Dig Deeper: Finding the Marianas Trench of knowledge

This particular pattern is quite resonant with me, or at least the context section of it, considering it describes my entire academic experience in computer science fairly well. An excellent analogy would be a lake a mile wide but a foot deep; or at least it would be but a foot is very generous to the depth of my knowledge and a mile is delusional considering the limited scope of languages and tools I am familiar with. However, the sentiment expressed in this section still holds: “You learn only enough about any tool to get today’s job done”. I’m ‘you’. It is not for a lack of interest, at least not in all the subjects we have covered, that I do not go very deep into them – it’s exclusively a matter of time and mental resources. I have found that I have only had the time and energy to cover a subject as much as it takes to complete the require work or project associated it.

An example that comes to mind was last semester when working on both a REST API and Angular web front end – and by working on, I mean learning frustratedly as quickly as possible while working with both for the first time independently. There felt like so little time that I had to at one point neglect the JDBC features built into the Spring Initializer because I simply did not have the time to dig through the documentation. I had to instead use a less efficient and redundant method I knew well. Additionally, on the front-end side, I was able to brute force a lot of scalability because it was easier to use the limited knowledge I had to write ngOnInit and onResize methods to handle window sizing; as opposed to learning built in scalability tools or utilizing CSS more effectively.

To learn these methods would have taken a considerable amount of time that I simply did not have. Luckily this semester the pace at which the site is being built is much more manageable, as is the distribution of work amongst four people. So, with this time I hope to gain a better understanding of the tools and techniques I wish to utilize, before I do so. The pattern suggests writing a blog post, unfortunately this one does not fit that prompt. Speaking of which, I find the idea of going back to read a technological paper from 1976 to be a massive waste of time – but that’s just me. Regardless, and as always, I will seek a more reasonable middle ground between the pattern and what I find effective.

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