zeropaper

Back to blogging

December 6th, 2020

I made my first blog when studying multimedia conception in the early 2000s. Basically the blog was trying to make a point about the fact that media like radio, TV, newspaper were “one-way media”.

I saw the Internet and blogging as opportunities of an emerging two-ways media in which people could start discussions.

That blog was the medium I chose for an assignment that I had to do during the course of my last year. I argumented that, since we had to write every week on the subject we picked, for me it was making sense to actually use a blog.

I wrote articles about the opportunities for the people to get critical about the state and that the state might also use these new technologies for surveillance purposes.
I was using the metaphor of a double-edged axe held on one side by the people and on the other one by the state. Both sides being able to hit the other.

At the end of the year, and for that matter, the assignment. Although my teacher was very skeptical about new technologies, Internet and so on admitted that it was a pretty decent work and I got a pretty decent grade actually for the work.

A few years later, after I moved to Berlin, these predictions actually turned out to realize themselves, the Arabic spring happened and Edward Snowden revealed the surveillance pratices of the state a few years after again.

It’s a bit unfortunate that I didn’t kept the blog online.
I was not carrying so much about it like I’m, generally, not carrying so much about archiving or promoting my experiments. That’s something I’m going to change.

I recently started mentoring someone new and, as I explained to my students a few years ago, programming is evolving insanely fast.
Some things you learn today will be outdated in 6 months. This is especially true in the front-end development.

When I started making websites, I would sometimes edit files directly on the FTP server, I was using a text editor, needed to care about the formatting like my life was depending on it (because it kind of did), setting the color of text was done directly on the HTML element, JavaScript, CSS was nearly incompatible across browsers, needed to be concatenated by hand if you had lots of them and so on and so on.

Nowadays developers have powerful IDEs and code editors that show where there’s an error or enforce clean code and format it, suggest what to insert after typing a few characters, Git takes care of the versioning, security has become increasingly difficult to deal with and so on and so on.

If all the new tools might be helping, in some regards, they also brought new struggles because you need to know how to set them up, use them and keep them up-to-date.

The complexity didn’t disappear, it shifted.

Programming may look like a digital El Dorado because it’s fairly well paid in general, work from anywhere or spend your day in sweat pants and hoodie.
But it’s far from easy and requires a lot of practice and continuous learning to excel at it.

My life, as much privately as professionally, is taking a turn and I feel it’s time for me to actually write again.

It feels strange because I don’t like to throw my opinions and my old-fart expertise at the face of others. It feels to me like I’m bragging and I despise that eventuality.
But I was told that some of my thoughts and ideas, about my career as designer, developer, lecturer and the rest, might be valuable and it could be an interesting execercise for myself as well.

I’m back to blogging and in the end, no-one is forced to read that either, I hope my articles, thoughts and ideas will help others (and land me an awesome new job).