Bookish Development Diary, episode 3.
In which our intrepid developer disappears down a deep rabbit hole, in search of the cleanest and most idiomatic way to express string constants in Swift1. Because, you know, stuff…
Sometimes it’s the little things that make me happiest.
In an open-ended system like Datastore, where any property can be assigned to any entity, I needed to be able to specify a property using some sort of key.
It turns out that there are a few ways of doing this…
If you’re a sophisticated user of Swift, none of what I’m about to say will probably come as a surprise. You may be bored or underwhelmed by this tale. Sorry! In fact, maybe you know a better solution? If so, please let me know. The solution I describe is was one of those things that I had to puzzle out over time when I started writing Swift - mostly by seeing other code that looked cleaner than mine, and figuring out what the difference was. I’ve been meaning to write it down explicitly for a while. ↩
Bookish Development Diary, episode 2.
One of the devevelopment tasks I enjoy most is designing then implementing a new module. The smaller the module, the more self-contained the job it is tasked with, the cleaner and simpler the resulting API, the better.
Perhaps that’s the reason that I allowed myself to be
distracted by convinced of the need to develop Datastore, my generic data storage layer for Bookish…
Bookish Development Diary, episode 1.
So currently, Bookish is sort of on the floor in pieces.
I was getting fairly close to something I thought that I could start sharing with a few select friends, then I decided that a feature that I thought I could leave until version 2.0 really needed to be in version 1.0.
Or more precisely, the underlying technology for the feature needed to be in version 1.0, even if the feature itself didn’t get exposed until version 2.0.
The feature in question was the ability for the user to add custom fields to the database. Sounds innocent doesn’t it…
Since finishing work on Sketch, I’ve been a bit quiet on this blog.
Initially I took quite a bit of time off because I needed a rest, and was battling various demons.
The largest of these was burn-out, which for me presented as a major loss of confidence and enthusiasm, brought about by long periods of professional conflict. This left me wondering whether I was any good at coding, and whether it was even what I wanted to do any more. I realised that if it was, I needed to find a healthier way of doing it. There are certain negative patterns that seem to have repeated a number of times at various stages in my working life; generally when I’m working full time on a project, have a sense of shared ownership of it, and feel that I want my future to be tied up with it. I needed to take some time to reflect on why these patterns happen, and to work out how to square a certain need for control1 with my genuine desire to work with other people as part of a team.
All of which is a big topic, worthy of a blog post (or more) in its own right, but this is not that post. Suffice to say that those battles are still part of my life, I’m still not sure I have all the answers, but on the whole I think I’m winning.
In the meantime, this post is about how (somewhat predictably, and very reassuringly), I couldn’t stay away from coding for long, and what I’ve been up to in the couple of years it’s been since I wrote my last line of Objective-C for Sketch.
If indeed control is even the right word. Possibly it’s more about trust and mutual respect than control. I’m still not sure. ↩