Codename: Life Happens

I don't have to actually look over at GitHub to know what it says. It says the estimate for MMP is mid September, 2015. And I don't need to go to my board to know how much work I have left for an MMP release. And I don't really want to look up at the date in the top right corner of my screen.

And I don't expect that mid-September language to stay there long! When I get around to it I'm taking out all language about estimated dates. I've already pushed back dates in the README once. By this point, it's more of an "It'll be ready when it's ready" kind of thing.

So what happened? Why did I miss my date? As often happens, I underestimated the work. But that wasn't the half of it. I mean, it's really a lot of work. Writing a good library API is tricky, and this library is trying to do some big things. But I can do the work. It's just a matter of time and focus.

I've spent a great deal of energy this year moving my family from Boston to Minneapolis. And I'm quite sure I underestimated the amount of work involved there too! It'll take some time to settle in, but I can truly say that the move is done, and that's a relief. I love the Twin Cities. It's beautiful out here, and people are so much more friendly and relaxed than they are in Boston.

And that's really the main reason why I missed my date. That move was a bear, and I'm still recovering.

So you might think, he's done with his move, he can start working full time on longevity, really focus, and get that MMP release out. Right? Unfortunately, life doesn't seem to want to be that simple for me. Because I ended up taking a job, and I started last week.

I know what you're thinking: "That's pretty self-defeating, to take a job at this point, isn't it?" At least, I know I hear myself thinking that. I've put a lot of effort into this project already, and it would be a big waste to leave it incomplete. And it's a waste to not get it out in a timely manner. It's a pretty cool project, and a lot of people might be able to make use of it. I could complete it in a few weeks if I weren't working. With a job, it's going to take longer.

So why did I take it? Do I need the money? Not really. I'll tell you one thing, I wouldn't have taken it if I had to work full time. I'm on a four day work week, which gives me one day a week to focus on longevity. I really do appreciate that they would take me for a four day week. And the company - Dow Jones - and their office in Minneapolis really seem to value work-life balance in general.

So that's great, part time, work life balance, but it still doesn't explain why I took the job. I took it because it was an opportunity I could not afford to pass up. Let me just bullet-point some of the awesome things about this job:

  • Commitment to agile methodologies
  • NoSQL database
  • All Scala

I list these three because that's basically what it says in the objectives section of my resume. Here are three things about the job that I probably wouldn't dare to list as objectives on my resume:

  • DDD
  • CQRS
  • Event Sourcing

Quite frankly, it's rare to see jobs in the JVM world where people really care about things like this. I'm a long-time fan of DDD, and it always comes into play on the job. But being influenced by the ideas of a great methodology is a very different thing from being on a team that is following that methodology. I've also been very interested in CQRS and Event Sourcing since I first heard about them, and I never thought I would actually get to try them out for myself, short of using them in my own pet project.

And to top that off, there are the technologies I get to learn and use. Some, I haven't used professionally yet, such as:

  • Akka
  • Cassandra
  • Docker
  • Node
  • Ember
Every one of these technologies will be a valuable addition to my skill set.

And then there are the technologies that I am quite familiar with already, and happy to be using on any project:
  • SBT
  • GitHub
  • ScalaTest
It sounds like a lot of fun. And it sounds great, nearly perfect, for my career right now. So when I feel bad about only getting one day a week to work on longevity, I basically have to remember all that. It's getting easier with practice.

Don't worry, I promise I won't abandon it! One day a week is more than I've had most of the weeks over the summer. It'll keep going. I'll get that MMP out soon. As you know, you can watch progress on the board.

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