I haven’t been posting much on this site lately because of the unfortunate fact that I haven’t been doing many programming projects. School last semester was unnecessarily busy because I overloaded on extracurricular commitments, and in between homework and tutoring and everything else, I had very little time to sit down and write code. Couple that with the “coder’s block” I’ve been experiencing lately, where I have very few ideas for programs I want to create, and you have for a long drought of programming creativity. Luckily, over winter break I was able to rekindle some of the old programming excitement, and I started teaching myself Scala.

I blew through a great book on the language. I must say that overall I am impressed. Syntactically and conceptually, the language feels fresh and cool and practically-speaking rapid to develop. Because such a focus inside the language is on the concurrent design pattern of actors, I wanted to try to improve one of my favorite projects of the past with some concurrency. I dusted off my old Episode Renamer and decided to port it to Scala to see just how much performance gain I could get  from the concurrency. You can check out the results in that post.

Other than Scala, I’ve penciled in a two-hour block of each week devoted to either programming or coming up with ideas for projects. Whether or not I am able to keep this appointment with myself once my schedule starts to fill is another matter, but I am hoping the forced brainstorming will at least lead to an interesting project or two that I can work on and write about here.