Henry Zhu

Dec 27th, 2017

I met Henry at JSConf Last call in 2015. We discovered we both live in NYC, and he was saying he "just started" getting involved maintining Babel.js.

I really like watching Henry's presentation. He is quiet and not overly expressive, but he makes like minded JavaScript developers nods hard and giggle hard.

I appriciate his honesty about what he knows and what he has no idea about. We had long conversation over a lunch once. We talked about Open Source maintenance and education because we both were stuck wondering how we should maintain and document our projects. To this day, I still think about his words "Everything is fake" - meaning no one is born expert but just looks like expert.

When you read his post, you might find his release updates are little different from just a list of bullet points on project updates. He includes lots of context information and you can hear his voice in the post. I really enjoy the human touch he brings to a software project like Babel.js.

Read the Post

Nearing the 7.0 Release

Ask Henry

What is one tool you can't leave at home in order to do your work ?

Boring, but my work laptop since I bring it home 😄. Maybe a board game (Codenames) so that I can rally some co-workers to take a break and work better afterwards!

What did you learn in 2017 ?

I learned a little more about what maintaining an open source project can be, not just what it is currently. It can be more than just reviewing pull requests, answering issues, but also a proper "etiquette" and building community (making it approachable/fun).

Maintaining something like Babel can be more than just the project itself but larger layers of ecoystems: for Babel it could be

What do you want to learn/work on/improve in 2018?

Probably writing? To write more, and stop waiting so long to put something down because I think it's bad/incorrect. And just doing it without trying to "publish" something that others will see since that will probably make it not happen.

And related to that probably improve my talks: more thought out + better slides 😄.