Who Am I

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Whoever you are, welcome to my blog. 

As for me, I have dabbled with computers for as long as I can remember, taught myself a bit of simple programming when in my early teens up until I was about 20. “Hobbyist” would have been the correct descriptor for me at that time. In my 20’s I started a career in the music industry working in recording studios, starting as a gopher working my way up to main audio engineer. In that capacity, I had the pleasure of working with some mainframe music/audio recording computer systems such as the Synclavier and SSL’s computer that integrated with their mixing/recording consoles. Didn’t do much in the way of programming during that decade as I was working 60 – 80 hours per week in the recording studio.  Finally I decided I needed a life and threw away all of my possessions, except my scuba gear and a guitar or two, and moved to Maui, Hawaii to teach Scuba Diving, which I did throughout my 30’s. Again, not much programming during that time either… I was too busy living large in paradise. 🙂

Then age hit… I was no longer able to do the physically demanding job of Scuba Instructor/Divemaster so once again I wanted to change careers. After a decade of eschewing all technology in favor of the natural wonders of the world, I decided to revisit my long lost love of technology. I moved to Eugene, Oregon, mainly to be with a woman I had met online but with an eye towards going to college and officially learning computer technology. I opted for a Network Operations major instead of programming because I knew I could teach myself programming and it seemed that a piece of paper demonstrating knowledge was more important in the networking field than in programming, where you can prove your mettle by coding, stack overflow reputation, etc. So while studying Network Operations, all of my elective courses were in programming, HTML/CSS, JavaScript, PHP. I was not working at the time so I had a lot of time and went far beyond what was taught in those elective programming classes, including teaching myself C++ with an eye towards developing games. That course of study is still ongoing. Then during my last term at college, I took an elective class in Mobile App development for Android using C# and Xamarin.Android/MonoDroid. I did not know a stitch of C#, and though the first two C# courses offered at the college were prerequisites for the Mobile App development course, I got the requirement waived by showing my knowledge of C++. I excelled in the class, going well beyond what was required and I learned so much. I also really liked the Xamarin platform so I decided to learn more about it. In exploring Xamarin’s website, I saw a job opportunity for a Customer Support Engineer and thought, “Hmm, I may be able to do that” and applied and eventually got the job. Now I really had the impetus to learn both iOS and Android development, learn more about C#, and lots of other development related ideas.

In order to really learn the iOS platform, I bought a couple of books on iOS programming, which taught iOS development using Objective-C, of course. So I learned enough Objective-C to be dangerous, but the most important part of this endeavor was to build the example apps  using C# and Xamarin. Then I got the idea to blog about my experiences. Maybe it will help some people, maybe it won’t. At the very least it will be a log of the things I have struggled with in my endeavors to educate myself about software development.

You will likely have guessed by now that I am no development guru, so use the information here at your own risk. What is presented here is how I have managed to make a certain thing work, but is not necessarily the best or most elegant method of achieving the same functionality. As my experience grows, I fully expect to look back at earlier posts here and realize that I have learned better solutions since then.

If anything here does help you in your own endeavors, please let me know in a comment even if it’s just a brief “Thanks, that helped me out!” It would be good to know that I am not doing this only for myself, that it is benefitting the community in even a small way.

Thanks for checking me out!

Aloha,

Jon

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