Jan 31 2008

True life

Jamie Barrows
My Life on the Internet

When I saw this pic, I just had to post it. It was too much like my real life. I spend all day at work at my computer and then come home andv spend more time on a computer

Dec 7 2007


Jamie Barrows
Cross Walk

Sometimes when you have spent all day working on something and you haven’t managed to get anywhere, it’s time to give up. Not permanently, after all you still want to get it done. But temporarily. Just to catch your breath and come back fresh.

Yesterday, I spent all day working on a project. And for most of the day, I was stuck on a small section of the code. At most 20 lines of code. But I couldn’t find what was wrong with it. No matter what I tried it wouldn’t work. I went over and over the same little section of code. But no matter how many times I looked at it, it still looked right to me.

Bunny with head against wallSo I decided that the problem must be data related. I re-worked and went over every step of code leading up to the function that didn’t work. Followed the data through the entire chain. I even rewrote some of it to make it a little more efficient and to ensure that I wasn’t corrupting the data. Nothing. The same function still didn’t work. At about 5:15, I decided to give up for the day. I had spent all day working, but I really hadn’t accomplished much of anything.

I headed home for a much needed break and some dinner. I can tell you I was really frustrated and extraordinarily tired from beating my head against this issue all day. But as I was driving home, a possible solution occurred to me. I dismissed it as too simple, but still kept it in the back of my mind. Slept on it, and when I got up this morning, it still seemed like a good idea. It was only a small change, and it was in the function I had originally thought it was in. So I tried it. And it worked!

I had spent all day yesterday working on this issue and had gotten nowhere. But when I finally gave up and went home for the day, the answer came to me. All I needed was to take a break. Sometimes when you feel like you are getting nowhere, it’s just time to take a break.

Nov 18 2007

Paying Bills

Jamie Barrows

Lately I’ve been more than a little depressed. The reason is that I don’t feel like anything I’m doing is worth anything. Not just not worth anything, but actually pointless. Every week all my actions are based around a single goal. Paying bills. I go to work every day for no other reason. Don’t get me wrong, I like my job. The problem is that the only purpose for my job, is to pay bills. And paying bills is not something that is really a worthy goal to have in life. It’s actually very worthless.

I need to have a point to my life that goes beyond paying bills. I need a goal that is really worth something. I really don’t know what I can do, but I need to find something. Otherwise, this pattern of depression about my life will keep pulling me down and leave me in a state of depression.

Finding that goal is the hard part. The problem is that I don’t have the skills and abilities to do the obvious things. People I know are going to suggest that I get involved in missions work and the church. But I’m already involved in my church, and the truth is that they don’t really need me. And I don’t have any of the usual skills that missionaries can use. No church planting or preaching skills. No building or construction skills.

About the only skill that I do have, is an aptitude for computers. My computer skills are not really any use to most of the churches around here. Computer skills like mine are just too common in the US. But possibly my skills could be useful on the mission field. Specifically in third world or impoverished nations. Maybe there is something I could do that would take advantage of the skill set that I do have.

I don’t know if it is even possible, but I think I will try to find out. If I can make some contacts with groups who are working in those countries, then I might be able to find out what I can do. Maybe my computer skills could be used, or maybe there is another area I could help out in. The only way I can find out what I can do is to ask. So that is what I’m going to try.

Because I don’t want my goal in life to be “paying bills.”