So, a year ago to the day, I posted my review of 2007 with a look towards 2008. To continue that age old tradition, I will now review 2008.

Learning

I started off the month by stating that I wanted to learn some new languages, primarily Python and Ruby. I’m sad to say that I haven’t made it past the 5th python challenge yet. I pretty much got distracted, which is a lame excuse. On the other hand, instead of learning languages, I’ve learned a ton about editing in VIM and even a little about Emacs (though I have to use viper or vimpulse to be at all productive in Emacs). I’m even using ViEmu in Visual Studio. The Vim key-bindings have become muscle memory now and I consider that a positive thing. I’m still going to try to learn other languages this year, but I’m going to need a project to work on before I can become proficient.

FSDNUG

This year, a very exciting thing for me was the formation of FSDNUG. Michael Paladino pretty much did all of the work, but he lets me call myself a co-leader. Raymond Lewallen opened up the FSDNUG meetings by speaking about Behavior Driven Development. I didn’t really grok BDD at that point, but I’m learning. I most definitely prefer the context/specification style of naming specs over traditional TDD test names.

Conferences

I was fortunate enough to attend both Tech Ed and DevLink this year. I even told people at DevLink that I’d be attending CodeMash, but I sadly won’t be able to make it after all. I have no doubts that it will be an amazing conference, though, and wish I could be there.

Presentations

I presented on PowerShell three times in 2008. Once to FSDNUG, once to MNUG and then once to Harding University CS students. My presentations pretty much took up all of September. It was a great experience and I’m looking forward to speaking to the Shreveport .NET User Group in March!

Posts

My post on “real world debugging witn WinDbg” post was featured on the Tech Ed bloggers site, which led to me being selected as a “featured Tech Ed blogger” for a day. I was also excited to have my PowerShell thumbnail script mentioned on the PowerScripting Podcast.

In closing…

All in all, a really great year. I noted in 2007, that it had been the year of the most growth for me as a developer. That was true… at least until 2008. My opinion right now is that there is no such thing as a good developer, only a better developer. This saying comes from a discussion I had with a coworker a few months back where we came to the conclusion that there isn’t such a thing as a good design or architecture, only a better design or architecture - all because we’ll inevitably have learned a better way to do things in the future.

I hope everyone has a great 2009!