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Now 現在

These days I spend most of my time in Taipei 台北, the capital of Taiwan 台灣, where I enjoy a low cost of living, relatively high quality of life, and an almost endlessly stimulating urban environment. Taiwan is a productive place of exile—there’s a wide variety of working cafes where I can get things done and it’s bike-friendly enough that I get around on two wheels without feeling like a second-class citizen. Most of my time is spent on web development:

  • Developing powerful and highly-optimized WordPress themes and plugins. I regularly use this blog as a testbed for new ideas. Presently I am working with Timber and Twig to produce clean, readable code. I am also continuing to improve my PHP, Sass, and related skills as I make progress on this codebase.
  • Learning JavaScript, which is harder than it sounds! My educational background is in ecological science so picking up programming has been anything but effortless. Presently I am working with Webpack, Babel, and Gulp while writing mostly framework-agnostic front-end code with ES6. I’ll publish some packages on npm when I think they’re good enough; I’m wary of dumping useless garbage into open source ecosystems and sharing some of my early projects around.

Now for some of the more irregular activities I engage in from time to time:

  • Blogging up a storm! I have an immense backlog of stuff I’d like to share and generally spend at least half an hour each day (and sometimes significantly more) preparing content for this blog in no particular order. Browse around and you’ll see!
  • Hunting for Hǔ Yé 虎爺, the tiger deity commonly found in temples all around Taiwan 台灣. I’ve taken dozens of photos of different representations of Hu Ye and hope to author a big post about it sometime this year. This is all part of trying to learn more about temple culture in Taiwan.
  • Maintaining this public map of working cafes.
  • Learning Chinese, mostly through osmosis at this point. I look forward to being able to engage in a more formal program of study whenever my main project relaunches and I’ve got some spare time for once.