Coding Blocks

How do you start your side projects?

thejoezack profile image Joe Zack Originally published at codingblocks.net on ・2 min read

I’ve got a small project that I need to complete for an upcoming presentation on JAMstack. Since I was starting the project from scratch I decided to record the process so I could see how I spent my time.

Here is the video:

I started out by trying to define my goals for both the presentation and for this coding session. Then I spent some time installing requirements and setting up Github and Netlify. I eventually got around to gathering some data and plumbing it through to the index page which completed my planned goals for the night.

So here it is!

Now don’t get me wrong, the project looks awful and it's still full of all the example code that came along with the starter I choose. But because I made my session goals I feel happy about the progress.

I looked at how much actual code I wrote in that ~2 hours: 22 lines and many of them are just curly braces! I expected that most of my time would be spent setting up my new computer and interacting with 3rd party services and documentation but seeing that number was disheartening. Especially when I felt so good about hitting my goals for the night.

So am I deluding myself? Do I feel good about the project because of the progress or because I checked some boxes? Am I cheating myself?


Maybe I am falsely tripping my dopamine reward system by checking my own made-up boxes but I do think that the bones of the project are solid and I am in a good spot to iterate towards the end state.

Being on time and under budget is unfortunately NOT common in software development, so I plan on enjoying this time while it lasts!

So, what do you think, does this look anything like how you kick off your side projects?

PS: You can check out what the site looks like now, or clone the project out on github,

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Joe Zack


Programming, Podcasting, Real-time analytics

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