Pedro Piñera bio photo

Pedro Piñera

Software Engineer and Open Sourcer



SpeakerDeck Email Twitter Google+ Github Stackoverflow

2017 is almost over. What a year! Like I did last year I’d like to reflect on what 2017 has been for me and wrote down the highlights in this post. I don’t have any structure for it other than just a list of things that come up to my mind while I’m writing it:

  • Budapest 🏰 - I lived in this city from January to July. María José, my girlfriend, was living and working there and I asked the company for working remotely. They allowed me to do so and I moved there. Budapest is a lovely city with a wonderful tech ecosystem growing up. I got to make some friends in the city and even organized a Meetup for runners. I liked from Hungary that people preserve values that have been lost in other countries like appreciation and gratitude. Eventually, Maria José found a job in Berlin, and we decided to move to Berlin. I had fallen in love with Berlin, and I missed it so much that I found it hard to get used to Budapest.

  • ADDC 🎤 - It was the first time in my life that I organized a conference. ADDC took place in Barcelona, and we brought app designers and developers from all over the world to learn and connect. I learned that organizing a conference is not as easy as it might seem and it requires a lot of energy, coordination, and a good team. The first edition of ADDC was very successful and we are very excited to work on the second edition of the conference that will take place in July. We got a lot of feedback that we’ll use to make ADDC better. You can check out the conference website.

  • German 🇩🇪 - My German got terribly stuck. Since I moved to Budapest, I didn’t put much effort on it. When we moved back, I realized that I should continue learning it and invest more energy. Maria José joined in November a company, Chatterbug which offers an effective method to learn languages (she is working on the Spanish curriculum). I signed up , and I have gained some discipline taking lessons almost every day. I hope I have good news about it in next year’s wrapping up post.

  • Social Networks 👨‍👨‍👦‍👦 - I learned how to use social networks more thoughtfully. I was somehow addicted to them and most of my time was spent scrolling through their infinite timelines or stories list. I don’t like the social interactions that happen on social networks and decided to invest that time in something more valuable to me, like reading or meeting people outside the Internet. It was tough to do it because sometimes I felt I wanted to check my social profiles but by disabling push notifications, uninstalling the apps, and using extensions on Google Chrome, like News Feed Eradicator I got a lot of discipline. Although I spend some time on them nowadays, it’s nothing compared to the time I spent one year ago.

  • Twitter 🐦 - I changed the way I use Twitter. Rather than keeping it open to see what’s going on at any time and participate in any active discussions, I only check the timeline at the end of the day. When I find something interesting to read, I use Instapaper to read it later. I tweet much less and try to clean up my tweets from time to time. When there’s any hot topic, everyone is talking about I try not open Twitter. I’m not used to processing so much condensed information. Trying to keep up with everything makes me feel anxious.

  • From the music 🎵 to the e-commerce 🛒 - As I announced a few days ago, I moved on from SoundCloud, and I will be joining Shopify in January. I grew a lot as an engineer during my time at SoundCloud. It’s an fantastic company with a great culture and a lot of talent to learn from. I became very interested in scalability and contributed with modularizing the codebase to make developers more productive working on new features. I wrote some guidelines on this repository and gave a talk at Mobiconf about how we built features at SoundCloud. This passion for scalability led me to Shopify and its Developer Acceleration team, where I’ll be working on tools and processes to scale the company’s mobile apps. Can’t wait for it!

  • Open source ✏️ - I’ve been a big fan of the open source philosophy since I started my career. I like sharing what I learn with others and work with other developers to build tools that can be leveraged to create apps. One of the open source projects I’m most proud of is xcproj, a Swift library to read and update Xcode projects. xcproj became part of an open source organization, xcode.swift which I’m part of and where I got to know amazing people with whom I share my daily struggles working with Xcode. We all help each other and build open source tools in Swift. In 2018 I’ll continue contributing to xcode.swift, helping developers that want to use or participate in any of the open source tools that we are building.

  • Homo Deus 🐒 - It’s my favorite book of 2017. If you haven’t read it yet, I’d recommend it to you. Before reading Homo Deus I read another book by the same author, Sapiens. It was fascinating to know how our history influenced how humans are nowadays. Homo Deus is the continuation of that book and talks about how humans are using technology towards becoming superhumans.

  • React ⭐️ - I’m not married to any technology or programming language so when there’s something that I find interesting to learn I just read about it. By understanding other platforms, technologies or languages, you gain different points of view when you need to solve problems. Moreover, you know the good and bad things of each of them and have enough grounds to participate in discussions. React was one of these technologies that I wanted to learn, and I ended up learning the basics. Together with React I also learned a bit about Typescript (I missed not having types).

  • Running 🏃 - I used to run more a few years, ago and this year I miserably failed at trying to get in shape again. I didn’t run as much as I wanted and I got some extra kilos as a result. I participated in Berlin’s marathon, but it was the hardest one for me since I hadn’t trained enough.

  • WWDC and my first time in the US 🇺🇸 - In June I visited USA for the first time. I attended Apple Developers event, WWDC in San José. I took the opportunity to visit the so famous San Francisco, took a photo with the bridge in the background, visited Facebook’s office and saw UFO-alike Apple’s campus. What’s more, we drove to Las Vegas and visited the Grand Canyon on a helicopter. The Grand Canyon’s views from the helicopter were stunning!

  • Coffee ☕️ - I reduced the amount of coffee intake that I used to drink. It was tough because I went from drinking around 5 cups every day to not drink any. The first two days I had extreme headaches, but after it, I had much better and deeper sleep.

  • Other 😜

    • I learned how to think slower and be less hot-headed.
    • I learned how to give a fuck about what people say about me.
    • I lost the fear to share my opinion even if it goes against others’.

Goals for 2018

  • Learn German and try to get to a B1 level.
  • Lose the extra kilos that I gained and commit to a running routine.
  • Read a bit more than what I did this year (preferably non-techie books).
  • Learn Kotlin and how it can be used to build iOS apps.
  • Organize the second edition of ADDC.
  • Visit a new country (Iceland and Japan are on my mind).
  • Write an open book.