Everyone has their favorite team chat service. Trying to get everyone to use one service is as impossible today as it was "yesterday" with IM services. So we're stuck having Skype, HipChat, and Slack open all the time to talk to everyone.

Yesterday, one of my coworkers shared with me a cool new service called Sameroom. Sameroom is an API bridge. Through the API's, you hook up a bridge from a room in one service (like HipChat) and then hook up a room from another service (like Slack). Once connected, Sameroom acts as the bridge that will sync messages between the two rooms.

This is great as I need to have HipChat open all day for work. At Atlassian, we're beta testing multiorg for HipChat and I decided to create an new account and hook up rooms from Slack.

First thing you do is to create an account which will ask you to authenticate into a service you use. I authenticated HipChat which guided me to grab my OAuth2 API key. Once logged in I could tell it what room I wanted to share. I created a new room that would be the bridge to a room in slack.

Side A

Next select the room you want to sync with in the other service.

Side B

Here's what it looks like once you get it all hooked up.

Slack Slack

HipChat HipChat

I admit the identity looks less then desirable. But if you use it so that you can just keep an eye on those rooms instead of keeping everything open it feels like it's worth the ugliness.


You can try out Sameroom for free which limits you to 30 API requests per hour. After that plans start at $9.


Keep in mind, you're giving up control of your private chat messages to a third party. So use common sense before setting this up. Set these up in chat rooms that have watercooler like banter and avoid the project specific rooms for now.


For me, it's an easy way to be able to close Slack and Skype and only open it when I need it. Or more importantly I can keep an eye on the conversation as I usually have those services closed anyway.

Here are my top technology stories from last week:

A re-introduction to JavaScript

The Mozilla Developer Network released a written tutorial that re-introduces developers to the language. Starts out by walking through a short history and continues into an overview of core features.

JavaScript moves forward in Microsoft Edge with ECMAScript 6 and beyond

Microsoft announced the name of it's newest browser at Build called Edge. It's been a week full of announcements from the browser team. In this post, the team talks about the support for ES6 features. Certain features like Generators are now accessible behind a flag.

Tower of Babel

This Node.js application will introduce you to ES6 through a series of exercises. It uses Babel.js which allows you to write code with ES6 syntax.

Plain JavaScript examples of jQuery methods

Vanilla JS utilities for writing powerful web applications without jQuery. I've always wanted to document this, plain JS functions for jQuery methods.

Ionic 1.0.0

Ionic, a mobile framework based on Angular.js, announced it's 1.0.0 release.

JavaScript is 20 years old

May 15th marked the 20th anniversary of JavaScript. After hacking on it for 10 straight days, Brenden Eich demo'd it off. These are slides from Brenden's talk at Modern Web 2015 Conference talking about JavaScript at 20 years old.

Microsoft forks Node.js and swaps the V8 JS engine for their Chakra engine

A fork of Node.js that used the same JavaScript engine as the Edge browser.

Git with the Program and sign up for AtlasCamp

I'll be speaking at AtlasCamp next month on how to get your Atlassian Connect add-on across the finish line. But dit you know that AtlasCamp isn’t just for Atlassian developer's! We have a whole other track dedicated to developers who build great software and services.

If you'd like to see more technology stories throughout the week, you can find me on twitter @RedWolves.

2 months ago I wrote My 2015 Personal Goals on my blog to make myself accountable for what I wanted to acheive this year. I figured now might be a good time to review those goals and see how I am doing to acheive them.

1. Lose 60 Pounds

Like I said when I set this goal this was going to be hard. I've had good early success losing as much as 8 lbs. But I've slipped on my eating and have gone back to drinking soda's and not eating the best. Been going to crossfit in January but haven't gone in a couple of weeks with Hope being in Florida.

The Winter months are really hard for trying to lose weight in my opinion. You really can't go outside and exercise and going to Crossfit is more of an ordeal then it was in the summer.

Verdict: Needs more work and attention

2. Create an Emergency fund of at least $10,000

I am probably most proud of the progress in this goal. As of this writing I am at 14% to reaching my $10,000 goal for the year. This is the most I've set aside ever for emergencies and the peace of mind of just having $1000 set aside is amazing.

Verdict: On pace

3. Create better work/life balance

Hmm...this one will always be hard for me. I asked my wife last night what she thought about how I've done on this goal and I was given an honest no bullshit answer of I haven't done enough to create better work/life balance.

Fair enough. Through talking with her though she equates me being on the computer to working and I'm not working all the time. So more effort needs to be put in here on my part.

Verdict: Needs work

4. Plan a family trip

I am so excited. Through our better money management that we are accomplishing with the emergency fund and working with my wife on budgeting and proper money management we were able to in just two months reserve a rental house with half the payment for the week.

Both Hope and I are really excited to have rented out this house in Hilton Head, SC at the end of August. Here's some pictures of the place:

I mean the place is just gorgeous. Our final payment isn't due till July and we should be able to have that by May.


5. Figure out what's causing my allergies

No progress has been made here although I do have a doctors appointment next month. Unfortunately it falls on a day I'll be in San Francisco, so I'll need to reschedule.

Verdict: No progress

All in all I'm pretty happy with the progress. I do pull up my goals at least once every two weeks just to reread what I set out for myself and plan how to move forward.

Let me be clear right up front, this post is primarily for me. If you continue reading this post then please feel free to give me encouragement or ask how I am doing on my goals throughout the year, I'd be grateful. I'm primarily posting this to make these goals more real for me. You know what they say, if you publish your goals you become more accountable for them.

I came up with these goals and wrote them down on my last trip to San Francisco last year.

Let's explore my personal goals. First up is the traditional weight loss goal.

1. Lose 60 pounds

I'd like to break 200 pounds by the end of the year and that equates to 60 pounds. I'll spare you all now but I took before photos to compare against later this year.

How am I going to achieve this goal?

Now that I have a steady paycheck coming in again, I'm going back to Crossfit Fairport. I've got to find how to get that into my daily routine again. Working from home makes this a lot easier.

Secondly, and this is probably going to be the harder part, change my eating habits. Give up on soda (easier said then done) and go back to the healthy eating habits that allowed me to lose 30 pounds last summer (to which I put all back on when I lost my job and had to buy the cheaper foods to make it stretch). I'm going to first look into intermediate fasting and the change in diet.

2. Create an emergency fund of at least $10,000

Events of this past year make this goal a priority. When I got laid off in October I had $500 in a bank account, two weeks severance and five mouths to feed and shelter. I was able to make everything work out in the end but it was a tough two months. If I were to have an emergency fund of $10,000 things would have been a lot less stressful.

The goal then is by the end of the year I'd like to have an emergency fund of $10,000 in an account that just sits there hopefully never to be used.

How am I going to achieve this goal?

Well, I've already implemented it. With my new job came a better salary and I am going to make this work for me to reach this goal. We have two accounts, one that we use to pay our bills and one that was set up to pay our car payments (which we paid off last year). I gave myself a little raise and split my paycheck so that our bill pay account gets the similar amount I was getting paid all of last year and the rest will go into the car payment account. The car payment account is harder to access the money, there is no debit card or ATM card, I have to physically walk into the bank to withdraw the money. This actually has a great benefit to making it harder to spend that money.

Other things we'll use that account for is saving for family vacations and traveling that I eventually want to do with my wife. Which brings me to my next two goals.

3. Create better work/life balance

This one is really going to be hard for me. In essence I need a hobby outside of using a computer. Meeting new coworkers at Atlassian, I am envious at some of their hobbies they do. Things like surfing, scuba diving and sailing. Of course it's easier for them to have those hobbies when the Pacific ocean is in their backyard but if you know me these are my kind of hobbies.

Other reasons for better work/life balance? I want to spend more time with my wife and kids. It's great that I get to work from home as I have a better relationship with them, I think, then if I didn't. I can do much better though. Part of the issue is there was never any extra money to do anything with them. I'm hoping by working on goal #2 will allow some financial freedom to budget in some money for family fun activities.

In the end, just scheduling some time during the day to play XBOX with the kids or help with homework or take a walk (when it's warm out, I still live in the Hoth System, otherwise known as Rochester, NY remember).

How am I going to achieve this goal?

First thing first, I need to get a handle on my schedule and make it work for me. Time management is the key here, get a schedule that works for me and stick to it. While I was laid off I got into a really bad habit of going to bed late and getting up late. Being that it's winter time now I don't see much of the sun. I also need to work on getting up earlier. This will help in being able to do things for myself like going to Crossfit and spending some quiet time with my wife in the morning after the kids leave for work and school.

Working on my time management will be trial and error to see what works and what doesn't. I've got too much work in my life and need more life. Hoping my wife can help me achieve this goal.

4. Plan a family trip

Traveling for me has become something I do by my self because I am always traveling for work. Through work though I got addicted to traveling and would love to be able to take my family to new places. I try to take my wife when I can and on the very rare occasion am able to take my entire family on a trip (usually with help like our Make-A-Wish trip to Hawaii last July).

My new favorite site I like to peruse when I'm bored is looking at the vacation rental homes that are available on http://vbro.com. We used to book leadership retreats through VBRO at my last company and was really impressed at what is available. I've found houses I'd like to rent in places like Florida and Hawaii.

How am I going to achieve this goal?

My idea of traveling is to be on the go all the time. I have friends that travel to Southeast Asia and Europe on a regular basis, I am truly envious of them. I know I can't achieve that in one year but I can at least plan one trip for this year with the entire family which is more then I can usually do. This year I want to plan a week away with the whole family in a location near a beach that is relaxing and warm. I don't care where it is but the end goal is to go.

Again goal #2 is going to help achieve this goal for me. My goal is to have a trip booked for the end of August.

5. Figure out what is causing my allergies

I've got what we call seasonal allergies, but lately it seems like it's every season. They are really bad sometimes. I'm starting to think maybe I am allergic to something that is very common like dairy as I seem to always have allergies. But what weird is I can wake up one morning with itchy watery eyes, sneezing my brains out, a stuffy sniffling nose and jump on a plane and be fine by time I get to my next airport (like Detroit). I sometimes think that it's Rochester that I'm allergic too.

How am I going to achieve this goal?

I'm going to commit to going to my doctor and hoping to see if I can get in to see an allergist about it. It's as easy as that, I guess.

Back on October 17, 2014, I received some bad news for my family and I. appendTo, the company I was currently working with as the Vice President of Training, laid everyone off and decided to shut it's doors. While it was a surprise of the timing of it all it wasn't so much a surprise in terms that it happened. As part of the leadership team for appendTo the boat started to take on water in early July and we put on life jackets in late August, so when the end finally came it really wasn't out of left field.

It was a tough couple of months since that day, with only two weeks of severance, little savings, and the only income in a family of five, the shit hit the fan. I am very thankful to Larry Roth and Hampton Bridwell at Tenet Partners for letting me freelance with them for a number of weeks. Without that work things would have been much more desperate for us.

I started the job search being pretty picky about what I was looking for. I wanted a company that would allow me to pursue being a fulltime Developer Advocate/Evanglist, allowed me to be able to travel, and finally I wanted to be able to still attend/speak/sponsor community conferences.

I was able to interview with some great companies LinkedIn, Twilio, Telerik, Github, and Apple. But I ultimately choose to go with Atlassian as the Developer Evangelist for their Atlassian Connect Marketplace where I will help developers build Add-ons for products like Confluence, JIRA, and HipChat. Most importantly I am thrilled that Atlassian will allow me to travel and attend conferences as requirement of the job.


Atlassian is an Australian based company and was ranked the #1 company to work for last year in Australia. Atlassian has seven offices around the world: San Francisco, Austin, Sydney, Saigon, Manila, Japan, and Amsterdam. I'll be working remotely from Rochester, NY with my team out of the SF office. I really am excited and looking forward to this next chapter and new challenges in my career.

I just finished my first week. I flew out to San Francisco and went through orientation, received my laptop, and met so many new faces. One of my challenges I am looking forward to is navigating a company as large as Atlassian (~1100 employees), the largest company I worked for never maxed out higher then 30 people.