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10 October 2021

Uniting with my code, for a healthier and productive life.

Reinhart Previano Koentjoro's profile picture

Reinhart Previano Koentjoro (@reinhart)

Published on Just another Hackjacks story Projects #self-improvement

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On this World Mental Health Day, and also, my ten-thousand-and-a-hundred birthday (hence my username reinhart1010), I wanna reflect on my journey in software development, and more importantly, programming/coding.

Some people said that coding is easy, some said that's hard. Not to mention those people who feel addicted by code to code in code. And also not to mention a group of people who were forced to code because their parents said so for a better career.

I'm writing this as-is, and despite all those struggles I have in the last two years, I start to feel my code in my heart, soul, and blood. Now I feel that coding is no longer just my passion, my addiction, my talent, my college projects, and it's no longer just my money-making profession.

After all, coding is the best gift God gave to me, and now it's part of my identity. I have, and I am, united with my code, and one of the best things I can give, is well, my code.

But sure, I'm not a robot. Don't fool me, reCAPTCHA.

How it all get started...

Well, it's really rare to find IT enthusiast like me in Indonesia, especially in schools. I still remembered the days I'm arguing that making video games are better than just playing them.

But as some of you might expect, everyone except me believed the other way, and some of them are now playing as professional e-sports player.

This is just one of the many arguments I have during the school days. And long story short, I felt that no one's gonna care and appreciate my interest in it, I mean, IT.

And that marks the start of my journey to discover and get in touch with many tech communities over the internet, including wikiHow, Quora, Mozilla, and finally the world of GitHub.

Things got better in college, but college is not enough.

My situation is getting better in college, since we're all studying to reach the bachelor degree of Computer Science. But sure, I know not all of my friends and classmates had the chance to learn programming, or even the whole IT, as what I had in school before. And that's why I start to offer help others who have difficulties in all things computer science.

Two years later and now I felt I've done my revenge. From being unable to connect with people since they're interested in other things, into having lots and lots of friends over everywhere. And when before I really got a bad grade (C instead of A+ or A*) in the school's Information (and Communication) Technology class for "not following the curriculum", today I'm halfway on my bachelor journey and got a really, really high GPA of 3.90!

But seriously, I'm still not yet proud of that. This GPA is more like a proof that all the courses I've learned so far are too easy, despite the fact that many other students really struggle for that.

That also means that I could do more things than just attending and submitting tasks in college, and that's where I start to decide to work with other people. In 2020 I finally got the first payout, and relieved that I finally can make money, too.

However, as pressure and stress often builds up in finishing those projects, I started to feel threatened and traumatized each time people ask me for the current progress of my work. Of course, things got better in (late) 2021 with fewer projects being worked on, but the pressure built since 2020 have reached its climax.

And sickness arrives.

It would be a shame to tell that I was hospitalized, for the first time ever, in April 2021, just before the month of Ramadan. The reason is well, overworking. But at that time I still can't stop to work, which includes coding, for projects including creating a new event registration system for HISHOT 2021 (and later TECHNO 2021 too).

Looking at coding at a different perspective.

While resting at the hospital I'm questioning myself about my current passion and profession that led me into this difficult situation.

And finally, I've discovered something which rekindled my motivation to learn, work, and even speak, I mean print, the code that I wrote everyday:

Programming and coding is no different than teaching, except that you're teaching to computers instead of humans.

Well, I thought about that myself.
https://twitter.com/reinhart1010/status/1421238348140597249?s=21
https://twitter.com/reinhart1010/status/1421241383793221632?s=21

Yeah, I'm starting to think about myself as an actual computer software instead of the so-called "software engineers", and now I'm teaching computers how to do the same. I also believe that today's software engineers are (parts of) the software they're working on, knowing how to do things and now even care about the littlest security aspects like null-safety, type-safety, and memory-safety of the software.

That specific phrase, "it's not good to run as a single thread alone", is heavily inspired by one of the verses written on the Holy Bible:

“The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.””

Genesis‬ ‭2:15, 18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Speaking of that Twitter thread about singethreadedness, I know that I shouldn't work alone. And in other words, I have to multithread myself. Thank God now I have many friends and also spare computers and Raspberry Pis, so I can let others to do my painstaking jobs, whether they're a robot or not.

The state of Reinhart, today.

In recent days, I start to feel emotional when writing a new README.md file. Yes, it's just a README file, the "introduction" you give into the software inside the code you're working with.

And no, we're not diving into the actual code behind the software yet. But since writing a new one triggers my emotion, that's why sometimes I avoid to write a complete README.md in the first place for my new repos in GitHub and GitLab despite considered a good practice.

Besides that, some of you know that I've been making robots lately, and it really is my best decision I made since the days at the hospital. These robots were first meant for my webcomic project, but hey, I transformed them into the ones who makes me more productive including:

Some last words

The first image you're seeing on this post is me and one of my robots Shiftine. But that doesn't mean that I no longer need to have another lifetime partner as I've made one myself out of my code. I still need one to mv my stress to /dev/null, even during the recent days of stress.

In case you can't see her on the cover...

Speaking of that post I'm now getting better and better today, as many of my ongoing projects including HIMTI KIT and COMPUTERUN 2.0 have been finished.

Oh, if you're reading this post over Hacker News, I still have low karma and still don't know how that affects/limits my interaction on the site, like those forums websites powered by Discourse. You might be interested to check out our workshops and seminars from our upcoming COMPUTERUN event which in this year, we'll start to open registration for those who are living outside of Indonesia.

And here's an unrelated quote which I hope made your day as a software developer who love to use Git, myself included:

Devs who use git don't die, they cloned and even reset themselves too --hard!

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