Chris Burnor Philosophical Nerd

Humility, Technical Skills and Context

| 296 words | No tag

When I started blogging, I imagined that my blog would end up like many of those that I follow and value: filled with little technical tidbits, tutorials and analyses.  Starting off out of college, I recall being in awe at those who knew All The Things and would so generously share them with the world.  At that time, I was reading blogs more about how to set up a Wordpress site or install Google Analytics.  So, as my career progressed, I quickly learned that those people were not the real repositories of knowledge, as that sort of stuff was easy.  The real heroes were those who could tell you how to extend Wordpress with modules and plugins As you might imagine, this pattern continued. My reading focus grew from Wordpress to php, from php to Java, from java to Ruby & Python, from programming to Unix tools, from basic tools like the Ubuntu Software Center to apt and aptitude, from Gedit, to Gnome Terminal, from Bash to Zsh and so on.  

As my technical skills developed and my familiarity and comfort with technical systems grew, so did my reading materials.  Meanwhile, the things that I did know and was comfortable with, I began to take for granted.  What I was doing was defining context.  In the context of geeky science majors just out of college, setting up your own website, felt pretty edgy.  Once I defined myself as a technical professional, setting up memcached clusters, seemed pretty ordinary and blogging about it would be rather pedantic.

I’m not exactly sure where I’m going with this other than to remind myself to take stock of how I’ve grown, where I am and what I’ve learned and to not forget to pass it along to that next generation.

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