Lift-off.

Logo. Basic. Hyper-talk. C++. Html.

Most computer programming origin stories begin with a young child magically coming up on these weird and strange markings with their first ever computer () and that sets them on a journey of discovery, ecstacy and self-loathing across bazaars and cathedrals.

That’s not my story.

But that’s not because I hated computers.

In fact, I loved them too much.

I chatted with people on IRC over a 28 kbps dial-up connection. I saw the first geocities website being born. I was amongst the first Indians on Myspace. Hell, I made a myspace page for a friend’s band with blinking tags(!) and all the visual disasters that only Myspace could allow. (Yes, I am THAT old.)

But I hated programming. Whether it be C, Logo, Basic or html; It sucked the living soul out of my body and it was my childhood version of a dementor. I hated my time spent in engineering and happily gave up on it by jumping ship to ‘easier’ (or so I thought) pastures of UX design.

Which is where life had a sucker-punch waiting for me. We had to pick up Flash to prototype our UX designs and it was love at first sight. Remember the first time you do something in code and it changes visually? HOLY SHIT! (Am I allowed to swear here?)

It’s funny how destiny does that. So it goes.

And the flash development UI is one of the greatest things ever made. I will fight you on this.

But, back to the story. After picking up flash, my journey has taken me across different UX/UI jobs where I have managed to call myself a code-scavenger. I can put multiple things together to make it work. I have also been equally frustrated in being not being able to articulate the exact intent of a gesture or an interaction and having to resort to hand-waving (A LOT OF HAND-WAVING!) while my developer friends look at me with a mixture of pity and frustration. Which brings me to ITP. A very expensive rehab for a frustrated aspiring programmer.

My intent with the course is pretty basic:

  • Level up on my programming stats. Less Barbarian. More Mage.

  • Learn enough to be able to pick up new languages without sweating buckets. Form a framework to approach any new language and treat it the same as I would treat any new software.

  • Decrease the gap between coming up interesting, interactive ideas and the ability to express them in a working piece rather than using some hand-wavy wizardry. More demo, less after-effects.

  • Learn enough to be able to program new art and use machine learning in generative pieces and installations. I look at generative and installation artists with envy. I do not want to keep envying them.

Currently listening: Muse-Starlight