Some reflection

Disclaimer : This post is about the psychological process, for the wave phenomenon, see here.

My friend and room mate Guru P has always been yelling at me... "dude! get a life da! life is not all about computers!" But to realize anything, it always takes a thing called the "final push"... the moment of realization, when all things become clear and you wonder why it did not happen before! That moment for me came when Saheel told me "I pity you and your life...". Which forced me to think, am I turning into some machine? Is my life becoming so miserable, and yet I am not noticing it?

Here is a typical day in my life here at bengalore -
  1. Get up (late many times) do morning chores, catch a bus to Yahoo!
  2. A permutation of [work, eat, browse the web for tech stuff, chat in gtalk] till 11:00 pm.
  3. Take a cab back from Yahoo!
  4. Sleep. (Believe me, sometimes I even dreamed about some code!)
  5. goto line 1
On the same day of my conversation with Saheel, I noticed something which made me change my schedule. I had to write a simple script to add some more functionality to the code I am currently working on. That day, it took me 5 hours  to do the same! (5pm to 10pm) And still I ended up with a buggy, not so good script. My mind was so saturated that it simply refused to work efficiently, clearly. And that, my friends, was the "final push" for me, I thought "WTH? 5 friggin hours to write a script?"

Next morning, I got up early, (5:45 am) got ready and started to office by 6:30, the sky was overcast and there was a cool breeze. I felt like one of those "fresh fresh" toothpaste adverts :D. Decided to take a 2km walk to Yahoo! And was in the office by 6:50, got a hot cup of tea, and started on the script, all from scratch, took a totally different approach to the problem, and I was done, before 8 am, with a much better and bug free, much more modular script on my comp! It took me two weeks and a pair of nagging friends and a script-gone-wrong to realize that too much of anything leads to nothing but saturation, even if it is the one thing you like the most (comp related stuff in my case). Then, determined to try out new stuff, I spent an hour or so trying to play pool.

All in all, I have decided to spend some time every day away from the trio which is the computer desk, the dining table and the bed. Made it a point that I wake up early in the morning (a habit which got discontinued when I came to Bengalore from Chennai). By the way, that is the only way to get fresh air in the cities. Oh I so dearly I miss the campus! One more thing which I found very effective against saturation is songs. Songs are different in a sense that, whenever you want, they simply fade into background, (almost like most of the lectures) letting you concentrate on your work. I realized that one way to keep me saturation free was to listen to songs while coding. I am still not able to get my mind off "दिल ऐसा किसीने मेरा तोडा" by Kishore Kumar and "पत्थर के सनम" by Rafi. They are simply awesome! No sir, I am not in love, nor did I have a heartbreak! :P 

So this week was a week of experiments. I watched movies (a small review by me of one of those can be found in another post), started reading Wodehouse ("Aunts Aren't Gentlemen" to be specific), only to realize that coming from the P. L. Deshpande camp of humour, I did not appreciate Wodehouse! But as I have bought the book, will finish it (in the hope of understanding and apprecating it) :P. And btw, although I suck at it, foosball rocks! \m/.

5 comments :

  1. Trust me, the first few days at my intern, I used to see syntax trees every time I read a sentence.

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  2. Oh good to hear that! So after all, dreaming about code is not as abnormal as I thought...

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  3. Try getting some of the Psmith books. They got me hooked to Wodehouse after years of trying his books and not liking them.

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  4. Unsurprisingly, I know exactly what you mean. I have fallen into the rut of things far too often, and have learnt the really painful way that you need to take breaks. I go to the gym almost everyday now, just to get that stiffness out of my body. I also have returned to my once voracious reading habits. And nothing beats human company.

    A nice speech by Chetan Bhagat http://itsfine.wordpress.com/2008/07/24/chetan-bhagats-speech-at-symbiosis/ ; while I didn't particularly like his books, he knows how to make people listen ;-).

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