A Fresh Cup is Mike Gunderloy's software development weblog, covering Ruby on Rails and whatever else I find interesting in the universe of software. I'm a full-time software developer: most of my time in recent years has been spent writing Rails, though I've dabbled in many other things and like most people who have been writing code for decades I can learn new stuff as needed.

Currently I'm unemployed and starting to look around for my next opportunity as a senior manager, team lead, or lead developer. Drop me a comment if you're interested or email MikeG1 [at] larkfarm.com.


A Fresh Cup

Notes on Rails and other development


Moving Right Along

Well, I've done several things lately to make progress on my quest to invent a new career not involving Microsoft:

  1. I let my current boss know that I expected not to be with the company past early 2008.

  2. I spent a bundle of money on a new Mac (which should be here on Monday).

  3. I've let the publishers I've been writing articles for know that I'm not interested in continuing to tackle Microsoft-related topics. This means an immediate income drop, but on the flipside it frees up some time.

  4. I've started setting aside a solid, real, uninterrupted hour a day to work on new stuff - my equivalent of Google's "20% time," more or less. The past few days this time has gone to brainstorming on a few ideas for relatively small applications that I can (I hope) build with Ruby on Rails as a way to get some hands-on time in that environment. Next week I plan to pick one and start building.

To sum it up, I've been slowly snipping away my safety net, in the hopes of forcing myself into a new world. With any luck, this strategy will work.

More Learning to Do

How to paginate, sort and search a table with Ajax and Rails (via dzone) - I'm starting to noodle around with a little app where this might come in handy.

Coming Book

Jay Fields is tackling a rewrite of the classic Refactoring book to use Ruby as its language (with Martin Fowler's permission). Here's the announcement, and here's the first example bit.

New Toys on the Way

Like a lot of other geeks, I paid some attention to the keynote at MacWorld yesterday. Though nothing announced there really interested me (oh, the iPhone looks like a fairly sexy bit of engineering, though it's a perplexingly stupid decision to not let users install their own software on it, but I don't carry a cel phone), I hopped over to the Apple store yesterday afternoon anyhow. That's because I was just waiting to see if there was any changes in the Mac Pro lineup before ordering one.

So, a couple weeks from now I should have a Mac sitting on (well, under) my desk along with the Windows and Linux boxes. I also splurged a bit and treated myself to a new Dell 24" monitor. I figure I'm going to cover about half the cost of this system by not renewing my MSDN subscription this year. Now it's time to get serious about spending a couple hours each day working on new skills.

Elegant Software

Capistrano 1.3.1 is another piece I need to spend more time grokking.