The little bit I've done with Ruby on Rails was an opportunity to delve into HTML as a spec/standard/language. I love HTML as a medium for written expression—tend to be quite digressive and referential in my writing and I love how I can drop clues or actual links to my references without having to interrupt the flow.

    This site is actually an opportunity for me to dip a toe back into these waters, though I must confess that I am cheating a bit by using the bootstrap framework.

  • Data Driven Documents (D3)

    This looks to be a perfect culmination of HTML & other web standards—a means for bringing what would otherwise be static data visualizations alive and enabling the viewer to make their own discoveries about the data. Plus they can be distributed as single html files! No more cramming everything into stultifying rich text or portable document format. I am in.

  • javascript + jQuery

    This pretty much goes with the HTML/CSS territory. Can't do fun webby things without javascript, and near as I can tell, jquery seems to be the app framework that's sticking around. I've read jQuery In Action and played around a bit, but it's powerful unnatural stuff.

  • Machine learning / Natural Language Processing

    Working on the pathology report text classifier we used on a study to do rapid cancer case ascertainment was an absolute blast, and whet my appetite for getting further in to that. Long ago at work I was going to be part of the NLP group, but a competing opportunity came up (VDW Co-Lead position) and I didn't have time.

  • Python

    This one isn't so much an "OMG I wish I could do that!" as it is a means to the end of being able to use/extend/tweak software written in python. In particular, my Sublime Text package for SAS Programming would really benefit from a better knowledge of python.