stuff id like to learn in 2015

Jan 7, 2015  

Ah yes, the time of New Year’s Resolutions. It never ends. Many weeks pass by in a haze of “shoulds”. So here’s something more to add on.

  • Keep playing with Go. It’s a great, simple language. In particular, I want to try out a whole bunch of crazy experiments.

  • Think about the “simple text games” book. Or bury the idea as soon as possible.

- Learn a bit more about the JVM (perhaps through Clojure?)

  • Stem the atrophy in algorithmic skills

… and there’s more I can’t remember right now. The first two seem self-evident, so a bit more about the third and fourth. I’ve had a deep dislike for all things Microsoft and Java for over ten years now, and I think it’s all mostly FUD.

In the case of Microsoft, it was because everything I tried to learn became deprecated as fast as I learnt it, and I quit in disgust (I’m told I quit before giving the CLR and C# a fair chance). I was quite naive fifteen years ago and thought that everything that was current then was going to last forever. This extended to such stuff as Frontpage, DDE, COM, RDO … you get the idea.

For Java it’s more vague. I think I never got the hang of it, and then I had a lot of “design pattern crap” thrown in my face, and my long-last impression was one of incredible, pointless verbosity. Last year though we had someone join our team who had done RealWorkInJava ™, and after talking to him it didn’t seem all that bad. In particular, the JVM seemed like something worth knowing.

I have pretty much zero experience with hosted languages. One of the reasons for this might be that I always want to know what’s “really happening underneath”, and am deeply suspicious of situations when I cannot know (this is also why I prefer Ocaml/F# over Haskell, but that’s a whole other blog post).

Add to this the fact that I’ve always been curious about Clojure, to discover all its differences from Common Lisp on my own (there are several rants for and against it online, but there’s only one way to find out for sure), and it’s a natural outlet for exploration.

Which brings me to the fourth point … I feel I’ve seriously forgotten a lot of theory, both in Math and CS, and it’s frightening. So I’m hoping to weave that (somehow) into my Clojure exploration and kill many birds with one stone.

So yeah, we’ll find out how this all worked out, same time next year :)

Update (113): This is a bunch of crap I just realized I wrote a similar post last year and did nothing about it (well, ok, I did do the r/dailyprogrammer stuff, more or less), so scratch all of the above. I’ll leave it up to remind myself of how foolish this is. I’m guessing this will reoccur the same time next year :P. Perhaps the best way out is to make no resolutions.