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Warren Shea

Archive for April, 2013

Been heavily considering dropping my secret project KB

Sunday, April 28th, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Pros to doing it / keeping the project going

  • It will be nice to finally complete another project
  • I have an excuse to keep buying the statues lol – I have all the ones that have been released at the moment, I take quite a bit of pride in that (some of them where tough to get/expensive)

Cons to continuing

  • If I finished, despite being proud of my work, I can’t really show it off due to the nature of the content and humanity’s judgement – I don’t really want to associate my name to it which is why, even now, I refer to it as Secret Project KB. Yes, other people’s opinions of me mean that much
  • Only 1/2 done photography, and it takes so much time…I’ll be working on this project another 5 months before it’s “caught up” and I have to go from “development” to “maintenance”
  • Was hoping to get free statues eventually once the site was done but doubt I can gain the necessary social/reputable aspect to get them from the parent/manufacturing company
  • Already learned as much as I can for the project development wise
  • Not happy with all the photography, want to go back and correct some rotators – but that will take more time
  • Already learned as much as I can for the project photography wise – and also, I’m sure once I learn more about photography, I won’t like the photos I’ve done
  • I want to move on to another project, one I can put on my resume or do/learn something new. Would also like to work with someone on a project, or get some money from a project.
  • Time consuming to maintain the site and social aspect of the site by myself – most sites like this have teams
  • The site is supposed to be a person’s “ONLY RESOURCE NEEDED FOR SAID TOPIC” but I can’t go to any of the cons (conventions) where they release the information first hand. I only get my information from other sources making the whole idea fundamentally flawed
  • Not happy with the design I came up with. Frustrated with it, just want to throw it away and start something anew

That said, I think a couple pros can be derived from my cons if I kept going:

  • Work with the design until I get it right. Rather than give up, keep working on it until I’m happy and it’s good. That will provide the most satisfaction.
  • Would still be proud of myself for completing the task. I’ve said this before about me:
    “I’ve left a wake of unfinished projects throughout my life.”
    and I’d like it if this weren’t one of them – but I only like the project as much as I can benefit from it and this one is slowly losing its appeal

I’ve been flip-flopping with the idea of quitting. One day, I quit. The next, I decide not to. Can’t seem to make up my conflicting mind. Must be the gemini in me.

Looking for input. Please give me your thoughts!

‘MURRICA + credit cards

Sunday, April 28th, 2013 at 6:47 pm

‘MURRICA’s an interesting place. I know I only went to Buffalo/Niagara Falls, NY but it’s interesting. It’s significantly cheaper there, compared to Canada. I guess people are poorer so things need to be more affordable. Which means Canada is more expensive because, comparably, we have a “surplus” of income? Screw you….all retailers! Taking advantage of us cuz you can (but I know that’s life…)

When I was walking around shopping, I heard a group of teenagers say “Yo, which one of you has the best credit rating? Cuz I can give you my cash and blah blah…”. I thought the statement/question was interesting. I’d never heard it before. I’ve never been with people who ask about credit ratings, esp teens.

I’m not sure if it’s the canadian, or the asian in me, but credit was always something that was never really a problem. We purchase things with our credit cards but pay them off ASAP. We only do things like pay the minimum payment consistently when we’re in a tight situation (for example, the term right after school, and before I had started full time working, I spent 2-3 months paying off my growing credit card debt). Even that behaviour of mine was poor, but I gather I only did something so reckless because I knew I was going to be working full time and that I could pay it back. But the nature of always paying things off immediately is something I was raised with. It also makes logical sense. People are even surprised when I say I have an $1X,000 limit. “Why so high? That’s bad.” Well, it’s only bad if I ever used that much. But I’m always paying off my credit card immediately so I never have more than a $1000 credit card debt, despite my limit.

But a lot of people aren’t like that. They have multiple credit cards and buy buy by and pay off the minimum payment. That’s how they live. They don’t look at a TV and ask: can I afford it? They look at it and say: I want it, can I afford paying the minimum amount per month to have it? So they end up buying things, increasing their credit card debt without paying it off and their money goes into their interest payback, not principal payback. They’re baller for a bit, makin it rain…but only temporarily. In the long run, it’s hurting them. Credit cards are like, a huge “devilish” thing! They prey on the weak minded and illogical. On the poor. Not cool.

It’s weird, the US has a lot of things that lead to more monetary success than Canada: lower taxes, cheaper things. If used properly, you can gain an advantage in life. Assuming you never get into any health related issues – I don’t envy the US’ lack of healthcare compared to Canada. In Canada, if you get randomly screwed by life (by that, I mean – you get a disease or get in an accident), healthcare will hook you up. And that’s what you’ve been paying taxes for your whole life. In the US, if you get screwed, you’re SCREWED cuz healthcare is so $$. I mean, in theory, they should be saving more money than us given the lower taxes and cheaper things. But it’s hard to save. For anyone. You have “spare money”, you spend it frivolously. It’s like they’re set up for success, but given the pitfalls of humanity, it’s easier to fail. Which is what the majority of them do I guess?

I don’t envy being raised in the US. Every time I go to the US, I see a difference in obesity. The men and women are, in general, heavier than Canada. I find they’re more rude and reckless. It may have only been buffalo, but it’s more run-down. Abandoned/closed property. Oddly placed traffic lights, compared to Canada (seriously, having the traffic lights in the middle of the road makes it harder to see, and not being able to see the perpendicular driver’s set of lights makes it harder to read and anticipate things).

So all in all – we pay for healthcare and our taxes are higher. But I think it helps when life screws you. If you never get screwed in life, then perhaps you’ve lost out a bit on average money wise. But that’s also a good thing (cuz you never got screwed in the first place). So I wouldn’t say that’s really a bad thing….

Also – guns and violence. Personally, if I were in MURRICA, I’d be holding a gun too cuz everyone’s got one. For defence. I think that place is scarier. Canada’s so nice and peaceful :)

Anyways, just wanted to talk about the noticeable cultural difference from Buffalo to here in Toronto. I’m obviously totally biased, having lived in Canada my entire life and not travelled like, anywhere else. But I love it here. I think it’s boring for some but I’d take safe and boring, especially for future generations, over anything else any day.

A busy weekend!

Sunday, April 28th, 2013 at 6:13 pm

First, let me say that my 1.5 year old G2420HD BENQ monitor “failed” Thursday night. I can turn it on, but it stays on one moment, and the shuts off. I talked to BENQ and it’s under warranty. But so much hassle to send it (I threw out the packaging) and I have to find the old receipt which I’m not sure I have. I think I need to do a better job keeping receipts. Anyways, I know it’s a capacitor issue. I’m going to try to fix it myself. I bought a soldering…gun…thing. Need to research/buy some correct capacitors and solder them on. Never done anything like that before but I want to learn!

I spent my Friday night going to Harlem Underground, follow by Mavrik to see a friend off. Was able to have an interesting conversation with a couple of my friends about being an elistist, introvert/extrovert and social skills and other things. Good conversation. Had to bail early, ended up sleeping around 11:30pm.

Woke up 7:30am to drive to the US. Got to the US at 9:30ish, went shopping a bit and ate at the Cheesecake Factory. Got 3 appetizers: Deep Fried Mac and Cheese balls, Chips with Ahi Tuna and Avacado, and Crispy Crab Cake. Z got some pasta and I got a pork chop with mashed potatoes and spinach. Man, the mashed was buttery and Z’s pasta was salty. ‘MURRICA. Got some shoes and 2 shorts from the Nike Factory Outlet, was able to get a Spring Jacket, and spent $118 in junk food at Walmart. Drove back to Toronto, picked up my Squash Racket from my parents place in Richmond Hill, got some BBT and headed home. Crazy long day but handled it well. Got home a little after 8:00 I a 12+ hour day, I drove probably about 6 of them and walked around about 3 of them :S Slept at 11:30pm…

and woke up around 12 on Sunday. 12 hours of sleep, but I needed it! Went on a “dwarf hamster” run, visiting 3+ petsmarts in Toronto. Went to the Richmond Hill Central library to read a bit, and then to Tim Hortons to read a bit more. And then I started blogging which leads me to right now! Using my macbook <3 It’s finally getting some love…I don’t use it too much but I’m glad I started reading books online with it. Maybe I don’t need a tablet after all? I don’t know…. Off to reads more….or maybe blog more…

Reading textbooks + new blog?

Thursday, April 25th, 2013 at 1:11 am

I can’t believe it’s been an entire week since my last post >_< and here I thought I was writing a lot. I spent most of my free time the last week and a half playing dota...I do that every once in a while. But my dota phase is done and I'm back to reading and learning. I just finished Smashing Magazine Book II yesterday and I'm starting 2 books - The design of everyday things and a Learn Chinese book. Hopefully my next break will be when these 2 books are finished. I also want to read about Cameras, Cars and Cooking. So Chinese, Cameras, Cars and Cooking are the 4 things I want to learn/improve my knowledge of. (What a coincidence they all start with 'C'). . . . I've been thinking about starting a new blog. This one is more of a journal. I write about my day, I rant about people and work, I write meaningless or odd posts, tutorials or review. It's just whatever. My world. But I'd like to write something that helps/inspires, motivates, makes people think or makes people know and understand me a bit better. I hate shallow conversation. I hate talking about sports, politics, religion. I'd rather talk about philosophies, ideas, psychology. Maybe if I write a bit about that stuff for others to read, they'll understand me more and have more deep talks with me. I'd like to be social about this new blog. Post that I've posted something on twitter or Facebook. Something someone will read and enjoy or entice them to think. And I don't want to share this blog in particular…it’s too….personal. I would still have this blog, I’d just have another more “the face of warren I want people to see” type blog. And this would be more “the real warren” type blog. So what do you think? Should I do it?

I was pondering blog names last night. ? (it’s a pun on…but minus the ‘l’). ? ?

i can’t think of anything more creative >_< i’m stuck on the pun and unfortunately, those are all horrible blog names…except for the pun of it all. . . . I’ve been thinking a lot about the next step in my career again. Mobile is definitely an aspect that others may want me for. Another – Development Manager. I just realized that while I love development, I’m not that good at it. So what does a crappy developer do? Become a manager lol. That’s actually a pretty serious thought. I would love to manage people. Again, it’s just the public speaking and meeting that I don’t care for – not the technical meetings or the one-on-one with developer meetings, but the others ones – scoping out projects or talking, I don’t know…money or something. Just trying to figure out where I belong I guess. I always thought it was dev but I’m starting to have my doubts. If only development came more natural to me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talentless with development, I just know there are better out there. So why focus my life on something I’ll only ever be mediocre at. Practice improves, reading and studying improves, but I’ll always be slower to learn something than (a handful of people I’ve met). So maybe it’s not my ‘thing’. . . . Also, I really miss dwarf hamsters. I’ve been aching to get some…..memories of hamsters keep filling my head lately and it makes me yearn for them again. That’s right. YEARN. . . . Off to read more….about the Design of Everyday things.

What’s the next professional step?

Thursday, April 18th, 2013 at 10:49 pm

I’ve been in the work force about 7 years (not including co-op). I’ve gone from a junior designer to a junior developer to an intermediate developer to a senior developer. I’ve been a senior developer for 2.5 years now and I think I definitely could have been the developer tech lead if wanted to be – but I didn’t. I wanted to stay a developer as I know there’s still more I have to learn. A lot more.

I’ve been wondering what the next step for me is. Part of me thinks management – I definitely think I could do it. I might hate the meetings and presentations but I’m good at putting fires out, get along with people, feel that I could mentor and guide them as well. I wouldn’t want to public speak – but I can do it. And I wouldn’t want the meetings – but I can do them. But I guess the real reason why I don’t want to be a manager is I don’t want to leave the development world yet. I still have a lot of fun doing it, it’s still my passion. I used to always think it was important to do what you love and get paid for it. And for me, that’s development. Do I start doing something I don’t enjoy as much for more money? Or because it’s the next logical step of progression? Maybe.

It’s funny, as strong as I am in development, I know I’m slow. In the last 7 years, stronger developers (and I’ve seen and known them) would definitely have surpassed me given that time. Development isn’t as intuitive to me as it is to others. Even though I might be the (or at least, one of the top 3) strongest developers on my team, I know that relative to others, I’m weak and slow. And again, web programming is still EZ mode compared to real dev. If I really want to be a better developer, I need to self-study more.

To be honest, I spent much of the day today making an unprecedented (for me) manager type decision. It was like I was a manager today, controlling the fate of someone on my team. It was kind of thrilling. The power, THE POWERRRRRR!!! But it gave me a glimpse of how a manager might think. And I liked it, but not as much as I like development.

I don’t think I’ll be doing dev forever. Not with my skill and the rate I learn. I can’t compete with the new kids who have lived development. I’m not out of the dev game yet but I have to start considering: what’s my profession after development? When I’m 50 and need to do something else. Possibly not even be in the tech field? Where do I go, what do I do? Something to ponder. Not now….but along the way…