AboutNeed regular doses of coffee to prevent buffering.
SkillsNode.js, PHP, Python, Android, Java
Joined devRant on 7/4/2017
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As a developer, sometimes you hammer away on some useless solo side project for a few weeks. Maybe a small game, a web interface for your home-built storage server, or an app to turn your living room lights on an off.
I often see these posts and graphs here about motivation, about a desire to conceive perfection. You want to create a self-hosted Spotify clone "but better", or you set out to make the best todo app for iOS ever written.
These rants and memes often highlight how you start with this incredible drive, how your code is perfectly clean when you begin. Then it all oscillates between states of panic and surprise, sweat, tears and euphoria, an end in a disillusioned stare at the tangled mess you created, to gather dust forever in some private repository.
Writing a physics engine from scratch was harder than you expected. You needed a lot of ugly code to get your admin panel working in Safari. Some other shiny idea came along, and you decided to bite, even though you feel a burning guilt about the ever growing pile of unfinished failures.
All I want to say is:
No time was lost.
This is how senior developers are born. You strengthen your brain, the calluses on your mind provide you with perseverance to solve problems. Even if (no, *especially* if) you gave up on your project.
Eventually, giving up is good, it's a sign of wisdom an flexibility to focus on the broader domain again.
One of the things I love about failures is how varied they tend to be, how they force you to start seeing overarching patterns.
You don't notice the things you take back from your failures, they slip back sticking to you, undetected.
You get intuitions for strengths and weaknesses in patterns. Whenever you're matching two sparse ordered indexed lists, there's this corner of your brain lighting up on how to do it efficiently. You realize it's not the ORMs which suck, it's the fundamental object-relational impedance mismatch existing in all languages which causes problems, and you feel your fingers tingling whenever you encounter its effects in the future, ready to dive in ever so slightly deeper.
You notice you can suddenly solve completely abstract data problems using the pathfinding logic from your failed game. You realize you can use vector calculations from your physics engine to compare similarities in psychological behavior. You never understood trigonometry in high school, but while building a a deficient robotic Arduino abomination it suddenly started making sense.
You're building intuitions, continuously. These intuitions are grooves which become deeper each time you encounter fundamental patterns. The more variation in environments and topics you expose yourself to, the more permanent these associations become.
Failure is inconsequential, failure even deserves respect, failure builds intuition about patterns. Every single epiphany about similarity in patterns is an incredible victory.
Please, for the love of code...
Start and fail as many projects as you can.30
Me: *listening to some random semi-obscure track on spotify, liking it, add it to playlist*
Come home, girlfriend playing the same track. "Yeah I've had that in my playlist for two weeks now". Our accounts are not linked in any way, and I only use Spotify on a PC at work, while my girlfriend only uses it at home.
It might just be coincidence, or us having similar tastes.
But the issue is that it's getting more and more difficult to know whether me and my girl are spiritually linked unique snowflake soulmates who are so perfectly in sync with each other, or whether an algorithm suggestively linked us both that song based on scraped location and behavior data.
And whether it matters. Maybe it matters. I don't know yet.
In twenty years maybe humans will be unsure whether it was a wonderful coincidence bordering on cosmic fate that you ran into your new love, or whether Google purposefully drove you towards the same lunch cafe at a specific time because it calculated that she was the perfect candidate to strengthen your susceptibility to advertisements over the coming decade.
Malicious AI will not come into lives bearing guns.
It will not instantly take all of our jobs and enslave us.
It will just know you better than you know yourself, it will know everyone around you better than you know them, and it will play incredible mind games. It will not be designed with malicious intent, just perfectly execute on top of the malicious systems we already have, and even arise as an emergent property within new systems.
It will rarely be clearly visible, but you will increasingly say to yourself: "That's odd, I was just thinking about that". It will detect depression from a smile, physical attraction from a glance, reliability from patterns in your voice and illness from the bloodflow in your cheeks.
It will not just make our cars autonomous, it will make our lives autonomous. It will protect us, decide for us, keep revenues and human satisfaction in a "balanced maximized" state, it will make everything feel easy, slightly abuse us, and when one of us suddenly crashes at 140 mph into depression, debt or addiction it will prove impossible to know whether the humans or the algorithms were at fault.
I'm incredibly afraid and excited about the coming 10 years.13
25 phrases you wish you could say at work more often
(Warning: Contains naughty words...:-)))
1. Ahhh...I see the fuck-up fairy has visited us again...
2. I don't know what your problem is, but I'll bet it's hard to pronounce.
3. How about never? Is never good for you?
4. I see you've set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public.
5. I'm really easy to get along with once you people learn to worship me.
6. I'll try being nicer if you'll try being smarter.
7. I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message...
8. I don't work here. I'm a consultant.
9. It sounds like English, but I can't understand a word you're saying.
10. I can see your point, but I still think you're full of shit.
11. I like you. You remind me of me when I was young and stupid.
12. You are validating my inherent mistrust of strangers.
13. I have plenty of talent and vision. I just don't give a damn.
14. I'm already visualizing the duct tape over your mouth.
15. I will always cherish the initial misconceptions I had about you.
16. Thank you. We're all refreshed and challenged by your unique point of view.
17. The fact that no one understands you doesn't mean you're an artist.
18. Any connection between your reality and mine is purely coincidental.
19. What am I? Flypaper for freaks!?
20. I'm not being rude. You're just insignificant.
21. It's a thankless job, but I've got a lot of Karma to burn off.
22. Yes, I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.
23. No, my powers can only be used for good.
24. You sound reasonable... Time to up the medication.
25. Who me? I just wander from room to room18