Code as art

Artistically, a codebase is an expression of a Software Engineer’s understanding of a real world problem (including the people working on it and their relationships) and its solution.

Most code is written by many engineers, so actual production code can be dissected by who wrote it – the entire codebase is a representation of how well each contributor understood the entire problem and the role contribution they’re making plays in solving the grand real world problem.

Multitasking

To me, multitasking means a very specific thing, and I thing a lot of people get the meaning wrong. Maybe I’m wrong! You tell me.

When I multitask – I’m aware of multiple problems that exist, and I have singular focus on a specific solution that addresses multiple problems.

The way I’ve seen people understand the concept is that they are doing multiple things simultaneously. That’s impossible. You only do one thing at a time, there’s only one you, but you can multitask if you solve multiple problems with the brush of a single stroke.

The art of building

A few years ago, I consulted with one of my mentors.

I said I’m miserable living in San Francisco, and I think the only thing keeping me here is the ridiculous opportunity that’s been bestowed upon me by fate – and that I think I should stay, but maximize what I’m getting out of my time here.

We discussed 2 options: getting into venture capitalism, and trying to make money by convincing people with money that I know how to best make a return on their wealth – or, actually building something. Obviously, in his mind actually building something and being able to personally shape the future was a lot more interesting than just trying to make a buck.

So we drilled into that.

At the time, I was leading a team of engineers – which seemed like a great opportunity to learn the leadership skills I’ll need to propel a company I’m building towards success. I tried to inquire in how I should take advantage.

While true that leadership is inevitable in an endeavor like building a company, I humbly heeded his wisdom: he said in fact, I should be doubling down on my engineering skills if I intend to truly build a technology company.

Today, knee deep in both leadership and code, his wisdom rings true.