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year end 2020

i don’t post many updates here, obviously. anyway, “professional” grammar style engaged:

This was an interesting year. Having spent the last couple years in Seattle hoping employers would learn to overlook my lack of professional experience, I decided to finish my degree to prove to some of them that I could. The semester ended up teaching me a few things as I challenged myself outside my comfort zone with classes like AI and embedded systems. I started working on ultron, a Discord bot toy project for me to play with async and database concepts. The consequence of these things means my open source contributions have slowed down. I’d like to get back to working on druid on the weekends; there are some smart people on that project that it’s nice to be in the same chat with. Another thing that seems inevitable is getting more into Android. Reading last years post and the recruiter emails I’ve been ignoring, it seems like Android is my destiny in a way. I’ve got a head-start on concepts like Compose, but I need to learn more about the pro Android stack – DI, testing, band-aid middleware, etc. – that is essential to writing stable Android apps.

Also, this is my homepage now. I don’t have time to manage a reinvented wheel of a CMS Go app. In this same vein, I’ve been getting into Linux containers and DevOps systems like Docker, Podman, Buildah, and Nix. I’d like to have a more functioning website/playground where I can show off some of my work and maybe incorporate things like WASM, Elm, Svelte, and/or React.js. If I were to manage a back-end, Rust is still a very compelling option for a quick and ergonomic HTTP server, and the async/await I’ve come into contact with is nice to use and readable.

So now, as an official college graduate and Bachelor of Computer Science, the job hunt gets serious. Dream jobs aren’t exactly flowing right now, but time’s a’wastin’. Android is a good avenue for income since it seems no one wants to do it – including me to some extent –, but the ecosystem has some promising improvements in the pipeline that could make this a workable option. I’d like to work in Rust, doing embedded systems or software infrastructure like UI frameworks or Linux desktop services, although I realize this market is fairly stiff for someone with my experience.

And it’s time to get real. I have been a lazy slacker to some extent, although I haven’t stopped programming. It’s time to do the tedious stuff like project maintenance, DevOps pipelines, documentation, working with others, picking up low hanging fruit, and being more dependable in general. After all, I’m a college graduate now, and with great power comes great responsibility.

year end 2019

This being the first post and year-end message is indicative of how my year has been. I’ve been jumping between projects deciding what my focus will be. I don’t think I’ll be contributing much more to Remacs; it’s a cool project but doesn’t push my career forward in terms of research or the end product. Also, this year I learned I’m not a game developer. I get so caught up in tools like the sheep texture packer that I can hardly make forward progress.

On a more positive note, I’m getting back into Android. Compose has promised to make UI development on Android more bearable, and my professional experience is all JVM/Android anyway, so here we go. I’m also very interested in UI development in general, especially reactive/declarative UIs. I’ll be watching the work of Raph Levien and the xi-editor/druid project and hopefully making my own contributions. Working on Android doesn’t mean I’m abandoning Rust, either. druid is a Rust framework, and Rust has potential for a great cross-platform story (vs C++, for example).

All in all I’m looking forward to doing more open source contributions and polishing my existing projects in 2020.