May 12, 2015

A Personal Development Plan

It’s important to keep your skills sharp. Nowhere is this more true than in web development, where it sometimes feels like progress moves at light speed. As is obvious from my posts on this blog, I’ve been learning a lot of new stuff lately, mostly Elixir-related.

But no matter how much I learn, there’s always more and more possible technologies out there to learn. In fact, a few new ones were probably invented while I wrote this post. The more I know, the more I know I don’t know.

What I need is focus: a plan to cut through the noise and focus on the things I really want to learn, and why. To that end, I just put together a personal development plan to structure my learning around.

Searching for Permanence

In this fast-paced environment, I’m looking for tried and true technology that has already passed the test of time or has the potential to do so. I don’t have time to keep up with everything, so I want to keep up with the right things.

This is why I plan on studying arcane stuff like regular expressions, SQL, algorithms, and Elixir. The first three have proven themselves useful over time, and aren’t going anywhere. Elixir is a new, brighter face of Erlang, which has been in production for 30 years now, and is known for rock-solid stability.

This is also why I’m not casting aside Ruby on Rails either. For all its quirks, it has been run in production for 10 years now, and is used successfully by many companies. Ruby isn’t on my development plan simply because I believe I’m already sufficiently competent in it, at least for now.


It was a really valuable exercise to put this plan together, and perhaps someone else out there will find it useful. I plan on updating it throughout the year as I accomplish milestones, and I’ll write a blog post at the end of this year reviewing my progress.

View My Plan

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