random notes and UW web stuff

I ran into Terrill yesterday at a Waterloo UX group event and it occurred to me that I hadn’t read anything of his lately. So I check and it turns out I wasn’t subscribed to his blog. Whoops. There’s a ton of interesting stuff in the last twenty or so posts that I’ve had the energy to look at.

It makes me think that I should really blog a lot more myself, since I do it so rarely these days. I guess I’m just lazy… a lot of stuff I bookmark on del.icio.us, but most things I just keep to myself, really. Or in some cases I complain to tons of people in person (such as about my school’s LMS software, which Terrill has written a great criticism of).

Terrill actually posted a screenshot of him using Quizify, a tool I made last year (and haven’t properly announced since it’s not quite ready) and keep trying to convince myself I will get back to working on shortly. I really want to, ‘cause it could be so darn useful, and I’ve got pages of ideas for it. I just need to get on it. Since I’ve already got a job (oh, by the way I will be joining Microsoft in Redmond around September), I’m thinking that at some point before then I will probably just open source it, so it has some chance of succeeding… I dunno.

Speaking of getting on stuff, back in March I had an idea for a Web Clinic at the University of Waterloo, where I book a computer lab for a few hours at the same time and place each week, and anyone who works on web stuff (any skill level and specialty) can show up, work on their own stuff, and help each other. Basically there is almost no web community at this school, and thanks to Jesse and a few others who started BarCamp here, there is something now, but I felt it needed a lot more. So this week was the second week of the Web Clinic. I’m proud of myself for actually following through with something (for once), and for trying to start a community (way harder than starting a website for instance). It is still just starting of course, and could easily collapse, but the turnout so far I’ve been happy with.

I’ve already met people I didn’t know at this school who are working on neat things. It’s funny how things come to you once you start things. Someone I didn’t know at all emailed me out of the blue to talk about his startup. I’m getting a couple of inquiries about people looking for employees, volunteers, etc. So hopefully before I finish school in April, this will have morphed into a real thing that can survive without me.

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