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Take a Break

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I left work an hour early today.

I'd been working hard on a new feature. It was all going well until I hit a wall. Progressed stopped. I hacked away for half an hour. I ruined my nice design and still failed to get things working. I reverted my changes and tried a different approach and still didn't get it to work.

So I left.

I reverted my changes again, got on my motorbike and went home. It was a nice ride. Dry roads, warm air, not too sunny. I forgot about my work as I filtered through the traffic. I pulled up to my house with a grin on my face.

And then it hit me. My program's design was wrong but only a little bit. One method in one interface needed one more parameter. I can quickly add an overloaded method to the interface tomorrow, provide a default implementation so nothing breaks, and deprecate the old method so I can gradually remove calls to it from the code.

Sometimes you just need to step away from the keyboard. I'd still be making a mess right now if I had stayed at work. Instead, I've solved the problem, written a blog post and feel a lot more content than I would otherwise.

9 Comments On This Entry

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leibniz76 

08 September 2014 - 11:24 PM
What kind of motorbike do you have?
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cfoley 

09 September 2014 - 12:33 AM
A Fazer. :)
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cfoley 

09 September 2014 - 03:02 AM
I've just realised that this blog might not frame my work ethics in the best light. My hours are flexible and I start an hour early every day. I work best in the morning so this suits me. It also means if my brain is ever fried or I have something on in the evening I can leave a little early.
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modi123_1 

09 September 2014 - 07:28 AM
... leave early and do sweet jumps on the way home!

Posted Image
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leibniz76 

09 September 2014 - 09:33 PM

cfoley, on 09 September 2014 - 03:02 AM, said:

I've just realised that this blog might not frame my work ethics in the best light. My hours are flexible and I start an hour early every day. I work best in the morning so this suits me. It also means if my brain is ever fried or I have something on in the evening I can leave a little early.



Yea, I was wondering about that because my brain gets fried all the time. So what do you do when you're working for the man and your brain is fried.
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cfoley 

10 September 2014 - 02:44 AM
You must have other work to do even if programming is the main part of your job. Just get away from the code. You should be taking regular breaks away from the computer anyway. It helps your productivity as well as your sanity. I like fetching coffee or watering the plants because it gets me out of the chair too but there is no end of stuff you can do.

Be careful of email, social media and forums. It's all too easy to procrastinate for too long and these are not a break from the screen or your chair.
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leibniz76 

18 September 2014 - 01:17 PM
Big day in Scottland. What's it like over there? Maybe you could write a blog post about it. I see you put your country as GB so that probably means that you're against independence. I've heard that the vote has put neighbor against neighbor. Is that true?
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cfoley 

19 September 2014 - 05:52 AM
I don't post my political views online and I like to keep my blog about code but I might make an exception and post something over the weekend. Thanks for the suggestion.

By the way, GB field was selected from a dropdown list of two letter codes. As far as I can tell, Scotland does not appear on the list. There is a SC but according to ISO 3166 that is for Seychelles.
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cfoley 

19 September 2014 - 01:46 PM
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