07 November 2013
In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few.
—Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginners Mind
Since John and I are starting Numerous from scratch, I have the exciting opportuniy to do something I haven't done in a long time: construct a new toolset. I've decided to go down to the bare metal.
I started with a new computer: a MacBook Air. I didn't transfer any documents or settings from my trusty mid-2009 MacBook Pro, instead opting to do a clean install of OS X Mavericks and build up from there. A lot of cruft can build up over the years, and I didn't want to bring it along with me into my new environment.
Next, I made the switch from Safari to Chrome. In addition to Numerous, I still have significant responsibilities at Spanning and need to maintain an environment where I can deal with Spanning email, documents etc. I wanted to keep that separate from my Numerous work and my personal stuff, and Chrome lets me do that. I created three user profiles, one each for Spanning, Numerous, and Gmail. That way I can stay plugged into all three while not crossing the streams.
At the same time, I switched from Apple's Mail.app to Gmail's web interface. Even before OS X Mavericks' issues with Google IMAP became known, Mail.app had become unbearably slow for me. The web UI is fast and well-integrated into the Chrome browser. I've been dealing with all of my email this way for only a week or so, but I can already say I'll never switch back.
Finally, and most importantly, I'm choosing a new programming language. Most of my Spanning Sync and Spanning Bakcup work was in PHP, so that was my default choice for the server-side work on Numerous. But while I may be comfortable with PHP, it's old and crusty. I had decided to learn Node, but John has (mostly) convincecd me to learn Go instead. In a previous life I was a C/C++ programmer, so I'm told it will make sense to me. Plus—Rob Pike!
Starting fresh is exciting—and a little scary. Mostly though, I'm thrilled by the many possibilities.