Barbarian Meets Codingbarbarianmeetscoding

WebDev, UX & a Pinch of Fantasy

Barbaric January Wrap-up: Loving JavaScript

Barbaric Monthly is my attempt at building/improving a coding project per month so that I can experiment with old and new technologies, learn ad infinitum, remain excited about the craft and nurture my passion for software development. This Barbaric Monthly is about practicing JavaScript building an HTML5/JavaScript space shooter: Serenity.

Well this was a quick Barbaric Monthly indeed :) I wasn’t able to get that far within a week of free time but I must say I was deeply satisfied with my progress in JavaScript and the language itself. Now I can say I dig JavaScript, and even though I am still a noob, I feel pretty comfortable coding away in JavaScript.

Head to Serenity’s website and you’ll be able take a look at how far I got, which is more or less the start screen of the game. If you want to know more about how I built this early part of the game, you can get the source code at GitHub.

Awesome Resources

Here is a list of awesome resources that I used for learning JavaScript in no particular order:

and also some interesting tools:

  • SublimeText, super sexy lightweight text editor
  • JSLint, JavaScript code quality tool
  • JsFiddle, great tool for quickly trying out stuff on JavaScript, HTML and CSS

What’s Next?

February is for ASP.NET MVC 4 and the full web development stack. I still have to decide if I want to continue with The Ultimate Personal Task Management System or start something anew… We will see… Soon :)

Barbaric January: Making a Space Shooter with HTML5 and JavaScript

Barbaric Monthly is my attempt at building/improving a coding project per month so that I can experiment with old and new technologies, learn ad infinitum, remain excited about the craft and nurture my passion for software development. This Barbaric Monthly is about practicing JavaScript building an HTML5/JavaScript space shooter: Serenity.

Wo! We are back with Barbaric Monthly! It has been a while indeed… I was working on quiz4couples back in September/November, <blinked> “Merry Christmas!“, <blinked> we are at the end of January 2013!

Anyhow, Barbaric January is going to be about JavaScript. I have started dusting my web development skills warming up for my new job and I thought JavaScript was as good place as any to start. Particularly, because I have always sucked at it, the kind of sucking in terms of “I know JavaScript, but I don’t really know JavaScript”, or “I am using JavaScript, freestyling, like if I was programming C#”. So, I thought a pet project would be a nice setting to warmup my fingers to JavaScript, and really get to know the language and its quirks. Thus, I hereby announce: Serenity!! A space shooter based on the universe of my beloved Firefly written in JavaScript!

As usual you can find the source code at GitHub. You can also play (not so much to play yet though) right on the blog at www.barbarianmeetscoding/Serenity.

P.S. Also found some time to watch JavaScript for C# Developers on Pluralsight by Shawn Wildermuth. Check it out, it’s a pretty good introduction to JavaScript quirky nature :).

Getting my Feet Wet With Windows 8 Store Apps Development

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Earlier this year I decided that I wanted to get my first contact with Windows Store App/Windows8 development. I did not have a lot of time, since I want to focus on refreshing my web development skills and becoming a web-dev-wiz for my new job, so I needed something quick and light. I decided to take advantage of my ever-growing library of ebooks and start reading Beginning Windows 8 Application Development - XAML Edition by Kyle Burns. It was definitely a great initiation to Windows Store and modern application development with 300 pages of pure goodness covering:

  • The Microsoft design language
  • Windows Store Application types and XAML controls
  • Data binding and MVVM
  • IoC, Dependency Injection and Service Locator
  • Service Agent Pattern, REST services and Odata
  • Asynchronous programming model: async and await
  • Contracts: Search, Share
  • Notifications and Tiles
  • Sensors, Camera and Location API
  • The Windows Store

The book doesn’t go very much in depth in any of the topics, but it gives a very good overview of the windows store application development experience and a lot of interesting exercises illustrating each feature to get you started. The image below, for instance, is a Netflix movie browser that consumes and OData web service.

A Netflix movie browser Windows 8 app screenshot

So, putting Windows 8 in pause. Web dev! Here I come! :)

P.S. As usual, you can find my test projects at GitHub.

Life Teachings and Enlightenment 2012 Edition

Everyday, sometimes early in the morning, sometimes not so, I get to work. I run the security card at the door, enter inside the office building defying the deadly revolving door and try to persuade the coffee machine to make an aromatic, silky, strong espresso without much luck. I continue to my office, remove my outdoors attire, sit in my comfy chair and switch on my laptop.

The first thing I invariably do is to open Evernote. I have my very own customized version of Getting Results the Agile Way and I handle all my goals through notes. Each day, I create a new note - say 2013-01-13 work - and set attainable goals for the day. In the header of the each note, I have a collection of rules of conduct, mottos or maxims that I have been gathering during the year: My life teachings of 2012.

  1. When I get sad, I stop being sad, and be AWESOME instead
  2. My self-imposed mission is to spread joy in the world!
  3. Sell yourself well, don’t be too humble!
  4. Don’t put energy into things you don’t want more of
  5. Make small projects of every endeavour. Define goals and scope! Remember Parkinson’s Law!
  6. Enjoy Life! It’s a short trip! Don’t take things too seriously! Loosen up!
  7. Don’t forget the 20/80 rule
  8. Always find the why of things!
  9. Always strive to improve things! Never shut up, express your opinions!
  10. Be Bold! Be Awesome! Don’t care about what other people think!
  11. Get outside of your comfort zone! Make it a habit!
  12. Sharpen the Saw! Practice smart! Practice Perfect!
  13. Be diligent, have discipline, a little bit of work every day makes a difference
  14. Anything is possible, you make your own reality, you are in control of your life. Don’t ever feel like you don’t have a choice

Goodbye 2012! Hello 2013!

Another year gone and I am not in Forbes’ richest-person-alive list yet, what a disappointment… I really had high hopes there for a minute with quiz4couples… XDDDD (Seriously how does people write without using smileys)

Anyhow… The year was actually quite great after all. These were my highlights:

  • Awesome year with Malin
  • Moved downtown to a beautiful appartment
  • After 5 years being the biggest fan and advocate of tobacco, I quit smoking and have been clean 10 months (I really need to write a blog post about how I quit smoking from one day to the next with no effort whatsoever)
  • I relaunched my blog, Barbarian Meets Coding and wrote 50 blog posts
  • I launched as a hub for my personal brand
  • Built and published my first windows phone app: quiz4couples
  • I am finally able to speak and understand Swedish. Yey!
  • Built an WP7 and ASP.NET MVC 4 evernote clone with a backend on Azure at work as an innovation project (Fun!)
  • Started Barbaric Monthly to build monthly projects with quite success
  • I finally learnt WPF, XAML and MVVM
  • I read 45 books on tons of topics
  • I went to the gym 3-4 times almost every week this year and ran regularly
Jaime in amsterdam

Pretty good… I have to remember to read this post whenever I feel I am not doing enough.

2013 looks quite exciting in prospect. I am going to start working at Medius focusing on ASP.NET MVC this 4th of March, which means that I will be doing pure .NET both at work and at home, something I haven’t been able to do for the past two years (Yey!). I think it will be awesome not to feel like I have to play catch-up with the software development world week after week. And there’s Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, two super exciting platforms full of promise for this upcoming year. It’s going to be great…

Ok. Time to wrap up. Good night folks. Malin and I wish you a happy 2013! :)

Malin and I wish you a happy 2013!

P.S. Oh! One more thing, I finally found some time to create a trial version for quiz4couples. So, if you haven’t tried it yet, please do, now you can check it out for free :)