A Few of My Favorite Things

With almost a third of the year over already, I’m far behind my goal to have 72 blog posts in 2009. I have, however, completed one presentation at CRIneta, and my co-presentation with Tim Barcz for the Iowa Code Camp in less than two weeks will fulfill my goal of two talks/presentations this year. I’ve had a single (small) commit to an open source project, which completes half of that bullet point. Overall, I’m happy with what I have completed, but there’s always room for improvement.

Not to make excuses, but here are some of the things I “blame” for my lack of posts lately. Some, more than others, are taking up a lot of my time. The ones that haven’t taken up lots of time are here because I want to share them with you.

  1. Trac – Trac is an excellent, free, bug tracking solution that integrates with Subversion. Initially I had some learning to do before setting this up. I’m not familiar with Python and running under Apache was foreign since I’ve barely used it. I must say, the tools around this really intrigue me and I’m a little less scared of the command line than I was prior.
  2. jQuery Tooltip Plugin This little gem was exactly what I was looking for. This only re-iterates my notion that if there is something you want to do with jQuery that isn’t in the core library, somebody has already written a nice plugin to do it for you.
  3. Jimmy’s **AutoMapper – I haven’t spent loads of time looking at what I can do with this, but I like what I’ve seen so far. This is about to fall into my tool belt.
  4. Scrum – I’ve been asking many questions about Scrum. I’ve known about it for sometime now, but haven’t been able to use it with a decent sized team, on a decent sized project, until recently. Thanks to all the Los Techies guys and anybody else who has helped make the transition go a bit more smoothly by answering my questions. Also, those who helped by conveying the idea to others in the company.
  5. DimeCasts.net I like to learn by reading, writing, and looking at code and Derik and several others have helped provide some excellent topics. I actually get so excited I sometimes stop what I’m doing when a new one shows up in my feed.
  6. Code Camps – As I write this, the Iowa Code Camp is sneaking up on me and the Chicago Code Camp is right around the corner. As I mentioned above, I’ll be presenting at Iowa Code Camp, which is being held in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I don’t even have to leave town!
  7. Developer Book Clubs – The third meeting of the Cedar Rapids Developer Book Club meets tomorrow night.
  8. GitHub – I created an account recently so I can take part in some open source projects that are of interest to me. Also, it’s a good excuse to get some practice using Git.
  9. Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 – At work, this has replaced Groupwise Messenger and made the lives easier of many people. Being able to share my desktop quickly through a chat client with an application IT installed for me is a nice bonus.
  10. Disc Golf – I know it has nothing to do with computers, development, software or tech gadgets, but I had to throw it in there.
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