John O'Rourke - How to not Hurt People with Software

John O'Rourke

John O'Rourke

The talk: How to not Hurt People with Software

People don’t usually die when we get software wrong, but every day our lives become more reliant on good software. The quality of software will have more impact on your health and wealth as you get older. Valid data is a big part of quality, and John will take you on an entertaining journey from the first principles of data validation to how this actually looks in your day-job. You only need to remember a few principles - while learning those, we will talk about meeting dates, character encoding, and (like all English people) the weather. His aim is to make the talk useful and accessible to everyone, which means keeping the language easy for non-native speakers, keeping it interesting for distracted or tired brains, and providing notes for those who aren’t able to take their own.

About John O’Rourke

John has been coding for 38 years and, thanks to a mother who asked “what are you doing on that computer?”, he’s always been able to explain in plain language what actually happens in software. After building a Perl-based e-commerce system popular in the promotional products industry, he realised it’s easier when there is a whole community of developers, and started working with Magento in 2012. With business partner Gareth Pritchard he runs Burnley-based agency GetJohn, which provides B2B e-commerce, SSO and PunchOut integrations to help buyers and suppliers communicate more easily. Their shared vision is to create a workplace where neuro-diverse people thrive and everyone is able to do their best work. You can find him on LinkedIn, MageChat and at