Thursday, February 08, 2007

It takes all kinds...

It takes all kinds of people to make everything work.  I stumbled on this short paper by Isaac Asimov this morning and really enjoyed it (again, it is something I've read in the past in one of his collections of papers).

I can relate to what he is saying.  Ask me to write a really complex SQL query - no problem.  Ask me to do some electrical wiring - forget about it (I'll have to write someday about how I blew every fuse in my apartment building years ago installing a dimmer switch).

We are all good at something, we are all expert in some area.  The trick I guess is finding out what that is.  Hopefully it is something you enjoy doing - and I think it almost always will be.

Because we enjoy doing things we do well.

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9 Comments:

Blogger Bill S. said....

Hadn't come across any of these Asimov shorts before - thoroughly enjoyable.

Thanks for the public service! :-D

Bill S.

Thu Feb 08, 09:53:00 AM EST  

Blogger Dave Edwards said....

> Because we enjoy doing things we do well.

And, I think, we do well the things we enjoy.

Dave Edwards.
Log Buffer

Thu Feb 08, 11:21:00 AM EST  

Blogger William Robertson said....

That reminded me of a line from Frasier, where I think it's Ros who says to him "You're the dumbest smart person I ever met."

Spookily enough, when I googled for that phrase it also turned out to occur in the movie version of "I, Robot".

Thu Feb 08, 11:41:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Doug Burns said....

Ask me to do some electrical wiring - forget about it

Ha! Tell me about it ;-) One of my best friends is a professional tradesman and he pulls his hair out at my attempts to perform the most basic maintenance tasks.

Maybe I'll blog about my less-than-successful home-made 'mains tester' one day :-(

Thu Feb 08, 09:19:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Touche. :-).



- Jay

Fri Feb 09, 04:25:00 AM EST  

Blogger SeanMacGC said....

Goddamnit, and I was just going to ask you to rewire my apartment! Ah well, a stitch in time... ;o)

Fri Feb 09, 05:46:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

"We are all good at something, we are all expert in some area. (...) Hopefully it is something you enjoy doing - and I think it almost always will be."

I perfectly agree. Remeber the ancient definition of happiness from Aristotele:

"Happiness turns out to be an activity of soul in accordance with its specific excellence, and if there are more than area of excellence, in accordance with the best and most complete."

Aritotele, Nicomachean Ethics, bk. 1 ch. 7

Fri Feb 09, 06:33:00 AM EST  

Anonymous AnySQL said....

Anything you want to do, try your best to do it well.

Fri Feb 09, 09:02:00 AM EST  

Blogger Joel Garry said....

Now, try to diagnose an electrical problem in a modern car, and you might as well give it up. Just like the old joke about DEC field engineers changing tires, they just swap things around until they appear to work.

Chevrolet once had a tour where they would take a bunch of Corvettes and put in a switch to disable ABS. They'd put together a course in large parking lots, including a part with a soaped-up skidpad, and let the general public discover the joys of skidding, after being shown how by enthusiasts (like me). Several GM engineers were on-hand, including the head of Chevrolet electrical engineering. I asked him if he would check a problem I was having with my heating controls (which seemed perhaps an eeprom programming error to me, but what do I know?). He benevolently offered to show me how to dump error codes with a paper clip in the readout plug, and of course, no errors. Then I demoed the problem for him, and he went "hmmmm..." and got that look in his eyes. You know that look? The one where they realize exactly what the problem is but can't tell it? Heck of a nice guy, though.

Then there's the electricians who worked on the electrical panel of my electrically heated previous house to only give half-heat... at least it happened in February so I noticed fairly quickly...

Guess what - they're all magicians!

Fri Feb 09, 10:27:00 AM EST  

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