Thursday 27 November 2008

The year is almost over...

I read Stephan Hermann's post today on his blog, that I saw on Planet Ubuntu. I think he pretty much hit the nail right on the head, especially with his quotes from Tom Limoncelli's excellent book: Time Management for System Administrators (ISBN-10: 0-596-00783-3 / ISBN-13: 978-0-596-00783-6)

I won't re-copy the excerpts he quoted, but it essentially stood for saying that system administrators, at least in the majority, are tinkerers, and have a hard time separating work from personal life -- everything seems to blur into one major problem-solving challenge, just endless puzzles from the point you wake up until when you go to sleep. In any case, it is the case for me. I'll just work my full day, solving different usual or just completely new problems, only to come back home to tackle on some open source project that fascinates me, or to play on my computer. I've even witnessed the same kind of thing happening when some friends come over with laptops, or when me and my SO just sit in bed with our netbooks, chatting or, in my case, working away at something that caught my attention on that day.

Anyway, I already started, last year, to pay more attention to time management, and having read the book, there's many tricks I still haven't applied to my life. It's great because each work independently, but I'm still going to give it more effort and integrate some of the really nifty little ideas to managing my time more effectively for the upcoming year.

As for giving out details on my other plans for 2009:

In company life, I've been at my current workplace for nearly 4 years now. I still very much enjoy everything I do, especially when I consider that not all places are necessarily as open, as stimulating and interesting to work in, and always full of totally new projects to tackle. It seems like here, things are ever-changing and there's always something new to learn. That's great: I love to learn. For the upcoming year, looks like there are still more new interesting projects to come, and I also have ideas of my own. I want to improve the network in a large scale, especially from the aspects of monitoring and administration tools.

In terms of my personal life, little has changed for a while now -- things are going on just fine, and it's especially great to have been able to re-unite with an old friend, and learn that he's a hardcore geek too ;)

In opensource, thanks to this "new" old friend, I'm planning on spending a lot of time on various little projects. One that should take a good amount of my time is to build a point-of-sales system for the KDE platform -- the details aren't set in stone yet, we're still looking at bringing in ideas, finding out what are the best tools for the job, etc.

I'm also still spending a good amount of time on NetworkManager, and I like to play around with Terminator too. Terminator was a fun little project to look into, and as I stated in a previous post, I was able to adapt a cool feature from a previous version in someone's Bazaar branch, bring it in my own, and make it work with Terminator's latest source (again from bazaar). That was a great new crutch for improving my understanding and skills in Python.

From reading Stephan's blog post, it seems I may need to look into Leonov as well. Looks like a very nice tool, also in Python, so I will definitely at least give it a test run. Maybe I can even find some cool ways to contribute to it too, even with my somewhat limited knowledge of Python.

Ah, and thanks to Fabian Rodriguez for creating a new team specifically for the Ubuntu Quebec Launchpad Answers contacts. It's true that we were getting a lot of messages from Launchpad Answers, and I'm guessing that not everyone wanted to have to deal with this. Anyway, I've already applied and I've been accepted to join that team, and I'll still do my best at answering any questions that come up. So if you're using Ubuntu, have questions about a feature, or how to do something (especially if you want to ask it in French!), drop by Launchpad and ask away! There's lots of very talented and understanding people ready to help you out.

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