Well, it has been an absolutely wild ride for the past 2+ years over at Mitchell International. When I began working there in October of 2010, I had never worked with WPF. I had never even heard of the MVVM design pattern. I had barely scratched the surface of what it was to work with Entity Framework, and I'd not yet explored using POCOs. Aspect oriented programming? Huh?? I'd never (knowingly) worked with that either. A prism was just a device to refract light. I had no clue what people meant when they threw around scary sounding phrases like 'dependency injection' and 'inversion of control'. For the latter, I assumed I was supposed to code upside-down, strapped into my chair with one of those massive roller-coaster style harnesses. I put in an order for said harness, and I was still waiting for its delivery all the way up to my exit interview earlier this afternoon.
Dear Disney-World: You can keep that harness I ordered... Turns out inversion of control has very little to do with writing code from an inverted position. My bad.
I learned how to use and at least somewhat understand all of those technologies, techniques, approaches and patterns with my teammates at Mitchell. I drank form the fire hose of .NET goodness, and while the learning curve was steep and required a million extra hours of personal time researching, studying and practicing, in the end it was absolutely worth while. I'm still not a ninja, but I believe that I leveled up a few times as a developer at Mitchell.
I will miss my teammates dearly... They are a wonderful and talented group, and I very much hope that my professional life will cross with at least some of theirs in the future!
Not only am I excited about the development practices they employ, I'm also a huge fan of what they are developing as well: I'll be helping to work on their web version of a platform for digital text books. This is the kind of thing I would have loved to have had when I was in school, and I still tend to massively prefer digital to physical books of any type. I like being able to carry a huge amount of books with me with taking up a ton of space, and without being ridiculously heavy to try to transport. I like being able to search my books using an actual algorithm, rather than hoping the index and/or table of contents will give me the hooky-hook on finding exactly what I'm looking for. The product is called Thuze, and for the insatiably curious, you can check it out here!
To infinity... And beyooooond!!
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Jon Bachelor: This geek goes all the way to 11.