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I come home and hop online, thinking there will be a world of content that has appeared since this morning. Unfortunately, I've been online all day at work, and in the 20 minutes it takes to walk home, not much happens.

I left the cyclical crunch times of school for the occasional crunch times of a startup. The assignments are different. They all have to work completely, and if they don't, you will sit there and fix them until they do. If you want more time, you have to fight for it. If a requirement is unclear, you have to talk about it. The code you write has to meet standards, and copying other designs is encouraged. Quality software engineering and documentation is equally important as working code. In other words, it's school backwards. And it's hard to quantify that as bad, as school assignments do an excellent job of exposing you to an enormous range of programming and architectural concepts, but they give little perspective as to how their application will play out.
Documentation is an oft-cited and excellent example. Docs are rarely expected (and sometimes discouraged!) in school assignments. But if you don't document your code at work, you will be fired, and your ex-co-workers will toast their newfound freedom from your shitty, unintelligible sludge. If you're bad at it, they may put up with you, but only if you improve.
While I was told these things in college, few assignments put it into action. I learned more about documentation from a one-quarter technical writing elective in community college than in 3 years in Western CS.
I complained extensively about this in my major review, but going out into the working world has made it clearer every day.

Mike V, one of my senior project teammates, had an interview with us today. He did very well, unfortunately he comes at an awkward time for us as the boss will be gone a lot for the next two weeks, and we're in the middle of a crunch for CTIA. I hope he doesn't find a better offer...

12 hours of coding today, and I gotta get off the keyboard and go to bed. Thank god it's no less than a mile between here and work.
intjonathan: (Default)
If I were the type to do so, I could be really wound up about today.

First thing this morning, and my computer won't start. Reboots as soon as Windows hits guiboot. Live-CDs generally unhelpful. Abandoned my main box and do the morning reading on the Vista box next to it. No time to debug today. Found irony in pre-beta software being more reliable. Vista still slower than a dyslexic kid learning Chinese.

Our live server fell over on Saturday and everyone wanted to know why. It was pretty much my fault, poorly written script, disks filled, same old story. Buh. It came back, won't happen again, nothing crucial broke forever. Playing internet detective consumed all real work hours.

Came home to find the rest of my textbooks arrived, including the truly massive Advanced Programming in the UNIX(r) Environment, which it turned out I didn't need very badly. At least I'll have some documentation this quarter though, when doing networking I frequently felt the "manpage burn", that infuriating state of being unable to extract meaning from the system's 2 pages of poorly-written docs on some crucial bit of functionality. Google was strangely unhelpful. Unix's "manpages are good enough for everyone!" attitude is a lot of horseshit if you ask me. I may be spoiled on Javadoc but so be it. I hope this is money well spent.

Also recieved very nice popcorn popper for 24 viewings. Have yet to try it.

Feeling more poor than ever, I set to sending my grandfather a thank you card for his nice christmas check. Upon entering my car to head to the bank to cash said check, I discovered something amiss. My gloves were on the floor. They're never on the floor. I looked up and found I had left my passenger window rolled down. Not again... wait. It was raining last time I drove. It hasn't stopped raining for 10 days and won't stop for the next 30. Why would my window be down. Hmmm.

Yes, one of the Worst Fears actually happened. My passenger side c-pillar window was broken and my speakers were gone. My dash had been pried up and out but oddly, the stereo remained. Nothing else had been removed, little else had been disturbed. The worst loss was my dignity.

Feeling EXTREMELY grumpy, I marched back to the house to attempt a sort of patch job, made difficult by my lack of duct tape. I have no duct tape. Packing tape is worthless in the rain, but I managed.

Haggen does not carry duct tape. Fred Meyer has a nice selection though. Neither have covered parking of any kind.

The apartments next door, however, have some covered parking which is typically unused. I am more thankful for it today than ever before. I sealed the window as best I could, dried out the soaking-wet interior, and pushed the dash back together somewhat. I then removed the stereo, which is extremely easy and only requires pushing 2 clips, and my CDs, all while rolling my eyes so hard I couldn't see what I was doing. Why you would work so hard on the dash and totally ignore the deck itself is beyond me.

The speakers were about $200 new, but were often more trouble than they were worth and never sounded as good as I wanted them to. I hadn't been using them for several months anyway. The deck was the real treasure, and as much as I'd rather have lost it than have to replace the car parts, it is likely the parts will cost less. The amp, stowed safely in the trunk, also remains.

Now I have to get out of a 9am meeting to get my window replaced and my dash fixed, then do a bunch of lab homework for a 2pm chemistry lab tomorrow, and maybe do laundry somewhere in there, cause I'm out of socks.

"Step 1. We admitted we were powerless over the effects of our separation from God - that our lives had become unmanageable."


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June 2012

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