Project Tech Update #1


It’s been six weeks since I introduced Project Tech, and it’s time for an update! I had three goals last time:

  1. Complete the HTML, CSS, and JS lessons on Code Academy
  2. Complete Zed Shaw’s “Learn Python the Hard Way” Course
  3. Get started on building something

Here’s how I stacked up:

  1. Complete! I finished all the HTML, CSS, and JS lessons on Code Academy, two weeks before my self-imposed goal deadline by the end of July.
  2. Incomplete. LPTHW is a self-paced course comprised of 52-lessons. I’ve completed 18/52.
  3. Incomplete. I’ve considered some ideas, but ideas are meaningless until they’ve been executed on.


  • The more specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and timely (SMART) your goals are, the more likely they’ll be completed. Completing CA was certainly doable within the time allotted, but not for LPTHW. It’s far easier to slack off if the goals are less specific.
  • It’s better to try than to not try at all. I began this summer cultivating a habit of waking up an hour earlier than usual to work on Project Tech. After about six weeks, my habits lapsed. An additional hour of sleep won the battle. Rather than giving up though, I’ve continued plugging away whenever I can – usually on the weekends.
  • It’s easier to publicize ambitions than on what was actually accomplished. I’ve never really liked publicizing my endeavors, mostly because I disliked the pressure that comes from public accountability. Succeeding publicly is great, but failing publicly isn’t. However, through StartingBloc, I’m slowly warming up to the power of public accountability.

Goals for Next Month:

  • Finish up LPTHW by 9/30.
  • Submit an entry on Kaggle by 9/15.
  • Create a one-page brief of my idea by 8/31.
  • Complete each Machine Learning course assignment before the weekly Monday deadline.

Closing Thoughts:

The problem with having so many interests is that, at least for me, it’s difficult to prioritize. I recently signed up for Stanford’s 10-week Machine Learning course, and am trying to get started on submitting an entry for some competitions on Kaggle. Both of these activities are related to my interests in technology, but they’re taking away time from completing my Project Tech goals. I’ve always believed it’s a bad idea to bite off more than you can chew, but isn’t this how we learn what our limits are? I’d like to get your thoughts. How do you prioritize what you do, when there are so many interesting things to work on?