Components are essentially bundles of code that compartmentalize logic and functions in a React app. We create components using JSX, which stands for JavaScript XML, a JavaScript syntax extension that lets us create HTML elements and appends them to a page automatically. Let’s explore some key differences between the two types of components as well as examples of usage for each.

Functional Components

Functional components, which are also not-so-nicely referred to as “dumb” components, are essentially JavaScript functions that render JSX. In reality, “dumb” component is a bit of a misnomer since functional components are extremely valuable in React and let us…


Many people think of computer programming as a relatively low risk field — there is virtually no physical labor involved, you can program from almost anywhere, and spend most of your time inside either at home or at coffee shops coding. However, spending countless hours every day, often times late into the night, staring at a screen that emits blue light can pose unforeseen risks with long term health consequences. Productivity aside, part of self care as a programmer involves mindfulness around these risks — your personal health is invaluable.

streaks of blue light on a black background
streaks of blue light on a black background
Photo by madeleine ragsdale on Unsplash

What is Blue Light?

Blue light is a color of light that occurs on…


Isokinetic spheres as a metaphor for parsing and stringifying data

Image of Hoberman’s isokinetic sphere expanding

Working with JSON objects can be a mystifying process. What exactly is a JSON object? What methods can we use on JSON objects, and when might we use them? For starters, JSON stands for Javascript Object Notation — JSON objects store data in key-value pairs, which can be accessed, manipulated, and transferred. There is some debate about the pronunciation, but any variation of “jason” or “jay-sahn” is acceptable. JSON objects are language-neutral or language-agnostic, meaning they are able to be read by virtually any…


galaxy and stars on a dark background with blue, pink, and black
galaxy and stars on a dark background with blue, pink, and black
Photo by Jeremy Thomas on Unsplash

Even those who are unfamiliar with the complexities of astrology have probably heard of Mercury Retrograde — a roughly three to four-week period in which the planet Mercury appears to “slow down” and move backwards in an optical illusion. In astrology, Mercury is said to rule travel, communication, and…technology. As of today, October 13, 2020, we are entering Mercury Retrograde in the sign of Scorpio for the next three weeks. Mercury Retrogrades are a time when miscommunication runs rampant, glitches and bugs are more common, and you might want to keep that $3 cup of coffee away from your $1300…


image of a green potted plants and a sleek grey laptop with light text on a black screen
image of a green potted plants and a sleek grey laptop with light text on a black screen
Photo by Safar Safarov on Unsplash

As a software developer, empathy for our users is an often overlooked aspect of programming. Even though 315 million people worldwide have vision impairments, 85 percent of the web is designed for and by sighted folks. The A11Y Project (pronounced “accessibility”) defines vision impairment as “a condition that limits the visual capability of an individual to such a degree that additional support is needed”. Navigating a digital landscape with the aid of vision-based interfaces such as a screen reader can be incredibly frustrating and disorienting. And before you think “that’s not my job, I’m not a UX designer!” — designing…

Christina C.

Queer femme and software developer based in Austin, TX.

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