Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Goals for the New Year

Happy New Year!  Ok, so I'm a week late.  With the start of each year comes a tradition that some view as a farse while others hold as an event of refocusing.  New Year's Resolutions are are great time to reflect and focus what someone wants to achieve.  While I'm not big on making my personal goals known like some other bloggers (it's just not my cup of tea), below are a few goals I've set for myself that relate (directly or indirectly) to this site.


Blog More

This is a given.  2008 was a huge year of transition for me in my personal and professional life.  While I was able to churn out more post than I had before, I struggled on many weeks.  I'm hoping to be able to hit my goal of once per week this year.  Hopefully I'll be able to keep it up while also providing interesting topics for everyone to follow.


Learn F#

One of the things that I've wanted to do in recent months is expand my professional arsenal.  Coming from a Java background and transitioned into the .Net world almost exclusively now, I've somewhat been stuck trying to stay afloat with just C# and VB.Net (ASP.Net included).  While I am still working on keeping up with the times and changes in those languages, I'm wanting to expand into F# as well for a truly different perspective. 


Learn Silverlight 2

I dabbled in Silverlight 1 while I was also learning XAML in general for WPF.  It was fun but I didn't get too deep into it due to the JavaScript model that it used and the obvious changes Silverlight 2 (then 1.1 alpha) had.  Now that Silverlight 2 is out.  It's time for me to get back to work on it and begin getting a subtle level of proficiency in it.


Finish the Books I Start Reading

For those that know me, I love reading; however, I tend to read books in parallel and rarely finish technical books.  This works well for some books since they are great for references just as much as reading cover-to-cover (i.e. Wrox's Professional C# 2008, etc.).  The issue comes in when I'm reading a book to clarify a topic or to truly learn, I tend to lose attention on the material.  This goal is to simply push myself to finish the books that I feel need to be finished.  For example, here are all of the books I'm currently reading:


Learn DDD

One concept that is being shown a lot of attention recently is Domain Driven Design.  It's got some great concepts for managing complexity and the research I've done on it so far has yielded some interesting ideas on my application designs.  I just recently picked up a copy of Eric Evans' book and will hopefully get to it very soon to clarify a lot of the items I've had some trouble with.


Use jQuery More

I love jQuery.  Of all of the JavaScript frameworks that I've used on both personal and professional projects, it is the one I prefer hands down.  With that being said, I haven't had much spare time to work on any personal projects that require new ways of using it so such posts have been reduced a bit.  I have projects queued up so hopefully there'll be more jQuery related posts to come up in the future.


In Summary

I'm sure that I'll have more goals as the year progresses; however, for right now I feel like I have a good focus for the next handful of months.  Next week I'll start up the normal posts again.  This year will have a more diverse mix of posts with more tools and different technologies and techniques coming.  Hopefully I'll be able to stick to my goals :-).

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