What have I been up to lately?

It has been quite a while since I have had much time to even think about writing a blog post and there are a series of reasons for that. Typically, I try not to avoid writing those “posting about why I haven’t been posting” posts that seem all to common amongst lazy bloggers like myself, but in this case I feel reasons are sufficiently interesting to go into detail.

To begin with, my wife and I bought a house in September and moved in late October. While we did often go and look at houses we were not really planning on actually buying one, but a couple months ago we stumbled upon the perfect 102 year old character home, with a rental suite and a veranda porch on the front. My first student house in Kingston had one of these porches and I loved sitting on it, having a beer with my friend. We even managed to get it without any bidding war, something that is highly uncommon in Vancouver.

It’s near pretty much everything, blocks from Commercial Drive, right near downtown, around the corner from a great Japanese grocery and sushi take-out place in the city. The place is “practically perfect in every way” well. almost. The kitchen is in a horrendous state, the drawers and cabinets look like a poorly trained monkey with one arm and one leg put them together. The sink pretty much bathes you in water if you try to do dishes in it, the electrical work around the cabinets is, well. questionable. On the upside it has new appliances which are really nice, including my personal favourite and Kitchen-Aid gas range which is awesome.

As it turns out, buying and now owning a home creates all sorts of chores and tasks that preoccupy a significant amount of free time, for example trying to find out what all the light switches which appear to have no purpose do. To make things even crazier during the last month than they already are, pretty much everyone I know, including myself, has their birthday either in October or early November so lots of celebrating, sometimes to save time we celebrate a couple birthday’s at a time ;-). Finally, nearing the ned of all this chaos, was the Agile Vancouver (n.b.: if you live in Vancouver and you are a developer it would be worth your while to join this group) conference, which was where I was going with this whole post.

This conference was incredible. Eric Evans, Martin Fowler, Michael Feathers, Mary and Tom Poppendeick were just some of the speakers. I have recently been introduced to many of them through several books, articles and blog posts I’ve been reading while trying to educate myself on various topics related to agile, SOLID, DDD and TDD. Being able to attend a conference with them was an incredible experience and a bit of serendipitous timing for my education as a developer. Short story, it was great.

There was also a discount book sale at the conference, so I went a bit nuts. I picked up my own copy of DDD by Eric Evans (until now I was borrowing Adam’s copy), Lean Software Development, Behind Closed Doors and Business Agility. With some luck I’ll actually find time to read them and maybe even get a post or two out of it. A man can dream can’t he?

I do think I should be able to find some time now to put fingers to keys and write a bit about some of the things I took away from the conference. Hopefully. I’m not going to promise anything.

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