October 6th, 2006

radioactive panda

perceived vs actual industriousness

I've been making climate change projections at work. (Vaguely frantically, since this latest, mmm, let's-call-him-a-client, close enough, wants the results soonish and I'm off to New England on Monday, so I want to get this big batch started quickly enough that I can be done with it before then and still have time to deal with the other things I should be dealing with and not need to work this weekend, at least not more than a non-trivial amount, so what I am I doing? Blogging.)

Anyhow, there's this weird aspect of working with this stuff because I've automated the whole process, and none of the people using the data it generates really gets that. I think they're under the impression that I'm doing it by hand. They're always saying "well, I don't really need X", and it's somehow very difficult to explain to them that it would actually be more work for me to NOT give them X. No, seriously. Let me give you X as well, it's easier that way.

The only thing that's work for me is when they have a request that's either ill-specified, or that requires something new in the way of input or output. (That's what this one is: non-rectangular regions, adding a histogram.)

Not that I'm complaining about them thinking that I'm some kind of superhuman data analyst, rather than just a guy who's so lazy that he builds tools to avoid doing anything by hand more than once, but it's kinda weird.