Dave Sníd

New year's resolution 2021: teach one thing a week

I’ve always been a big fan of new year’s resolutions. The vague life philosophies I’ve held onto over the years are around self-betterment and auto-didactic learning. Resolutions and big events, even manufactured ones like a new calendar year, are a great way for me to deep dive and focus towards a specific pursuit. As a college drop-out with a chip on his shoulder, I’m constantly fighting an inferiority complex over my skills.

2020’s resolution was to get a pilot’s license. Due to the pandemic it didn’t go as planned. Below is a photo from my introductory flight just over a year ago. I’d flown in simulators for nearly a decade, but this was the first time I actually flew in a small, general aviation plane. I’ll admit I don’t really have any real need to learn to fly, it was just something challenging that could fit into the before-mentioned self-discovery. My training started off well enough. For two and a half months I went to the airport twice a week, clocking nearly twenty hours into my log book. I also did weekly ground school classes through the local airport. Then in March the pandemic hit and the idea of being in a classroom or a small two-person flying box of shared air sort of killed the dream, if at least temporarily. What I did gain over that brief time was a deep respect for how much commitment and safety goes into flying. I hope when the pandemic settles down I’ll find time to redo the resolution and pick it back up. I’ve had similar failures with resolutions, usually from my own lack of stamina, and fail or succeed I tend to enjoy the journey.

For 2021 I’m thinking a little bit more inwards, since inwards is what I have access to as lockdown continues! I’ve always felt lucky to grow up with the birth of the Internet, acting as a digital carpenter building tools and websites for others. Almost all those skills were self-learned from the Internet itself. Outside of a couple early books I bought for Flash in the late 90s, I’ve mostly learned through the written word or video tutorials on a computer of some sort. For 2021 I’d like to give back, flip it around and do a little teaching. My goal is simple: to put up one piece of content a week that teaches some deep skill, no matter how trivial or mundane I think it will be. Outside of my profession as a developer / designer I am a person that has picked up quite a few hobbies over the years - from woodworking to games to basic home repair. These all come with opportunities to share. If you want to follow along, I’ll be posting here and on my YouTube channel.

So I’ll try and teach what I know, which I mostly learned from others who shared their knowledge in a similar way over the Internet. Hopefully my small contributions to the great Pangaea of knowledge will help some folks out. I’ve seen some decent reactions to videos I uploaded around terminal programs, and my hope is that I can put some of my talents as an extroverted nerd to good use.

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