Blogging and reading and spending my time

Maybe it’s because I’m an engineer, maybe because I have been working for “real” for some time, but one of the things that I spend a lot of time doing is paying attention to how I’m spending my time. Probably I do this to convince myself that I haven’t done XYZ because I really didn’t have time, and not that I was procrastinating. One of the things that I pay the most attention about is my time spending reading books.

As mentioned in more than one occasion before, because now my commute is much longer than it used to be, I’m now reading much more on the bus, which means that a larger piece of my day is spent on reading things. At the beginning I mostly read books, and was going through them in a rate of almost one a week (until I hit The Time or Our Singing, which was way too long to finish in a week).

But after some time, I felt like I had to spend more time better. So I decided to get a newspaper on my Kindle to read in the commute in the morning and leave the book only for the way back. I mentioned this already in the previous post that it didn’t work quite well to do this morning-afternoon division, but I’m still sticking to it. Just going way slower through Tobias Buckell’s Crystal Rain.

This weekend and early this week, though, I decided to add one more thing to my list of current reads. Something that was bothering me greatly that I had stopped devoting time to reading: scientific papers. But not only this, in the spirit of a previous post I’m actually planning on taking the time to play around with the algorithms, post about them (not on this blog or else I would lose the few visitors I still have to this blog), and maybe even start discussions with the authors. That last part I’m a little afraid to commit to, based on my history of taking months to reply to emails. But at least I think I should start something.

And that should have made me quite energized and excited, right? That’s what I thought so, but I still haven’t felt it. I’m still a little numb. It feels like I need some sort of big change in something I’m doing. I just don’t know which kind of change yet. Maybe I’m spending way too much time looking at shoe sizes and considering how wrong it all is. My orderly brain is shutting down not to thing too much about why such a simple concept can be implemented in such a terrible way. For example:

* Who came up with the idea of making US shoe sizes go to size 13.5 and then wrap back up to 1?
* Why did Mexicans decide that 26 for a shoe size is too big, so some brands simply decided to drop the “2” and call it a number 6? And, yes, there is a second number 6 for kids.
* Why are women’s and men’s shoe sizes different for the same shoe in US, Australia, UK (although some brands don’t make it different), and Japan (although also the difference is not everywhere) – probably there are others too?

I’m writing code that, given a set of locales, it spits out all possible sizes in global order from smallest to largest. Yes, global ordering is not technically possible, but approximate global ordering can be good enough. I thought that this task was going to take about a day and a half to be done, but I’ve been working on it for about 2 1/2 days now and, although it’s close, it’s not finished yet. I’m yet to build all possible variations on size combinations.

Alright, I think i’ve spent enough time on this post already. I should go to bed. For some reason I woke up last night at 5 AM feeling fully refreshed, which was odd considering that I went to bed at almost 2 AM. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I’m feeling extra numb today.

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