These days I spend most of my time in Taipei 台北, the capital of Taiwan, 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 and co-working spaces where I can get things done. It’s also 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. These days 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 not been effortless. I’m up to speed with modern tooling (Webpack, Babel, Gulp, etc.), and now I’m puzzling out React, Express, and all sorts of other interesting tech across the stack.

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

  • Publishing photos and notes from my travels. I have an immense backlog of stuff I’d like to share and generally spend a few hours every week (and sometimes significantly more) preparing content for this blog. Browse around and you’ll see!
  • Research and documenting vintage movie theaters in Taiwan, a project that roughly mirrors the Southeast Asian Theater Project.
  • Hunting for Hǔ Yé 虎爺, the tiger deity commonly found in temples all around Taiwan. 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 public maps of working cafes and food/drink recommendations in Taiwan.
  • Learning Chinese, mostly through osmosis at this point. I look forward to being able to engage in a more formal program of study when I have some spare time.