Happiness is Clean Code

Most of this is standard practice for most everyone.

My employer has been in business online for over 20 years.   They are a small business, and not everyone has time or resources to stay on the cutting edge of everything.  This is natural and they really do work hard with what they have.

I have long been the company advocate for clean, future-proof, and W3C complaint code.  There are times when they ask me to reign it in, and I do.  Again, I respect that every project has different needs and everyone at the business has different strengths.

There are times when they set me loose on a project, and I gleefully take care of business.   This is a lot of happiness about one of those times. How I solved half of the problem before anyone imagined the problem.

Music, Continuity, Themes

I’ve been struggling with a theme for the last year and a half, very strongly.  It can be summarized in two words: “Not alone.” This is me missing places that always felt like, “come as you are. All are welcome here.  Our differences make this place more vibrant.  Love and respect are all that matters.”  Concerts, certain scenes, and some online groups really celebrated that aesthetic.

Now I’m very happy that those places are needed much less for so many people. There are still people who feel torn in this current climate.  People who look like everything is cool on the outside, but feel completely without a real place to be themselves.  I’ve been searching for that place, but every time I act like it’s already there for someone else, it appears.

Not alone.  Continue reading “Music, Continuity, Themes”

Arguing Against the Experimental Tag at Bandcamp

This is where the art gets made

I make music out of my closet.  I honestly enjoy hearing what others make out of their bedrooms, closets, and home studios.  In the process of perusing Bandcamp, I also find a common red flag: “Experimental.”

The biggest reason I see for people using the Experimental tag at Bandcamp is when they feel uncertain about their music.  Every time, I want to beg them: do not feel uncertain.   You made art.  You are already ahead of everyone who only dreams of making the art.  By virtue of your recordings being published, you’re ahead of the game.  You conceived, recorded, and published the art.

Do Not Undersell Yourself

Instead, learn why you should be proud of your recordings.

Working from Home

This home office thing is great!

No interruptions from phones.  I don’t have my concentration broken by lengthy conversations about who is about to run what errand.  Crawling out of bed to make coffee fifteen minutes before the day starts is pretty alright.

The best part is being told by my employers to put all my focus on the things they originally hired me to do.  I’m learning new faster than I have in years.  I’m getting work done much more quickly than I used to.  I’m happier.  I’m in that sweet, wonderful place where I get focused on the job at hand and lose hours doing it. This is by far a good thing. Read more.

Not Blogging Much

It’s been ten months, I think?

I love the Internet and all.  But I also love living in the real world.  I’ve had a really big year with a lot of huge, necessary, hopefully positive changes.

One of those changes is that I just want to be in the world.  I want to look the other person in the eye when we speak, when we agree or disagree, when we share camaraderie.   Whatever it is.

I’ve spent the last four years effectively pulling my best self out of all my fears and insecurities.  So while I love working on web sites and code, I’d prefer to communicate face-to-face or from a stage.

It’s a balance and it’s helped me to be happier than I’ve been in years.

PostWorlds, Viewing Pages, PHP Classes

I looked at this giant post about to hit Facebook and thought it might be better as a blog post.  I’m working on a Play By Post site in the style of the site I once loved, and spent a while working on how to view a page that had been stored in the database.  There were multiple “hard way”s to write one of the pages.

All of the code here is very simplified from what I’m trying to (except the HTML examples), and the variable names are not the same as in my real code.

The easiest way was to intermingle the programming language and the HTML/web page language at every step of the way.  The PHP scripting and HTML code would be so intermingled that none of it could be easily re-used, or even understood after any time has passed.  I’m not even going to write that here.  It would have been a piece of script to open the database connection and connect to this “row” of data, followed by enough HTML to get to where the next piece of data is needed, followed by PHP script to retrieve that piece of data alone, followed by enough HTML to get to where the next piece of data is needed.  Everything would have been horribly tangled up, and a pure nightmare to look at.  Where I separate my scripting code and my HTML code by creating objects.