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Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

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If your manager told you to spend the next two weeks working on any "fun and fulfilling" project at work, what would you do?

Given this freedom, what do you take on?

Top comments (69)

andrewbrown profile image
Andrew Brown 🇨🇦 • Edited

I would finish up my AWS Star Trek Karaoke app where you can input a karaoke soundtrack and it would clip together video photage to make star trek character sing.

So I can make things like this:

It would cost $500 USD on AWS to transcribe the entire seasons of TNG but I have the credits to do so.

scrabill profile image
Shannon Crabill

Hello, fellow Trekie! 🖖

This is an amazing project and I hope you can get the resources to complete it.

nomangul profile image
Noman Gul

Maybe I'll turn "Sublime" into "VSCode" on all machines 🙃

iarmankhan profile image
Arman Khan

The hero we need!

itsasine profile image
ItsASine (Kayla)

Refactor the world. No new feature development -- just making the existing codebases cleaner and easier to maintain.

This may be because of my 3-year-old Tech Debt of Doom Confluence doc. Or maybe because it takes 2 weeks to get my data-driven tests functional again after the data changes... yeah, mostly that one (I'm currently on day 4).

maciekgrzybek profile image
Maciek Grzybek
ben profile image
Ben Halpern

For me, extended periods of "therapeutic refactoring"

Perhaps with the added freedom to work on features or bug fixes that come up as I discover them. Lots of the best parts of the DEV codebase I've contributed were in these periods.

desi profile image

I think this would be mine too, but in a different way. Our copy has been written and rewritten by many different people in many different countries over many different years without any style guide, and I'd love to develop a style guide and get all copy up to a consistent standard!

intricatecloud profile image
Danny Perez

My upcoming work hackathon project will be a tool to aggregate JIRA ticket #'s from git log messages, and link them to a ticket to internally track all changes that are going out in a particular build.

Also, I can't believe that fun & fulfilling project at work would involve JIRA 🤦‍♂️

ben profile image
Ben Halpern


molly profile image
Molly Struve (she/her)

Refactor our Elasticsearch searching code and make the specs run faster!

Last year I got the chance to overhaul our indexing code mainly to make changes to improve performance. The end result code was SO much cleaner and nicer than the original!!! I would love to do that again.

yashints profile image
Yaser Adel Mehraban

I would start working on a machine learning model with Tensorflow.Js and do something cool like creating complex/dynamic scenarios in a game with unsupervised learning 😍

The game can be used for useful stuff like teach kids how to code 🔥.

Oooops, did I give up too much on my side project? 😉

garrett profile image
Garrett / G66 / megabyteGhost

We use a terrible CRM but being a small non-profit I can’t seem to convince them to get something better. So, I would spend 2 weeks working on an MVP of a custom one just for our org.

xowap profile image
Rémy 🤖

I would get a thousand ideas, run in circles and accomplish nothing

nareshravlani profile image

You got a company 🙋🏻‍♂️

isaacdlyman profile image
Isaac Lyman

Haha, too real.

ryibas_89 profile image

This hits closer to home than I'd like.

picocreator profile image
Eugene Cheah

Are you referring to DoorJam? - There is an entire guide on how to do so on a raspberry pi =D

You can see more details at

bbutlerfrog profile image
Ben Butler

Document the codebase of our apps. Refactoring is a long-term goal, but large parts of them work decently now. Like most development shops, though, people have come and gone and meant to do the documentation later. That's led to all the common issues (and actually contributed to much of the code that actually needs refactored, because people didn't use existing methods and did things twice).

Good documentation for the code would solve so many problems, but we're going to do it "someday".

mx profile image
Maxime Moreau

I have the same damn problem with documentation. We're dealing with data pipelines that aren't documented so it's hard to maintain...
I'm already trying to catch some time to do it because it's becoming a mess. No business rules documentation ect :(

chadnaz profile image
Chad Naz

They should have you do this anyway ha

winstonyallow profile image

Refactoring most of our kubernetes deployments to use helm charts (or add them to our rancher catalog so that other teams can reuse apps easily). I love building CI pipelines.

Currently most of our CI pipelines use kubectl apply to deploy to our old kubernetes.

My project would include making a docker image that teams can use in their gitlab CI runner. It would have all tools needed to test and deploy helm charts to our new rancher kubernetes cluster. In an ideal scenario this would lead to a consistent way to deploy to the cluster across all teams. The image would also include the tools to add apps to our rancher catalog and to deploy apps available in the catalog.
The image would be cluster agnostic, it should be possible to configure which cluster to use (we have integration, staging and production clusters).

I already implemented some of this. Sadly there is no time to finish this in a clean and nice way. If I could I would definitely work on this project more!

danjconn profile image
Dan Conn • Edited

I still need to play with Kubernetes properly!

moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I'd make a narrator bot.

This will be a device that listens to you speak, in a similar way to Alexa, but without a wake world. Screw privacy for the narratorbot.

Narratorbot would listen for your use of superlatives and imperatives and reply in appropriate fashion:

Me: I will definitely refactor this code later
NB: He did not refactor this code later.

ioana__b profile image
Ioana Budai 💬

It's not exactly 'work' related, since I'm currently a marketer dabbling in coding. But I'd learn to use Netlify to create a website. This will allow me to create a book review platform (the fulfilling part) where I can deepen my knowledge in HTML/CSS, Git, and UI/UX design (the fun part).

ben profile image
Ben Halpern

That sounds great! I was once a marketer dabbling in code. 😄

ioana__b profile image
Ioana Budai 💬

OMGGG! I didn't know I needed this info but damn! 🤩

danoswalt profile image
Dan Oswalt

I was going to be unique and say "refactor code", but it looks like that's everyone's work fantasy already...

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