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Simple Machines

Published 8/3/2016

In today's episode, we talk about the redirection of misplaced energy through the lens of 7th grade science.

Today's episode is sponsored by Linode! Head over to Linode.com/developertea or use the code DeveloperTea20 at checkout for a $20 credit towards your cloud hosting account! Thanks again to Linode for your support of Developer Tea.

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Transcript (Generated by OpenAI Whisper)
Hey everyone and welcome to Developer Tea. My name is Jonathan Cutrell and in today's episode we're talking about simple machines. Today's episode is sponsored by Linode. You will talk about what Linode has to offer to Developer Tealisteners later on in today's episode. By the way, Developer Tearecently surpassed 4 million downloads. Thank you so much to all of you who listen on a regular basis. We send out three episodes a week and if you want to make sure you don't miss out on those episodes, go and subscribe and whatever podcasting app you are using while you're listening to today's episode. Today's episode is relatively short. I just want to talk to you a little bit about energy and we aren't talking about the cosmic type of energy. I'm simply talking about the effort that you put forth into your career. I get questions all the time from people who really want to do a great job. They want to become a great developer. They want to do well in their careers and they don't seem to have a lack of energy. Sometimes people have a lack of energy because they're burnt out or perhaps they're at the end of their ropes. They've been trying to get a job for example for years or maybe just months even and they feel like they're burning out and they're running out of energy because they're running in the same direction and not seemingly getting anywhere. Most of the time people tend to have a sufficient amount of energy. They put forth a sufficient amount of effort. Now to be fair, there are others who put forth more than a sufficient amount of effort. There are some people who put forth over 100% of their effort, especially when they're trying to, for example, start a business earlier in their development career and they really go all out with the energy output. But most people, they run at a relatively stable level of energy. The questions that I receive then are not really about how do I get inspired or how do I have the energy to do the thing that I need to do. Instead, they're about what should I do? They're questions about how should I spend that energy? Where should I put that energy? I want to talk about a simple concept that I'm bringing over from my seventh grade science class. I think it was seventh grade where we talked about simple machines. We're going to talk about how we can think about energy moving forward into the future. We'll talk about simple machines right after we get back from this quick sponsor break. Today's episode is sponsored by our wonderful sponsor, Linode. Linode has eight data centers and their plans started just $10 a month. You can get a server running in under a minute. That server is going to have two gigabytes of RAM. That is a new feature as of July. That comes with that $10 a month tier. Linode has hourly billing with a monthly cap on all of their plans. You can start a VM for full control. You can run Docker containers. You can have encrypted disks, VPNs. You can even run your own private get server. They have native solid state drive storage. This is incredibly important for speed on your server. They also have a 40 gigabit internal network and they run their servers on Intel E5 processors. All of this is backed by a seven day money back guarantee. Of course, as a Developer Tea listener, Linode is providing you with $20 of credit. That's $20 free for using the code Developer Tea 20. You need a server. If you use the code Developer Tea 20, you get $20 of a server for free. Go and check it out. Linode.com slash Developer Tea. Thanks again to Linode for sponsoring today's episode. For today's episode is really a big metaphor. Hopefully you've recognized that. We aren't really talking about real simple machines. But if you don't know what a simple machine is, I'm going to give you the kind of the Wikipedia overview. A simple machine is a mechanical device. This is directly from Wikipedia. A mechanical device that changes the direction or magnitude of a force. Let's think about that for a second. It is a simple device that changes the direction or magnitude of a force. Some examples of simple machines are a lever, a wheel and axle, a pulley, an inclined plane, a wedge or a screw. I've been told that a screw is kind of like a wedge wrapped around a pole. But in any case, all we're talking about here is something that takes energy that is going in one direction and repurposes it. It changes the direction of that energy and built from simple machines. If you compound these machines, you can get very complex interworking systems. If we apply this metaphor to a human, or to a group of humans for that matter, our groups of humans or companies of people, if you combine their efforts, if you create a compound machine out of the energy from these people, you can do really amazing things. But the problem is, if your energy is not going in the right direction, if you have an issue in understanding where to put your energy, then the machine can break down. So I want you to think about this concept of the simple machine and recognize that your brain is responsible for playing the part of the simple machine. Because you have a lot of energy, you have motivation. But your cognitive analysis of the situation, when you recognize that you're putting your energy towards something and it's not really making any effect, it's not making any headway for you, your brain is responsible for redirecting that energy that you have to the correct location. Your brain is acting as that simple machine. For example, I've heard people ask questions about how do I act passionate in an interview, even though I have very little emotion for programming. And you have to recognize that you are expending a certain amount of energy by going to interview after interview after interview. And your ultimate purpose, your ultimate goal in these interviews is to get a job. Now, if you have the goal and the energy you're putting forth is not meeting the goal, then your brain's job in that moment is to try to recognize how you can redirect your energy to the correct location. In other words, how can I show emotion in these interviews? How can I figure out a way to connect with my emotions with the energy that I'm using? How can I figure out a way to convey that I care about this? Another great example, if you are leading a team of developers and those developers are consistently writing bugs that you're having to stay late and fix. This is a very common problem. The leaders end up staying late and fixing the bugs that the people they are leading are writing because those people are less experienced and that leader feels like it's their responsibility to clean up the mess. So instead of staying late every single night and spending the energy going behind and cleaning up the mess, perhaps that energy can be redirected to teaching those people how to avoid those bugs in the first place. Really, this comes down to optimization. That's what a simple machine is for. It's for making the most optimum use of the energy you are expending. So think about your brain in the next scenario where you end up feeling frustrated that you're putting forth a lot of effort not seeming to get anywhere. Use your brain as that intermediary step, that simple machine to redirect that energy to the place that it's going to make the most difference. Thank you so much for listening to today's episode of Developer Tea. And thank you, of course, to Linode. With Linode, you can get a server up and running in just a few minutes. You get two gigabytes of RAM, eight data centers to choose from, and at seven day money back guarantee. On top of that, they're going to give you $20 a credit just for using the code Developer Tea 20. Go and check it out. Linode.com slash Developer Tea. The show notes for today's episode and every other episode of Developer Teacan be found at spec.fm. We are here to help you as designers and developers level up in your career. Whatever stage you're in, that's what our purpose is at spec. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time, enjoy your tea.