Recurse Center, incoming!

I'm honored and excited to join the January 2021 batch of the Recurse Center, a unique community of programmers focused on self-directed learning. Although their Brooklyn space is closed for the foreseeable future, they've put an impressive amount of effort into facilitating productivity and communication with Virtual RC, leaning heavily on Zoom and Zulip, a Slack analogue. So far I've taken a look at their calendar, which is hopping with cool activities; set up a chat with an alum who studied the same topics I'm considering; signed up for some mailing lists and joined the Github team; and started writing up some learning goals and gathering resources. I also anticipate wanting to blog and show off whatever I accomplish, so I spent the last couple of weeks building and populating this website. It already contains quite a bit more content than my previous site, based on Hakyll; for more details on how I did it, check out the colophon.

But what will I do at the Recurse Center? Ideally, become a better programmer. Specifically, one who can get hired to do data science/engineering. RC is funded primarily by companies who recruit their alumni, essentially paying a referral bonus. I'll be spending my time filling in gaps in my statistics and SQL knowledge, gaining fluency in the standard techniques for language processing, machine learning, and deep learning, making visualizations of my results, and perhaps contributing to an open source project. At least, that's part of the plan. I'm also keeping some mental spacetime open for serendipitous encounters with other Recursers, who are typically a fascinating bunch, and my own experiments. I hope I can find some knowledge to share; unfortunately most of my non-programming hobbies don't translate so well to virtual space. I'll be blogging about my learning here and adding projects as they're ready for review.

Taking a step into the unknown is a bit scary, but I'm putting effort into planning the structure and support I'll need to be successful at Recurse. Tune in in the new year to see how it goes!