Who am I?

My name is John, and I am a life long learner and software engineer. I love challenging myself by taking on highly ambitious and difficult projects since this usually brings about new things I need to learn. I also love sharing what I've learned with others, and that is why this digital garden exists.

I also like to just challenge myself by learning new skills unrelated to coding. I have a particular interest in learning languages, and this usually involves writing my own language learning tools. I made my own assisted reader application, and used it to slowly and painstakingly read through two full novels in Spanish. From that, I can now read and comprehend a good amount of Spanish. I wouldn't say I'm fluent by any stretch, and I sure as hell suck at speaking and listening. But overall, it was a fun experience, and maybe I'll continue it some day when this particular language itch comes up again.

I love video games that use my brain. Factorio is my all time favorite game, and other examples include Prison Architect, RimWorld, Oxygen Not Included, and other such builder games. Ironically, I'm not as into puzzle games.

Video games are what got me into software development, and specifically, Sonic the Hedgehog was where it all started for me. This was the first game I was exposed to, and I was fascinated by how it worked. There were tons of Sonic fan sites on the Web 1.0 back then, and many of them had information about emulation and ROM hacking. I was hooked, and my first "game" was essentially Sonic 2 recolored by hex editor.

I am a hiker, trail runner, and cyclist. I love mindfully walking around in nature, and also love pushing myself to run longer distances and up steeper hills. This often results in injury, and lately, I've been learning how to fix my body after decades of sitting as a software developer.

I think you can establish a common theme from the above to get a good sense of my personality type. I love learning, I love challenging myself, and I love making things. Enjoy my digital garden where I will talk about all of these things.