Log in

No account? Create an account
I was visited yesterday afternoon and this morning by Tontor, the… - The Mad Schemes of Dr. Tectonic — LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

[Mar. 16th, 2006|04:23 pm]
I was visited yesterday afternoon and this morning by Tontor, the Headache That Destroys All Ability To Focus On Anything.

He's gone now. I think he was a sinus headache, and ibuprofen + entex (aka, pseudoephedrine++) seem to have driven him away.

The funny thing about Tontor is that it didn't actually hurt all that much -- it wasn't a migraine, and I've had worse headaches, honestly -- it was just this thudding pain that made it impossible to concentrate enough to actually do anything. I managed to write a dozen lines of code, but they were about as simple as can be.

Anyway, it just lead to some general ruminations on the very burst-y nature of productivity in programming and heck, knowledge work in general. I wonder how prevalent that is across professions and types of work?

[User Picture]From: melted_snowball
2006-03-16 05:22 pm (UTC)
Certainly, it's true for me. Some people seem to be able to be more uniformly productive, but I can't. I'm really lucky that during periods when my brain just isn't firing, I can go off and balance my grants out, or read faculty applications.

[And I think he's now visiting me. I tend to refer to this feeling as "bowling ball head." *sigh*]
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2006-03-16 06:21 pm (UTC)
I don't think that's Tontor, I think that's his cousin Nagrak. Tontor is the inexplicable and mysterious headache that just appears from nowhere...
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: melted_snowball
2006-03-16 07:08 pm (UTC)
Ah, I see. Yes, this one was mildly predictable, and accompanies typical head cold symptoms.

Given your previous rant about drug names, I find this topic more than a bit amusing...
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: goobermunch
2006-03-17 04:23 pm (UTC)
On that topic, have you heard about "ProCylon?"

Talk about taking all the good Sci Fi names.

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: ng_nighthawk
2006-03-17 07:44 am (UTC)
My experience is that there are definitely cycles of productivity in abstract work (non-manual labor kinds of stuff). Mostly, in my case, it comes down to getting started. Once I can get into it and stay in it, my productivity increases rapidly. But I need to ramp up into it--my first efforts are sloppy and I focus poorly. By the end of the work period, I'm scarcely looking away from my work and it's hard for me to transfer my attention anywhere else, and I've got great ideas and insight into the project.

I have no idea how to increase the speed with which I go from point A to point B, however.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2006-03-17 08:28 am (UTC)
I don't know that it's the same for programming, though. It seems like there are some days when it's easy to drop into coding trance, and some days where you just can't do it at all.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: (Anonymous)
2006-03-17 01:27 pm (UTC)
Tontor is the name of fufachew's evil headache, as well. Are they one and the same?
(Reply) (Thread)
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2006-03-17 01:31 pm (UTC)
Indeed, it is the same Tontor.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)