programming books and videos

We’re snowed in today here in my part of NJ, so today’s probably a good day to review and clean up some of the “independent study” stuff I’ve been working on over the last several months.

First, I decided to finally finish up a book that I started reading about a year ago, Real-World Functional Programming. I’d been reading it a little bit at a time for quite a while. I started in on a program to learn F# back in 2014. I read a few books, and learned a bit, but I never really got a chance to apply any of that knowledge on a practical project. So I skimmed through the last couple of chapters of that book today, marked it as “read” in Goodreads, and decided that my F# experiment is over for now.

I started (and finished) reading a book on JavaScript this week, Object-Oriented JavaScript. I’m doing a bit of JavaScript programming at work right now, but I’m rusty, since I haven’t used it much lately. I got this book for free at some point from Packt, so I thought maybe it would be a good way to brush up and refresh my memory. It was a good refresher, and even had some stuff in it that I hadn’t stumbled across before.

On the video front, I’m still working my way through SharePoint videos on Pluralsight. I’ve completed Andrew Connell’s “SharePoint 2013 Developer Ramp-Up” series, and Sahil Malik’s “Understanding SharePoint 2013” series. Now I’m working on David Mann’s “Developing SharePoint 2013 Solutions with JavaScript,” which is helping me out with the SharePoint/JavaScript stuff that I’m currently working on. When I paid for a year’s worth of Pluralsight, I wasn’t sure if I’d get my money’s worth out of it, but I think I’ve been making good use of it so far this year.

I’ve also now been sidetracked into messing around with TypeScript. I read a book on CoffeeScript a few years back, but CoffeeScript never really took off (at least in the .NET community), while TypeScript seems to be very popular right now. (Take a look at this Google Trends graph.) So I’ve been experimenting with using TypeScript and JSOM together in a SharePoint project. I’m not sure if it’s worth the effort, but it’s interesting. I haven’t devoted too much time to TypeScript yet, but I’ll probably watch a Pluralsight video or two on it and see if I can persuade myself into using it.

Finally, I feel like I should get back to Ruby on Rails at some point. I started learning Ruby back in 2015, and learned the basics (of both the Ruby language and the Rails framework) but really didn’t get as far as I wanted. I got partway through Michael Hartl’s book/tutorial, but I guess I got off track at some point, since I haven’t touched it since June 2015. As with F#, I never had any real project in mind, or work-related reason to learn Ruby, so I probably abandoned it in favor of something else I needed to learn.

So I guess I’ve got some goals for the rest of 2017: keep working on SharePoint, brush up on my JavaScript some more, look into TypeScript more deeply, and maybe get back to Ruby on Rails, if I have time.

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