Before I began the Learn-Verified program, I had picked up front-end web development. I was mostly self-taught, taking a few classes now and then to supplement. That was all fine and dandy for a while, but after several years, it was time for a new challenge. I wanted to understand the big picture—how all the parts play together—so I decided to take on full-stack. It was a natural move to make.
Of course I had some reservations. As someone who’s both right and left-brained, I was worried it wouldn’t be a perfect fit. I thought programming had the potential to be a logic-based activity that I might find annoyingly mechanical. I feared only vulcan-like computer people could be good at it. Turns out that’s not really the case, it is more ambiguous.
As I’ve gone through the curriculum, I’ve found there are many ways to reach the same end. Sure, there are established standards and patterns (and sure, it may take me a little longer to grasp some of them), but after you get those down, it’s very open-ended. To have the ability to take an idea and build it out from start to finish makes the world your imagination’s oyster. That’s pretty good motivation right there.
As a kombucha hobbyist, I’ve developed a fascination with the growing MOTHER in my brew, aka the SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast). It’s fueled by a mix of tea and sugar, and after a few batches is several inches thick. When I have more than I need to brew the next batch, I usually throw it outside for the worms. But not before wondering what else I could do with it.
No more! This summer, I’ve decided to grow fabric with the leftovers. I got the idea perusing google image search. I somehow came across the site of an English fashion designer, Suzanne Lee, who experiments with growing living materials for clothing. She did a great TED talk about it. She even made shoes from this stuff.
I’m starting off small, with 28 quart storage containers. I drilled holes in the lids so they can breathe, and covered the containers with towels to shield them from light.
Because SCOBYs grow faster in warm environments, this Instructables suggests placing the brew containers on heat pads. I’m hoping heat from that summer sun will suffice.
If this first round goes well, I might upgrade to a kiddie pool.