Giving Back

Way Mondo would not exist without the open source world. I will admit: I have never had proper programming or UI design education. As a high school student I naturally made my first website for my band at the time from instruction I pieced together from Yahoo! searches and threw it up on Angelfire.

My college education was at Ithaca College for film production, and I have no regrets about not pursuing it afterwards. Instead, I spent my joblessness traveling down the Internet’s free information rabbit hole. I started by learning HTML and CSS, then turned server-side to explore Ruby on Rails, then back to the browser with JavaScript and CoffeeScript, and recently became infatuated with Emacs.

Although it took quite some time for the deeper programming princles and best practices to settle into my ADD-riddled brain given my backwards education-less approach, I truly think the best relevant programming information is being given away for free by the open source community. When it comes to the web applications of today, there is simply too much complexity to write every aspect of code yourself, at least in a time-effective manner. Besides, “The Industry” and the demands of the user as well as the capabilities of the devices they use change everyday. The fact that I can throw my favorite ruby libraries in a Gemfile and run bundle install is invaluable to my capabilities. Each library of open source code also comes with the support of its community in the form of Github issues and pull requests, Google Groups, IRC, etc. With this blend of ‘information is power’ meets ‘freedom of information’, the open source hivemind is the place to be.

So that’s basically my short manifesto of why I want to start this blog: “long time fan, first time caller” kind of thing. I spend a chunk of basically everyday consuming open source code on Github, Stack Overflow, and all the development feeds in my Google Reader and its time for me to give back. Here I will share the projects I’m working on, little tricks and solutions I discover, and some of the amazing things the rest of you are giving out.