Toptal Engineering Blog

The Toptal Engineering Blog is a hub for in-depth development tutorials and new technology announcements created by professional software engineers in the Toptal network.

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3D Graphics: A WebGL Tutorial

by Adnan Ademovic

Whether you just want to create an interactive 3D logo, on the screen or design a fully fledged game, knowing the principles of 3D graphics rendering will help you achieve your goal. In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Adnan Ademovic gives us a step-by-step tutorial to rendering objects with textures and lighting, by breaking down abstract concepts like objects, lights, and cameras into simple WebGL procedures.

25+ minute readContinue Reading
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Eight Rules for Effective Software Production

by Timofey Nevolin

While working at different stages of the software development lifecycle you often realize that software production isn’t easy. It takes consistent effort to make something great. However, it doesn’t have to come at the cost of working through nights or weekends. In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Timofey Nevolin shares eight simple, yet powerful rules for effective software production.

23 minute readContinue Reading
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Server-side I/O Performance: Node vs. PHP vs. Java vs. Go

by Brad Peabody

Understanding the Input/Output (I/O) model of your application can mean the difference between an application that deals with the load it is subjected to, and one that crumples in the face of real-world uses cases. Perhaps while your application is small and does not serve high loads, it may matter far less. But as your application’s traffic load increases, working with the wrong I/O model can get you into a world of hurt.

16 minute readContinue Reading
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How to Create Custom Magento 2 Widgets

by Vivek Khatri

Widgets play a pivotal role in Magento development, as they’re often used to display targeted content and provide crucial front-end functionality. Magento 2 offers a lot of widget possibilities out of the box, and also allows developers to unlock more features using custom widgets. In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Vivek Khatri provides an overview of widget implementation in Magento 2, starting with the basics and culminating in custom widget design.

9 minute readContinue Reading
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How C++ Works: Understanding Compilation

by Daniel Angel Muñoz Trejo

Compilation and linking are two very fundamental processes that happen all the time during C++ software development. However, what happens during these processes? How does the compiler go from your neatly organized source code to a binary file that the machine understands? In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Daniel Trejo explains how a C++ compiler works with some of the basic language constructs to answer some common questions that are related to these processes.

23 minute readContinue Reading
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Aurelia vs. Angular 2 — A Code Comparison

by Alexander Mikhalchenko

Angular and Aurelia are fierce competitors developed and released at approximately the same time. They have a similar philosophy, but they differ in a number of key ways. This article does side-by-side comparisons of those differences in features and code.

13 minute readContinue Reading
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Building Cross-platform Apps with Xamarin: Perspective of an Android Developer

by Emran Bajrami

Writing reusable code that can be shared across multiple platforms can make developing mobile applications a lot easier. But, how do you do that without paying the usual cost of maintainability, ease of testing, and poor user experience that comes with cross-platform mobile application development? In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Emran Bajrami walks us through Xamarin and shows us techniques for building high-quality cross-platform apps.

13 minute readContinue Reading
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SQL Server 2016 Always Encrypted: Easy to Implement, Tough to Crack

by Josip Šaban

Security has always been a primary concern for database experts, and with the advent of new, decentralized services, it’s become even more crucial. Microsoft addressed the need for an added level of security in SQL with the introduction of Always Encrypted functionality in SQL Server 2016. In this blog post, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Josip Saban explains how Microsoft’s Always Encrypted concept works, how it’s implemented, and why developers can’t afford to ignore it.

11 minute readContinue Reading

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