Talking CukeUp with Charlie Rudolph

Matt WynneJun 14, 2017

Next week we will run CukenFest London (June 21st-25th). I've spent some time catching up with a few people involved in the conference this year in preparation for the conference. Flying all the way from the States next week is Charlie Rudolph, a core contributor to the Cucumber-JS project. He gave me a few minutes of his time to discuss what he's looking forward to most.

Here's our conversation:

Hi Charlie! Can you tell us a bit about your background? How did you first get into programming?

I majored in Computer Science in college thinking I wanted to make video games. After graduation, I joined Originate and have been building web applications and working on a handful of open source developer tools. The engineers at our company make tests a priority, so I'm using Cucumber constantly.

You joined the core team for Cucumber-JS a few years ago now. How’s that been?

I joined Cucumber-JS after making a few pull requests porting over some features from Cucumber-Ruby that I really wanted. My biggest challenge was the major internal rewrite that lasted 6 months of sporadic nights and weekends. What I'm most proud of so far is the rework of the failure output, updating fail-fast and the rerun formatter to work together, and the progress bar formatter.

You were one of the lucky few invited to CukenHagen last year. Can you tell the readers a bit about that event, and what you got out of it?

It was really fun to have the Cucumber maintainers all together. The show and tell of every Cucumber implementation was awesome as we saw the unique challenges each language faced and their favorite features. That weekend inspired two of the features I'm most proud of on Cucumber-JS.

This year we’re combining CukeUp! with CukenSpace, a two-day open-space for the whole Cucumber & BDD community. CukenSpace is very much inspired by CukenHagen, but we’re hoping that by opening it up to the whole community we can make it even more awesome. What are you hoping to get out of the event?

I'm excited to see what people are using Cucumber for and how they are using it. Hopefully will catch a spark for another great Cucumber feature. Also looking forward to getting some face time to discuss ideas with maintainers and users.

What would you say to someone who would like to contribute to open-source but doesn’t know where to start?

Start small with something that will give you value. Having some skin in the game is a great motivator. If you open an issue/feature request on a library, try your hand at implementing it. Ask for help and discuss ideas if the task is large or the repository is complex.

Thanks Charlie! Cya in London.

Join Matt and Charlie at CukeUp! and CukenSpace over June 23rd-25th. Book your ticket today.

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