Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A flurry of activity

Well, that's another semester past.

I have from right now until January 10th to myself, effectively. It's time to decide how to use it.

So from what I can tell, my options are:

Base Skills
Something Complex

Graphics would be making computers do graphical things for me and also making graphics myself. Playing with Blender, with the GIMP or Photoshop, with Paint and maybe Flash, reading about colour-theory and how to paint a perdy picture. I'd also be drawing a lot, and reading about basic art stuff. And of course, playing with C/OpenGL to make the computer do cool things, and learning related math (Matrix Algebra, anyone?)

Languages would be reading about and learning Lisp and Python through the development of simple (and slightly more complicated) projects with them. I would watch the SICL videos from MIT's Open Courseware, generally get a better feel for Lisp, and I'd just do stuff with Python. I would like to implement my scope/stack/reference/object stuff for C.

Basic Skills would be math and physics and chemistry and maybe biology, just learning voraciously over the break -- very largely just improving my mathematical skill and comfort level. I would also be spending a lot of time working on music and some basic technology things, like awk/sed and being a better vimmer, using the full extent of regexp's and scripting.

Something Complex would be choosing a project - I'd spend a few days choosing, then go through a design phase and build myself something good. Something that I could sell, or at least use in my day to day life. Maybe this could include working on an Open Source project, or attacking Sam Altman's company Loopt, which just does not seem to be doing a good job with my idea.

Anyway, one of those four things. I'll have to ask myself "Where do I want to be on January 10th", and my answer could be "I want to walk up to a Piano and lay down the driving rhythm line from 'Don't Stop Me Now'.", or "I want to be able to take 4 files of similar data in disparate formats and spit them sorted into a single new file, every 10 seconds or when the file exceeds 100 lines, and I want to be able to write the thing to do it in about two minutes.", or maybe "I want to be able to spend a weekend and make a simple game, with my own pixel graphics, my own physics, my own everything, and run it on Linux or Windows.", or maybe "I want to be able to do what I want to be able to do. In Lisp. (really poor recursion joke)". Ooh, or, "I want to be able to read a Wikipedia article on a mathematical topic and not have it go over my head before I'm halfway down the page."

So, which of those sounds best? Or at least, sounds like the one I'd like first? I'm going to spend an hour or two thinking about it.

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