New Years Resolutions 2016

It’s that time of year again!

Resolution 1: Post on the blog more regularly. A minimum of once a week.

I know that I say this every time that I come back from a break. It is just a matter of having the self-discipline to find the time to sit down and write something, even it it’s short. It’s not like I have nothing to write – I have a list of topics in the backlog. The problem is that if I miss one week, it becomes a lot easier to miss the next too, so I’m going to practice self-discipline.

Resolution 2: More Apple II Projects

I lost the space I had available to work on stuff as of the summer, so I had to put all of my Apple II gear away. But in about a month, I’m going be getting some office space at home again, so I can set it all up again! I want to continue with the disk imaging, and find some sort of interesting hardware project to do, as well as retrobrite a bunch of stuff. Maybe I can even find something that I can write up for Juiced.GS!

Resolution 3: Work on LuneOS

I did a bit of work with the LuneOS folks last year, but mostly had to leave it alone due to being busy at work. Now that I’m going to have office space at home again, I want to find some time to contribute to the project – maybe get the Photos and Videos app complete and functional.

Resolution 4: FeedSpider rewrite into pure Enyo 2

I know, another FeedSpider rewrite!? The last re-write still relies heavily on prototype.js. With model and collection support, and taking advantage of bindings, I should be able to eliminate that entirely. I’ll be able to complete my goal of releasing FeedSpider for more platforms, especially iOS.

Resolution 5: Grow the business

If I want to be able to fund all of this, I need to keep growing my business, Othello Ventures Ltd. The goal is to take on more development contracts, so that I can bring on more people and turn that into a positive feedback loop. I also have a few other projects in mind that will hopefully help, and I look forward to executing on them. 2015 was a good year for the business. I want 2016 to be a great year!

That all should be enough to keep me busy for an entire year now, shouldn’t it!

The Joy of Creation

Nothing is quite as satisfying as finishing a project that you’ve been working on for some time, especially if its been sitting on your desk for a while – important but not urgent. For me, that has been adding Feedly integration to FeedSpider over the last week or so. That is now complete, and I am just waiting for the guys over at Feedly to push my new client id to production so that I can release the app. (As a bonus, I also added support for BazQux Reader. It only took about half an hour thanks to their very Google-like API.)

The biggest challenge was implementing OAuth support (detailed in my last post), but between a few false starts with AOL reader, which requires the same technology, and work piling up at my day job, I got it done. The rest of the project was merely tweaking the app to support Feedly’s API, which is Google-like, but just different enough to create it’s own challenges, especially on the platform that I’m working on. And now, that’s finished too.

While I can’t take credit for building the app from the ground up, (Darrin Holst did an excellent job of architecting it), I have done some significant tinkering under the hood, and am very proud of reworking the API and login/credential layers so that the app can properly and easily handle multiple providers with different requirements. This was aptly demonstrated by how easy is was to integrate BazQux Reader. I just had to drop in a new app API, and add the service to the service list. No other changes required.

One of the things that I love about programming is the feeling of having built something, even if it’s just a bunch of bits. It gives you a certain satisfaction and an energy that can’t be duplicated – make you feel like you can take on the world, and makes you feel ready to go energetically into the next project. That’s something that’s feels like its missing nowadays – and why I intend to keep programming and building computers and systems for many years to come.