At the dawn of yet another semester, and I can barely wait to get started. Much like new year's resolutions, there are a lot of things which I promise myself I will do THIS time. If, after four months, I've achieved even half of what I hope for, I think I can look back and call this a succesful semester.
One big reason why this semester has so much promise is the module CS3216 (Software Development on Evolving Platforms). Having heard great things about the module from peers and seniors, and having actually liked and used projects done in the course (Hush - before Secret, Whisper, Confessions and the like), I have great hopes for this module.
After two years of university, I believe that, technically speaking, that although I definitely do not KNOW every framework or stack out there, I am pretty confident in my ability to learn one fairly fast. I have taken part in a few hackathons and used different frameworks to build working prototypes of products. Over summer, through an internship, I have experienced the facilitating of growth and user engagement on products through various tools and techniques. However, there is still an aspect which i hope to learn more about. What I'm hoping for, through this module, is to learn the skills significant to bridge the gap between a hack or prototype to an actual product which can sustain a user base.
A significant part of it seems to be a mental block. For me the enjoyment of building stuff seems to derive largely from the problem-solving aspect - once I know 'how' to do it, I seem to lose some of the drive to actually doing it, let alone polishing it and perfecting it. However, making a project accessible to userrs involves getting a large number of things right on the user experience and design front. In this aspect, my lack of experience has led to a difficulty in translating from theory and examples to application. My hope is that being thrown in the deep end and being 'forced' to build a project with user base will force me to do my best to apply the finishing touches and convert prototypes to products. Further, I hope to pick up more on design and UX skills from more experienced peers of mine.
Getting access to a great peer network is also something to which I'm looking forward to in CS3216. I am sure that many, if not most, of my classmates will be highly motivated and skilled in diverse ways, and I hope to absorb some of the skills and motivation. It is quite a common saying that the worst place to be in regarding knowledge is to don't know what you don't know, and I am sure this module will, at the very least, expose me much more to fields which currently I am not even aware of. Through such a broadening of horizons, I can hope to find out further what aspects of software development interest me most, and where exactly I am most lacking.
This has all the makings of a great module. Looking forward to the ride.