2019 – Year in Review

September 2019 marked my 20th year as a professional developer. I feel that I have come a long way in those twenty years, yet I continue to feel like a complete impostor almost every day. Pretty much the entire of my experience has been on the job learning or self taught. I didn’t complete school, and have made no effort to return to academia to try and get a piece of paper.

I think that has negatively impacted me along the way, not having the confidence to say “I’m qualified, look it says so right here”. So, in that twenty years, I’ve only had four jobs. Maybe it would have been different, I don’t know. I am, where I am.

To me, my chosen profession is not “just a job”, and in order to be the best I can be, I have to continue to grow in whatever way I can. With this in mind, I felt that trying to share what I felt about software development with others might help me reflect and grow in new ways, having found so many excellent “dev” streamers making positive impacts on others. So, this was the year I decided to give streaming a true shot. In doing so, I have learned a lot about me, a lot about what I really think and feel about software development. I have learned that I am not alone in my lack of confidence, or even alone in my origins story. I have learned that there are people out there excited to develop, but scared to fail.

In streaming, I discovered a great community full of helpful and understanding individuals. I believe my streaming has been a positive impact on myself, and more importantly, on others. After making affiliate, I applied and I was invited to join a team of like minded individuals in the form of the Live Coders and have been honored to have other team members visit my stream. Considering the negativity that is easy to find out there on “the internet”, it makes a refreshing change to find so many people who are genuinely out to help their fellow human.

In addition to my software development journey (because I have infinite amounts of time!), I decided to take my health a little more seriously. I began a new journey, taking up Karate. Going from completely out of shape to being in a class full of teenage black belts was quite the start, but I’ve seen positive improvement. Both in my mind and body. I have had the chance to reflect on my own personal beliefs in ways I didn’t expect, and feel that I’m a better person for this new path.

I hope that 2020 brings with it new positive challenges, new growth and new possibilities.

Remember to breathe..

Software development , programming, coding. Whatever you call it, it often involves sitting (or standing) for long periods of time in front of a screen, tapping away at a keyboard to get a result. If we are going by stereotypes, none of us are in good shape. We are the kids that got picked last at sports.

It’s easy to get wrapped up in being productive, it’s easy to justify those long periods of time because you’re working on the next best thing.

These days, I see a lot more developers who take their personal well being a lot more seriously. And I look at them, and I think. “How do they get enough time to do that and still do what we do?”. I have neglected my health for too long. I’ve made excuses, “oh, when my daughter is older”, “oh, I don’t have the time because I’ve got to sort out A or B”. But, the reality is, I’m just putting it off. And it’s cost me big time. I’m grossly overweight, I’m horrendously out of shape and hurtling towards my forties. I don’t want to be this any more.

I began cutting down my crap intake (I’m a big snacker), upping my water intake (drinking a lot of water means I get to walk more!). Increasing my exercise from basically nothing to something. And I intend to improve on that every week. I signed up for something with a year commitment. Serious Financial commitment. And then I began. And it hurt. It hurt bad. But with each passing session, it will get easier.

I’m not turning in to an angel overnight, I’m not cheating on a diet. I’m not dieting. I’m just cutting down the crap intake and gradually lowering the size of my portions so I’m not starving! I’m still going to eat burgers, steak and candy. I’m just going to eat a lot less of it and less frequently.

So, this site isn’t going to turn in to a “I’ve lost 5lbs” site, but I just wanted to share.

Remember to breathe…


A blog appears

I’ve not done much blogging in the past decade. I don’t consider myself to have much interesting to talk about. But it seems that I might have some opinions and ideas that could strike up conversation. That get others thinking.

This site will be primarily dedicated to documenting the things we go through on stream. If we talk about a design, or we discuss preferences, then I can share that here.