2017…. The New Hope

Wow, so another year has past! Last year in my 2016 medium post I said that I would write more blog post’s this year, I have done about 4! Like all new year resolutions it could of just been another failed one to add to the pile, however I like to add myself a caveat with this one, it didn't take long in 2017 to see fellow like minded individuals (techies) posting countless, boring, factually incorrect articles (there were also good ones too), nor did it take long to see that a slightest mistake in a post can very quickly circulate and you can be made to look a fool or, in many cases, worse.

Taking a quick read of my 2016 review from last year, I just wanted to point out my mention of the following viral video. Chum Drum Bedrum “What Are You Wearing!?” It has become even more popular, so I can now say, I mentioned it before it got even bigger. It may of been that post that made it circulate further! Then again maybe not.

2017 Review

So its the time of the year where lots of reviews of 2017 articles will appear, and a lot (most) will say how bad of a year it has been, and from a quick glance it may appear like that, however as with my title, I feel 2017 has been a year that has shown signs of hope. Ok, yes we have had:

  • Trump being Trump
  • The painfully slow process of Brexit
  • Grenfell Fire
  • Terror Attacks
  • Hurricane Devastation

But we also had:

  • The amazing response to the Manchester terror attacks, including the one love concert.
  • We have actually taken some of the most endangered animals off the endangered list. This doesn't mean people can start hunting them again now.
  • Bradley Lowery won the Barclays Premier League goal of the month.
  • Katie Hopkins got fired.
  • English Women’s Cricket Team won the World Cup.
  • Some brilliant guy at Twitter took Trump offline for around 10 minutes.
  • Equality! There have been massive strides made over the last year for Women and the LBGT community’s and this is even with Trump in power.

Can you see the trend appearing in my list of positive moments? Most of these have been achieved by the brilliance of people. It shows that we should never underestimate what we can do as an individual and also what we can do when we come together. So focus on the success of 2017 and use them to help you make 2018 better for us all.

Software Development

IOS Mobile App

An unexpected path I found myself going down was developing a Brand New iOS mobile app. After lots of careful thought and research we came to the conclusion that we needed to write a fully native mobile app, even though we are getting closer to PWA’s that could replace the native app we are not yet there, which means if you want to give your users the perfect experience they deserve, you need to go native. That doesn't mean that these hybrid technologies are no good, they are, but you have to accept some trade offs. So writing a very well designed iOS app using swift was a delight, the programming language at first was unusual, but by the end a lot of it was better than C# in many ways. Our app was fully dynamic and would build the user interface by the way the Restful API described it. I don’t see this as my only adventure in iOS development and swift and so I am looking forward to what the future might bring

REST API & Avalon

Firstly let me introduce Avalon+JSON something that I was heavily involved in this year and very proud of. Avalon + JSON is a hypermedia specification that we designed when creating our new API which powered our new mobile apps (both iOS & Andorid). I wont bore everyone by going through it now, but take a look at the link above, and fire any questions at me.

This was an eye opener to me, like many, when i thought of API’s I simply saw them as an easy way to get and update data without using a traditional user interface. Within the world of HATEOAS and Hypermedia, API’s are more like a standard user interface themselves and should be treated that way, when doing so the power of your API can increase hugely.

A New Path

So after a very busy and interesting time at Marval, I decided it was time for me to move onto a new path with a new company iSAMS. I wanted to further pursue my passion for front end technologies and in particular an active project using web components. My time at Marval was great, met some interesting people and worked on some fantastic projects. However I now get to work from home full time, and the balance between work and life is a 1000 times better and I don’t miss the traffic.

Web Components & Polymer

As you may know, I have been an advocate of Web Components, Web Standards & Polymer for a while now, but for the last 6 months I have been able to work on a project using these technologies, which is always nicer than your little homemade projects. It’s not working on PWA’s which I would ultimately want to be doing, however I am creating and implementing a centralised UI Kit and setting the foundations for all new projects.

2018…

2017 was a great year for Web Components and 2018 should be even better, I look forward to continue working in and outside of work with these technologies.

I am potentially looking at signing up to Social Coder which is a way to volunteer my specific skill set to work along side charities and ultimately give back to the community.

Finally ,and most importantly, I want to get my golf handicap into single figures and enjoy my personal and work life balance.