Little Things

Things that never fail to fill me with childlike giddiness:

  • When code that I wrote talks over a network.
  • When multi-threaded code that I wrote shows evidence of actually doing two or more things in parallel.
  • When my code makes an LED blink.
  • When my code makes a motor move.

These are not new things to me, but each time I do them with a new piece of hardware or as part of a new project it fills me with such wonder and joy, and once it’s done it’s still fun to run the code over and over and watch it happen again and again. It takes a long time for the satisfied feeling to wear off. It’s even more amazing if it’s more than one of those in combination (multi-threaded blinking of many LEDs, over a network, while moving a motor!). I haven’t confessed this to anyone before, but lately I’ve seen engineers more seasoned than I show the same excitement that I feel in these same scenarios, and I believe that I am not alone. It’s the little things that count.


Anonymous said…
It's an amazing feeling when something you "create" does something on the real world. To me is a feeling that never wears off and think I'm lucky to be paid to do this kind of things.

Great post.
Unknown said…
Being an ECE in training, i know how you feel. Our lab project last semester was programming a robot arm and it was a wonderful experience, both getting it to work and messing up watch it thud against the table.
Vernon Mauery said…
The breadboard with the atmega8, the digital pot, the 4x16 text lcd and the two blinking LEDs on my desk whole-heartedly agree with you.

When I managed to get the LED blink out "Hello World!" in Morse Code, I must have watched it for 20 minutes.

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