Learning Things Deeply Enough

Today I was talking to someone I got introduced to via Contrary regarding learning things deeply enough. It's a hard, because many times in the past, especially when doing Dev-OPs or Fullstack related work I never felt like I truly grasped how things worked. For example, recently I've started working on a project using both D3.js and React, and since both are frameworks that manipulate the DOM it's unclear how they will behave together. For example, if React were stateful, would it be possible to make its virtual DOM outdated? What would that do? I'm sure that by reading a lot of docs I could learn these things, but it's rather painful and not helpful to my bottom line. Sometimes it feels like I'm stuck between either feeling unsatisifed at my lack of understanding (of things which are abstracted away) or unsatisfied at my mostly useless understanding of these things. In general I've skewed towards the first of these, but in general I think it's better and important to have a good middle ground. I'm not sure what the answer is, but I think it certainly will involve some patience and willingness to sacrifice the ability to learn things other than that which you are focusing on right now. I've been considering the idea of trying to recruit friends to organize learnathons: like hackathons but for learning (usually) how certain things work that underly important aspects of my life (whether technical or otherwise). This may be useful, but it's important to be very focused, which is generally difficult to me. Right now I'm figuring out my higher level goals and hope to motivate my incremental steps with those goals. Once I have a better way to organize my educational endeavours I'll probably post some thoughts here. Generally, now, my strategy is to only learn things important to my needs or which give me supreme optionality. Also, I try to only learn things that reqire incremental steps from my current knowledge purely due to the lack of viability of the alternative. I think somewhere I can improve is in recruiting the people and learning resources I need when I am alone (including whatever will motivate me to keep going, whatever or whoever will help me understand what to focus on, the most effective curriculums out there, etc...).

PS I think also doubling down on fundamentals tend to be useful. The main times I have been lost or failed academically or whatever has been when I lacked fundamentals (or they were not strong enough).

PPS I tend to be regretful, sometimes... often when I am in a depressive state of mind (usually a few days or week at a time)... about what I did at MIT and even before. Some main mistakes come to mind. I just felt like listing them out. They are mainly MIT mistakes and I hope that if you go to MIT you will find your way around them better.