TITLE: Letting Go of Old Strengths AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: July 23, 2012 3:14 PM DESC: ----- BODY: Ward Cunningham commented on what it's like to be "an old guy who's still a programmer" in his recent Dr. Dobb's interview:
A lot of people think that you can't be old and be good, and that's not true. You just have to be willing to let go of the strengths that you had a year ago and get some new strengths this year. Because it does change fast, and if you're not willing to do that, then you're not really able to be a programmer.""
That made me think of the last comment I made in my posts on JRubyConf:
There is a lot of stuff I don't know. I won't run out of things to read and learn and do for a long, long, time.
This is an ongoing theme in the life of a programmer, in the life of a teacher, and the life of an academic: the choice we make each day between keeping up and settling down. Keeping up is a lot more fun, but it's work. If you aren't comfortable giving up what you were awesome at yesterday, it's even more painful. I've been lucky mostly to enjoy learning new stuff more than I've enjoyed knowing the old stuff. May you be so lucky. -----