Monday, June 27, 2005

My Calling

Being a programmer is sort of amorphous in that your job involves modeling and processing data around other people's needs. Often times, those other people are not technically savvy, and they have unrealistic expectations of what can be accomplished. Regardless, I enjoy the process of programming. There's a little thrill in getting the computer to do exactly what you want, exactly how you want. The process satisfies the control freak in me, and at the same time, it engages the logical side of my brain. I particularly enjoy setting up some code that has a lot of flexibility built in. It's very satisfying to edit some older code and find that only minor tweaks are necessary to encompass some new, unanticipated functionality.

I used to say that I was just inherently lazy. I didn't want to do the same tedious steps repeatedly; I just wanted fairly simple solutions to complex problems. Now, I've come to realize that it's a mathematical mindset. The mathematician is continually searching for "elegent" solutions. So, I'm not lazy, I just have a fondness for elegance. I'll do hours of extra work if the result is an elegant solution that requires little maintenance. Ultimately, there's a time-savings there. The future time needed for adapting or updating the code is decreased considerably by adding some flexibility on the front-end. The programmer just needs to do some planning, and a little guessing about the types of information that could change in the future.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

My God, elegance as a vocation. Well both Luther and Elijah would be happy. While you are busy being mathmatically elegant don't forget about art, the beautiful and the soul. Its time to get the hell out of the pasture. There are giants; hell we might be them.


see you a the party

12:53 AM