Using Vacation Time to Learn New Tech Skills

Everyone agrees that being able to take a vacation is a treasured privilege but many approach the free time in different ways. Some prefer to get a little light work done while others (understandably) prefer to unplug the tech and just enjoy the peace and quiet. For me, vacation is the perfect opportunity to ignore all the stress and demands of my normal life and focus on learning an important skill set or program that was recently released.

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Any technology-based profession requires you to constantly stay ahead of the curve. As a design student, I need to constantly keep up with the latest programs (especially Adobe's quickly changing Creative Suite). This year, however, I've decided to take advantage of the free time and try to teach myself a bit of web design (HTML/CSS). I have no intention of coming out a master but the foundation knowledge will be good for me as I head into my senior year of college. The advantage of studying while on vacation is the ability to think with a completely free mind which helps you concentrate better and learn quicker. Additionally, I'm always trying to find ways to be more productive; and as much as a week of relaxing sounds nice, I'll feel much better if I accomplish something significant while I have the opportunity. The disadvantage, however, is not being able to totally relax or ignore the life you're trying to get away from.

How do you enjoy your vacation? Ever take time out from your time off to learn about the next best thing or do you have a strict rule of separating work from play?

If you do plan on getting a little work done on your next vacay, we have some great tips to help you travel with your tech.

(1st Image: Tobias Glatthard [Pengster] licensed for use under Creative Commons edited by myself)
(2nd Image: Giorgio Montersino [Giorgio Montersino] licensed for use under Creative Commons)