Mad scribblings and inexpert musing

Who I Am and Where I Am Going

published: 28 Nov 2011 04:11:00PM

So who am I now?

Basically I am not anybody. I'm a student of Computer Science and Mathematics at San José State University. I have been fiddling with computers my whole life but would say that the decision to embrace quality software design only happened about a year and a half ago. My entire formal education save for one functional programming class which I only had last semester has been Java but for a token course each in C, C++, and Assembly taught by a professor who had to mentally translate everything into Java and then translate it back to answer questions. As a result, I'm really behind in a lot of stuff I shouldn't be behind in.

In the past two years I've found myself making money doing things in Ruby. The best thing about Ruby is that it's fun to do things right, compared to Java where you are actively punished for trying to do so. I have made it my business to be a good Rubyist and live up to those who inspired me to learn the language and participate in the community. As part of this process I've read voraciously on Ruby and software craftmanship, lurked in IRC, and made a nuisance of myself at conferences and Ruby meetups. The process has made me a lot of new friends, at times both inflated and deflated my ego, and overall given me a much grander perspective on what the important things are in life and in software development.

Because it's rather difficult to code in 90 minute spats with shoddy internet, the great majority (read: all but school related) of my projects are in-progress and incomplete. I despise this about myself. One of the main things I still suck at is cranking out a project in a weekend. And since most of my projects are started to apply a specific bit of knowledge or insight, or leverage a specific language or language feature I wish to do more with, I tend to start a new one more often than continue work on the old ones. While I don't think it too much of a problem, it'd definitely feel better to have one or two completed works in my portfolio that aren't a top-down recursive descent parser, of which I have three with a fourth (Clojure, this time) in progress.

Just where is he going with this..?

Well now, I'm working as a Ruby developer, I've finally made it to a Railsbridge workshop and absolutely love teaching there. More to the credit of Steve's open commit policy than to my own artistry I am a contributor to

I've just decided to apply to January's Ruby Mendicant University session though the upcoming weeks are going to be maddeningly busy for me and I may have to hold off until the next one comes around. I had the pleasure of taking Peter Cooper's Ruby Reloaded course which I highly recommend for those who learned just enough Ruby to be potent with Rails but still aren't sure what's going on in some cases.

I've picked up Clojure and and revisited Haskell and am loving both. I've got a few ideas in mind for beginning Clojure projects and am preparing for a return to Archlinux as my primary OS as I simply can't tolerate OS X any longer.

I want to start being the type of programmer that inspired me to get as far as I've had the privilege of getting thus far and I'll do it one application, library, and blog article at a time. Starting...