What? Still here? Yes, it seems I all but abandoned my site and design life. Which isn’t entirely the case, just that a lot has changed in life; blogging isn’t as cathartic for me as it once was.
My kid has grown up. 10 years old now with all the expected problems associated with being a 4th grader. We shuffled him off to a private school this year which I swore I wasn’t going to do. But an opportunity came up to make the tuition more affordable and we took it. It’s a nice small little school with a lot more hands-on teaching which I really like. Get this, 2 (TWO) teachers in his class of no more than 14 kids. And they’re good teachers too! So it’s an amazing experience for HIM. For me? Not so much, I’m sitting in an extra 40 mins of traffic each day as opposed to what could have been walking distance in his last school. Sacrifices! That kid betta appreciate it someday.
Work is both amazing and exhausting. They shuffled me and my colleague over to the main university campus at Manoa this past year. Main reason was that they were renovating our offices back on our home campus, but it also overlapped with the fact one of our projects ballooned into a major project that involved the entire university system. It kind of grew before we really fully realized what happened…one day someone wanted us to explore how to make something perform a little better for one community college campus, the next day we’re presenting to the entire system office who wants to replace an old 20-year old legacy system with ours. It debuted just this week.
It’s just an online form, you might think. To fully grasp how big a scope this was….imagine someone asking you to design an input and commerce form, not from scratch, but it had to play nice with a database in the order of several terabytes; one that had to keep operating, and had SUPER sensitive student information. OH, and then count in a dozen or so 3rd party and inhouse custom applications that handled all these various uniquely necessary functions for a university…all connected to this giant database over the course of these 2 dozen years maybe handled by people who are no longer around to help. ACK.
Oh by the way, the old system wasn’t accessible or responsive. So can you hold it all on your shoulders to come to the rescue and make sure this new one holds up to all of today’s standards?! It’s nuts and it’s sort of amazing that it’s working at all. Credit goes to having an amazing colleague that somehow is a programming genius, but it’s still overwhelming even from a project management perspective. The way universities work their IT infrastructure is still mind-blowing to me.
All the while I’ve been forced to learn new things; I’m actually grateful for this part. I’m better equipped to handle Bootstrap frameworks nowdays; I’m loving the Visual Studio Code, despite being wary at first; I’m getting more accomplished and rehearsed with SASS CSS; toying around more with Trello and Slack to get things done within a team, etc. All the things that would be part of today’s’ development repertoire but not so easy for an old crow like me to get into because “the old way was good enough why change” mentality.
I’m surviving. I’m growing. I’m still here.