The New Noel Rappin Dot Com About, oh, eight or nine years ago, I decided I needed a personal website. On the theory that I didn’t want to become a full-time personal website wrangler, I decided to put the site on Squarespace. Squarespace was a great service, and a very well thought out set of tools but over time, it’s become less well suited for my (admittedly minimal) needs: Squarespace costs some money.
Last year, when Obtiva was purchased by Groupon, I wrote a “what I learned” post talking about things I thought I came to understand about software projects after working on a bunch of them. Now that I’ve moved on from Groupon, I started to think about what, if anything, I learned while I was there. I keep coming back to three different things – this is a more personal set of lessons than the last batch, so maybe they’ll be less generally useful.
Oh yeah, things happening… Got A New Job, Got A New Office First off, I’ve started a new job as a Senior Developer and Agile Coach at Table XI, putting me back in the realm of small, Chicago-based consulting companies. Very exited, Table XI seems like a great place so far. Hoping to do new things, challenge myself, and learn. Book Update Most importantly, you can still buy it. It’s going slowly but steadily, thanks for asking.
As you may have heard, Obtiva got bought by Groupon. I’ve been traveling a bunch, so this coming week is my first full week in the Groupon office post-transition. And, well, someday maybe I’ll write retrospectively about Obtiva, but today isn’t that day. I’ll probably write about what I’m going to be doing at Groupon, but today isn’t that day, either. Instead, I realized that month marks four years since I left Motorola and became a Rails consultant.
I was a nerdy kid. I suppose that isn’t much of a surprise, given how I turned out. But in those pre-computer days, I was nerdy about math and baseball. I was the kind of kid that kept a daily log of my batting statistics in the recess kickball games. So you can imagine my surprise and happiness when this image appeared in Sports Illustrated, in May 1981. I was ten:
I want to tell you about LoneStar RubyConf and how my session went and all that, but first I want to tell you this seemingly unrelated story. Once upon a time, my Senior undergraduate project was an educational software tool I built to teach fractions to elementary school students. (To give you the time frame here, it was written in Visual Basic 1 on Windows 3, and I had to ship my own desktop to the school to ensure that they’d have something I could run it on.
With respect to this request to link to early web stuff, I think the oldest HTML page I coded that’s still online is my Georgia Tech home page, circa 1997-8. Note the creative use of ugly nested tables. I don’t think that any of my earlier web stuff has survived… no, wait, one other thing. The site dates to, I think 1997, it can’t be much earlier because it has a broken Java applet (which was basically just a fancy animated gif).