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The question may seem strange at first glance ... And I may be alone in this situation. But currently I want to improve my skill through learning new framework.

however, do a simple "HelloWorld" application does not satisfy me. I think a practical project is required to apprehend the basics of a framework.

I know there is many scholar-like project like design a library manager or CMS. But I have recently planned to learn ~3 differents frameworks and I can't find any motivations through "unexciting" project. In the end I have not started any framework ...

I'm aware of I do not develop the project of the year ... I'm just looking for something a bit exciting.

I do not expect any project subject, anyway stimulation provided by a project is something subjective. But I want to know your inspiration ! (or method to learn framework ^^)

I'm talking about web-dev framework but I'm open to any kind information !

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try to find a client with an open mind to your current level of knowledge. Reality is the best school. –  user13796 Feb 28 '11 at 22:21
Im currently student in Master Degree. I know client can be the best way but I can't contract any jobs atm. That true I have intership but not enough ... –  Kakawait Feb 28 '11 at 22:25

6 Answers 6

up vote 7 down vote accepted

What are your interests? What would you like to have a site/project achieve?

Personally, I'm an amateur photographer - so I monkey around with creating gallery sites.

If you haven't got a client with a specific project - become your own client. At least you'll be forgiving if you miss a deadline ;)

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+1 to finding something of interest to you. I did the same with CCGs. Even if a resource exists, find a way to improve it or make it your own. –  Dillie-O Feb 28 '11 at 23:22
Yeah thx. I will try to find some links between passions and development. Maybe develop something around developpment passion :') hihi –  Kakawait Mar 3 '11 at 14:41

In addition to looking at your interests, look at where people around you are spending a lot of time. I learned that the people scheduling our prayer group spend 2 to 3 hours a month working through scheduling about 15 families, broken into 4 groups of about 4 families each, with different people willing to host every couple months while others only visit. So I'm writing software that will do it for them.

I also look at my hobbies and where I, myself, spend a lot of time. I have a pretty long list of things I want to make . . . a cross-stitch project that will make counted cross-stitch patterns from photos (might exist, but probably not to my specs); some games for my kids to help them learn and explore academic subjects; a light-weight budgeting program that will do exactly what I want in the way I want it done; a chore-management system for keeping track of what needs to get done at home, what has been done, who did it, and if they got rewarded . . . you get the idea.

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Find something that's either too niche or local too be profitable. Your goal isn't profit, so you can go after the little fish.

For example, a few years ago I set up an informational website for a type of event that's specific to my region. I dropped some google ads on it, and while it may never repay the monetary value of my effort, it easily pays for it's own hosting.

Alternatively, design a web application strictly for yourself. Maybe it's a grocery list managing app, or time keeping app, or something to track your personal stats. It is somewhat reinventing the wheel, but at least this way it will be your wheel.

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+1 i don't look for profit but if there are profits :') And I'm loving to create bots to managing app & track stats. I often use python or perl language to design its. But it's just script application and you'r true I can convert its on webapp ... Good way thx –  Kakawait Mar 3 '11 at 14:47

You are correct that the best way to learn something is to do an actual application that implements the thing that you want to learn

That being said, what you actually should do depends on you. What is the application you always wanted to build? What's a good challenge that you would find inspiring? Ignore people that would call you crazy for building a search engine/mail client/file manager/browser or whatnot and just do it.

If nothing else the learning experience sure will worth i, and if you're lucky you just might build something groundbreaking. I've read about a couple of guys who built a search engine when no one believed in the concept and things seems to be going quite well for them.

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"crazy" project are often very interesting ! But It's hard to find the motivation to start a big project. Maybe if I can recruit some friend to team up ! Thx for advices. –  Kakawait Mar 3 '11 at 14:44

I hesitate to suggest this, but what about re-implementing something that already exists? If you resolve not to actually release it, then no harm should come, and you can effectively sidestep the inspiration problem. (If you do release it, then you're possibly stepping on someone else's copyright, potentially fragmenting the marketplace, maybe exposing yourself to liability...)

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Ah, the inspiration....

I never finish anyth

I am inspired to learn, but to me it is hard for dev to be an end in itself once the appetite for a new tech is satisfied. I haven't been able to do it yet, but your best bet may be to use it as a means to accomplish something tangible that you want. Perhaps then once you have learned the framework, you will aspire to continue the project?

If no 'practical' project holds appeal, maybe a game might? Or something uselessly creative / creatively useless?

Another option is coercion via employment, use only as last resort.

Maybe I should have become a piano player.

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