Pareto Efficient

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Sarita is at 70%, but my macbook is dead

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Many thanks for the thoughts, prayers and well wishes.  Sarita was diagnosed with typhoid fever a few days ago and she really had a rough go of it for a few days.  Thankfully, the love of my young life is feeling about 70% and she’s on the path to full recovery by week’s end.

In no way equivalent, but still crushing…My macbook hard drive crashed the same day Sarita got sick, but unlike my resilient little half puerto rican wife, the macbook is dead.  The data was backed up, but I lost my coding environment in the middle of a new project.

My dear wife was kind enough to lend her computer (part time) to my coding efforts.  Time to setup my rails environment on her macbook, yay!  Unfortunately, Macbooks don’t ship with a compiler pre-installed.  Therefore, I have to go online to download Xcode 3.1.4 to compile my ruby build.  Turns out Xcode is 950 MB and I’m in Uganda.  Yep, its been 3 days of trying and still no Xcode.

Its been kinda brutal:

  • Attempt download via MTN wireless card. Estimated download time 3+ days.  Not worth trying.
  • Attempt download at UN IOM office.  Estimated download time 12 hours.  Sit for a 5 hours, internet connection hangs, and Apple Developer Center session expires; lose all download progress.
  • Attempt download at BJz bar/grill.  Estimated download time 8 hours.  Sit for a few hours, and the internet goes down; lose all download progress.  Told internet will be back in 1 hour.  Wait a 4 hours, but still no internet.  Leave.
  • Attempt download at NUMAT.  Estimated download time 3 hours.  Can’t even log in to the Apple Developer Center.  Try for a few hours on different laptops with different privileges.  Every other site is reachable, save the Apple Developer Center.  The NUMAT network engineer is baffled.
  • Attempt #2 at Bjz. Set download to run through the night on their server.  Power goes out that night; all download progress was lost.
  • Attempt #3 at BJz.  Returned several hour later to check progress only to find that the power went out and all download progress was lost.
  • Attempt #2 at NUMAT.  Several hours spent fiddling with the firewall and proxies is fruitless.

Funny thing is, I only need Xcode to build/configure ruby, then I probably won’t need ever it again…  Haha.  Good luck to me, sir!


Written by thetyson

March 16, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Teach myself to code — WTF?

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I’m an economist at heart.  Its what I studied, its the framework I use to evaluate almost every decision I make.  I know nothing about programming – never written a line of code, never taken any classes.

I have recently decided to go ahead with the COUPONGOOD project by testing a prototype in the market and raising investment build it out.

I’ve approached couple engineering buddies about building the prototype, and they liked the concept, wanted to help, but couldn’t commit to timelines due to other obligations.

That means I’d need to either work with more expensive less trusted local engineering contacts, or completely dicey outsourced engineers from or elance.  Not great.

Engineers will never fully understand the frustration of having ideas that you cannot implement yourself.  Walking around Silicon Valley as a non-coder is like walking around Paris without knowing French.  You feel a little disoriented and awkward most of the time.

Yesterday, my good friend, Sandy, just said, “You should just code it yourself”.

Hmm, interesting… [1 minute delay] Okay.  I’ll do it — just get the prototype pages up, super basic.  Then, I’ll find someone to help me finish it.

Good luck, sir.

Written by thetyson

February 17, 2008 at 8:18 am

Posted in Programming, Projects

Tagged with , , ,