Taking notesPosted on 23 June, 2023
I need to get in the habit of taking notes while I work. Especially when I’m debugging. I’ve noticed a poor habit reoccur when I’m working on a particularly difficult problem.
It usually goes something like this:
- Start working on problem. Do some research. Try out
Adoesn’t work. Do some more research. Try
- At this point I’m already tired so I think to myself, “
Aseems like a pretty good idea. Why didn’t it work? Let’s try it again.”.
- Oh, that’s why
Adidn’t work. Of course.
- Try some variation of
- Think about
So much time is wasted, with very little progress made. Even worse, if this is at the end of the day and I have to leave it pending and come back to it the next day - or if I have to stash the changes and work on something else for a while then come back to it later, then the cycle begins all over again.
If notes are taken at each step of the way, it’s clear what works and what doesn’t - and why. This isn’t just helpful in the moment. Chances are I’ll come across a similar issue in the future. I can’t always rely on memory on these things. Experience has shown it to be very unreliable.
As much as I plan to mostly use pen and paper for this, it should also give me ample opportunity to blog more. Many problems should be general enough for someone1 else out there to benefit from.
Barely anyone reads my blog, I know, but it should at least act as a backup to my pen and paper. ↩︎