Category: Uncategorized

5 of my favourite CodeWars Kata’s for February 2017

jackLyons Uncategorized Tags: , ,
CodeWars Kata's

I highly recommend these CodeWars Kata’s for anyone wanting to improve their programming skills. It’s a great way to train your brain and stay sharp. It also is an excellent tool to practice new techniques, especially when learning new syntax (take ES6 / 7 as a fine example). The best part about it is, that when you complete a kata, you can review your work and compare it to other coders. (more…)

Goals for 2016

jackLyons Uncategorized Tags:

Hello World!

Finally I have a place to call home. I’ve been blogging here and there throughout the past 12 months, however it never really felt just quite right. It never felt like my own space. I know, personal blogs can be somewhat self indulgent and rather egotistical places. However,  that is exactly not what I want here and I will do my darndest to stay from falling into that trap.

Blogging for me is such a perfect way to get my thoughts and ideas out and a useful tool to chronicle my experiences in this world. Plus writing is something I always have enjoyed doing, I’ve just never put the effort in pursuing it as a skill to be learned.

Tony Robbins says it best:

The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your communication”.

The qualities of self-expression, meaningful conversation, articulate persuasion and that feeling of flow when you feel yourself connected in deep dialogue are all skills that can be learned. Thus, it is my hope that I will learn a thing or two along this blogging journey. Who knows where I’ll be or what I’ll be doing this time next year, but here are a few ideas that I would love to flesh out a little more.

Here are my goals for 2016:


1. Maintain my healthy yoga habits.

Ever since living in China and coming down with a debilitating bout of Whooping Cough, which subsequently saw me lose a decent 8 or 9 kilograms, I’ve found great solace in yoga as a restorative mind and body practice. To be honest, yoga has changed my life. From humble beginnings, my practice really just began as a simple means to prevent lower back pain after waking each morning.

There, it took form while practicing in a pleasant little dojo located down in a ramshackle old building right by my apartment in Hangzhou. I learned a lot under the guidance of a venerable old yogi-chinaman and some seriously strong yogi-women. It was a fantastic experience of total Chinese immersion, which definitely made for a few laughs along the way.

So now yoga is something I really can’t imagine my life without and therefore, something I want to strive to practice each and every day. I see it as an investment in the day. While some mornings I may struggle to get out of bed and think that there is absolutely no way I can be bothered getting the mat out – I know enough from experience now to realize that is absolutely the most important time to invest in relaxing and rebuilding myself.

I see it as an investment in my day, which means you got to give a little before you can receive the benefits. In all seriousness, 15 minutes is all you need. Thanks to an amazing app called Yoga Studio, it really isn’t so hard to just flop out on the mat and follow along. You can download it on Windows 10 and Apple TV too. Click here to find out more.


2. Complete my certificate in Front End Web Development.

Again, my interest in web development can be traced back to China where I had way too much time on my hands and a bit of a freak out moment; a quarter life crisis where I had this crazy feeling of inadequacy due to my lack of skills. The internet is everywhere and our lives are so dependent on it that I really felt as though I should learn how to truly grasp that power. I respect those savvy techies who are able to create cool stuff and solve of worlds great problems simply by writing some code.

While that may not happen every day, I still see the web and the development of the web as an ultimate expression of creativity, not to mention an amazing excuse to travel the world and work freely. Someone I look up to is a dude by the name of Pieter Levels, a real pioneer in the digital nomad community.

Levels is the reason why I started my rock climbing blog, Adventure in my veins. Basically, I want to learn how to build a sustainable living and a lifestyle around my love for travel and adventure. A while back, I interviewed an incredible all around adventure expert and software developer by the name of Quest Henkart. Quest’s kickass approach to life really inspired me to get moving. And, so now here I am.

I’ve enrolled in a Front End Web Development course by Free Code Camp. It’s an open course that will take me from being a total nOOb to hopefully landing a job. The course offers an incredible array of problems to solve, projects to build and caps of the final certification with some real-world project work for non profit organizations around the world.


It’s not going to be easy, I already know that! But I really do believe that these are valuable skills to learn and by doing so, this allows me to give something cool and creative back to the world. Only time will tell, but be sure to watch this space for I will be uploading my project portfolio as I go.


3. Spend the year working as an Urban Planner.

It’s been well over a year and a half since graduating. I feel as though I have spent enough time gallivanting across the globe and now it’s time to settle in and solidify. I love learning about the world and am especially drawn towards creative urban solutions that encourage happier and healthier people and places.

I’m excited to begin my journey into the world of urban planning and would love to one day contribute my skills as a web developer and create something cool for the greater community.


4. Climb more. Stay healthy. Be Bulletproof.

It’s a pretty well known fact that I seriously love rock climbing. This is the one sport that has opened up a whole new world for me. It’s completely turned me around and helped raise my awareness of  how to treat my body and stay fit. Combined with travel, yoga, CrossFit and eating healthy, this sport has turned me into a passionate foodie and all round health nut.

Throughout 2016 I really want to focus on getting more in touch with my body and it’s rhythms. I really think it’s important to be in sync with oneself and we should  all learn how to properly listen to what our bodies are saying. Over the past six months or so I’ve been on a rampage, reading book after book on diet, nutrition, exercise and wellness. Yeah, I may be a little obsessed, but hey, this stuff really does interest me. I want to learn how to perform at my best all day, every day and I don’t see it as a “diet” like so many other people.

My philosophy is simple: Just Eat Real Food.


5. Find a place to call home and invest in the future.

It sounds like quite a simple one from the outset, but I really do see this as one of the bigger challenges ahead. I haven’t seen much of Australia and while living here in Brisbane is nice and comfortable, I don’t see it as a place to really settle down. Settle Down!? Yeah, yeah well, I don’t want to get too ahead of myself right now but deep down I do have a longing to find a place the truly represents me and what I value in life.

Namely, nature – some mountains, the ocean, farmland and countryside, beautiful parks and places to connect with the earth. I would love to go camping more often, surfing in the mornings, climbing on the weekends and bush walking with the dog.

On top of that I would love a small city that just offers enough to keep you satisfied – a good mix of cafes, shops and interesting spaces that keeps you coming back for more. As a planner, I would love to work on a small town to help develop an exciting hive of vibrancy and flair; an array of spaces throughout the urban-scape, where people can gather, interact and just be proud to live where they do.

It’s going to take a lot of investment, not only in money (which is something I realllllllly need to get moving on) but I feel as though now is the time to really start thinking about these longer term goals and taking these conversations seriously.

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