← Sean Lawrence

First Day of Hacker School

First day of Hacker School was a whirlwind of activity. I realized how little prepared I was for the reality of starting my projects. It appeared others were in the same situation, so I think I was in the majority on this. I regret not taking the opportunity to speak to an alumni (everyone received an email with contact information for alumni who didn't mind speaking to incoming students). If I had I may have not wasted most of the day, although I think there is something to be said for acclimating oneself to the environment - it's important to not be too hard on oneself. Socializing a bit and getting to know some of the other students feels like it may be one of the biggest benefits of attending Hacker School.

We began our day with brief introductions to the founders (Nick, Sonali, Dave), followed by some talks on general guidelines and introductions by the facilitators (Tom, Alan, Allison). Students volunteered their fears and what they were excited about. I did not feel scared, only worried about what I'm going to be doing for the next three months. It feels like there is so much time, and so little all at once. There are a lot of people (60ish?), and I have as many self doubts about what exactly I will be getting out of this experience. I definitely feel like Hacker School if for a specific breed - it's not for everyone.

I mostly began reading through 'Elements of Computing Systems' by Nisan and Schocken. I've finished reading the first chapter and began the exercises. It was difficult thinking because of the noisy/busy environment. I don't think Hacker School is suited for deep problem solving activities (at least not the main room) but more for collaborative and social activities centered around learning something. Will have to reevaluate projects I have in mind and redirect myself. I joined the nand2tetris group at the least, and will continue working through the book, but will start doing the reading at night as homework, while leaving Hacker School open for other activities.

Lastly, I think I'm going to reset my linode instance. I installed an instance of Gitlab and it's definitely insecure. I also can't remember what else that's been installed. Another project...