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Start the year off with professional development

Is training and professional development something you are going to get around to one day? Why not make it today? Resources abound for honing our career skills. iTunes has free podcasts from iTunes University. A quick Internet search should produce abundant articles and videos useful to whatever your line of work.

I am taking the next 30 minutes for professional development. In my case, I am going to begin learning Eclipse so that I can move away from Notepad++ and CFStudio5. This will be a step toward moving my development environment to a portable hard drive so that I can work on any machine anywhere I go. I know learning to use an editor sounds silly. In my case, shouldn’t "professional development" be about learning about new software testing techniques, algorithms, or another programming language? Not necessarily. Anything that you learn which makes you more efficient in your career or makes you more valuable to your company is professional development. Even if you already know and use Eclipse, watching these videos make teach you something you don’t realize you are overlooking. Retraining on a tool you already use and know can help break bad habits or reveal better ways to use the tool.

Update: See Darren Schall’s discovery on Eclipse workspaces as an example of using a tool for awhile and then discovering its hidden power.