Jon Blankenship


Side Project

It’s been awhile since I’ve done any serious side-project work. I’ve not had the energy or time to work on a personal project since I started working for my current employer almost three years ago, and, honestly, I haven’t felt much of a need.

When I joined my current employer three years ago, any side projects that I had in flight stopped dead in their tracks because – after years of consulting for the state – I was all of sudden working on interesting problems, being challenged daily, playing with cool new technologies, and building something new and innovative. The needs I had satisfied previously after hours working on side projects (i.e., the desires to create, innovate, and learn new things) were now being satisfied at work.

I’ve got a bit more free time these days, and while I’m still being challenged at work, I’ve been looking for a project that I can spend some free time on with a few goals in mind:

  • Sharpen my skills on familiar (to me) tech
  • Work on new problems
  • Create something neat (and perhaps profitable)
  • Learn some new (to me) tech when appropriate

I’ve got some ideas for my next project(s). I’m not ready to reveal what they are yet, but here’s a peek at just a few of the things I intend to use/work with in the coming months:

  • Natural language processing
  • Machine learning
  • Azure Service Fabric
  • ASP.Net Core
  • Some sort of API management to support monetization
  • Xamarin.Forms to target iOS/Android/Windows

So why am I sharing this publicly? A few reasons…

  1. I wish I would have kept a journal of projects that I’ve worked on in the past to serve as my own personal reference for problems I’ve encountered and lessons learned. This will be that journal.
  2. Communicating what I’m working on helps to sharpen my thoughts and aid in my understanding and retention.
  3. Sharing my progress will help to keep me accountable when my motivation wanes or my progress slows.
  4. It may be helpful to someone out there. I hope it is.

I will work on this as time and energy permits. I hope to post somewhat regularly and frequently, but I make no promises.

That said, thank you for joining me!

– Jon