On Startups, side projects, and hacks.

2018-03-16

I’m finding myself in a precarious situation: I’ve spent a considerable amount of my free time over the past few years on a project, and the raison d’être for its existence still evades me. In other words, I can not crack the core algorithm which will put it ahead of the competitors.

So, I sit there. Wondering what to do. Not quite able to do anything else. Hands tied. Sunbathing in the LED backlight.

Me, staring at the screen.

What do I work on next?

Certainly not another big project. I’m stuck on an existing big project, and I don’t want to burn out.

For a couple of days I just frittered away the time.

Then it dawned on me: my online CV is quite dreary. It mentions things like doing stuffy Java things for dusty old banks and government agencies. My online professional presence has no pictures, no “new shiny”, nothing to excite anyone looking at it.

I need a portfolio website.

It makes perfect sense. Besides, for a while now I’ve had the urge to rebrand myself as a creative developer. (I thought this would be the closest I’d get to games dev without starving my family).

Here’s my existing text-only professional website:

My old professional website.

What you’ll see over the next few weeks at https://uys.io is a website which showcases the real me, and all the bits and pieces I’ve worked on over the years: failed startups, side projects, and the little hacks still worth showing to the world. Some will be shown as is, and some will get a little bit of spit and polish to breathe new life in what would overwise just be a code repo on Github.

Conclusion

I recommend this for any developer stuck in a debilitating funk. Work on the little things you’re proud of. Show the world. You’ll deliver early and often, feel good about it, and gear up for the next big challenge — be it a more fun client to work with (because they’ve seen your AWESOME portfolio), or your next big startup idea.