2 years later.

Well after well over 2, nearly 3 years I’ve revived the blog.

A whole lot has changed in that time, it’s kinda crazy…

Betfred

Firstly I left my very first developer job, much to my sadness. I came across a new position with Betfred which would allow me to develop my career in the direction I wanted it to go, in that I would be joining a company that was undergoing an Agile transformation. Working as part of a team in an Agile environment was something i was really missing before, but now i’m reaping the benefits. The amount of knowledge and experience I’ve gained so far from this position is unquantifiable. I feel like I’ve undergone a complete transformation, and am now capable of writing software to a standard I didn’t think I was capable of. (I need to stop underestimating myself!).

As much as it was hard to leave my previous position due to the rapport I had developed with colleagues and the managing director himself, I believe it was absolutely the right thing to do and the perfect time to do it. Being the only developer at the company, I didn’t want to leave them in a position of difficultly. Luckily I mentioned the open position to my brother, who was keen to become a developer after being a hobbyist since a young age, he has successfully taken on my previous role and is making amazing progress as a Junior Developer. I can see him become very successful in the industry.

 

Homeownership

Pretty self explanatory, yet nonetheless exciting times. As of November 2016 me and my partner became homeowners. Searching didn’t really take all that long. We knew that we wanted to stay within the Winstanley Area of Wigan, where we had previously been renting a property together, so that narrowed the search down dramatically. After viewing several houses in the area, we stumbled across this one. We fell in love with it straight away. The room sizes were perfect, very generously sized garden and the added bonus of being backed on to by woodland. Now don’t get me wrong, there is lots of work that needs to be done to modernize, but i’m embracing that as part of the fun and experience! After all, I made a career out of wanting to be creative.

 

Fatherhood!

Also, last but by absolutely no means least, I became a father for the first time! Baby Jacob John made his way in to the world on the 23rd February at 16:47 – (Just in time for dinner!). Becoming a father has been one of the most amazing experiences I could have ever imagined, and this is only just the beginning. Coming home from work and seeing his face light up when he see’s me is one of the most amazing feelings in the world. You can have had a very stressful day where nothing has gone to plan, but coming home to that just makes every ounce of worry and stress disappear in an instant. He’s developing an amazing little personality – such a happy baby and I couldn’t be more proud.

 

On-wards and upwards…

So after a rather incredible and life changing 2 years, and feeling very accomplished – I’m left wondering what’s next? Well I aim to keep on doing what I love – Developing software, learning new things each and every day and who knows where it may take me. But whatever challenges lay ahead – Bring ’em on!

Piracy, What’s the REAL solution to the “problem”?

Over the past week or so, I’ve signed up and began to use the free version of Spotify (a little late to the game I know). It offers me a service that I can legitimately and legally use for free should I so desire. So what service is that exactly? Well, I can stream as much music as I please, from a collection of over 15 Million tracks. So far, every track I’ve searched for, I have been able to find. Great stuff! Granted the free version is Ad supported, meaning every so often there are radio style adverts that I have to listen to and there is a banner on display in the application window it’self. To be fair, this doesn’t bother me _THAT_ much. So, I can happily listen and share the music with friends. Infact, writing this post has reminded me that I need to get in contact with my ISP (Virgin Media), who when I signed up for their services, gave me a 6 MONTH FREE TRIAL of spotify PREMIUM, giving me access to a whole host of more features and an Ad-less experience. Now, im not a sales rep for Spotify, so on with getting to the point.

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Ramblings about audio hardware.

So whilst visiting the Trafford Centre today, I went into HMV and decided that I’d try out the headphones that where on display. You simply plug them in to your device, and test away. Naturally curious, I selected to try the most expensive pair. Costing around £280, I expected them to be the cutting edge in audio technology. Oh how wrong I was. Whilst they where advertised as being noise cancelling, of which they did that job very well I must admit, the audio quality was to be perfectly honest, dreadful.

It didn’t stop there either. I tried the Beats Audio by Dr Dre headphones that where on display, and whilst they where somewhat better, there was still a significant lack in quality. The thing that gets me, is that there are so many people buying these headphones and paying what I consider to be overpriced. Continue reading