I like learning new programming languages. Unfortunately, I rarely make the time to get any good at them. I’m hoping to figure out how to force myself to write something non-trivial in something at least relatively unlike what I do all day.
I feel like I’m always struggling with productivity. I don’t get the things done that I want to get done, and I’m never sure where I lost my momentum, or why, or how I can keep with it. I’ve tried a bunch of productivity tools, and most of them have failed. For a while, now, I’ve had an on-again-off-again relationship with The Daily Practice, which I think is great. Even though I think it’s great, I don’t always manage to keep up with it, which means it doesn’t actually do me much good.
I just recently wrote about trying to deal with my backlog of bug reports and feature requests. It is not, sad to say, the only backlog of stuff I’ve been meaning, but failing, to do. There’s also my backlog of reading.
I maintain a bunch of published code. I probably wrote more than half of it, and I’ve been the sole maintainer for years on most of the rest. I inherited a lot of bug reports, I get new bug reports, and I get feature requests. I used to try to respond to everything immediately, or at least within a few days.
Template Toolkit 2, aka TT2, has long been a thorn in my side. Once upon a time, I really liked it, but the more I used it, the more it frustrated me. In almost every case, my real frustrations stem from the following set of facts:
I’m posting this much later than I started writing it. I thought I’d get back to it and fill in details, but that basically didn’t happen. So it goes.
We’ve been rolling out more and more metrics at work using Graphite and StatsD. I am in heaven. I’m not very good at doing data analysis, but fortunately there are some very, very obvious things I can pick out from our current visualizations, and I’m finding all kinds of things to improve based on these.
I got home from Lancaster, this morning. I’d been there for the sixth annual Perl QA Hackathon. As usual, it was a success and made me feel pretty productive. Here’s an account of most of the things I did:
If there’s money earmarked to be spent improving Perl 5, one seemingly obvious
thing to do is to try to use it to directly to improve
perl. In other
words, the mission is to “turn money into code.” The most successful
expression of this strategy, I think, has been in Nick and Dave’s grants. On
the other hand, it’s an expression that succeeded because of very specific and
felicitous circumstances. Dave and Nick were both well-established, trusted
participants in perl’s development, known as experts and conscientious workers.
They were given, by and large, free rein to pick the topics on which they would
work. The foundation trusted them to pick things of value, though with a means
for TPF to call shenanigans if needed. That trust has been well-placed, in