Conduitry // About // Web Developer

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Greetings fellow entity.

This is an attempt by Conduitry to describe what historically and currently gets me excited about programming.

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At the end of first grade, each person in my class was given a small notebook labeled "Summer Journal", I guess to keep us cerebrally active during the break. A couple pages into mine is this entry from July 5, 1996:

7-5-96 PM
When we went home my dad taught me how to porogram a coputer!

This is followed by a few more pages of extremely rudimentary programs. It never returned to more traditional journal fare. It's tangible evidence of the beginning.

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After the RadioShack Color Computer 2, I graduated to IBM BASIC/GW-BASIC and then through the various QuickBASIC variants. I do think that growing up with old computers around me helped with all this. I'm not sure how people learn to program if they don't start early or if they have an internet's worth of distractions at their fingertips.

Another early source of inspiration was 1980s-era text adventure games. Ten- to fourteen-year-old me spent a lot of time writing programs to serve as a framework for text adventure games. I suppose these could be said to have gotten off the ground — if only slightly. They never reached Turing-complete DSLs for developing adventure games, as it turned out that writing parsers and interpreters in BASIC is hard. It also turned out that creating adventure games themselves was hard, regardless of framework. For now, I'm content knowing that n-th generation copies of all these creations still exist in notebooks and on a hard drive under my desk. Later in my teens, several projects involved level editors and other modding utilities for Commander Keen, a DOS platformer.

I've found my niche, and this certainly seems to be an efficient way for me to make money. It's an area I can comparatively excel in, to my relief. I'm glad that something I enjoy is something that society apparently values, or at least that the segment of society with a lot of the money apparently values.

All of my websites and the bits of code behind the scenes form my largest personal programming project. A bunch of pretty standard tools held together with whatever non-standard thing seems like a good idea at the time. I wouldn't have it otherwise. I'm perversely proud of this mess. It's put together weird, and it's me. In at least a little corner of the world, I get to build and steer my own ship.

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