Barrie Callender

On becoming a Software Developer and starting a UK business

I Am Not a Programmer

'CallenB in 2011 or was it 2012' I have written applications over the years on the odd occasion that I have needed to. One such application was written for Network Rail in 2005 and as far as I know it is still there in 2013. It wasn’t the first application I’d written, but it remains the biggest. I’ve written bits and bobs since then, including a Rubygem called Workpattern, but I am not a Programmer and, judging by that Gem, certainly not a Ruby Programmer.

Apart from one small piece of software, I have only ever worked by myself when programming. I look forward to the day I can work with someone else. I am a long way from that day and just as far from being a programmer or software developer or whatever name you can give yourself if you write good pieces of software. I’d like to learn and I hope I can use this blog to document my journey from a Dabbler to someone who is kind of OK at writing software.

This isn’t the beginning, just the start

Ruby is the language I am most interested in at the moment, although I am also interested in Erlang, however I have a small amount of free time, so it is probably best to stick mostly with Ruby. I have my Workpattern gem, which works, but isn’t very Ruby like. It is one thing I’d like to sort out and it requires a far greater understanding of Ruby to do so. I imagine I will return to that several times over the coming months.

I work with Primavera P6 which has a Java API and Web Services based on SOAP. Data Migrations from one P6 database to another are very difficult when it comes to moving user defined views, reports, macros and filters. I’d like to do something with that using Ruby. I already have some scripts but they are chaotic and incomplete. I’d like to make them into something re-usable and useful.

I’d also like to use Ruby to talk to the Primavera P6 Web Services. I tried to use Akami but it didn’t work. I “fixed” one thing and sent a pull request, but that is as far as it got. It all seems a bit quiet in the world of Akami.

There are lots of other things I’d like to do too, but I should try to limit myself to just a small number, which may turn out to be too much in any case.

Although at the (new) beginning of this blog, I am not totally new to coding, but I want to do a proper job for me. There is no wage or contract running on this, which means I can learn in public without fear.

A learning journal

My hope is for this to grow into a record of what I am learning and that others may find it useful for them. I suspect the length of articles will vary from very short snippets to articles longer than this. I’ll probably need to modify the design of this site which uses the default Octopress theme at some point - but not for a while.

That way I can probably manage to post something fairly frequently and hopefully get into the habit of posting regularly. This will be very difficult for me but let’s just see how that goes.

To be honest I needed to put an article up to see what it looked like. A tick in the box, roll my sleeves up and get on with it.



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