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I won't be rolling out my own CMS

ruiclarateixeira profile image Rui Teixeira ・2 min read

In the past I've started blogging about my dev work a few times but haven't had much success getting to actually writing posts. In most attempts I've gotten lost in building my blogging platform because I wanted to be a "real dev".

I'd start by wanting to build my own CMS! Not by using any framework or any too-easy-to-use library. I wanted it to be hardcore and from scratch from database to the styling of the buttons. Even the thought of an IDE doing all the work for me was unacceptable! Syntax highlighting was the only luxury I could afford without becoming a fraud!

Safe to say I never built a CMS.

This is just an example of a flawed mindset that has stopped me from focusing on what I actually want to make. The idea that I have to be in the detail of everything that surrounds what I'm building is a crippling feeling.

A couple of years ago I got some advice from a senior developer that stuck with me: if you constantly teach others then you free yourself to learn more. This benefits you because you can expand, experiment and create new and more interesting projects. But it also benefits the team/community because that knowledge is not centralised and because they don't have to reinvent the wheel and can build on top of your work.

I'm not proud to say it took me a while to see this advice from the perspective of the person getting the knowledge. Even more importantly that this knowledge can come in the form of tools that abstract away complex processes. I started realising that using what others have built gives me the opportunity to be creative and build on that knowledge and hopefully then contribute back.

I've recently started playing around with React and I've happily used create-react-app to skip the project setup steps! I don't miss out on googling "best atom plugins for <Language I'm using now>"! Also, I'm a massive fan of code formatters!

There's so much cool stuff out there that is impossible to learn about everything in detail. On the other hand there's so much cool stuff out there that this is a great time to be a developer!

Discussion

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Andy Zhao (he/him)

Thanks for sharing! Whenever I have an idea for a side project, I always want to make it a learning opportunity, too. Then I go through feelings similar to yours about pruning what I can use so I can "be a real developer."

Of course, that just makes me forget about both the idea I had, and more importantly, the fact that just doing the side project is a learning experience already.

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Rui Teixeira Author

Make an effort to let go of those thoughts and embrace all of the great tools available! I like to stop and think that even if I was writing all my code in assembly I would still be making using of so much work that I don't even begin to understand!