There is so much stuff out there to learn it is crazy. It is said that the last person who knew everything was Thomas Goethe, or Immanuel Kant or perhaps John Stuart Mill. These men all lived some time between 1724 and 1873. Personally I think the assertion that human knowledge was ever so small as to have been knowable by a single person is bunkum. Even a millennium ago there were certainly those elders who spent their entire lives learning the patterns of flow of a single river or how to tell which plants to plant based on the weather. Â A person who knew everything is a romantic idea so I can certainly see the appeal of believing such a notion.
These days the breadth of knowledge is so expansive that knowing everything about even the smallest topic is impossible. I once heard a story (sorry, I donâ€™t remember the source) of a famous wrist surgeon who operated only on right wrists. He was that specialized. The field of computing is a particularly difficult one to explore as the rate of new ideas is breakneck. Â 4 years ago there was no nodejs, no coffeescript, Â no lessÂ - web development was totally different. Chef hadnâ€™t been released and nuget was a twinkle in Phil Haackâ€™s eye.
Somebody was talking about how the pace of new development ideas in computing has accelerated in the past two or three years and that since the .com crash of 2000 to 2009ish innovation had really been slow. If that is true it means that for almost my entire technical life innovation has been slow. Iâ€™ve been hanging on by my fingernails and innovation has been slow? Oh boy.
In an e-mail the other day I mentioned to somebody that I had to add Erlang to my learning queue. The learning queue is just an abstract idea, I donâ€™t have a queue. Well, I didnâ€™t have a queue. That changes today. I have so many things to learn that I canâ€™t even remember them.
So with the most pressing things at the top of my queue the list currently looks like
- Azure Scheduler
- Async in .net (still donâ€™t fully understand this)
- E-mail server signatures
- Kinect gestures
- Raspberry Pi
- Some hardware sensors about which I know so little I canâ€™t even put a name on this list
Iâ€™ll keep this list up to date as I learn things and as things move up and down in order. What is in your learning queue?