I'm finding myself increasingly bored and disenchanted with all forms of modern technology and I’m not confident why. I have always loved creating and breaking things, learning how they work but everything seems too polluted now and I just don't know where to start. Web technologies have sky rocketed over the past 4-5 years and now there's a JS library to do just about anything from PDF parsing to MP4 decoding, it's crazy!
When I first started programming in non basic languages it was on a windows 98 box with a copy of DevCPP and later Microsoft Visual C++ 6.0, I loved this editor and I still get a great feeling of joy when I see a Screenshot of it. It was exciting to make something non-trivial, to hit F5 and watch my creation come to life. I had dial-up internet and no hacker news, github or reddit, I was naive and it was great. Now I am constantly asking myself, why build this... it's been done a 100 times before and it's probably better than my attempt, or why am I making this I have no need for it?
Before I was aware of all these existing projects I would spend hours working on something and enjoy it, seeing the result and thinking 'wow I made that'. Perhaps I just need to get around this situation and build something I have an interest in regardless of alternative projects already serving the same purpose, and whilst working on existing ideas I will find new problems that need to be solved.
I'm not denying this boom in libraries and software is great, in-fact it's incredible, you can make just about anything from 3rd party libraries and a bit of programming knowledge. Of course the quality might not be great but the opportunity to turn an idea into a working project is outstanding. I think I need to think of them as inspiration and not as a distraction and carry on writing code.