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Keith Sparkjoy

Keith Sparkjoy is a Culture Coach at Pluralsight. As a cofounder, Keith was the Chief Technology Officer for many years, building and hosting the website and all things IT. These days there's a whole team of folks taking care of the tech, and Keith is focusing more on company culture, which is one of the most important aspects of a fast-growing business.

Keith Sparkjoy has written 66 posts for Pluralsight blog

Why company culture matters

By Keith Sparkjoy on January 6, 2015

Not sure if you’re getting involved with the right company? Here’s a list of questions to consider before you jump on board.

Pluralsight iOS app update, now with ChromeCast support!

By Keith Sparkjoy on March 13, 2014

Our newest iOS player is now on the the iOS App Store and includes a first shot at ChromeCast support! Start playing any Pluralsight course and tap the cast button to select a local device to cast to. Not familiar with ChromeCast? It’s a $35.00 dongle that you plug into an HDMI port on your TV so that you can “cast” video to it over a local wireless network.

Focus on the system

By Keith Sparkjoy on December 5, 2013

As part of my quest to really understand the Lean movement, I’m going back to its roots and reading Out of the Crisis, by W. Edwards Deming, originally published back in the 80′s. If you want to know where the idea of continuous improvement, or Kaizen came from, read this book.

Pair programming

By Keith Sparkjoy on October 23, 2013

What do Nirvana, Fleetwood Mac, Rick Springfield, Rage Against the Machine, Metallica, Johnny Cash, Tom Petty, Nine Inch Nails, Neil Young, Santana, REO Speedwagon and Barry Manilow have in common? They all recorded at Sound City in Southern California. Recently I watched a great flick about this shop that was directed by Dave Grohl, leader of one of my favorite […]

On Immutability

By Keith Sparkjoy on June 25, 2013

At Pluralsight, we’ve been programming with immutable objects for a couple of years now, and I know some of the team is wondering why we bother. When you’re a traditional OO developer used to updating the state of objects in place, it sure feels weird to go to the trouble of building immutable objects using […]

New Android player feature in beta – Variable Speed Playback

By Keith Sparkjoy on June 13, 2013

This was a tough one – there’s no native support for variable speed on Android, but our rock star Android developer came through with a solution using our custom FFmpeg player. You’ll see a new speed setting in the upper-right corner of the screen that you can tap to bring up a speed control. Please […]

New Android player released to the Google Play store today: v1.1.151

By Keith Sparkjoy on May 16, 2013

This new release includes a modern look and features you’ve asked for: Easier to use on tablets Recently watched courses at your fingertips Easy to find newly published courses Plus members can now queue entire courses for download All orientations supported on all form factors Improved stability Android player on the Google Play store – […]

Our Android player gets a face lift – v1.1.151

By Keith Sparkjoy on May 6, 2013

This beta build includes a modern look and features you’ve asked for: Easier to use on tablets Recently watched courses at your fingertips Easy to find newly published courses Plus members can now queue entire courses for download All orientations supported on all form factors Improved stability Android player beta release – v1.1.151 Please leave […]

My Clojure Journey: Simple Expressive Tests

By Keith Sparkjoy on April 22, 2013

One thing my team has struggled with in enterprise C# development is the complexity of unit test setup. This is complicated by Domain Driven Design, which encourages the use of concrete classes for entities and values. Test setup often becomes nontrivial as you are often required to set up considerably more of the object graph […]

Now you can slow us down!

By Keith Sparkjoy on March 25, 2013

For many years we’ve had the ability to play back our courses at high speed, and that works great when you can understand the author very well. But what about that one course that you really want to watch, but the author speaks a little fast, or maybe English isn’t your first language? Now you […]

My Clojure journey: pure functions

By Keith Sparkjoy on March 13, 2013

In my last blog post in this series, I pointed to 4clojure as a great tool to help you practice writing functions in Clojure. By its very nature, 4clojure only allows you to write pure functions. In this post, I’ll talk about the beauty that I see in pure functions, but also point out that you’ll typically […]

New feature: Course discussions via LiveFyre

By Keith Sparkjoy on March 12, 2013

I’m excited to announce that every course in our library now includes a new Discussion tab where you can discuss the course. After a lot of debate, we’ve settled on LiveFyre as our discussion provider, which gives you lots of options for signing in and sharing the discussion: you can use a Twitter account, Facebook, […]

My Clojure journey: Hearts, koans, and 4clojure

By Keith Sparkjoy on March 11, 2013

I blogged recently that my boys and I have started learning Clojure. It’s been an incredibly fun journey so far, sans the challenges of cobbling together a Clojure dev environment (which I’ll talk about another day). I’ve come a long way, and I wanted to share my journey so far, which starts with a card […]

Share your Pluralsight achievements with a public profile

By Keith Sparkjoy on February 8, 2013

We recently released a new feature that allows you to customize your Pluralsight profile and show it off to the world! Simply sign into and click your user name in the upper right corner to drop down the menu. Click “Your profile” and you’ll be taken to a page that lets you edit and […]

CTRL your CAPSLOCK key for great good

By Keith Sparkjoy on January 28, 2013

I’ve always had pretty good typing skills, but sometimes I’m not quite as accurate as I’d like. As a younger developer, I’d sometimes miss the Tab key and accidentally mash CAPSLOCK instead. If you work on a PC you’ve probably done the same with the Insert key. I’m pretty sure that’s what happened to this […]

Learning a new language: Clojure

By Keith Sparkjoy on January 18, 2013

Software craftsmanship is very important to me and the dev team here at Pluralsight. And one aspect of that is continuous learning – improving yourself instead of remaining stagnant. As Bob Martin points out in The Clean Coder, if you have the luxury of working 40 hours a week as a programmer, you owe it to […]

Our HTML 5 player just got more flexible

By Keith Sparkjoy on December 10, 2012

We asked for your feedback We recently ran a survey about our HTML 5 player. Thanks to all of those who took the time to answer a few questions for us! What we found was that most people are still using the HTML 5 player, and those who switched back to our older Silverlight player […]

New Android player (v1.0.102) available for testing. Addresses Offline Viewing failures on Jelly Bean!

By Keith Sparkjoy on December 8, 2012

If you’re running Jelly Bean and have been having problems getting offline viewing to work, we’re working hard on a fix. Here’s a beta version of our player, v1.0.102 that we hope will help you get offline viewing working again. We still have more work to do on it, but we think this is a […]

New feature! Closed captions and transcripts

By Keith Sparkjoy on November 12, 2012

We now have the ability to display closed captions in our HTML 5 player, as well as show the full transcript of a course in English (optionally translated into over 50 languages) on a new Transcript tab for a course!

Clean up your gmail inbox

By Keith Sparkjoy on November 8, 2012

If you’re anything like me, you get so much email that you just can’t read it all. Eventually you end up with an inbox that has thousands (for me tens of thousands) of unread emails. I used to spend a few minutes every week cleaning up my inbox by selecting “Unread” email, unchecking items to […]