WHEREIN I REFLECT A BIT
2010 was a good year for me for web development. I got better at ASP.NET/C#. I learned some ruby. I made some significant progress on my personal websites. I got fairly seasoned with git.
2011, so far, has not seen these kinds of developments. I burned out a little. It’s been hard to get motivated again. This is a natural cycle for me. I aim to change this by moving forth to the part of said cycle where I ridiculously binge on 343423545 projects at once.
One roadblock thus far has been my new computer. Usually, getting new tech is supposed to better your situation, not worsen it. Unfortunately, whenever I get a new machine I like to start from scratch instead of restoring a backup (e.g. Time Machine). The idea is that over time your computer builds up with application cruft, bits of code, settings, and applications you may have introduced that were useful for 5 minutes but then forgotten about. Backups save everything, for better or worse, and restoring it to a pristine specimen would just make it the same used vehicle you’ve been riding for years.
Instead, I like to begin with a blank OS install, install all my basic applications, and then configure them accordingly. I look at my old machine and filter out the stuff I barely/never used and skip them when copying stuff over. This leaves me with the newness of my latest tech acquisition, and (hopefully) none of the residue of the old one save for stuff I actually use. It’s a slight OCD way of going about it, but I like the process…the mind-clearing aspect of it all. The process, however, can take a while.
The last time I had to do this was 2007. That’s a long time. I was instantly reminded of that precious luxury I always say I’m going to utilize: make a list of all things I need to do to set up a new computer and actually use it. In the end, I usually just download the things that come to mind, copy over music/movies/pictures/documents, and then concurrently set up my main music composition/recording (Logic, sample libraries, plugins, etc.) and web development (Textmate, apache, php, cakephp, ruby, git, etc.) applications. My OS of choice, Mac OS X, comes with a lot of the web dev stuff built-in, but not all. Even when it’s automatically installed, I always seem to have to reconfigure something, spending a day or two on Google finding fixes for my specific situation. A minor revision in any of those applications can change how something works.
What would help this? Making a list of all of these things (they often reoccur each upgrade cycle) so that in the future I know what to look for, saving myself some frustration and time. I’ve gotten so far sometimes as actually making the list of things to install, but I never want to account for the intricacies of getting them all working. My forced amnesia of the past condemns me to repeat it, no?
Thankfully, I seem to have most of it all squared away. If I could just tear myself away from WoW and sometimes crushing self-doubt about my abilities as a programmer and designer I will again tackle the small pile of bugs in Redmine for both nebyoolae.com and nebyooweb.com. I’ve got an idea or two to make morethingsneed.to better, as well, but I’m not sure of the current status of it right now.
Regardless of all the set up woes and consternation, my new MacBook Pro continues to be the knees of a bee.
FOR THE ROAD
The new iPad 2 is reslickulously (to quote myself) sweet. It is everything you like about the iPhone, made bigger and better. If it could just shrink down into your pocket, it would cause the world to rejoice in unison.