Hello I am back!
It’s been a while since I wrote something & I think blogging in general is slowly dying out, so I am gonna try & make a more conscious effort to blog quick snippets or things I learn as I enjoyed doing this in the past, so hopefully you can see more in the future.
So where have I been for the last 18 months or so… well I started working for Umbraco HQ helping to build great software be it the core CMS product, the Cloud platform or the addon products such as Forms & Deploy (TAFKA Courier), with a very talented & passionate team that I am so lucky to work alongside and learn so much from.
Previous to working at Umbraco HQ, I would actively work on pet projects be it small packages coded in a few evenings or lunchtimes to larger projects such as uHangout.
What is uHangout?
uHangout was a project I decided to create one lunchtime around September of 2013, I fired up a Google Hangout On Air session and invited someone in the Umbraco community to come talk about their Umbraco project & why it was so neat, where we streamed it live on YouTube. From there the idea just grew into a community show & tell. This was mostly involving new packages being built, as at the time & still today the Umbraco community site our.umbraco.org has a rapidly increasing amount of packages and it’s hard to keep up with whats new.
Why did the project die?
So you may be wondering why the project came to an abrupt end? With the last episode being aired last August. Well this happened due to a number of different things:
Getting regular new content weeklyish was becoming harder and harder to find towards the end of life of this project. The pressure to find new guests who could find the time during their working day to talk to me became difficult and I struggled to think of new ways to mix up the format to create new content and towards the end it felt more like a chore to find something new, fresh & exciting.
Starting a new job at the Umbraco HQ is a time consuming & rewarding job, where I am constantly learning so much from my clever development team colleagues. With this job I have committed myself 100% to it and thus I have found it hard to plan and organise episodes that I used to be able to do so easily.
Depression & Anxiety
You may or may not know but I have been very open about my past & current struggles with anxiety and depression. So I am coming out of a rough winter period with some low mood which can suck the soul of any creativity to hack, build or work on anything in my freetime. I can’t fully blame it, but it can eat away at your confidence & motivation. With this being said I am trying to turn things around and hope to reboot the project, even if that means handing over the reigns to someone new.
Rebooting the project
I am currently debating with myself on how to resurrect the project and ensure it’s successful and that I enjoying doing it again. The black dog of depression just tells me ‘Why bother with it?’, ‘Does anyone really miss it or care that it stopped?’
However today’s mood is positive and that I think it’s a good idea to attempt to bring it back in some form.
So with that all being said I won’t make any promises I can’t keep, but here’s hoping I can think of a new format to ensure the project can come back from the dead.
I am currently trying to figure out how best to reboot the project & kick start off something new and exciting again for the Umbraco community, I have some ideas and initial thoughts as follows:
- Scrap the live recordings – as very few people watched it live & asked questions in real time
- Means they can be pre-recorded to suit more people with their schedules in order to come & chat with me
- No more technical hiccups that happened live & can be edited out
- Less frequent
- Perhaps one a month
- Series based – 6 episodes or similar, released one a week with longer gaps between series to gather new content
- Share the burden
- Ask for help from other members of the community who want to get involved & help out
With my initial thoughts & suggestions, I would like to actively hear the wider community’s thoughts, ideas & input on where the project should go or how it could be improved, so if you have a suggestion or general thought about it all please leave a note in the comments section below 🙂
Hopefully with the help of you all I can come back with a realistic plan to resurrect the project with a sustainable future for it.