The most productive programmers have an ability to cut through to what’s really important, focus on that, and then know when they’ve gotten stuff right.
What would you do if you were in Angelina’s position? Would you choose to have a mastectomy or you try other preventative measures first?
Anya, the author of DIY U, talked about making your own education using web technologies.
Even though this talk was given a while ago now, with the current economy and its extremely damaging effects on education, most of these ideas are very topical today.
Degrees are increasing in price (from £1000 to £10,000 here in the UK) and don’t provide any guarantee of a stable income anymore. But education is still badly needed, so students and professionals are turning to learning outside of traditional structures. The rise of MOOCs these days is a sign that things are moving fast in that space.
I share Anya’s enthusiasm; there is never been a better time to be a student and and an educator. But there is still a lot of work to be done to design the new spaces for today’s education.
Tonight, I’m on my own at home since my wife is out. I have an hour and a half ahead of me before going out. In those circumstances, I would normally take the opportunity to lounge in front of the TV. Finally, some me time.
But not tonight. Tonight I’m writing a blog article. I’m moving forward on at least one of my projects.
I’ve known for a long time why I’m frustrated by not contributing enough to open source, not writing enough blog articles, not playing , writing or recording any music, not doing this and not doing that, blah blag blah.
I know, and you know it too: what’s stopping me is the lounging for too long when I actually have time to make stuff I care about.
Since we moved to the Fareham area in December, my wife and I joined a small badminton club. It’s been decades since I’d played any form of racket sport (I gave up tennis after my appendicitis in 1992, because I’m lazy), so saying my game was rusty is a huge understatement. Nevertheless, I managed to catch the shuttlecock a few times, even to send it back…sometimes. But my successive partners and I never actually won a game at first (we use a rota which makes us play with everyone, against anyone). But then, I realised something that changed everything and helped me improve dramatically.
Now that you’ve learned how to type like a ninja, launching your awesome software project is going to be much faster. But we’re not there just yet. Programming might be “just typing”, but when you’ll need to sift through thousands of lines of code scattered around dozens or hundreds of files, you’ll need solid tools to code without loosing your mind. And you’ll need to master those tools as well as your programming language of choice to become an effective programmer.