When you talk to programmers you will discover some of them have pet projects. Some even tend to be unhappy when they don’t have at least one running. I’m one of the latter.
During my internship I earned good money. We were eating out every weekend and I had plenty bucks to spend on gadgets. We had a classic 9-5 job. Work was fun and interesting most of the time (at least in the first half of the internship). Doesn’t sound too bad, does it? I didn’t feel unhappy but still, something was missing. I was lying in bed at night, staring at the walls and asking myself “Why aren’t you overjoyed? This is probably more interesting than a lot of other jobs. What was different a year ago?” Well, it turns out I had pet projects a year ago which I abandoned. Two browser based games with a small but lovely community. A few weeks ago I stumbled upon those old backup files and started to play around with them. Ye olde times :) I felt the well known excitement as I browsed through that terribly written code with joy. There are several reasons why I will not revive that project. But I realized what the missing thingamajig in my life is - a pet project. So for now this blog is one of my pets. I’m also playing around with a couple of other ideas. So far I’m happy for having found that missing piece in the puzzle for me. The real insight is a different one: I want to spend as much time as possible on stuff I care about. So I have to find a way to make a living which doesn’t involve working 9-5 for somebody telling me what I shall do all the time. What is your pet project? I would be happy to read about your experiences in the comments!