I’m hanging my head in shame right now. A part of me doesn’t want to have to write this blog post, but the lesson is too important not to share. When I published version 0.3 of ConTabs 4 days ago, a big chunk of a headline new feature didn’t work. Wanna see how I messed up? Read on…
In today’s post, I want to share a trick I discovered: using Stack Overflow to help answer my questions. Before you stop reading, I mean without posting my question at all. In fact, I simply rediscovered the time-honoured tradition of “rubber ducking”. I think Stack Overflow provides the perfect place to rubber duck and I’d like to share my reasoning.
This post was inspired by conversation I had at my desk today. It’s a conversation that takes place every now and again and it always takes the same form: someone will come over to my desk, start using my mouse, and remark on how lovely it is. They aren’t wrong. My mouse is excellent. Not flashy, but quietly brilliant. And it’s not just my mouse either. My keyboard is a joy to type on and I have some pretty nice wireless headphones too.
Now, the point of this post isn’t to boast about all my lovely things. As I point out in these desk-side conversations: these are the tools of my trade. During the week, I spend fully a third of my waking hours using a keyboard and mouse to cajole electrons into doing my bidding. Whilst I’m doing this, I very often use my headphones to shelter my concentration from the noisy open-plan office around me. Given that I’m using these things so much, any minor niggles can add up to become real productivity drains. In short, it’s pretty important to work with decent tools.
I recently discovered Project Euler and have become an overnight evangelist. For those of you unlucky enough to not have discovered it yet, Project Euler (pronounced “Oy-ler”, by the way) is a series of maths problems that lend themselves to being solved with programming.
In my humble opinion, Project Euler is great. So great, in fact, that I thought I’d spell out exactly why you should give it a try. So here goes, 4 reasons I think you should give it a go.