Day Hackers?

Place to discuss anything, almost. No politics, religion, Microsoft, or anything else that I (the nazi censor) deem inappropriate.
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Day Hackers?

Post by worker201 » Tue Aug 03, 2004 3:11 am

If you ever read up on any hacker folklore on the net (ERS being a good source), you hear a lot about Unix coders pulling all-nighters at least once a week. I know I can't go to bed until I have fontconfig installed (dang fontconfig!). But this place is totally empty after normal business hours.

Perhaps the times have changed. Or perhaps Linux is a different crowd. Or perhaps [gasp] all the problems that kept Unix geeks up all night in the 70s have been fixed!
haha

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Post by Tux » Tue Aug 03, 2004 7:05 am

You don't have time to be on forums if you are really concentrating ;)

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Post by Void Main » Tue Aug 03, 2004 8:00 am

I must not be concentrating. :) I used to concentrate *very* hard!

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Post by X11 » Tue Aug 31, 2004 8:58 pm

I have to take medication now to sleep at all, I got the point where I would sleep a few hours every couple of days.

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Post by Void Main » Tue Aug 31, 2004 9:06 pm

I was like that for many years. I'll bet for 15+ years straight I would rarely get over 3 hours in a night. There was a specific point less than two years ago (I could almost mark the day) where I couldn't do that anymore. I think I hit the breaking point. Now I am tired all the time and have to get at least 7 hours of sleep. I also have developed this bad ringing in my ears that almost drives me crazy when I am in a quiet room.

It may be that I'm just getting old. I certainly can't focus like I used to and feel like I am only running on about 50 percent of the brain power I once had. I used to be able to sit down and start working on something and lose myself so deep in what I was doing that I could go for like 36 hours straight. Now I am lucky to be able to keep my attention on anything for more than 15 minutes at a time. It's really kind of scary. You might want to consider finding some sort of sports related hobby to divide your time with and also try and get some sleep. You have to shift gears long before bedtime in order to let your brain wind down. I never did this and then I couldn't sleep because I was constantly thinking about stuff.

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Post by dishawjp » Thu Sep 02, 2004 1:33 pm

Jeeze Void, and you're still a puppy. I started going downhill in my early 40's, mostly my eyes then. By my late 40's I noticed some difficulties with concentrating. Now I'm taking a class in Perl programming and am really struggling with it. I'm not at the bottom of the dung heap in the class, but certainly in the lower third. These kids just take to it like ducks to water and I'm putting in some serious effort and having problems. When I was in college (yes, they did have colleges back then) I had no problems hitting dean's list and I graduated from Cornell U., cum laude. And believe me I didn't put a ton of effort into school back then. I majored in frat partying, girl chasing and beer drinking... only took classes on the side :-)

About the ringing in your ears. I have the same thing. One of my work computers only gets run for minutes at a time because the hard drive has a whine that is about 1/4 tone off the ringing and it drives me nuts. My assistant and the students who use it only hear the whine if I point it out to them. One thing helps though, beer and lots of it. After the first dozen or so beers, I don't notice the ringing at all. Must be some serious medical benefits to beer :-)

Jim

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Post by Void Main » Thu Sep 02, 2004 2:04 pm

Heh heh, yeah, I'm catching up to you. The beer does help. I had a couple last night and I could have kept going if I weren't so dang responsible. :) I do think I will have to take up drinking though once the kids are out of the house. I only have a couple more years for that to happen.

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Post by dishawjp » Thu Sep 02, 2004 2:29 pm

Well, my "kids" are mostly grown and now they take their old man out for beers. On rare occasions, they even buy :-)

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Post by Void Main » Thu Sep 02, 2004 2:57 pm

Man, they must be making some good coin if they can afford to buy *you* beers. :)

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Post by Calum » Mon Sep 06, 2004 1:33 pm

i have to sleep at least 8 hours every night (although sometimes i only get maybe 6 and a half because i like to stay up later, always lose the time some other time though).

hopefully this will mean i take longer to fall to bits! also i am hoping that being a vegetarian non smoker and a hardy scot will help also! :-D

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Post by caveman » Tue Sep 07, 2004 6:56 pm

Getting to sound like a medical journal ;)

But yes - from '78 thru '98 I got away with the minimum sleep...
sometimes 4-8 hours every 2nd day.... lotsa concentrate straight thru
any problem - hardly ever fell ill - just the occational sniffles.

Then suddenly for no reason I started feeling sick and tired and stayed in
bed for close on 2 weeks solid. Nobody could figure out what was wrong,
except by dad, a homeopath, visited and said "total f....n burn-out",
like most doctors he could give a sailor lessons in cursing..... heh heh.

Ever since - the ringing in my ears that tries to drive me crazy, I stay tired,
concentration gone for a ball of shite, eyes suddenly needed glasses.
Trying to learn something new is a massive effort etc. etc. etc.

Bloody hell - and I'm only 48 - now I suddenly need 6-8 hours sleep a day
and it is driving me nuts.

So it seems that life et al does eventually catch up..

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Post by Void Main » Tue Sep 07, 2004 7:20 pm

caveman I have a nearly *identical* situation, and it came all of a sudden. One day outta the blue I could have swore I instantly became 80 years old. I think the burn-out is very possible even if it doesn't have a medical ring to it. I haven't had my eyes checked yet but I know they are starting to go. Are you sure we just aren't getting old? I have a really good buddy that I ride dirt bikes with who is 47 (might be 48 by now). He looks more like 60 but he is out riding every weekend and never gets tired. He's like a little kid. I'm not quite as old as you guys in actual years (almost though) but I am right there with you in burn-out years. :)

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Post by worker201 » Tue Sep 07, 2004 9:41 pm

A pet theory for you:

Assume the brain is a hard drive, capable of storing 400 Terrabytes of data. Every day, your input sensors (eyes, ears, nose, etc) record gigabytes worth of data. Most of it is repetitive junk, so you can flush most of it. The brain shuts everything else down at night so it can sort through all this data without interruption. As it flashes the events before your eyes, you catch some of it, resulting in dreams that make no sense, because all images are out of context, so the conscious makes up a story to go with the slideshow. Anyway, you wake up feeling refreshed, because so much temp junk has been deleted from your drives. You know, the way windows feels faster after you defragment it. Eventually, though, you are going to run out of space. There are only so many episodes of "Family Ties" and "CHiPs" you can store in your brain. And the need to flush out the overly repetitive stuff can catch up with you. People who read a lot, or people who look at a tv screen a lot, or even people who watch too much tv, they have a lot of junk that needs to be cleared out regularly.

Eh, I'm no neuroscientist, but my theory seems to fit the data. And it seems to fit the construction of our lives. Thinking material, best forgotten by tomorrow morning.

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Post by Tux » Wed Sep 08, 2004 8:45 am

Actually your brain stores everything you do, ever. You just can't remember it alll, it is only things that you recall repeatedly which you remember most easily.
In fact they say this is why many bad memories fade away.

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Post by worker201 » Wed Sep 08, 2004 1:18 pm

To say that the brain stores everything you do is misleading. The brain isn't quite like a hard drive. What happens is, pathways are created. When you learn about Linux, Linux becomes a branch off computers, and Fedora becomes a branch off of Linux. You probably already have "ice cream" and "burn your tongue" in your brain somewhere. If you were to burn your tongue on ice cream (??) then these two notions would be connected.

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