Be confused! 🥴

I’m finally looking a bit deeper into Haskell. When I first saw the syntax, I didn’t know how to feel about it, but since someone told me about the concept of purely functional languages I was really curious to get to know them.

So, the choice fell on a pandoc filter to get into the language. That should be a fun but challenging and (hopefully) useful little excercise to get into the language. As I then was fighting with the, at first quite odd, syntax, wrinkles on my forehead - deeper than the rabbit holes I tend to fall into when I tackle a new topic - a thought wandered through my hea. What is it that keeps me interested in programming or even some tools and languages that are maybe a bit uncommon at best (this is written in vim) even when I’m most of the time confused as hell and feel like I don’t understand a thing? Are there some unexplored masochistic tendencies I should look into? Or is it just the challenge that I want to take?

I realized: The confusion is the fun part!

Why so serious?

A spectator may conclude, that it’d be better off looking for different hobbies. Frustration is kind of a key part when I’m doing the things I like and some problems can really get on my nerves. But in the worst cases I just take a break and get something to eat. That always helps. Normally I swear like dock-worker from 1900s and munch on my teeths as if they are my lunch from the day before yesterday: chewy, lukewarm and barely edible. But I know that I just have to stare and swear long enough and one lucky night at 4am my jaw will drop and I will crumble my hair because the solution was either so obvious, outright stupid or ingenious.

So of course one of the most important things for hobbies (or probably life in general) is in my opinion that you can enjoy them, no matter how infuriating they are from time to time. But…

Embrace the dumbness

The second thing - which ultimatly was the thought that inspired my to write this - is that confusion is the best indicator for the lack of understanding. And that’s what makes me continue. Because it puts me in a position where I can easily learn something new. When you’re convinced to know something, you (probably) first need to be proven wrong to open up to new thoughts (which isn’t inherintly bad. Of course should you reflect on your own thougts and understandings, but it’s also good to be confident in the things you know). When you know you don’t know what’s going on… You know that there is something to learn.

Conclusion

So.

What’s the takeaway from this?

I realized, that confusion is a key part of what I love about learning. If I feel like I have a problem that has (probably) a solution, but I’m confused I don’t quit right away. It often keeps me going!

Let me know if you feel the same or if you hate confusion and I’m a total lunatic. :)

>haskell >opinion - März 2021