Post 0 – Why?
Why? This is a question I keep asking myself while setting up this website and creating the first few pieces of content. Is to show the world what I have made? Is it to document my work so I can look at it years down the track and to be able replicate it later if required? Is it to document it so if someone else on the internet has the same problem, they can follow a guide on it? Or is it to have a portfolio of work publicly available on the internet so that it might help land me a job in two and a half years’ time? I think the answer is a bit of all four.
I have been listening to a podcast called The Amp Hour for the past year or so, and one of the common topics which gets brought up by the hosts Chris Gammell and Dave Jones is the idea of doing projects and logging them on the internet, as a body of work you can present to an employer to show that you have some real-life experience. This website acts as a way to log all of these projects, and I hope doing this will differentiate any job applications I submit from the other A4 pages full of size 11 Calibri, because I guarantee most of them have better marks and more extracurriculars than mine.
Another reason is that I recently wanted to reuse some code from a project I was part of in First Year, and upon finding the file, there were hardly any comments explaining what went where and why, and if it wasn’t for the final product that I had on hand, I would not have been able to reverse engineer the design and figure out what parts of the code did what. Whilst I could write documentation for each project I do, comment the code to a sufficient standard, and keep it on my computer (and backed up offsite) such that I could refer to it at a later date, I know that I would never follow through on it. However, through posting it online, where it can be viewed (and replicated) by others, along with hopefully helping in the pursuit of employment, will hopefully give me the motivation to document everything properly.
This website will also be a place where I can share the work I have done, and also help others in my position who are getting started in whatever topic I am discussing. I really admire the work of Ben Krasnow and his Applied Science Youtube channel, in that he shows the process he went through to design whatever his latest project is, but at the same time is entertaining and provides enough detail that you can recreate it at home. Whilst I might not be planning on embedding LED’s into contact lenses, or making my own scanning electron microscope, I hope that my content and presentation style will be interesting.
The final reason is if it wasn’t for the community of makers and hobbyists documenting their projects, I would not know half of what I do today, and by making this website I hope to give back to this community. Whilst I still don’t know a lot about circuit design, PCB layout, or programming Arduinos, most of what I have learnt has been through reading blogs similar to what I am trying to create. My hope it that as I learn more, my posts will become more informative, and people will be able to learn from them.
With all of this said, I hope that the content I publish will be informative, and that it will be help at least one person make an interesting project. If you are reading this in the future and have used any of my posts to make something, I would love to hear about it in the comments, or use one of these methods to get in contact and let me know.