Write On Time

What did you do this past week?

This past week was the 1st part of my One Desire Fast, which consisted of fasting from meat. Even though after the 4th day, I started missing the juicy crunch of a Chik-fil-a sandwich, I was able to spend more time with God and grow closer to Him in my reflection. Next week will be a bit more of a struggle, because I’ll be taking on the 2nd part of my fast consisting of only liquids. Fortunately I’ve done it last year, and I’m looking forward to it because I believe I’m more prepared for it.

School-wise, I’ve been able to manage my time wisely. I finished Collatz before the weekend started only after testing out 3+ different types of optimizations/caches. Python is different than C++ so I was unable to get away with the same code design that I put up for Collatz in Object Oriented Programming, but I learned a lot from working through it. Algorithms is a bit hard to follow because previous experiences with Discrete Math did not provide enough foundation to understand/enjoy proofs, but I feel that as time goes on, I will eventually understand enough to appreciate.

I’ve been writing a lot lately. To give you some perspective, not only do I write a blog for this class, but I also write a blog for the UTCS department, write a blog to update the professor that I proctor for, write a short story for my Fiction Writing class, and over the course of these next few weeks, I will be writing an article over a professor’s research on Operating Systems.

Of course, I signed up for two writing flags, and the jobs I have require writing, but it’s pretty amazing to me since I came into college only expecting to write code. If blogging for this class is the first time you’ve actually spent writing, I highly recommend trying to sustain it and try to refine your writing craft. Though it will take up time as another responsiblity, it can be a refreshing challenge to let out your thoughts, and maybe by the end of it, you’ll become a really fluent writer.

What’s in your way?

Taking action with ideas. I spent about 15 hours trying to figure out how to optimize the Collatz project when I could’ve solved it with less than 15 lines of code.

I originally thought of the solution while optimizing, but I shrugged off the thought because it required a lot of outside effort aside from the project. If I had pursued that afterthought, I probably would’ve finished the project in less than 10 hours, but since I didn’t, I am sadly 15+ hrs down in my time bar.

On the bright side, I was able to try out many different optimizing options for the project and get more associated to Python, but it would’ve been nice to spend that time working on more demanding schoolwork.

Also, I plan to read more into StackOverflow, especially the newsletters. I enjoy contributing to communities (after taking Object Oriented Programming last semester), but I don’t understand enough programming, if at all, so contributing to a post about Java Iterators vs Streams will have to wait till another day.

SWE Class Impressions?

Prof. Downing never fails to surprise. As a proctor for his other class, Object Oriented Programming, I can really see the parallelism of how he teaches for both the classes. He really values discussion, feedback, and one-on-one teachings with all his students, and I can see how he hopes that both sides of any conversation end with learning something new or being inspired.

What will you do next week?

I plan to take on the 2nd part of my One Desire Fast. Praying for lots of learning, survival, and healthy smoothies during that time, especially since I’ll be running for class and playing IM basketball…

I will also start preparing an article over one of the UT CS professor’s research, which will be challenging since I’ve never written an article. I’m looking forward to what they have to say though, especially since it’ll be in person. Who knows, maybe I’ll get a chance to see the next big thing for the world!

Finally, I will be preparing for the CNS Career fair, practicing for interviews, and hopefully getting a secure internship for this Summer. Else I’ll be finding a company to work at here in Austin or back at home.

Tip of the Week

There is so much news going on around the world, especially in America, and I highly recommend that you stay on top of what’s going on. Here are some of the newsletters I follow to keep in touch with current events, technology, pop culture, and programming practices:

  • The Hustle: Probably one of the best curated current news sources I follow. I’ve tried out many newsletters this past year, but this newsletter is the only one I’ve really been able to appreciate. If you want to keep track of current news, technology, business, and pop culture, I highly suggest following them.

  • HackerNewsLetter: All of your programming/entrepeuneur news packed into one email. HNs always brings up awesome articles from programmers in industry and I’m always inspired by a lot of the bloggers that get featured here. And if you want technical stuff, they have tons of links to code and languages.

  • Software Engineering StackExchange: This is probably relatable to the class.

Written on January 28, 2017