These days, I work on side projects sporadically at best. Here are some recent things, some of which are still in the works:
- I wrote a theme for VSCode called Dracula at Night. It’s a fork of Dracula, but with higher contrast and less (i.e. no) italics. I’m thinking of making an even higher contrast version soon.
- I built a Slackbot called Shitty Bot, which always replies with an @channel. It started as an inside joke, it ended as an excuse to work with Glitch for the first time. Conclusion: Glitch is great! I will use it again.
- I’m trying (for the second time) to learn Rust by going through the second edition of The Rust Programming Language. I think I’m going to put it to use to toy around with image processing and manipulation. The catalyst here were a number of talks at DinosaurJS 2018 highlighting Rust’s investment in WebAssembly as a first-class target of the Rust compiler. WebAssembly seems cool, Rust seems cool, and I want to learn more about both!
- I’ve written a couple small apps in Elixir over the past two years. The most substantial of these projects was a never-quite-production-ready Slack notification service, which consumed events from Kafka and outputted Slack pings. I would still say I’m learning the ins and outs of OTP and the actor model of concurrency.
Back when I was a student, I worked on side projects more frequently. I had the time. And, I wanted to learn so many things. Some highlights from the distant years of 2015 and earlier:
- I built a Jackbox.tv-inspired party game called U Don’t Know Me! at a hackathon in 2015. I kept hacking on the project afterwards as a way to learn more about React, Redux, and real-time web apps. Fun fact, Fibbage 3 uses the same gaming premise (guessing things about your friends) and was released 2 years after our prescient hackathon project.
- I did a lot of random data visualization work in school. It was one of the first ways I really started to learn programming. My favorite project from that time was an interactive map of drought trends in the mainland United States, which I creatively called Drought in America.