2015 Goals

2015 is fast approaching, with only a few days left before another amazing year starts.

I have a few goals for 2015, so I thought why not publish them. I can then reflect on those goals at the end of the year and see what has changed and what stayed true (if any).

Currently I have a handful of goals, these being:

Automated Deployment Strategy/System

Currently, setting up a new server or updating an existing one with security releases, while not hard, is quite time consuming. One server here, another one there, yea thats not to bad but when it jumps above 10 it really starts to eat into your day.

Take for example when heart bleed came out, having to patch a couple of dozen servers really wasted half a day. If this process was automated in some way, that would make it a lot easier.

After playing around with Chef for a while, I think I am going to stick with Ansible. Ansible is so easy to read and even easier to learn. I am currently playing around with a Rails setup by testing it with a vagrant box, loving it.

This may change slightly if docker can be put into production easier than I think, but I still think docker will need some use of ansible.

Multi Front-end, API Back-end

As more and more of the application I am working on are becoming quite interactive and requiring a large amount of javascript on the front-end, it only seems right to extract the front-end from the back-end and start developing API’s first then the front-end to hook into it.

There has been a move to breaking out parts of applications to this model recently and it just works. Lightning fast responses is another huge one, hitting a json api is so quick. Further to that, its easy to plug in to another front-end, whether that be a mobile app or some other device, clean and simple.

I really like this approach as it keeps a clean separation of code and also reduces the knowledge required for any other developers that may come on to the project. Having a purely front-end based dev come onto a project and have to learn rails or node is asking a bit much (although, I am sure they would find it fun).

Implement Docker

Docker! Docker excites me quite a lot, the speed, security and just pure awesomesauce about it. The more and more I learn about docker, the more I want to have that for everything, at least in my development environment.

There are times where I want to just make my machine a clean slate, not having to install tons of libraries on it just to do some dev work, then find one library version is needed for one project and a different one on another, or just clogging things up, writing crazy readmes etc. Docker solves all those problems.

I think docker, or if not docker, something along those lines is the future of development. Coming onto a new project, you just pull the repo, run a command and boom the full dev environment is setup and running, all isolated from the machine you are working on, no conflicts, life is grand.

So I would really love to have that happening in 2015, I think its just about a silver bullet when it comes to the development environment and potentially in production.

Side Projects

Currently my side projects are gaining more and more interest, but I need to start pushing them more so I can get them making a profit, to grow them into something even more awesome and help other peoples lives.

Currently devbase.io is my everyday companion, storing all the details I need for client websites, domains, hosting, etc, it just solves a huge problem for me storing and sharing that information with anyone else that I may have on my team.

One thing that devbase is lacking is a decent marketing site. At the moment it is absolutely horrid, it really does not look very nice, tells nothing about how it can help you. I really need to work on that straight away. I want to have a marketing site I am proud of and that represents what devbase is.

As for my latest side project, Email Setup Buddy I would like to try and get more people using it as well as finish up some of the last guides. The guides are ready to be put in there, but I need to stop being lazy, get in there and smash it out. If I set aside a day, I could easily get it done.

It does need some work on the admin ui as well as the actual guide pages, but I won’t be touching that until I get some more feedback.

I also have a couple of other side projects I want to release, but I think I just need to sit back and really focus on devbase and Email Setup Buddy right now, get them to where I am fairly happy, then I can move onto those other side projects.

Summary

Anyway, thats my 2015 Goals, Have an automated deployment strategy/system, Move to a multi front-end API back-end workflow, Implement docker (at least in development) and Push my side projects and make them profitable.

Here is hoping to a fun and successful 2015.