The Focus on Code and my Oct - Dec Sprint ~ 20 Oct 2021

The thing I love the most about learning is that every topic is infinitely deep. As I’ve progressed through my early career and found software engineering as my landing spot, I’ve been thinking about where to double down.

The Story

After graduating from college, I thought that Product Management would be my future. It still might be, but I’ve taken a slight detour into the realm of software engineering. Putting applications together with code-poetry is not only intellectually stimulating, it’s valuable.

I’ve been heads down recently, learning and growing (as I also get settled in Austin). This learning and growing has pointed me to reflect on what I’m looking to learn, and why.

The world of development is cluttered with buzzwords. Full stack, backend, frontend, server-side, client side, the list goes on. Clarity of thought is clarity in word, and I want to simplify my technology decisions as much as possible.

There’s a lot of talk on tech Twitter about what language to learn, and what’s the best, etc, etc.

“Python is so flexible!”
“Java is amazing in the enterprise!”
“JavaScript is ubiquitous”
“Ruby is dying”

When stripped of the “hotness” of a language, they all do similar things. Considering my past experience in this reflection, I see a few patterns in the work I’ve enjoyed doing the most.

  1. I love working with people. More specifically, I like building something for an audience.
  2. I have dabbled in product strategy and design, but have no desire to make product design my primary profession.
  3. After trying a smattering of languages through the years, it’s clear that I love Ruby and JavaScript and their respective ecosystems.

As a customer-centric, product oriented, collaborative, designing developer, I’ve decided to double down on Ruby on Rails and JavaScript frontend frameworks.

In coming to this conclusion, I’ve had a strange reluctance. I often wonder if I’m pidgeon-holing myself. Then I remember how I got here, by trying lots of different things that didn’t fit well. Right now, at this moment in time, this skillset feels right to me. It’s one that will allow me to branch off creatively in other directions through my career.

The Sprint

I’ve started a sprint to immerse myself in the tools, strategies, and skills I need to get my technical skills to the next level.

I’m running it for myself between today (October 20) and December 10th, giving me roughly 7.5 weeks. I’m holding myself accountable by sharing my progress with those around me and online (Twitter and this post right here).

My focus areas are:

  • Ruby
  • Rails
  • RSpec (the Ruby test framework)
  • VueJS

My commitments are:

  • Commit to GitHub 6x a week
  • Ship 2 side projects (non-work related)
  • Complete 2 online courses
  • Read 2 programming books
  • Join and be active in 1-2 online programming communities

It’s time to get to work. 🚀

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© Saalik Lokhandwala, 2021