New website, new blog, current projects, current struggles, and other ramblings

Hi. I'm Noah. This is my first "official" blog post. I'm currently a software engineer for a financial reporting company in the midwest.

The quarantine has been particularly hard on me; I'm lucky that it hasn't affected my family's health or my job, but I'm still getting stir-crazy. This blog is a result of me trying to be more productive while documenting my struggles and the projects I'm working on.

nezteb.net is a Phoenix app that I'll be tinkering with over time.

blog.nezteb.net (this page) is made with Google's blogger.com. System administration is not my favorite thing in the world, so I'm doing things as cheaply/simply as possible. I really don't want to pay for or manage a WordPress or Ghost installation. I'm lazy and have selective interests.  I used to use Gatsby.js but got tired of it; it was just complicated enough (mostly the GraphQL and plugin setup) to annoy me. I wanted to reduce the effort of writing blog posts (like this one) to as close to zero as possible. Blogger helps with that for now. Maybe in the future I'll look at using Hugo.

Current development projects I've got going on: (in no particular order)
  • Adding support for the Haxe programming language to exercism.io, a website dedicated to teaching various programming languages. The track's repo can be found here.
  • Getting more actual practice with Elixir and Phoenix. Someday I'd really like to work with them professionally, but for now that's not in the cards for me. This is what the main nezteb.net site is for, and I hope to be implementing some dev ideas I have written down in Notion. The backlog is long...
  • Practicing Kotlin for scenarios where Elixir doesn't make as mch sense (my work is mostly a Java shop, and I'm trying to get Kotlin in the door).
  • Practicing TypeScript, my favorite frontend language and toolkit. I'd like to be considered a "full-stack" developer, despite the negative connotations that term has had over the years. I don't need to master it, but I'd rather not be relegated to "backend developer" status.
Despite having projects to work on, I don't have any concrete "goals" with any of them. I'm not a big fan of "goals"; I'm more of a "habits" person. Instead of "get XYZ done by July," I prefer to focus on "work on XYZ for some hours per day/week until it's done". Current habits I'm trying to strengthen:
  • Meditate for 15 minutes per day.
  • Exercise for 30 minutes per day, even if it's just stretching/yoga.
  • Work on personal dev projects (listed above) for at least 30 minutes per day.
  • Write a blog post once per week.
In addition to the above, I've been preparing to move to Minneapolis. This was initially postponed because of coronavirus. Obviously there are other issues in Minneapolis going on right now, but I still plan to move there sometime in July. Moving and packing stresses me the heck out, almost irrationally so. I'm currently in the process of giving away as much of my stuff as I can. After that, I'll start actually putting things in boxes/bins.

A lot of my initial writing will probably come off as rants and ramblings. I'll probably come back and edit them after initial posting; this is how I encourage myself to focus on writing and to not worry about it being perfect at first. I hope to write more structured blog posts on topics like meditation, productivity, personal finance, public speaking, and random programming things.

Stay tuned!

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