Arjan van der Gaag

I am Arjan van der Gaag.

I’m a dad, historian, software developer, agile and holacracy evangelist, speaker, and all-round geek. I write about some of that stuff here. You can also find me on Github, LinkedIn or Twitter. I work at Brightin.

Talks and slides

  1. How to Lead a Team by Doing Nothing
    talk at Agile Manchester 2017
  2. Hanami: because sometimes, you need to re-invent the wheel
    talk at Utrecht Ruby user group
  3. Web development that hurts even less: taking lessons from Rails
    talk at DomCode 2015 (video)
  4. Ruby Acting up: How Celluloid implements the actor model
  5. Ecto: a database wrapper and language integrated query for Elixir
  6. Using Awk: and old school text processing tool with surprising versatility
  7. Lotus: because sometimes you need to reinvent the wheel
  8. Mikado Method: a structured method for significant changes in complex code
  9. Beat Impostor Syndrome
    talk at the ArrrrCamp 2014 conference on dealing with impostor syndrome as a software developer (video)
  10. Getting started with ruby
    Lightning talk on the ruby program and some of its options.
  11. Say Hello to Elixir
    talk I gave at The Guild about Elixir and learning from functional programming.


  1. Writing a lexer and parser
  2. How to Lead a Team by Doing Nothing
  3. Testing Elm updates
  4. Elm: nudging you toward good design
  5. Use your editor to write simpler code
  6. Using custom inputs with Simple Form
  7. Switching from Vim to Emacs
  8. Ruby protected methods
  9. Up and running with Lotus
  10. Some of my favourite podcasts
  11. Writing custom RSpec matchers
  12. Wrestling JSON with jq
  13. Combining Vim and Ctags
  14. Tips for writing better Cucumber steps
  15. Working with Rails Attributes magic
  16. Using Ruby command line options
  17. Navigating project files with Vim
  18. Fuzzy-find all the things with Selecta
  19. Using and abusing RSpec metadata
  20. Working with Postgresql on the command line
  21. Programming Awk for fun and profit
  22. Modular front-end code in Rails
  23. Vim advanced search and replace
  24. FactoryGirl Tips and Tricks
  25. Rails decorator patterns
  26. Introducing Rpub, a simple ePub generation library
  27. Presentation: Getting started with ruby
  28. A Ruby gem for the developer API
  29. Shell scripting to the rescue
  30. Generating fancy URLs with Rails
  31. Customize your ZSH prompt with vcs_info
  32. Clarify your Git history with merge commits
  33. Compiling Vim with Ruby support
  34. Taking advantage of foreground and background processes
  35. Testing Rails 3 routing constraints objects
  36. Retro-fitting Git branches
  37. The Javascript Class Pattern
  38. The nanoc-cachebuster Gem
  39. Why I don’t need Alfred App
  40. The Productive Macs bundle
  41. The a.block pattern
  42. Tagging links for Google Analytics
  43. Why I like Nanoc
  44. On Using Vim
  45. Internet Explorer 6 and media types
  46. Modifying Subversion commit messages
  47. Using relatedTarget in Javascript event handlers
  48. Quick text manipulation with Ruby
  49. Issues using VCSCommand with MacVim
  50. ZSH arguments-fu
  51. Using Postbox
  52. Test Apache configuration syntax
  53. Introducing ╬╝til
  54. Javascript typeof Nodelist
  55. jQuery custom selectors
  56. Subversion branching
  57. Snow Leopard web development configuration
  58. Internet Explorer and base elements
  59. Removing deleted files from the Git staging area
  60. Awesome Javascript memoization
  61. Using git stash branch
  62. Creating new Jekyll posts
  63. Publishing a Jekyll website to a server
  64. Rake task to ping Google
  65. Using Jekyll to create websites
  66. Hello, world!

Arjan van der Gaag

A thirtysomething software developer, historian and all-round geek. This is his blog about Ruby, Rails, Javascript, Git, CSS, software and the web.


You cannot leave comments on my site, but you can always tweet questions or comments at me: @avdgaag.