• Week 17

    11 February 2013

    Much of this week was spent wearing what Matt Sheret has called one's learning smile.

    There was a degree of fettling Firle and trying to bring it in to land – which focused on bugfixing and wrestling with IE8's awful understanding of caching headers.

    There was work on setting up Dundry: refining details in order to get a contract sorted.

    Towards the end of the week, as Dundry stalled, I decided to fire up a small personal project to keep my hands in. Crowborough is a small project for Berg's Little Printer. It's a simple tool, with an unusual interface and some strange restrictions (that lead to strange affordances). Two afternoons work saw an end-to-end alpha, which already feels really fun, and I'm hoping to push it to completion in spare minutes.

    Crowborough helped my mood and attitude. My learning smile is primarily a result of learning how to manage scope creep, deal with delays, and not worry about work running into future work. This is the real learning process of freelancing. Crowborough was useful because rather than being a reading learning process – and I've been doing a lot of reading recently – it was learning with my hands. As usual, I was surprised by how swift it was, and the materiality of it – paper, SMS – was great fun.

    It boosted my confidence and meant that in a quiet week, I still had something to show for it. So I'm going to push through with hacking on it in week 18; busy is good, and sometimes we have to invent our own busy.