2017 Favorite Things

December 27, 2017

Frontend Development

Vue/React/Angular

I spent about 50% of my time with Vue, 50% with React, and ~0% with Angular. I still have no idea which one I like the most, but if you tell me a scenario, I have a good feeling towards which I would use.

I really love Nuxt.js and Next.js and all the stacks of tools that solve the real problems of building dynamic websites.

Hyperapp/Calmm/Svelte

If I were to write a “framework”, I would write Hyperapp. Expect a course on hyperapp on egghead.io in January 😇

I think Calmm is a stack of tools that many people are looking for, but they don’t know it exists. Observables inside of JSX, lenses, atoms, etc, it’s really quite impressive, but no one has heard of it.

I think Svelte is a wonderful solution for those looking for a template-based approach. I also think Sapper should have a big impact in 2018.

RxJS/Most

I love RxJS because it’s bringing Observables to the mainstream. I love Most because of their new composable API. The code in this demo is just beautiful.

FP

2017 was the year that Functional Programming really clicked for me. It was also the year where I realized how easy it is to push FP too far. I’ve found a happy balance between “point-free all the things” and “code normal” and I’m a bit more at peace and more confident authoring code than I’ve been in a while.

Partial.Lenses

I fell in love with lenses in 2017, especially the library partial.lenses. Conquering huge objects with tiny composable functions, yum! Lenses are one of those concepts that don’t really seem like they have much of a payoff when you just start out with them and you don’t fully realize their value until your data/state gets more complicated. I hope to be able to teach that well in 2018.

Codesandbox

Ives is killin’ it with Codesandbox. He’s even been kind enough to support a couple of my feature requests and we’re proud supporters from egghead.io. I can’t wait to see where he takes the product. I know I love hosting my demos with them.

VS Code

The thing I love the most about VS Code is the monthly release cycle of great new features. I find myself missing a lot of features from WebStorm, but I also tend to edit so many tiny one-off files that VS Code has been my go to. VS Code is also really easy to make look so nice for videos/presentions/workshops that it’s hard to justify opening WebStorm even though I know WebStorm is “better”. Gah, I’m so torn over this one. I love them both so much. I need a bigger heart.

Gatsbyjs

Gatsbyjs seems like the perfect answer to gitbook. Where gitbook locks you into a specific pattern with markdown files, Gatsbyjs allows you to use markdown, but then write JS to render (using React) when you need to. I’m looking forward to spending a lot of time with Gatsbyjs in 2018 and I’m super excited for their v2 release.

Docker

Docker is one of those things I love, but don’t have nearly enough practical experience with. Configure once, forget it, but then when it’s time to upgrade it feels like learning it for the first time all over again.

Poi and Parcel

I love the “zero configuration” movement. Poi and Parcel are both incredible and I can’t thank the authors enough for sharing them.

Zeit

I love everything zeit.co has put out this year: now, hyper, next.js, micro, they’re like a year-round Santa handing out presents. I just wish their hosting didn’t experience so much down time. I’m hoping they get it all sorted in 2018 (ironically, their sites are down as I’m writing this).

Office

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Keyboard

I’m a keyboard nut (I have quite the collection) and I just have to say that I’m completely blown away by the Keyboard.io. It deserves a full review of its own.

I recently received the Ultimate Hacking Keyboard, but I haven’t had any time to put it through its paces. I’m really excited about the prospect of the trackball/pointer add-ons, but those don’t come out until later on in 2018.

Mouse

I have the Logitech G900. Great mouse. Long battery life. I’ve dabbled in trackballs, but I just have to have the precision of mouse for my video editing and selecting code.

Monitor

I’m using the AOC Agon monitor. I’ve come to love higher refresh rates on screens. I never thought that I’d care, but it’s super noticeable to me now even for simple things like dragging windows around.

Laptop

I’m on the latest 13” macbook pro. I’ve found 13” is really the sweet spot for me between portability and size. Run most things in full-screen and swipe between spaces. I don’t hate the keyboard as much as many people do, at least it has proper n-key rollover for my weird “chording” I have set up in karabiner.

Windows keeps calling me back and WSL keeps getting better and better, but I’d really need autohotkey to catch up to karabiner to take it seriously.

Phone

I’m on an iPhone X. I kinda wish I was on the iPhone 8 because the face ID really bugs me. My bigger wish is that iMessage worked cross-platform because then android phones would actually be an option, but alas, Apple stuff is fine.

Keyboard/Mouse Switches

I’ve got a beefy PC for gaming. I use this for monitor switching and this for USB switching. So I’m only two button clicks from switching between work and games 😆. I couldn’t find a good monitor switch that also had USB 3.0, so I keep them separate.

Headphones/Speakers/Mic/Etc

I haven’t changed many of my peripherals in 2017, so not really worth talking about.

Gaming

Nintendo Switch

Zelda blew me away. Mario brought endless joy. I love the indie games and even bought Rocket League again. I should really make more time to play.

PC

I haven’t played Overwatch since the beginning of the year. It’s always on the back of my mind, but never quite make it a priority. I put a couple dozen hours into Warframe and have quite enjoyed it, but didn’t really get too far.

Loved playing Ultimate Chicken Horse with my boys on Steam. Stick Fight was a blast for a night.

VR

A lot of the VR experiences have made me queezy, so I’ve never been able to spend any significant amount of time playing. The most fun I had was playing I Expect You to Die.

Books

First, I hate spoilers, so I’m just going to say that I loved these books and leave you to read up on it however much you want:

Read a few other random books, but I’m just realizing that I need to read more.

The One Thing I Hated

“Michael Vey 7: The Final Spark” was an atrocity. I’ve written one book review in my life and it was to express how poor I thought this book was.


John Lindquist

You are awesome 🏆

See my work at egghead.io