2016 has been a difficult year for me. You see, in the last week of December 2015 I made what should not have been a startling realization about myself – I hate being a software developer. In fact, I never loved it. It was never a passion. You see, as I prepared to enroll in college, I wasn’t entirely sure what I should declare as a major (a dilemma I know is far from unique), but since I couldn’t major at being a rock star, I fell back on programming. I had picked up some BASIC (har-dee-har-har developer humor) programming skills as a teenager and figured that would be a good career. So I declared that as my major, learned enough to be dangerous, and started my career post-graduation in 2007 as a .Net developer.
For a while, I think I was really able to delude myself into thinking I’d made the right choice. After all, once I moved on past my first entry-level job, I made decent money, had good benefits, met some good people, and I generally seemed to know what I was doing and be good at my job. And I think that was mostly enabled by the incredibly low standards at my first job and just being around a team of very exceptionally talented developers at the second job.
Those familiar with me know my typical stance on New Year’s Resolutions (I don’t make them), but if you’ve known me and been following anything I’ve said over the past few years, you’ve probably noticed me struggling over and over with some common themes. And while we’re assuming that you, my hypothetical reader, know me that well, you also know that I am far from being a very private person. I am not afraid or ashamed to talk about subjects that others may consider too personal or embarrassing to bring up outside of in-person among friends. And if you are that private, then more power to you. I can understand that. But I’m frankly a lot more open about things.
So what you’re about to read is a little prelude to what will kick off (I hope) a 2015 I can actually look back on and be proud of. And if you don’t care about the ins and outs of my personal life and mental issues, then by all means, stop reading right here. I will not take offence. And you also should stop if you’re put off by really long posts, because I can just feel a wall of text coming. You have been warned.
I’m sure you hear a lot from we users about our privacy. And I’m sure that you must sadly shake your head at some of it. Sure, I’ll go ahead and ‘fess up: we can be pretty dumb sometimes, because we obviously shouldn’t share something we don’t want someone seeing. I mean, you have to post something on the Internet for it to be seen on the Internet. But let’s be frank, FB (you don’t mind if I call you FB, do you?), you have to share a bit in the blame for some of us losing our jobs.
These days, especially if you’re in the IT field, it seems like you can go far if you have an Internet persona. And that goes beyond just having a profile on Facebook, because even George P. Burdell has a Facebook page. These days, nobody is impressed that I’ve been on Facebook since 2005. It’s practically old hat. To be a real Internet persona, you need a few other things…allow me to enumerate a few of them.