Viewing entries tagged
LEGO

Thanks To The Cloud

this is not billable time - but that's perfectly OK

There are many things that we can do now that we couldn't do ten or even five years ago. Thanks to the interwebs and the cheap availability of both high speed data connections and online data storage, it is now possible for Betsy and I to work together even though we live nearly a thousand miles away from one another. It also allows me to work from home on occasion when I feel like it or when the developer with whom I share my office is being especially loud or when his dog has pooped next to my desk.

When I was home on Wednesday of this week I was pleasantly surprised when my in-laws stopped by with Sammy after school. There is about an hour in between when they pick up my eldest daughter from school and when my youngest daughter is let out, and on this particular day they decided to swing by the house. Luckily I was wearing pants and Sammy and I enjoyed an unanticipated playdate.

There are both advantages and disadvantages of working for one's self. You may work harder and be paid less but all that buys you flexibility. It buys you the freedom to pursue the work you want in the manner you want. It affords you the ability to pursue interests outside of your main line of work. It buys you time to play Legos with your daughter for a few minutes on a Wednesday afternoon.

HiWorks founder taken down a notch by eight-year-old

image courtesy LEGO (and for the record, I think I actually had this set when I was a kid)

So I was recently hanging out with Alex.  He is the eight-year-old son of my first cousin which I believe makes him my "first cousin once removed" (although even with the help of some informative Wikipedia diagrams, I'm still not entirely sure that this designation is correct).

At any rate, he was busy playing Minecraft on an iPhone and although that particular game remains a complete and total mystery to me, on some level it seems to be about the creation of space within a world that you then inhabit and explore.  As such, what he was doing in the form of a game seemed to be similar to what an architect does in the form of a profession.  I thought I might use this observation to attempt to create a teaching moment.  

The conversation that ensued has been recreated below:

 

BRANTLEY

So basically in Minecraft you're building a world, right?

 

ALEX

(without looking up from iPhone)

Yeah.

 

BRANTLEY

And then you get to walk around and explore that world?

 

ALEX

Yeah.

 

BRANTLEY

So by designing and building things you're essentially doing what an architect does.

 

ALEX

(looking up from iPhone)

I thought an architect just made the instructions. I thought someone else did the building.

 

BRANTLEY

Uh, yeah... I guess that's true. We create drawings that other people use to build things.

 

ALEX

(returning to the iPhone)

So it's like you draw the instructions for a Lego set.

 

BRANTLEY

(diminished)

Uh, yeah.  I guess that is what we do.

 

For those of you keeping track, the score is Alex 1, Brantley 0.