Sonntag, 12. Januar 2014

The Right Focus

Focus is important but it can also be a dangerous thing.
Being obsessed with something means you do not look into some things that might be important.
Everything is connected, so knowing a little about the context is always important.

But there is also too much to know. If you habitually try to get to the bottom of things there will not be enough time in your lifetime to do (and actually finish) even very simple things.

Thinking about your life as a buffet is probably the best way to go.
Look at TED and TEDx Talks like those:

Logan Laplante
Logan Laplante
Logan Laplante
Logan Laplante
Logan Laplante
Sir Ken Robinson, Logan LaPlante and Jacob Barnett:

to get an idea of why learning at home is so incredibly helpful these days.

A similar concept applies to the job market:

Jenny Blake:;search%3Atag%3A%22tedxcmu%22

That is why I would start projects and come up with a game plan.
In case you know this and you worry because there are people who started a lot earlier: don't!
Think about those guys who wrote their first compiler when they were 13 this way:
  • It is unlikely that they are your competition - in many ways
  1. They need to specialize too and probably have a different focus
  2. Know even just a little about a topic they have never worried about: you are better than they are in that area (e.g. they learned C++, you learned Java - they will not catch up any time soon ... they probably do not even want to)
  3. There are, by far, more average programmers out there than very gifted people
  • They might be your colleagues or partners (and you can learn from them)
  • They proof that working on projects and being prepared is probably a good idea
An interesting related topic is how talent, skill, knowledge and genious are connected.
You might think that "Is IT For You?" is the same question as "Do I have what it takes?".
I don't think that is correct, though. As soon as you can provide value and if it is apparent that you are motivated you are interesting as an employee or even employer.

In my opinion talent equals how good you are at learning and gaining new skills by default.
You can get better if you invest time and energy in learning how to
With too little focus you dilute the results / success. Your pace will get faster if you establish and improve your approach to studying.

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