The Significance of 256

256 is a composite number, it is 2 to the 8th, making it a power of two. It is also 4 to the 4th and a perfect square (16^2). It is also the only 3 digit number that is Zenzizenzizenzic because it is ((2^2)^2)^2. In computing a bit is a single on/off switch with two potential outputs. A byte is 8 bits with 256 potential outputs. The number of colors in a GIF are 256. It is also the number of characters in extended ASCII and Latin-1. Until 2007 it was the maximum number of columns in an Excel worksheet. Needless to say it is a uniquely significant number in computer science.

For this unique episode, we’ve brought some of our friends and crowd favorites back on the show. Dave Harned and Erin Orstrom have been a part of our podcast family for a while. Erin was one of our first guests on the show. They co-hosted Junior Developer Toolbox, and are are admins in our slack channel.

Erin is a technology professional with several years of experience in software development, business analysis, & product ownership. She performs the duties of all 3 roles on a Scrumban team at a healthcare company. Erin has worked as a software developer, business analyst, and is currently in a dual role as a software engineer and product owner. In her spare time she helps organize a trivia team for developers in Nashville.

Dave is a full-stack web developer who finds happiness when combining creativity with development. Even before becoming a developer, Dave found himself toward roles in the tech industry. In his spare time he helps organize the Nashville Free Code Camp, a free platform helping people learn to code.

Book Club

The 17 Essential Qualities of a Team Player

John C. Maxwell

The seventh quality of a team player is Disciplined. “Where there’s a will, there’s a win.” Maxwell starts off telling the story if his friend Gordon MacDonald who was on the college track team. He talks about how one of his teammates who would repeat grueling workouts while the rest of the team was in the showers or resting. He never won a medal, nor was he an exceptional athlete in college. He just had an attitude that it wasn’t the big things in training but it was the thousands of little things that made you better. That teammate was Bill Toomey, who was inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame in 1984 having set world records in 1966 and won the gold in the decathlon in 1968. Maxwell defines discipline as doing things that you don’t want to do so that you can do the things that you want to do. He defines three areas where you team members need to develop discipline. The first is your thinking. Keep your mind active and take on challenges to improve mental discipline. Next he mentions emotions. You can either be the master of your emotions or let them master you. Finally are your actions. You have to work toward your goals and do the things that you may not enjoy. Closing out he gives three ways you can improve your discipline: strengthen your habits at work, challenge yourself, and get control of your tongue.

Tricks of the Trade

Will got to talking to Erin and Dave after the show and didn’t write anything.

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