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This had to be an Advent of Code 2023 post

Posted in Advent of Code

It’s been a long time since my last entry, almost a year. Funnily enough, my previous entry was all about last year’s Advent of Code as I slowly played catch-up with its day 20. From there, I figured this might be the best way to bring this blog back with some Advent of Code 2023 bonanza.

What happened? Why the silence? Plenty happened. A couple of days after my previous entries, I turned 32 and started the countdown to the crucifixion. This may have been one of my most eventful years on a personal and professional plan.

The professional highlight of the year was my journey to Tech Leadership. While challenging, I had massive support from my then-manager on that path. The training had a good level of balance and even featured weekly sessions with Uncle Bob himself for almost three months. From there, making time for the blog or even gaming became even more challenging.

Eventually, all the hard work and preparation paid off when a new Tech Lead position was open and I applied for it. The internal interview process went great and if you follow my LinkedIn you know the rest…

Starting a new role requires a high level of commitment and focus but balance is necessary for a sane mind. I found my balance in dropping the amount of work-like activities conducted at home. I enjoy blogging about as much as I enjoy work. However, I needed to relax my posting while finding my footing in this new role. After all, some people blog as a career. Also, I tend to treat my writing as seriously as I do my work.

That time has been even more challenging as I have been preparing for my upcoming wedding in Italy. This required me to travel a few times there to find the venue, the church and so on. Fast-forward a few months, wedding prep is going amazingly and I’ve got a firm grip on my new role.

This means I can return to blogging and the timing is perfect because the Advent of Code 2023 started a week ago. Unfortunately, I haven’t done much yet but I decided that Java 21 will be my weapon of choice. I will try to discover more of these Java features that were introduced since Java 8. So far I’ve completed the first three days and the problems felt easy so far.

The biggest challenge I faced so far was actually on the Day 1 problem that I probably underestimated because it’s supposed to be the easiest one. Maybe it was just my brain warming up but I got to write an extra test to find a bug. Will I bring back the previous Advent of Code cruise log format? Not sure. At least not until I’ve caught up with all the days. I’ve got three days down, and six more to do. My main motivation for this year’s AoC is to shred competition on the office leaderboard. That should be just enough to catch up and push onward and upward.

Thank you for reading my inaugural Advent of Code 2023 post. Hopefully, I will keep enough balance to write my next entry before another ten months pass. Feel free to check out my code for this year on GitHub.

Cover by Agustin Piñero

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