Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Why blog?

I've decided to give blogging a try once again.

I have new questions every day and I learn something new every day. I'm very fortunate to work with an extremely talented team at the moment, and I've never learned so much from others as I am on my current project.

It would be a shame not to share some of the useful patterns and practices I'm learning from them (assuming my attempt at conveying the ideas will do it justice!).

As a developer, you inevitably have to "research" various bits and pieces every day anyway. I often feel the need to write down what I learn to help myself remember it. Sometimes I send an email to colleagues explaining something (e.g. like why I think we should use xUnit.net instead of MSTest) and then think afterwards: "I just spent 30 minutes working on this email that might get read by one or two people, I should've written it as a blog post instead!"

I'm hoping that blogging about a few of the things that I'm learning, will
(a) encourage me to dig a little deeper into the topics that I'm "researching";
(b) document my findings for my own future reference;
(c) hopefully help the occasional anonymous beginner programmer doing a Google search and somehow coming across this blog.

However, blogging isn't easy for me. I think about an idea or concept. In my mind I imagine the idea might be worth a blog post. "I've got an idea for a blog post! It's going to be epic!" My blog post ideas are usually formed around a few keywords. But as I start fleshing out the post, the structure just doesn't work. My thoughts don't come out into words the way I imaged it would when I started. Then the post just remains unfinished forever in a lost text file somewhere.

That is why I almost never blog. I'm never satisfied with the result. But I've decided to stop caring so much and just start doing it. Even the current plain theme of this blog is an example of how I'm deliberately trying to get over this time-wasting "perfectionism".

It does mean I'm revealing my perhaps unpopular opinions, biases, weaknesses and sometimes chaotic thoughts to the world (assuming anyone actually reads it) which is a slightly scary thought.

Your Blog Is The Engine of Community.