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Snowpocalypse

I was one of the first people in this morning. Oddly enough, everyone in cars took ages, while the busses ran without trouble. It did then proceed to vomit snow all over everything. Oh well.

Funnily enough, it's one of the first pictures I punted onto this flickr thingamabob wot I have got for myself. Funkily, I can punt stuff straight there from my camera using the attached telephone. Rather awesome. Time to dig through iPhoto and work out what to upload.

A thought, bubbling in the back of my head from last week. Am I really good at my job(s) because I was a last-minute crammer?

Every exam in my life, I've crammed for it the night (and morning) before. Some, like my A-Levels, I should have actually revised for, but working two jobs made me want to do silly things like "not working". But everything else, even right up to my finals, I crammed. I'd be the one the night before the exam, getting two hours' kip after loading up on Red Bull and staring at fact sheets and formulæ. Everything got broken down into easy chunks and fired into my brain in order to make me an instant expert. Six hours and I'm good to go.

Tech support, beyond first-line phone-monkeys, require the ability to cram. Someone calls through a weird error, it's up to you (and Google) to isolate the error, work out what's causing it and how to fix it. Especially in a small company, it's never the same error twice, so while I might document a solution it's rare that I'd have a chance to re-use it. Every time, I need to become an expert on something new. Analogue phone systems? Two days. Windows Vista (ugh) networking internals? An hour.

Likewise, writing for White Wolf doesn't give me much time to do in-depth research. Skim-read a couple of papers, yeah. Learn how to transcribe Burmese into a roman character set? Easy (Armory: Reloaded). The psychology of enforced ritual behaviour? A doddle (Lore of the Forsaken).

But ask me to learn anything long-term off my own back and I get distracted and lose interest. It's like history. I glom on to the interesting bits while thoroughly ignoring any chance to learn about the context. I don't care about context because I can't cram context, and it's Googlable if I need it. Bullet points and keywords only, please. I'm already thinking fast enough as it is.

Or maybe I'm just seeing patterns where patterns don't exist yet. Damn Wintergreen Process.

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