Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Programming skills (and side projects)

I think it is time to improve my programming skills in a different direction.

In the last year I worked full time on a project as a C++ (MFC) developer. In order to keep exercised with .NET Framework, I used to work on a small ASP.NET/C# project in my spare time.

Now I changed clients, and I'm working full time on a new big and complex project with .NET Framework and C#.

Wait, I'm not very sure I need to keep exercised in the same tecnology !

So, why don't move on another side project ? In the last year, I sporadically wrote some small tools in Ruby, and I was very happy with it, with its platform independence, with its design and flexibility.
Why don't improve my skills with Ruby, and in particular with Ruby on Rails ? They are cool, they are cutting edge, and I can boast of them in my blog !

I'm planning to write something in Rails: basically, I can start from something like that old, never refactored, and buggy Jirino project management tool (that is, a simple manager of bugs/features/documents that renders like a wiki and allows to assign, plan, tag, comment and move stuff around the team members) and improve it into something more flexible and extended, with features more similar to a contact and budget manager, with some  standard format support like those recommended by microformats or data portability ?

Any cooler idea ?

Do you think it is the right language in the right time ?