My job at Bungie these days is about one core piece of technology we use to make our games. It's a system that all the artists, designers and sound designers use to get their work into the game. So, like any technology job where you're building a product other people use, there are two kinds of work: the work of building the technology and the work of supporting the people using it.
Things have been busy enough lately that I was trying to focus just on the coding and not do much support work. It wasn't really working out. All around me the artists, designers, and sound designers were struggling with issues while I was trying just to plow ahead on the coding work we need to get done. When the support work boiled over and I had to stop and attend to it, it took a ton of time and effort. Because I'd been burying my head in the sand trying to get code written, I didn't have any context for what was happening with the users. If I had to help someone, first it took me a good half-hour of asking random people questions just to have enough context to even understand what the problem was and what needed to happen.
I couldn't ignore the support work, though. Eventually I had to turn my attention towards it, and so I did, one week, and it consumed basically my entire week. I got just about nothing else done. It was frustrating seeing the coding work pile up, so my response was to keep trying to minimize my involvement in the support work. I'd do as little as I could get away with, try to hand off problems to someone else. Bu it didn't seem to actually help. It still took a ton of time just to figure out enough about a problem to know how to hand it off to someone else, and if anything that ramp-up time was getting longer.
* * *If you've ever watched the Tour de France, or the road biking events in the Olympics, or ever seen any group of people riding road bikes together, you've probably noticed they tend to cluster together in a compact formation. They're not just riding close together because they like the company (and the increased risk of crashes and injuries.) No, they're riding close together because of drafting.
SETT has gotten to the point that I'm spending less time putting out fires and stomping bugs, and more time trying to think about how people are using it and how I can make that better.
As you've probably noticed, I'm working really hard to write two solid blog posts per week, even though my life is consumed with SETT right now. If you could give me back a few minutes of your time to answer this SETT survey, it would really mean a lot to me.
SETT SURVEY IS HERE. CLICK ME.
I never fill out surveys online because I sort of imagine that they get sent to the digital equivalent of a dark moldy basement somewhere and never get read. NOT THIS ONE. I will personally be reading every single reply, and will take all feedback very seriously. After all, I'm making SETT to help build communities and give some of the power back to the readers. So if I don't listen to readers... who else can I listen to?
Speaking of which, I feel like I owe a huge debt of gratitude to each of my readers. Just by reading my site and interacting with it, not to mention all the valuable bug reports you've sent me, you've had a huge hand in building SETT. If I didn't have a real live community reading my site, it would be impossible for me to test things out. There have been glitches along the way, and I appreciate everyone having patience. Thank you.