by the end of it. Yes. It’s true. I’m addicted to … YouTube.

There I said it! (Whoo! That feels so much lighter now that it’s out there!)

So, jokes aside, this is something I’ve been thinking about recently. Downtime is something that is essential to productivity — sounds counter intuitive, but it’s true. More recently, however, I’ve felt that I haven’t been using mine as effectively as I can.

“Not all downtime is created equal”
- Me…

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Artists rendition of my blog. Graphics courtesy of

Yes, it’s true, I have started a blog. This post is for all the people that asked me why — which, as of writing this, is 0 (So, it’s completely justified).

🤷🏽‍♂️ i̶d̶k̶,̶ ̶I̶ ̶j̶u̶s̶t̶ ̶f̶e̶l̶t̶ ̶l̶i̶k̶e̶ ̶i̶t̶,̶ ̶O̶K̶!̶ ̶C̶a̶n̶’̶t̶ ̶a̶ ̶g̶u̶y̶ ̶j̶u̶s̶t̶ ̶d̶o̶ ̶s̶t̶u̶f̶f̶ ̶a̶n̶y̶m̶o̶r̶e̶,̶ ̶g̶e̶e̶z̶!̶


… through learning how to code and figuring out ways around the various roadblocks I hit in my projects.

This means that you’ll see technical posts about things that I’ve created with code — like this blog or my portfolio and other personal/freelance projects I’ve done (I may sprinkle bits and pieces of projects I’ve done at work — depending on how private I need to keep those). …

Umar Ghouse

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