If everything goes according to plan, some time around 11:00pm on December 20th I will disconnect from the work VPN and remain disconnected until the morning of January 6th, 2020. This is technically two weeks off work that equates to a full seventeen days — 395 hours — away from the day job. An astonishing amount of time given all the priorities and deadlines that seem to be coalescing in the first month of the coming year. Barring any catastrophic system failure, it should be an excellent time to sit back, relax with the family, and make some progress on the recent spate of Udemy courses I've picked up.
Online learning is something that I've not been particularly good at over the years, but some of the recent courses that have been put together on subjects such as iOS development, DSLR photography, and professional writing are rather captivating. This isn't limited just to Udemy, either, but a number of platforms. The videos are well-edited, with clear content and supporting resources, the fundamentals are generally taught in context of a larger problem, and people can take what they've learned from a short course and apply it immediately. What started out as a relaxing pastime to learn how to properly use a camera has become an opportunity to develop a whole host of incomplete and unrefined skillsets.
There's just one little problem, though: time.
With just 24 hours in any given day, there is seldom enough time to really sit down and absorb a lesson. Fortunately online content can be revisited any number of times, and this is exactly what I plan on doing with some of the 395 hours that will be available during this Christmas holiday season.