The fine former colleagues of mine from Redmond put out a beta today of ASP.NET MVC 4 today. For people who don't know what that is, it's basically a framework that makes it a lot easier to build Web sites/applications in a sustainable and testable way. It really makes it exciting (for me) to build new stuff. This particular version has a feature that allows you to make device specific views (the "V" in MVC), making it stupid easy to whip up a mobile version of the app with very little work.
Because the framework encourages you to split out all of the logic and "heavy lifting" into discreet parts, separate from the user interface, that meant that all I had to do to whip up a mobile forum was re-do the pages, which is a piece of cake. Knowing this release was on the way, I started a couple of weeks ago. It didn't take long.
You can see it in action on the test site. It's a little rough, and doesn't fully embrace the mobile framework I'm using, but it's a really solid jumping off point. When I've really spent some time optimizing it, it'll feel a lot like a native app on your phone/iPad. (If you view it on your iThing and it doesn't appear mobile, click the "mobile view" link at the bottom.)
Working on this, and some other stuff, has really energized me about development. I've spent just enough intermittent time away from it, from having a child, moving, changing jobs, etc., that diving into it today makes me appreciate how much less my imagination is constrained. A lot of the things I'd like to do, I can. You can largely thank the open source world for that. (The MVC framework itself is open source. Yeah, from Microsoft.)
I look forward to seeing the outcome of some stuff I'm working on right now. I'm having a lot of fun lately in my spare-time endeavors.