OK, really simple. I want to install Docker on an Ubuntu box. Should be easy. Right?
When I do a Google search for “install docker”, Google returns a link to the Docker installation page for Ubuntu. That’s fine, but following the 18 page/2000 word installation is insane. The first time I did that, it took 15 minutes. What a waste of time, and not easily reproducible if I stop to get a cup of coffee, then come back.
So, I go to docker.com, and somehow find some other documentation for a Linux install through the now totally indecipherable menu system in docker.com. The instructions are shorter, and seem the right thing to do, basically: curl -fsSL https://get.docker.com/ | sh.
Why ask why there are two different instructions?
Finally, I seem to be making some headway into graph drawing. Over ten years ago, I had a similar problem. In 1999, I worked for a company that sold a UML modeling tool, but I did not like the way it worked. I tried to convince management that it needed changes to make it more useful, but they brushed me off. So, I decided to try to write a UML modeling tool on my own. Moreover, I wanted to expand my knowledge of computer science to include graph drawing, which is the field in computer science that tries to find two- or three-dimensional representations for graphs. Unfortunately, I never succeeded in writing the tool at that time. I did not have enough time to learn graph drawing because of a job change. I spent several weeks trying to learn the subject, but I was not able to grasp even the most basic algorithms.
Call me old fashioned for working on compiler technologies. But recently, I was interested in displaying a parse tree generated by a parser that I am writing. For several weeks I read some well-known papers on tree layout, then implemented the algorithms described in these papers. To my chagrin, this took a lot longer than I expected. Am I losing it as a software engineer?