I thought that it might be time to give an update. I have been very busy over with the agile evangelists at Integrum Technologies and have been loving every minute of all the things I’ve managed to absorb in the past few months. My conversion to Rails has been drastically better than my past experience of learning other languages. Within weeks I felt confident enough to start my own side projects and dive head-first into things that I used to wait months to fully understand how to do with previous conversions.
I have come to gain a very solid appreciation of AJAX, as long as it is done unobtrusively. I’ve also come to love the purpose and structure that a good MVC framework can provide. I’ve come to swear by TextMate. I can’t imagine managing a web project again without it. I’ve found that pair programming provides amazing benefits that can never be guessed at until you’ve tried it yourself. I’ve found that my errors and refactoring due to pair programming have been exponentially improved and that my development style in general has become more efficent, more detailed, and more well-thought than in the past (in much less time). I’ve also found that agile methodology as a method of software development just makes sense (for me at least). Software (especially web based applications or sites) are constantly changing in their requirements, goals, needs, and acceptence criteria. Agile methodology ties in perfectly with this dynamic lifestyle of software growth.
As to the other things that I’ve been up to, well I’ve started at least three side-projects that I work on at nights in my free time and on weekends. I’ve always been a big “to-do” list person and I’ve started using Things on the iPhone over the past month or so and the change in my productivity has been drastic. It helps me to prioritize everything that needs to happen, when it needs to happen, and it especially helps me to space out the things that need to happen so that my entire evening, weekend, and life are not consumed by mundane or necessary to-dos. I have yet to learn the details of GTD (Getting Things Done), but I plan on it full-heartedly once life slows down a little more. In the meantime, 2 minutes over at Things’ for iPhone website has made it a pretty easy to use system that works for me in the status quo.
I’ve also been busy setting up a new server over with the folks at SliceHost so that I can get a simple development server for my applications, and clients on the side. So far the experience has bee amazing and I really like the service and GUI features for the price.
As to life in general, well if the above hasn’t made it clear, I don’t really have one. I go to work, come home and do the household chores and spend as much time as I can with Paisley, then tackle something related to a personal project or client each night. I’ve gotten pretty good at sleeping less again lately and my 8 hours has cut back to 6 or so in order to let me get more done each day. Through all of this insanity of business Katie has been the most supportive wife anyone could ever ask for!
I did have a chance to get a book read recently. Breaking Dawn came out as the last book for the Twilight series and I finished that up yesterday. It was a much needed break away from the constant thumbing through of manuals, APIs, and tutorials. I’ve also watched a few movies lately when the opportunity permits. The best movie I’ve seen in a long time (like everyone else it seems) is The Dark Knight. It’s a shame we won’t have Heath Ledger around as I’ve always like him as an actor. Even in Brokeback Mountain.
As to what is upcoming, Paisley turns one in a little over a month! I can’t believe how fast she has grown! It seems like only a few weeks ago to me that we were bringing her home for the first time. She already has four teeth now and is pulling herself along the edge of furniture to walk. She reads to herself all the time and her favorite show (we’re fairly certain) is the Upside Down show. She is always sleeping through the night (and always has) and the only time she’s even slightly fussy seems to be when she is teething or has been stuck in her carseat for errands all day.
As to my wishlist of things to do. I’m dying to go snowboarding of course, but unfortunately I’m not sure that I’ll get to do much of that for a while. Between work, projects, household tasks, and paperwork I’m not sure if I’ll be able to make time to get onto a slope for a while to come. I’m also not sure if the finances will provide for more than one or two trips this season (if I’m lucky). There’s still so much to find funding for and just no funding to go towards it (logo design, website design, business paperwork, hardware upgrades, server expansion, etc, etc). Such is life though and hopefully, in time, things will get easier in that department.
That’s about all the time I can spare during this lunchbreak though so I suppose I’ll have to tie it up for now. Thanks for checking in and I’ll try to post more frequently as I know I’ve slacked a lot as of late.