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Principal Engineering at AWS Scale, with Nik Pinski

Nik Pinski, Principal Engineer at AWS, shares how AWS is organized for autonomy and customer-centric product development, dealing with millions of events per second, and how Staff and Principal Engineer career tracks work across different software organizations.

Ep 9

May 17, 2023 • 47 minutes

Scaling a UX Org from 30 to 450, with Shopify’s former Head of Design Kyle Peatt

Kyle Peatt, former Head of Design at Shopify, shares lessons he learned helping rapidly scale Shopify’s UX team from 30 folks to 450. We talk about effective triads of product, design, and engineering leadership; building a UX organization without becoming a matrix org; the concept of UX Leads that manage folks from front-end engineering through design and content strategy; what makes a Staff Designer; and the importance of having an opinion in design leadership.

Ep 8

Apr 26, 2023 • 56 minutes

Effective and Scalable Machine Learning, with Opendoor Co-Founder Ian Wong

Ian Wong, co-founder of Opendoor, shares what he’s learned about machine learning and data science in his work as CTO of Opendoor and helping detect fraud at Square. We talk about the differences between descriptive and predictive ML, approaches to human-in-the-loop prediction, setting up a data science org to deliver real business impact, why so many internal tooling projects fail, and how leaders should be dividing their attention between top-level strategy and the details that really matter.

Ep 7

Apr 05, 2023 • 46 minutes

Architecting Apps at Netflix Scale, with Arik Devens

Netflix’s Arik Devens shares what he’s learned about architecting mobile apps with many millions of users, building from early adventures at Netscape and Palm up to architectural roles at Fitbit and Netflix. We talk about Netflix’s culture of small, high-trust teams; some of the pathologies of very large engineering teams; how to sell new architectural patterns to a team working on a large existing codebase; and the challenges of A/B testing hundreds of millions of users.

Ep 6

Mar 17, 2023 • 56 minutes

Making Billions with Ethical Onboarding, with Jaycee Day

Jaycee Day, a seasoned designer having worked at GitHub and Blinkist, shares what she learned designing a now world-famous app onboarding flow. We talk about onboarding flows, subscription and trial mechanics in apps, the tensions between ethics and short-term profiteering, the business model of mobile games, and A/B testing.

Ep 5

Feb 15, 2023 • 41 minutes

Solving Engineering Problems with DuckDuckGo’s Cate Huston

Cate Huston shares what she’s learned leading engineering teams at DuckDuckGo, Automattic, and Google. We talk about the challenges of hiring directors, what makes DuckDuckGo weird, supporting team happiness vs. team effectiveness, the quagmire of trying to measure team velocity, and the tradeoffs inherent in cross-platform app development.

Ep 4

Jan 20, 2023 • 39 minutes

Effectively Leading Technical Teams, with Khan Academy’s Shawn Jansepar

Shawn Jansepar, Director of Engineering at Khan Academy, shares what he’s learned about keeping product teams engaged, effective engineering practices and how to teach them, and building trust.

Ep 3

Dec 28, 2022 • 41 minutes

Lessons Learned Building Alexa, with Product Manager Polly Allen

Polly Allen, former Principal Product Manager on Amazon Alexa, shares what she’s learned about the challenging world of building products for voice and AI, as well the roles of data-driven decision-making and computing science education in product leadership.

Ep 2

Dec 07, 2022 • 43 minutes

How Not to Ship Your Org Chart, with veteran product designer Brad Ellis

Brad Ellis pulls from his experience designing for Square, Lyft, and many other products to share what he’s learned about the incredible value of user testing, scaling product design across a large org, and how to make great experiences instead of shipping your org chart.

Ep 1

Nov 16, 2022 • 58 minutes