Last week I began working through Algorithms by Robert Sedgewick, and Kevin Wayne. Or I should say, trying to work my way through it again. I believe this is my first honest-to-goodness attempt at fighting through it. For me it’s a heavy book and can be a real challenge to understand, not because it’s poorly written (on the contrary, nice work!).
I recently finished reading Malcom Gladwell’s book, Talking to Strangers. In it he talks about how challenging it is to understand one another, and why. There are a few key concepts and missunderstandings that he hones in on to try and address why we’re so bad at understanding one another. He then summarizes these concepts using them as a lense to view the 2015 arrest of Sandra Bland that ended in her suicide.
Somewhere around the end of July, I stopped. I stopped reading books, I stopped playing games, I stopped programming for fun. I managed to spend some time with friends, and family but it was generally a struggle. I wasn’t ever interested in updating my blog, and I stopped working on my big personal project.
I recently got the opportunity to join another team at my company working on strangling a large chunk of our monolithic application. I knew it was going to be a huge, scary project but I was excited for the opportunity to have a massive impact on my company. We started off with a week or so of meetings just trying to get our heads around the problem at hand. The discussions were fun and lively. Occasionally good natured arguments would break out, or we would hammer on a single point on and on ad nauseum. When the meetings were over I was exhausted but still looking forward to starting the work.
Programming did not come naturally to me. In high-school I hung on to the kid nearest to me who seemed to have a good idea of what he was doing and copied his work. I knew I wanted to program (I wanted to make games) - I enjoyed the idea of it - but I didn’t understand what it took to get good at it.
I'm a father of three and a software engineer for both hobby and trade. I enjoy tabletop role-playing and board games - especially of the heavily social variety! I also occasionally participate in game jams with friends.
I'm particularly interested in self-improvement in all of those things. I enjoy progressing through a new skill and learning ways of maximizing my time and focus.