This week, I published Tracy Lee's #DevJourney story on my eponym Podcast: Software developer's Journey. Among many other things, here are my main personal takeaways:

  • Again, one example of a developer that got hooked into dev by tweaking her MySpace... or was it Geocities (?!) homepage :D
  • Tracy created her first tech start-up before she learned to code. At that time, she focused the energy of a difficult breakup in to work. And she has repeated this at other occasions since.
  • "Tracy's relationship test": sit beside your partner, on a weekend, in front of a laptop, and see if your significant other understands that you are trying to get in the zone!
  • "How do you create a startup? You just start. I believe it's going to work out. I run toward the vision. If it works, it works, and if it doesn't, it doesn't. Then you get back on your horse. Do it enough times and you'll find success." This positivism just left me speechless. This is certainly one of Tracy's personality traits and superpower.
  • Creating a startup and choosing your next mini-side project both follow the same process: am I excited? How much time do I want to allocate to this endeavor? What do I think can come out of it? Rinse and repeat. And for a startup, everything has to work. Right time, right place, right people.
  • An important factor of success is hiring the right people. You have to recognize when you are stepping out of "your zone". You might be a great in a startup context, but not in a 100 people company. Then you either step down, learn, or hire and learn alongside these individuals.
  • Tracy's secret for becoming successful: finding something you are excited about, and making some noise about it, teaching it, showing others, doing what you wanted to do and having fun! When people realize you are genuinely having fun, they will start to care as well. For Tracy, Node.JS was a good counter example. She tried, was not passionate enough and let it go.
  • When I asked Tracy how much time she spends on activities through which she earns money and other activities, her answer was "I have no idea, those are so intertwined." That is a true sign of being able to do what you love professionally.
  • In order to be more effective, Tracy gives herself one weekly goal (or regular goals). This helps her get out of the paralysis of not knowing where to start.
  • You don't chose a technology. You chose what you want to do, and then you pick the technology that applies in this context.

Advice: "Don't do something just to do it, do it because you are passionate about it."


  • "When I enter a colo-facility, the smell and the sounds of the servers reminds me of my childhood" :emojiheart:
  • "I love starting things, and when they get stable, I get bored and I want to start something new."
  • "The best ideas comes from the problems you try to solve for yourself"
  • "You rarely start with a big idea. A small idea emerges, and you iterate on it."
  • "When you think you are the best, or become attached to a code-base, it can become very detrimental to you."
  • "Writing blog posts is a great way to write documentation for yourself so that you remember what the heck you did"
  • "It makes you a better developer to have to explain things to other people"

Thanks Tracy for sharing your story with us!

You can find the full episode and the shownotes on

Did you listen to her story?

  • What did you learn?
  • What are your personal takeaways?
  • What did you find particularly interesting?