Seems I may never know how the jTemplates experiment would have turned out. Same with the WYMeditor experiment, which I haven't mentioned here, but trust me, has been lengthy. I've got an amount of time somewhere between zero days and two months to get my ducks in a row and make whatever further enhancements I want to make before moving on to something different. The team I'm currently on will continue with the same product for a while, but without a UI person. Considering that a large portion of our product is the client-based application I just rewrote, that means that in a substantial way, the product is entering maintenance mode.
The new project is cool, though. Last week I got handed a list of things to prototype, and I love prototyping. Imagining the best way you can think of to have a user accomplish something and then architecting the solution around writing the sexiest possible code is the best part of development - frontend or otherwise. Once you add the business' opinions and the edge cases it can get to be a slog, but that comes later. I'm looking forward to making perfect little creations that don't have to know a damned thing about SEC regulations.
But, there's uncertainty.. My team is the only team with a UI Engineer that won't be working on this new initiative. My other peers are staying with the projects they (or their positions) have worked on for over a year. They know their roles within their teams and how to work with their backend and QA people. I'm a little adrift, pulled into this as an extra body. I've been on the same team for over a year as well, and though I think they're a little dismissive of the frontend, I'm comfortable with them.
They say you dress for the job you want, and they say clothes make the man or woman. It's not bullshit, even in an industry where our fashion sense is just about the last thing we're known for. Dressing well makes you feel more confident. If you're a woman, you can't overstate the role a decent bra plays in dressing well (or the role a shitty bra plays in making you look and feel like a broke-ass college student again). I'm told it's the same for dudes and their shorts. So I feel excited but also freaked out about my job right now, I need the confidence to try and make a place for myself on the new project, and guess who's going to Nordstrom this weekend?
I started buying good bras - big girl bras, the kind that don't come off the clearance rack at Target - shortly after getting this job. Over the past ~2 years, I think I've become a much better developer. As good foundations go, buying decent underwear ranks right up there with learning C.