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Invisible progress

Looking at the site the Writestreak doesn't look much different from what it was couple of weeks ago. Only a closer inspection reveals those few visible changes I have done on the frontend recently.

 

Behind the scenes there has been a lot more happening. Almost all of the essential missing features have now their backend logic ready. They are also features that won't ever be directly visible in the site. They are still required to make the site usable at all beyond being a pretty showcase. The remaining few features just need to be brought to the frontend as well.

Wending machine workout

Sure it would be nice to have own gym at home, but there are benefits on having to go out to the gym as well. If it's too easy to get started with exercising it's also easier to postpone it just a little later.

Preparing to go to the gym is a ritual, start of a snowball where you start from small victories completing steps to get ready to leave. Get up from the couch, change into training outfit, pick your training gear and so on until you are at the gym.

Potential future features

While I try to focus on the essential features while working on the Writestreak I can't shut my mind off from thinking ahead. There's just so many of them it's often hard to focus.

 

There is an actual reason to think ahead and ponder those ideas. There might be things worth adding later, but if I don't account for them now in the initial design it might become much harder to integrate them when the system isn't designed such features in mind.

 

Home gym

When returning back to the gym after a long break I remembered why I don't like it. It's not the actual workout that bothers me. I think I'm actually starting to like it. It's not even the extra effort of actually getting there. That just adds some friction.

The first two times the gym was quite crowded. It's a bigger, more popular gym than what I used to go before. But yesterday there weren't that many people there and I felt a bit more relaxed.

Finnsplaining

Maybe we Finns tend to be more on the quiet side. But there is one thing we won't shut up: explaining how good we have things here in Finland. It's like we are living in this magical wonderland like Narnia or something. Another way how somebody put it what I have heard is that Finland is like Narnia because we are so quiet you can hear the animals talk.

This might also be the only occasion we say something good about the Sweden as well as we like to include all of the Nordics in our praises. After all they are our dear enemies, still better than the others.

Dogfooding

Eating your own dogfood refers to a practice of using your own products. It's the best way to haun insight on how good the product is and how could you improve it.

In consulting business this is rarely possible. Most of the projects, especially when working on b2b sector are quite far from the regular day to day services anybody would be using. Unless you happen to be in the industry. So you just need to trust your customers and their insight of their users' preferences.

Focusing on essentials

My ideas and urge to keep implementing all the fancy stuff could potentially endanger the stable release of the Writestreak. I've already done implementing some of those, but others are still in progress. It might be easier to take a step back and stick with the basic functionality first.

Static content in real time

I'm an avid advocate of green tech thinking. So obviously I want whatever I code to be as efficient as possible regarding resource usage. My current website and writing platform produces only 0,08g of CO2 on page load. According to wesitecarbon.com that is less than the emissions of 93% of the sites tested. I definitely wish to keep my new platforms emissions at the same level. Going any lower starts to be quite challenging. 

Introducing Writestreak

I guess it's good enough to show. I've got most of the issues sorted out to the point that the site is already usable for demo purposes. There are still a lot of all those little things I'd like to iron out. There is also still a lot of work on the backend side. But the basic functionality is there and it doesn't look half bad.

I don't think there will be better time to release it to the wild. If I keep it to myself I just keep refining it over and over again. Trying to reach perfection is sure way of never releasing anything. Trust me, I have plenty of those projects.

Just one more feature

Working on your own project is great. You can basically decide all the features you want to implement by yourself. You get to implement the features you are capable of and those you are willing to learn the necessary skills. You can even implement features just for the sake of learning.

But when all those features start flowing in it feels like there is no end. There are always things to add, improve or learn. The only limit is you willingness to put your time and effort into the project.

The hot mess of modern JavaScript

I'm no stranger to JavaScript. I used to write it quite a lot 15-20 years ago. I even wrote couple of frameworks for it. So it shouldn't be that hard for me to work with it after all these years. (I have done some occasional JavaScript coding during the meantime too.)

The language itself isn't the problem. Even if there has been a couple of major iterations of it that came out since my prime time. It's just syntactic sugar, easy enough to pick up rather fast. In many ways it's a lot easier to do things just by the vanilla JavaScript itself than it used to be.

I have not failed 700 times

The famous quote from Edison about his success in finding multiple ways of how not to so a lightbulb pretty  much sums up my todays progress working on the writing platform. In a sense I didn't make any progress on it today despite working on it for several hours. I did however learn a lot about modern JavaScript and how not to do things.

A weekend project

It wasn't just a talk, I actually went ahead and started prototyping an alternative social streak writing platform. And of course I couldn't wait until the weekend! I've already spend a few hours during the week to setup something simple.

Getting up with the basics is easy. I already have fully functioning platform ready where you can register and login, write posts and comment them. There is even a favourites feature. Then there is own, recent and popular posts listings too.

Back to the gym

I finally managed to get myself back to the gym yesterday. While I have gained some weight and lost muscle I was surprised I still managed to do a proper workout. I didn't let myself off easy, pit on as much weight as I felt barely comfortable. So I expected to have pretty sore muscles today.

Turns out you don't lose muscle that fast. At least when you still make sure to do at least some activity every day. And that's exactly what I have been doing. After being away from gym for one and a half year I'm still in adequate shape.

Caffeinite'd

I made a big mistake yesterday. We had a friend visiting us in the afternoon and as is customary the coffee was obviously served. And letting your quests to drink alone just doesn't feel right either. So I had a cup myself as well.

There were times when I could drink half a pan of coffee right before going to bed and sleep like a baby. After gradually lovering my dose all the way to just one (or rarely two) cups in the morning the effect of caffeine has once again returned. Just one cup after noon is able to keep me up all night.

Four and a half cups

Me and my wife both drink a cup of coffee in the morning. Earlier we both used to drink two cups, but have recently dropped it down to one. The responsibility of making the coffee falls to the one waking up earlier, or sometimes to me even if she gets up before me if she's not in a hurry.

Our coffee machine has the water container with measurements of water per cup in increments of two. We however like to drink a bit bigger cups. The correct amount for our two cups is about 5 cups on the machine's scale.

Mind drifting

Trying to focus can be hard. Especially when you are doing boring tasks that don't require that much thinking. It's easy to let your mind drift away from the current task and start thinking something completely different. Usually it's a good thing. It makes those menial tasks more bearable and helps pass the time.

There are also times when that's a bad thing. If you are doing something that is boring, but which still requires you to be aware of your surroundings it can even be dangerous to lose the focus. Driving is a good example of this.

Premature autonomy

Tesla has released their full self-driving capability upgrade for selected vehicles some time ago. The beta testing is nothing new in the software world, but when the software is something like this it's entirely different thing. They are literally putting human lives at the stake.

The (final?) countdown

I'm only three days away from my 700th post in co-writers, two weeks until i have published half my streak on it and a bit over month away using it for two whole year.  These might be my last waypoints there as @basilesamel has announced the end of co-writers.

Besides those additional waypoints and achievements the site has offered a nice community and feeling of writing together (and a wider audience I'm sure). During the past two years I have thought of leaving my own platform behind and focus on posting only on co-writers. Now, I'm glad I didn't.

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