My Relationship with Computers

I have an interesting relationship with computers. I love them, I hate them, and sometimes they annoy me to death. I had one computer that had some many issues that once one of the issues got fixed, something else would stop working.
That was hell.
My current computer is quite annoying as well because it isn’t as slow as some of the older computers but is advertised to run faster than it actually does. This is also where I learned that having more cores on your computer does not necessarily mean that your computer runs faster. Remember that. The salespeople are not necessarily well-equipped to properly help you. Or maybe they’re simply biased. I suspect its a combination of both.

Earlier this semester, I had one available slot left in my timetable and I opted to take computer science, which is A. an elective, B. an elective offered to people in the grade above me, and C. headache inducing. Do you think I’m crazy? Sometimes I myself think I’m crazy for taking the course. When people hear that I’m taking that course, a common question is, why?

If I’m going to be completely honest with myself (and you), I first have to admit that it was a split-second decision. I had planned on (maybe) taking this course, but as a grade 10 student. This summer, when I went to summer school, I took math. It was a very intensive course and I did not want to take anything related to math this year. And what did I end up in? Computer Science (or, as they call it, Introduction to Computer Studies), which is basically another version of math. Great. It was either that or take Grade 10 math, which I would do under no circumstances.

I actually like the course though. It’s a really different approach to teaching. We learn (very, very basic) programming and it’s not the “Follow the instructions and you’ll do well” kind of class. No. It is literally “Here is the problem. Solve it.” I both love and hate this approach. It is totally appropriate for a class where you learn coding. Basically what software does is solve problems for you. But someone wrote that software. In order to have the program solve problems for you, you need to understand the problem yourself. You need to be able to break down the problem into its parts before you build the code. Then, you need to understand the logic and how to do things sequentially.

The funny thing is, the more you write code, the more you start thinking like a coder. It literally changes the way you do things. I find myself wanting to simply write the word “else” instead of otherwise or something do that effect, because that is how conditional statements are communicated to the computer. Huh. If I wrote an essay like that, my teacher might ask quite a few questions. Namely, “are you sane?”

I honestly don’t think I am.

-Rebeeks

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Reflection on School

This has pretty much become my default place to rant about school. That is awesome (no, it isn’t). Ranting is just something I do, I guess. It’s my default mode. None of the posts on this blog are edited. Here, I kind of just write. I mean, all the practice you can get is good, right?

I don’t know why I even bother to call myself a writer. I’m a terrible writer. Every time I sit down to write something I spend more time thinking about writing than actually writing. I know my first drafts suck. A lot of them do. Quite a few of turn out nice. Mine?
I don’t know. I don’t really know what to compare it to. Do I find out tomorrow?

Here I am, talking about being in Lit again. This seems to be my favourite thing to write about. Maybe it’s because it’s different. Because I don’t know what else to expect. I don’t know what people think of Lit kids. I feel like no one really knows what to make of us. Hell, I don’t know what to expect. It’s not exactly like an English class. That’s what I love about it. But that’s also what throws me off. You don’t take English with the same 25 people for 4 years. Life doesn’t work like that. A lot of English classes don’t involve much creative writing. Don’t get me wrong, I love creative writing. It holds a special place in my heart. But sometimes, you just can’t deal with the uncertainty that comes with creating something — weaving a story from bits and pieces and snapshots of life mixed with a generous dose of your imagination. You don’t know where to go. There is no set format, there are no rules. There is no black or white, only shades in between.
But when you put it this way, it sounds like it’s difficult to tell the good writing from the bad writing. And sometimes, it is.

Sometimes you don’t know why a story seems off, but you just know that it is. It drives me nuts. Crazy. Half the time I just abandon the story and do something else. Then I look at it a few years later, think about how crappy it is, and don’t do anything about it. Honestly, essays are a lot easier to write. And I enjoy writing essays, most of the time. But the issue with essays is that the structure tends to be a little (more like a lot) rigid. You can’t take an essay in an interesting direction, most of the time. There is a subject. Stick to it! Whereas stories have plots and subplots and plots twists and you have to keep track of them and keep them logical and believable or else the reader gets mad. Essays? Intro ,point one, point two, point three, conclusion. That is how a lot of essays are formatted. It’s very formal. It’s a formula you can follow and get results every time–as long as you follow the formula properly.

The lazy part of me loves this. So does the debater in me. But there is another part of me that actually hates this. It’s the part of me that demands change and individuality and original thinking. Listening to 5 of 6 essays is boring–most of them tend to sound the same. Listening to 5 or 6 stories is never boring. Sometimes it gets annoying, but that may be because the story is bad or because you don’t like it. But usually people people stick around even if it’s just to complain and rant about how bad it is later.

So  here I am, still thinking about the damn story that I want to write. i have ideas, but I don’t feel like putting then onto paper. I wonder if I should write one page of it everyday and see what kind of useless crap I can come up with.
Did I mention that I have a total lack of imagination?
Having a total lack of imagination is totally detrimental to me. I’m sure some people will say otherwise about my ability to put things together. I don’t think they’re right.

The issue is that I’ve never spent so much time working on a single piece, other than my portfolio for the program. (BTW, my portfolio totally sucked.) It’s different. I don’t know if it’s good different or bad different.

Pros

  • I get to spend more time making the writing perfect
  • I have to more time to ask for opinions
  • It means that if halfway through, I decide to completely change directions with my story, I have time to figure it out
  • More time for editing
  • I can bounce ideas off of people
  • I have time for tweaks

    Cons

    • I spend too much time worrying about perfection
    • Sometimes I get confused by certain opinions
    • uhhhhh

    Okay. I guess the pros outweigh the cons. Now what?
    I guess I should just stop complaining.

    -Rebeeks