Monthly Archives: October 2008

What Have I Done? (Anniversary Review 2008)

Today marks the first anniversary of Flush. A year ago, I “soft opened” this blog, and believe it or not, I still haven’t “grand opened” it, although I’m not sure if I really need to anyway.

Flash Review

The past year has been a bumpy ride. I finished my last undergrad class, got sucked into the world of Sim City 3000 and Sims 2 as I prepped for my job search, started my beta site, got a job at Peet’s, went to see Sagmeister speak, skipped out on Alumni Day (I’m sorry!), worked on a freelance project for my aunt’s business, bought a new printer, watched the impressive production of the Beijing Olympics, resumed working on my portfolio and site, and rekindled my passion for web developing.

My attitude on design has changed, and that has helped me narrow down the types of careers that I would like to pursue. And every day, I’m getting closer to that job and that career. Working on my site almost every day excites me and motivates me because 1) I’ve grown to enjoy coding and designing, and 2) I can’t wait to share with the world what I’ve done.

Prediction for the Next Twelve Months

I don’t know.

Nobody does, and I’ve been wrong enough times about where I would be right now to not make any more general predictions. But I will always have hope, I will always have my expectations, and I will always believe in the future.

A year from now, I may or may not be a designer, and I may or may not enjoy coding still/anymore, and I may completely change my mind about this site and start a brand new one, or career. And that’s perfectly okay, as long as I am okay with it and it’s for the better. I may not reach my current desired destination, but that may or may not be as important as the journey to get there. I mean, I totally wish I were rich already and not have to work but become a philanthropist and help starving children in Africa or save the rain forest in South America, but it would probably mean more to me if I actually pay my dues, work my way up, meet interesting people, and learn about the issues to get there.

Flush.

Lot of Progress with the Portfolio Section

Made a lot of progress in the past week.

I tried to make the portfolio section available to both JavaScript-enabled and disabled browsers. With JS-disabled browsers, visitors will have to refresh the page. But for JS-enabled browsers, visitors can click on different projects and pieces without needing to refresh. Initially, I thought I needed Ajax to make it refresh-less, but it wasn’t as accessible as I would like it. Fortunately, my new friend PHP allows me to solve my problem.

It’s not all done, yet. But once I get the navigation down, I can start to populate it with real images and text.

The path is portfolio/index.php.

Flush.

I Don’t Know Anything

Recently, I saw the documentary Crawford on Hulu, and one of the older folks interviewed mentioned how young people think they know everything but they don’t. While I agree with him, I wanted to ask what old people now know but didn’t before. Every time an older person informs me of my ignorance, he/she never really elaborates. What don’t I know? Do you care to give me your advice about life?

What don’t I know? This is sort of like the last question posed at the second 2008 presidential debate a few days ago. The moderator asked the candidates a “zen-like” Internet-submitted question: “What don’t you know, and how will you learn it?” What the candidates said was not important, since neither of them really answered the question, nor did they attempt to give a zen-like response. But how are we expected to realize what we don’t know when we don’t know what we don’t know? It’s sort of like when a teenager or a young adult looks for his/her first job, but is frustrated when it seems like every job requires work experience, which can only be acquired through having had a job.

In any case, I’ve concluded that “I don’t know anything,” although that is a very generalized statement, so I’ll make a slight exception: I know a little more than the people younger than I. I am privileged that, simply because I’ve been on Earth longer than they, just like older people have than I.

Okay, so I don’t know much. But I do know some. I have an idea of what I want, at least for the moment. I partly know who I really am and how I really am. I have a general idea of how people are; there is a spectrum of personalities and attitudes and perspectives that I’ve collected from the people I’ve met and observed in my life. I haven’t met every kind of person in the world, so I don’t know how accurate my spectrum is in relation to the big picture.

But at the same time, neither do old people. They can’t possibly know everything there is to know, and they’ll probably admit that. They would say that at such an old age, they’re still learning. So I guess that’s the point: live and learn. I may not know everything, nor do I know a lot, but I am always learning, and I’m eager to learn. Sometimes I might not like what I’ve learned, but I still learned what I don’t like to learn.

Flush.

What Am I Doing? (Oct 2008)

Web Languages

As I had posted in the past few entries, I’m teaching myself the relatively basic web programming languages by working on my site, mostly the portfolio section. I’ve conducted a couple experiments to get a better understanding and grip of these languages. Learning Cookies, Ajax, and PHP has been very exciting and has stirred up project ideas.

Every day I wish I would have enough energy after work to work a little bit on my site or an experiment. I could see myself doing this as a career, although I haven’t been with the big kids yet, so troubleshooting one line in the haystack of hundreds that others have written might make me think otherwise. Still, it’s exciting when things work the way you want it to, and that might make it all worth it.

Economy and Job

So the economy’s not doing so well. Just when you think you’re at the bottom, you’re wrong. This isn’t really affecting me as directly as other Americans, since I don’t intend to buy a house or borrow large sums of money in the near future.

But when others suffer, we might, too. I’m talking specifically about companies’ ability (or inability) to keep their finances in the black, which may require them to lay off some employees, employees who might now compete with me in the job market, or employees whose positions that I desire but seize to exist because they’re laid off.

So that makes me reconsider the length of my employment at Peet’s. But then again, if I worry too much, which I probably already have, I won’t get anywhere.

Flush.