If you have been tracking this blog, you may have noticed that my rate of posting has going down recently.  (Thanks for noticing!)

I have been busy doing my “real job”, working to complete the next release of Microsoft Forecaster.

It is during times like these that I’m reminded of how incredibly isolating focused, technical work can be.

I’ve experienced this before on other projects:  I’m busy cranking out functionality—coding, testing, debugging—and I know so little about what is going on in the world around me:  From the weekend plans of my cube neighbor (yes, I do have a cube), to what my spouse is thinking and experiencing, to the latest Microsoft releases (see http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2006/sep06/09-14ZuneUnveilingPR.mspx), to the latest happenings in the world (see http://www.msnbc.com).

It is as if I am spending time in the monastery of the technical, working to produce my unique and (hopefully) perfectly correct copy of the application gospel.  (See http://medievalwriting.50megs.com/word/bigbible2.htm.)

For me, the engineer, this time problem is very challenging because I want the “correct” answer.  It seems “correct” to focus on cranking out the code to deliver the next generation of Microsoft Forecaster better and sooner.  But, somewhat in opposition to that, it doesn’t seem “correct” in our age of interconnection to lose connection to the extent that I do.

I am sure that there are those of you out there who will point-out that there are many allocations of time that would address both in varying degrees.  The answer is not binary.

This is also a challenge to me, for I share that renaissance monk’s goal of creating scripture (code) that is perfect—for the ages.

So, I toil away, keeping a constant eye on my keyboard calligraphy and ensuring that my writings properly reflect my scriptural requirements.

If a Johann Gutenberg (see http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07090a.htm) ever comes to the world of application development, removing the requirement of hand-coding, he will truly revolutionize my life as well as our application development society.

By the way, if you are interested in some history and background on monastic script, see http://www.christdesert.org/noframes/script/history.html.  This page is from a modern monastery that still creates books by hand.  (See http://www.christdesert.org/).