Tag Archives: coding

Lost in the wilderness

Great post by Gus Mueller on losing your way in a project:

“Maybe you’ve been making foundational changes to your app. You’ve been spending time cleaning up your code, rewriting those hacks you’ve been wanting to fix for years now. Or you’re targeting a new SDK and there’s all these deprecated methods to replace. So while important change is happening, you don’t seem to be moving forward. You look up and all of a sudden notice this has been going on for weeks and you’ve been standing still all this time, and now you’re standing still for no reason at all. And you’re lost in the wilderness.”

I work on several apps throughout the week, evenings, and weekend. Most people would say: too many apps. The only way I can possible keep up is if every minute that I’m at the keyboard I’m productive, on the right path to finishing the project. Usually I can do it. But even so, I frequently fall into exactly the wilderness Gus describes, losing valuable time off in the weeds on things that just don’t matter.

The difference between those who can ship apps and those who indefinitely have a great idea that’s never complete often comes down to how much time we’re lost in the wilderness. By giving it a name we can recognize when it happens and hopefully recover more quickly.

Hello Saturday

I had a busy week coding. Long days and longer nights. Deadlines are fast approaching. The last few weeks of a project are always the most stressful, but also the most rewarding as all the pieces start to fall into place. The user interface tightens up and the bugs are found and worked out.

I shut my computer off last night and didn’t look at it again. Spent a great morning out shopping and at lunch. It’s a lazy Saturday afternoon — a holiday weekend, even — but I have a bit more code to knock out. The new Dixie Chicks CD is playing, iChat is safely in the “off” position, and for another hour or so, everything in the world is just fine.