I’ve done a bit more introspection regarding the sense of boredom that I’ve been feeling in the last several weeks.
I get satisfaction from learning new skills. In tech though, I rarely get the chance to do that anymore. I’ve already got a broad skillset, which I can use to get pretty much anything done in a professional context. There are no skills where I find I’m really lacking. It’s not very different for hobby projects, either.
I found that gaining new skills is easily confused with gaining knowledge. There’s plenty of knowledge that I don’t have, it’s true — but I’m very much not driven to increase my knowledge. Expanding my skillset is much more interesting to me; it’s what yields the sense of fulfillment and accomplishment.
Knowledge is stuff like “learn Vue.js” or “know GitLab CI in depth”, while skills include “public speaking” and “write short stories”. Knowledge is fleeting and loses relevance over time, but skills last forever.
When I came to Berlin in 2013, I ended up in a community of people whose skillsets vastly surpassed mine. I was surrounded by people who were better than me in so many ways. I regularly experienced wonder (and impostor syndrome). People went out of their way to help me improve myself, to help me build my skillset. Not just professionally, but also as a properly functioning adult human being.
That sense of wonder is something I’ve not experienced in a long time. I’m playing around with learning entirely new skills. For example, I signed up for singing lessons and vocal coaching. How will that go? Time will tell. It’s scary — but a good kind of scary. Bye-bye, comfort zone.
I’ve dropped the therapy. I only had one session, but I don’t think that therapy will be very effectively in dealing with my current struggles.
When I started out writing my weeknotes, I feared that there would be weeks in which I wouldn’t have anything to say, because I felt bored or down or so. It turns out that those weeks are the most introspective, and most interesting to write about — at least for me, but hopefully also interesting to read for you (dear reader) as well.
I’ve got my ticket to Brighton Ruby! I’ll be floating around the UK for some time around the conference (end of June), though I’ve not made any concrete plans.
Who else is going?
Earlier this week at work, I reached my 600th pull requests (PRs) created+merged at work. Taking into account about a month of onboarding as well as holidays, that averages out to 10 PRs created per day.
That’s quite a bit, but they’re small, focused, and designed to be easy to review.
At the recommendation of others, I’ve adopted an approach where I tag each PR with the following bits of information:
What is the priority? When there are quite a few PRs open, this information allows prioritising review work effectively.
What type of change is this? The types I’ve defined are chore, feature, enhancement, bug, documentation, refactoring, and test. It helps set the context for a PR review.
What project/epic is this PR part of? This clarifies the purpose that this PR feeds into.
Gotta keep things organised!
I made some tweaks to the dark mode theme of my site. The background is now darker, and the contrast should generally be better. I suppose it’s good? But it’s hard to tell.
Designing for dark mode is really tough.
I’ve continued with AC Valhalla’s Dawn of Ragnarök expansion, finally actually getting going with it properly. It’s good fun.
I bought (and finished) Superliminal, a surreal first-person puzzle game. I really liked it, though with all puzzle games, it ends up being rather short (maybe 90-120 minutes of playtime?).
I watched Paper Girls (the TV series), which was fine. I thought it was a bit of a mess. I’m interested in checking out the comics that the series is based on, though.
The Romantic Little Town That Built The World’s Biggest Toilet (The Tim Traveller): Poop puns!
The Rich Have Their Own Ethics: Effective Altruism & the Crypto Crash (ft. F1nn5ter) (Philosophy Tube): Excellent.
How to be different (fasterthanlime): Sadly quite relatable.
Introducing the AI Mirror Test, which very smart people keep failing (James Vincent for The Verge)
Faux Progress (Jim Nielsen)
Code review vs code proofreading (Hillel Wayne)