The Wilson Project Blog of UX/Front-End Developer Ivan Wilson

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  • Remembering Aaron Copland (1900-1990)

    This morning, CBS Sunday Morning gave recognition to Aaron Copland, who died today in 1990. They showcased the familiar list of works such as Appalachian Springs (1944), Fanfare for the Common Man (1942), and ended the segment with a pianio/violin duo briefly playing Hoe-down from Rodeo (1942). His sound is so iconic that it’s become a soundtrack for America.

    But my favorite Copland work is one that is rarely played, even in its orchestrated version – Nonet for String (1960). It’s a slow, tense, yet gentle work, written at the start of his last period of composing. If I were to describe it to someone hearing it for the first time, the best description would be the following:

    Imagine Copland writing Appalachian Springs again 20 years later. But instead of the vigor and confidence of the former, imagine someone who has 20 years of experience. A person with less vigor and bits of doubt creeping here and there. Representing an America that has also changed during those 20 years.

  • Starting Point

    Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small.
    A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.
    – Lao Tzu

  • A Look Back At MLK Day

    Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.
    – James Baldwin

  • The State of Front-End Development in 2017 (…well, at least, my version of it…)

    A response I gave to Roger Johansson‏ (@rogerjohansson) on Twitter (please read through the whole thread):

    From my view, it seems that front-end development has split into two camps: one web-focused, one app-focused.

    @iwilsonjr (6:20 PM · Jul 8, 2017) –

  • Contraction of Life

    “In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don’t.”
    – Blaise Pascal

    “It takes more courage to examine the dark corners of your own soul than it does for a soldier to fight on a battlefield.”
    – W.B. Yeats

  • Restarting The Engine

    Job Change from Innate (2016) to CQ Roll Call (2017)

    Today, I start a new job and adventure – UX developer with CQ Roll Call, a company that has been historically documenting the legislative history of the country for the past 72 years.

    It has been an interesting four months away from full-time work, going through the process of applying and interviewing for jobs – something that I hadn’t done in 10+ years. Obviously, applying for a front-end developer position as changed during this time. Unfortunately, some things haven’t changed since I last went job hunting. [Hint: JavaScript is not Java.]

    That said, there are a number of people that I would like to give thanks to the following:

    • Kenneth Joholske reminding me why we’ve been friends for 30+ years (see you next week for opera 🙂 )
    • Owen Shifflet and Devorah Firestone with their support and letting me bent an ear once in a while
    • Alison Farmer for her advice and support in making this job transition one of the smoothest I’ve had
    • Mary Cadden for her support and shoulder to cry on at the right moments
    • Darrin Maule in offering a job literally hours after losing mine (sorry we can’t work together at Fig Leaf but I really appreciate what you did and hope you, your family, and Fig Leaf success and happiness)
    • Jeff Lloyd and Ambrose Ferber for reminding me that I was worth more than I thought
    • my fencing family at Olde Town and DCFC (and other members of the fencing community), who are waiting for me to come back
      (P.S. Wayne would have laughed perversely upon knowing my new employer 😉 R.I.P.)
    • nclud for not just brief employment but allowing me to stay around to get myself (not just work-wise) together. I am grateful to all of your and hope you guys do great things. And finally…
    • To the design/UX/IA/tech community. Many of you I’ve met off and on during the years, at meet-ups, various conferences and online. But during this time, many of you not only offered not just job lead but advice and support. I’m really honored to be part of this community and hope to return the favor.

    Thanks to all of you.

    And now…forward…