An Administrative Note | Day 16

After the past several weeks at Bitmaker Labs, and especially following our recent encounter with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU), two facts have become quite apparent to me. I’ve come to realize, primarily, that the type of posts that I like to write are much different from the posts that I have initially been writing for this blog and, secondly, that I’ve finally discovered the industry that I truly want to innovate in.

When I began this blog, I thought that it would be apt to write about the day’s events, summarizing my time here at Bitmaker Labs. However, I quickly discovered that this was an unsustainable model for content generation, especially when I wanted to write posts of a certain caliber, at a sustained length. I found myself procrastinating until late at night, squirming to put something on the page – I felt very reluctant to write summary posts. If I really wanted to, I could lay out the entire day in a single paragraph and that’s not the type of writing that I wanted to engage in.

The fact remains that there are operational realities that enforce strict parameters upon what can be written. I practically spend twelve hours every day at the Bitmaker Labs office, arriving at a quarter after eight in the morning and leaving at eight in the evening. When you combine the limited amount of time remaining for blogging with the fact that I want to blog everyday at a high quality, I’m left with very few options. In these situations, with time working against you, you have to use the natural strengths that you have developed to your advantage.

It was in attempting to write posts everyday that I realized that I had to play to my innate strengths: I’m a Philosophy and English Lit major who can write commentaries with relative ease. It is much more easy, and engaging, for me to take a certain topic or theme and work through it as if I were analyzing a text or developing an argument. Consequently, you will notice the evolution in my posts as I transitioned to commenting on what I can only describe as meta topics. My writing became more detached from the quotidian affairs of Bitmaker Labs and, instead, focused itself upon tangential topics where it could develop a particular topic into a sustained post. It is in the spirit of these recent posts that I wish to continue my blog.

Even though I had implicitly stumbled upon the type of posts that I wished to write, it was not until Bitmaker Labs’ run-in with the MTCU last week that I realized that Education, in general, is a topic of particular interest to me. In my interactions with my entrepreneurial friends, we have often identified Education and Healthcare as two industries which will see major shifts – and, consequently, room for disruption – in the upcoming decades. Nonetheless, I have never “owned” Education as my industry of choice until I had to defend it from a momentarily misguided ministry. It was in those moments of rebellion that I saw something, not only worth defending but also, worth innovating in.

With the above in mind, I feel justified in bringing this blog to a new direction in the coming weeks. I christened this blog “Kode Konviction” primarily because it was my conviction that coding was the new frontier for me in my life (and, secondly, because I have a morbid fetish of rebranding “C” words with a “K” to appeal my suppressed, Montreal-inspired hipsterness). In many ways, Bitmaker Labs and my pursuit of coding will forever remain as the backend that informs the frontend of my present writing – any post that I write emerges from this environmental context. Nevertheless, coding is more than just the code, inasmuch as language is more than just the words. I have always been interested in the manipulation of words to achieve differing emotional responses. My experiences with poetry have always been from the standpoint of a problem solver rather than a genuine artist – when I was in middle school, I would spend hours just fiddling with words to fit a rhyme scheme or a stanza structure (I was never one for free verse). As a result, it would only make sense that I would be drawn to what coding can help me achieve in a particular industry rather being interested in just the code itself.

From my standpoint, words and code are simply tools – they are instruments and I can craft them to achieve a particular end. You can only write well when you have no attachment to the final outcome, when you see the words for they are: mere symbols that encode meaning. Through a detached use of the tool, you become the tool’s master. In a similar sense, I only see coding as a means to an end, where such an end would be a manifest change made to the prevailing system of education. There is much that I want to write about regarding potential changes that can be made to the education system – especially how technology and the internet can play a pivotal role – and I will be using my blog posts to incrementally convey my thoughts on the matter. There will most likely be the occasional post on Bitmaker Labs or Ruby on Rails, but I feel that it would be a much more beneficial use of my time if I could articulate the gaps that I see in the present system and the changes that I desire to make. There is much to be written and I look forward to sharing my thoughts with you.

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