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Showing posts from December, 2014

It's Not My Raid

Some people like to dress up in special clothes, get together with like-minded individuals, and then spend 90+ minutes running back and forth over a hundred-meter rectangle of grass. Others like to wear scarves and yell at the first people. I confess to not being fit enough to do the first thing nor dedicated enough to do the second, but as I said before, Some People Juggle Geese.
What I do for fun, a couple of times a week, is to sit at my computer and coordinate with between 15 and 20 other people for three hours trying to make certain pixels last longer than other pixels on the screen. This is called "World of Warcraft Raiding" and it is not terribly common as a pastime, but it's something that my partner and I enjoy doing together with a number of our friends across the world. My partner actually has her own raid group that she leads, and I'm lucky enough to have a spot on that team, but that group is currently on hiatus for various reasons, so we have been parti…

Wash Speaks For Me

"Some People Juggle Geese."

If you don't know the reference, it's from Firefly, the Joss Whedon show back in the early Oughts that spawned some pretty hardcore fans. Wash, the series hero and my personal favourite character, is trying to explain to his wife and some of the other crewmembers of their spaceship that sometimes, people do things for fun that don't sound like fun to you. And that is OK.

It's become a shorthand for me, a reminder that my tastes are not universal and my idea of fun is not the ideal against which all others should be measured. And that is OK. It applies to a bunch of other things, too, things not about fictional entertainment modes in short-lived science fiction TV shows.

For instance, the iOS/Android divide? The particular tribalism that crops up in both camps that insists a position of superiority simply due to the brand and operating system of a pocket computer used? That's a position I don't understand. There are things a…

Do you know what today is?

Today is a Monday, and that means it's time to do something new.

Mondays get a lot of guff, much of it entirely reasonable guff; going back to work or starting a new week can often be difficult, especially if you're looking at another week of 'more of the same' of whatever it was that had you looking so longingly towards Friday last week. Mondays are when things seem to loom before you, when the work seems grindy and the leisure time seems very, very far away.

But Mondays are also a chance to shake things up; to plan the rest of the week and break everything down and divide and conquer. They're the strategy day, the day when you find out what happened last week while everyone was racing for Friday. Mondays are when stuff gets planned (and if you're doing your planning on Sundays, shame on you and more importantly shame on your boss, because it's hurting your productivity if you're working on weekends). Mondays are when teams can assess their load and di…

Antici...

There's a really tough part to the grind of being unemployed: the waiting.

The UI department doesn't care that it's Thanksgiving. It doesn't care that I've had a couple of phone interviews with a place, or that I'm waiting on a callback. It doesn't care that my stomach is tied up in knots and I'm having trouble sleeping.

It only cares that I've looked for work, and that I haven't yet been hired.

In a way, it's been really good training for working on issues and getting myself used to the idea of managing my time better, and good practice at applying Kanban in places other than the workplace, and how organizing myself makes things easier (significantly easier, as I get older). I have had trouble in the past with writing things down, on the belief that I could just "remember" things, despite never, ever being able to remember anything at all. I once forgot my own name. So practicing the process is good.

The set goals and determined t…