Why Are We Here (v1.0)?


Woman sitting on rock peak facing away

This is my first post on this shiny new blog that I first spun up in 2015 but never put into use. However, a month ago when I dusted it off, I did upgrade it to latest version of Django/Mezzanine along with Python and all other libraries. Then borrowing a practice of blue-green from OPS folks, spun up a fresh instance so yeah, it is mostly shiny.

To start off, and this is mostly for my own benefit, I’d like to set a somewhat of a goal/purpose/mission statement for this project. This is something I’m expecting will change/evolve over time, hence why I went ahead and versioned this one as 1.0. If this project does end up going somewhere it might also be amusing to link these mission statements to each other to see that evolution.


Why am I here?

There are a number of drivers for why I am typing this right now...

It’s an experiment - I’m not a writer or a blogger. Never did anything like this before. I’d like to see what would happen if I did.

Book/blog/podcast/other recommendations - I read books and often make recommendations to other people. On a number of occasions, people have come back to me to remind them the name of the book we’ve talked about. So another experiment is to make this information more accessible. In fact, the book list is one of the first things I intend to put up here as I’ve already promised to make it available... 3 months ago.

Life has a path - Although this may sounds obvious, I’ve discovered this fact for myself few years ago. Or more accurately I started discovering the depth of this statement few years ago, and to this day more and more things seem to unfold. As an overlay project on top of the blog, I thought it might be interesting to create something a journal of things.

What got me thinking about this is that our paths (mine included) are not simple, straightforward lines. Rather, they are full of twists and turns. They fork off into side-quests/side-stories. Sometimes, they loop back to the main trunk; other times we leave dead-ends and back track. What if I was to figure out how to map that out and add some color commentary?

In doing so, I’m hoping to use this exercise for my own reflection (both now and if/when future Dennis comes back to what I wrote). But I’m making it public with intention that...

  • Other people who have not discovered their own path, might use whatever I post to bootstrap their own discovery.
  • Other people who are going through their own path discovery might find useful to read someone else’s story. Conversely, I’d love to discover your story as well
  • Other people who are clearly way ahead of me could possibly find this blog and leave me some breadcrumbs to follow/explore.

Why are you here?

If you are reading this, there's a good chance that you are someone whom I already know and you found out (most likely directly from me) that I'm doing this thing. You typed my name in the browser, added ".com" on the end, looked around and found only a few crappy posts and this was one of them.

Alternatively, you've discovered me in a Slack or LinkedIn and noticed that that I have a personal website. You were really close to moving on, but something made you click on that link. You looked around, found only a few crappy posts and this was one of them.

If you are not in one of the two categories above, why are you here? Tell me in the comments below (you'll also help me see how comments work/look on this thing). If you find anything useful here, let me know. If you don’t find anything useful here, let me know.


Why is this website here?

For years, I’ve contemplated building some kind of online presence for myself. But seems every time I’ve accumulated enough random thoughts/ideas in my head, there would be some kind of life-event (i.e. changing a job, adopting a child, etc…) and those thoughts would evaporate for a while. Then new ones would come in.

In 2015, I created a DigitalOcean account, a month before we were notified by our adoption agency that our case was ready to move forward. That was the end of this blog back then.

Back then I’ve looked into various options like Wordpress and later things like Medium and other providers, but at the end always came back to the facts that...

  • I don’t like the idea of someone else controlling my content and possibly controlling access to it
  • I’ve always been a backend software engineer and having my own website would give me some minimal exposure to front-end stuff so this blog could be a playground to venture into front-end land.

This also gives me a chance to play around with Django, which is the Python framework we did NOT go with at work and it is a rather interest contrast to Flask.