What I done did in August

I’ve had my second jab so I’m just waiting for my 5G to kick in now

Reciprocal.dev is almost ready for Alpha

Loading animation I made for Reciprocal.dev . It was my first time in about 10 years using After Effects so I’m quite happy how it turned out

It’s been a really busy month on the Reciprocal.dev front. At the start of the month the editor was working well using local storage and we made the call to start preparing for an alpha.

Originally this alpha was going to continue using local storage but I felt that doing so wouldn’t allow users to sign up for an account that they could continue to use throughout the beta and eventual launch so I pushed myself to get a basic account management app in place ontop of saving everything to the cloud.

On top this I broke the editor and the view-only versions of the app into separate apps as this means smaller bundle sizes and a smaller code base for the view-only app which makes it easier to update which was useful as I needed to add some code to handle maps being publically accessible or not.

We’re aiming to announce the Alpha in the next couple of weeks (assuming no major bugs turn up) at which point people will be able to sign up for the service which will give them the ability to create 3 maps with 10 versions which should be more than enough for people to see how amazing and useful the app is.

The next steps for me I think are less code related and more design and marketing which will be an interesting experience.

Enjoyed watching Skateboarding in the Olympics

This year was the first time Skateboarding was featured in the Olympics and it was an absolute joy to watch. It also had the side effect of shocking my colleagues that I was talking about sport!

The Men’s Street finals was probably the least exciting of the events due to the lack of excitement in the crowd but this was something that the Men’s Park finals solved.

While I’m normally more interested in Street skating I found the scoring system for the street skating to be a bit crap as I didn’t see the point of the 45 second runs if people who suck at pulling lines together can just make it up by performing a bunch of single tricks well.

The Park skating was really fun to watch and seeing them tear up the park was really enjoyable. Some of the lines being done were near Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater like and I’m hoping that at some point in the future the Tokyo park will feature in a game (especially if it’s Skate. 4)

I’m hoping that now Skateboarding is an Olympic sport that the UK will invest in more skateboard parks as I know when I was growing up in London the availability and quality of the parks was a little lacking and the attitude towards skaters made for a hostile environment for the sport.

Bought a M1 Mac Mini

At the start of the month I decided to invest in a new bit of kit. I had a week off work coming up and I wanted to have one machine that I could record music and do design work on. While I had Windows 10 on my Dell I never found a DAW that I was as comfortable working with as I was with Logic Pro and I’m not really a fan of Windows in general.

So far the machine is great and the only issues I’ve encountered have been when I’ve been trying to use it for development, which wasn’t it’s intended use anyway.

While the music side of things didn’t go according to plan due to me taking my guitar to get restrung and the music shop delaying the work until after I went back to work I’ve managed to get a lot of design use out of it.

Had to self-isolate

When the Mac Mini was delivered I happened to be near someone who was tested positive for Covid so got a ping on the NHS Covid App telling me to self-isolate for 10 days.

This could not have happened at a more awkward time as within those 10 days my second Covid vaccine jab was meant to happen but luckily I was able to reschedule it for the next day which was outside the self-isolation time.

The self-isolation itself went relatively smoothly as I basically don’t leave the house until the weekend as it is but we did have some issues with getting shopping delivered as Sainsbury’s refused to bring the shopping to the door and as we live in a block of flats that meant they dropped it at the ground floor and I couldn’t help bring it up.

As I had contact with someone with Covid I had to do a Covid test which up until then I had the pleasure of not having to do. It was not fun but luckliy came back negative.

Had a week off work

For the first time in what seems like forever I had some time off! I had originally planned to wrap up any Reciprocal.dev work on the weekend so I could have a full week to just chill and enjoy my hobbies but that work ended up leaking into Tuesday but I finally finished it.

I basically managed to do nothing on my list of hobbies as the aforementioned guitar restring delay meant my guitar is still in the shop and the screen printing kit that I bought requires extra kit that I’ve yet to be able to track down.

I did however manage to go for a walk most days and did generally enjoy not being at work. I also managed to play some World of Warcraft, play the new Pokemon Snap levels and cleaned the flat a bit as well as do a lot more on Reciprocal.dev than I probably should have.

Bought a PinePhone

With Apple being exposed as the liars that I had hoped they weren’t when they promoted themselves as being privacy centric I decided to buy a PinePhone. A couple of weeks later and I had my beta handset with me.

I’ll do a full write up of the PinePhone soon but first impressions are that their decision to ship the device with Manjaro and Plasma was a bad choice. When I first booted the device it was slow, the UX was a crap and it wasn’t until I installed Ubuntu Touch that the it felt like a smooth experience.

I don’t think I could really move over to having the PinePhone as my daily driver just yet as there a number of apps that I use that don’t have web apps available so I need to seek more open alternatives for these.

I’m eager to have a play around with Click though as it seems you can program apps in Python so there’s a potential I can build any apps that I can’t find myself.

Sent off my ADHD referal paperwork

A couple of months ago I went to (well had a video call with) the doctor to see if I could be tested for ADHD as a particular tough time at work (which has now fortunately been resolved) had me struggling and I’ve always suspected I had it.

I got the paperwork this week and aside from asking a bit of background information about how symptoms may have been present as a kid and now there were a couple of tests to fill out.

I completely messed up one as I didn’t realise there was an N/A column so had to scribble out some of the answers but after completing the paperwork I decided to look the tests up and my scores were in the ‘you probably want to do further testing’ range so hopefully I’ll receive a response from the service over the next couple of months and I can start understanding how to handle things better soon.

However, and I understand that the service may be limited on resources, I did find it a bit rubbish that if they don’t think I have it they won’t contact me at all. If they list ‘anxious worrying’ as a something on the paperwork I’d expect them to want to put people at ease.

Currently building reciprocal.dev. Interested in building shared understanding, Automated Testing, Dev practises, Metal, Chiptune. All views my own.