What I’m Doing *Now*
I recently moved to Edinburgh and made this page to help explain to new friends “what I do” 1 but it’s turned into a great way to keep myself “on-track” with a number of personal goals, so I’ve continued to update it each month.
Who I Follow
For keeping up with design, creativity and technology (particularly iOS), I recommend getting to know these people if you don’t already:
- Seth Godin – author and marketing savant.
- Austin Kleon – author of a few great books (the “Steal Like An Artist” series) as well as frequently inspiring emails and blog posts on sharing creative work.
- Casey Neistat – film-maker and prolific vlogger. How does he do it? Here’s how.
- Chase Jarvis – photographer who also runs CreativeLive.
- James Victore – designer who has an opinion and isn’t afraid to share it.
- Derek Sivers – creator of CD Baby (which I’d never heard of until after he’d sold it for millions, gave almost all of the money away for charitable causes and moved to New Zealand). He’s done a handful of brilliant short TED talks (start with this one) and interviews. I recommend the 2-parter he did with Tim Ferriss: Derek Sivers on Developing Confidence, Finding Happiness, and Saying “No” to Millions and/or the shorter Derek Sivers Reloaded.
- Apple-centric tech news via Jon Gruber, Casey Liss, Jason Snell, Federico Viticci, Jim Dalrymple.
- The Great Discontent which regularly publishes insightful interviews with amazing people.
- Continuing to learn iOS app design and development in Xcode and Swift. Still early days but the latest beta of Xcode 8 with its improvements to storyboards is awesome, and makes for quicker design iterations and testing.
- Starting to build out my movie sharing app, plus a couple of other smaller projects I haven’t talked about.
- Designing a portfolio website for a photographer.
- Not playing Pokémon Go 🙂
- It’s Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference this month, so I’ll be catching up on videos from the various developer sessions in San Francisco. There’s some big new releases to learn about including the latest versions of iOS 10, OS X (I mean, macOS!), tvOS and watchOS 3! Not to mention Swift 3 and Xcode 8! Busy busy busy!
- While also continuing to dive into app design and development, I’ve decided I should share what I’m learning… so I’m putting together a brand new website at DOSWIFT.net which will be launched before the end of the month [UPDATE: the site went live on June 27th with the first video tutorial covering some of the great new features in Xcode 8 and Swift 3!]
- Launching the new website for the Edinburgh Festival of Cycling.
- Continuing to learn app development for iOS, programming in Swift. I’m developing a movies app for couples to share films they’ve both seen, or want to watch together. I’m learning techniques like using a live database to store information (via Firebase), fetch information from an API (TheMovieDB), cache images locally to optimise loading, and design what will eventually be a good-looking UI. I’ve also been introduced to the concept of unit tests, so am looking to implement some robust tests too. If you know of any good resources to learning this stuff, please drop me a line 🙂
- Launching a new site for award-winning choreographer Janis Claxton.
- Finalising a web project which was started as part of 8i Edinburgh (8 hours’ overtime for a good cause) which I took part in last month – for the Edinburgh Festival of Cycling
- Meeting new freelancers/agencies in Edinburgh – always up for meeting interesting people!
- An unashamedly Apple theme for two new books I’m reading this month (Apple Computer was incorporated 40 years ago on April 1st, in case an excuse is needed): Becoming Steve Jobs and Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products.
- Getting to know everyone at Tribe Porty, a new coworking space I’ve joined in Edinburgh. Check it out here!
- Learning iOS 9 / Swift 2 development
- Meeting new people in Edinburgh – agencies and freelancers
- Small number of web / graphic design projects
- Reading more great new books (primarily on life and work)
New This Month…
- iOS 9 / Swift 2 development
- Mark Price’s iOS 9 and Swift 2: From Beginner to Paid Professional course on udemy is awesome, highly recommended. Have already made a number of basic apps, and learning solid programming ‘best practice’ from a Swift/iOS development perspective. My projects are over on GitHub.
Continuing from January…
- Web & graphic design projects
- Meeting local creatives in Edinburgh
- Learning from others (always!)
- Web & graphic design projects.
- This isn’t taking up much of my time right now, I just have a small number of great clients, and my two goals are simply to do good work with interesting people, and cover my basic costs, to allow me to do more.
- Developing and releasing my own side-projects.
- The first of my side projects2 for 2016 came from talking with a local letterpress printer. I was looking to produce something tangible for friends, which would be useful and good for the world in some small way. I also wanted it to be something that could last (not throw-away), and that would encourage people to remain in a growth mindset throughout the year. The result? Beautiful high quality letterpressed bookmarks that are also a year-round record of your favourite books.
- I plan on reading at least a dozen good books in 2016 – see above – because I read very little last year, and reading is important!
- Meeting local creatives (in person!)