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Deep Dives and Treading Water

eRezLife Logo

Starting from scratch, it’s something developers should be used to…

A couple of months ago, I started a new job at eRezLife. I consider myself fortunate to have landed in a small company where I can make an impact, and each and every person is great to work with.

But what’s so deep about that? We’re just starting to migrate from a PHP code base (that’s where I’m treading at the moment) to Python + Django where I will be diving in as deep as I can, along with learning more JavaScript and jQuery. I’ve spent 8½ years working with Perl (with the last few years spent in modern Perl with Moose). I can truly say I am happy for a change, and really want to absorb the concepts within Python, not just the syntax and some libraries.

Completely unrelated to programming

I bought a new road bike. I’ve ridden the same bike for nearly 8 years, and it’s just not comfortable. Trust me when I say, get a bike fitting before you buy a bike. Plus the technology in bikes has improved quite a bit during this time, and the carbon fiber in the frames these days is incredible.

Trek Domane

This is my new ride. Why yes, that is a ProjectOne bike :-). This pic is really what it looks like, since ProjectOne lets you customize the parts and colors. Part of my plan for next year is to ride in some of the Gran Fondo’s (Grand Rides). Either (or both):

On the few rides I’ve had before the weather turned to heavy rain, I can already tell that the fit is sooo much better. No back ache, neck pain or headaches. And it’s fast.

A Side of Scala

Scala Logo

I’ve been investing time in a few different technologies and programming languages lately. One of the languages that has surprised me is Scala. I’d heard about it, even took a peek at it many years ago, and promptly went on to other things. However, after meeting with Jeremy Pierre (noisycode.com/) from HootSuite, I decided to take another look at it.

Scala has come a long way, and it seems to be poised for some real growth. I began with the usual, a quick google, wandering through some scala dedicated sites, StackOverflow and Reddit posts. I came across a course on Coursera (already signed up), and have begun reading Cay Horstmann’s Scala for the Impatient.

Scala makes you wish this is what Java had turned into. Scala runs on top of the JVM, so it’s doing what the JVM + Java would be capable of, if only Java had gone towards this path.

I think what has surprised me most about Scala so far, are the parts that seem like Perl to me. I know, shocking right? Scala similar to Perl? Scala has much higher information density that Java - you get more done per line of code. I always found Perl to have a high information density too. Quite often, Scala will infer what ‘type’ you want. You can declare values as lazy (which is one of the features the Perl Moose framework provides)

I’ve only just begun with Scala, and my views may very well change as I learn more about it. For now, it seems like an interesting (but growing) niche. There is a Vancouver meetup group - Vancouver Scala. Hopefully there will be some meetups and presentations there soon.