djrobstep.com

I'm Rob, an idealistic software developer who wants more humanistic technology and a fairer society.

My interest areas/hobby-horses:

Databases, particularly migration tools.

I'm building a radically different migration tool because I believe the existing tools suck. I'm also building a new service: CI for databases, to solve problems with database deployments. Register your interest.

Democratic socialism

I want socialism and a classless society, and I think the best way to achieve that is by relentlessly pushing society's institutions to the left, rebuilding working class power through unions, and seizing all the capital into public ownership. PS bernie woulda won

User interfaces

I want to build a radically different user interface, that removes the divide between users and programmers, and doesn't constrain information artifically by trapping it within separate applications.

Recent posts

title published
Trust an Australian on this: A Job Guarantee is a terrible idea
2019-03-05
Choose your examples carefully
2019-03-03

Speaking publicly

I talk at conferences and meetups occasionally. Mostly about databases, but sometimes politics too.

date title conference location
2018-01-25
Unions: Hacking society's operating system
linux.conf.au
Sydney
2017-09-08
Your database migrations are bad, and you should feel bad
PostgresOpen
San Francisco

Open source projects

I'm the creator of several open source software projects.

project description
migra
A schema comparison and migration tool for PostgreSQL
sqlakeyset
Multi-column, multi-direction offset-free paging library for sqlalchemy
logx
Zero-config best practice python logging
pgnotify
Easily listen and process PostgreSQL NOTIFY messages
autovenv
Automatic python version and virtualenv management
csvx
Better python csv file handling
sqlbag
Miscellaneous boilerplate for working with SQL databases

These projects are a labour of love. I'm not paid to work on any of them, and they don't have any other source of funding.

If you use these projects, or if you'd just like to support the cause of open source software, and encourage further development, please consider supporting my efforts thru Patreon.

Don't get mad, get results

Through my work I've also helped develop and release results, a toolkit to make it easier to work with databases and tabular data.

Work

These days I design and build software the Australian Council of Trade Unions, trying to play a small part in rebuilding working class power.

Before that I worked on making government services better at Australia's Digital Transformation Agency, and on supercomputing data warehousing and analytics at New Zealand eScience Infrastructure.

My go-to tools are Python and PostgreSQL.

Technically, my main interest and specialty is at the intersection of database and application software layers: How to structure applications and databases to work better together.