The system is down

I was thinking that I'd continue the last blog post's theme by saying that not a lot has happened in the 'life' part of my currently-over-worked existence. The instant I thought that and started typing it out on my keyboard, I realized how false that was. A lot has actually happened. Is it all blog-worthy? Maybe, maybe not. Then why aren't you blogging about it? I hear some part of me asking myself.

For me, it's that time in this website's never-ending life cycle when I feel that the code/system running 'the MooCow' needs an update. It happens maybe every 18 months, the feeling that the site just needs some sort of modernization, and so I start dedicating my spare time towards the effort.

The last time this happened was the beginning of 2009 where I updated the look of the site from this, to what you see now. So that took about 2 months and was mainly a visual overhaul. This time it'll be a system/back-end overhaul, meaning you dear blog reader won't see any difference at all.

Spot the difference
Once this is over it'll be, 'spot all 0 differences'

The motivator for the 2009 visual overhaul was that the look of the site was starting to feel a bit dated since it was also then that I really started to wade my way into the web design world and expose myself to a lot of stunning and beautiful-looking websites created by all those web designer types. As somebody who wanted to be a part of that world, it pushed me to update the look of the site, and so I did.

And the motivator for my current system overhaul? I just feel I've learned a lot more and improved as a programmer since the last system overhaul. So, in my constant struggle to feel relevant in the ever-shifting IT software development landscape and to keep my own skills sharp with some established technologies and practices that I don't already use in my job, I kicked the 2010 system overhaul about a month ago.

It's also these times that I find myself asking why I don't just pick some sort of CMS or blogging platform (eg: Wordpress), install that, and never have to worry about it again. Then I remember: I'm a programmer. We re-invent the wheel and fix things that aren't broken every day because it's how we learn, it's what we enjoy doing, and it's the only way the world is going to end-up with better wheels - lord knows the software industry could do with some better wheels.