Video Games, Books, Writing
Does anyone else out there struggle with being useful with their computer? (Kind of ties in with the Douglas Adams quote, now that I think about it.) I'm the kind of person who has always loved playing with computers. I was in eighth grade when my father brought home our first computer: A Radio Shack TRS-80 Model I computer with Level II BASIC and 16K of RAM (That's right: 16K! Four times the memory of the low-end machine!).
It turns out that I was just the right age at just the right time to really benefit from this machine. I was old enough to play with it and start working my way through the "Teach Yourself BASIC" manual. The really good thing, however, was that computing was new enough that there were very few games available to play on the computer. I was forced to program because I could not just go out and buy good games. If I was born a few years earlier, I might have gotten turned on to some other hobby and never really explored computers. If I was born a few years later, there would have been so many great games available that I never would have bothered to learn to program.
I can say that with some confidence now, because it takes a lot of self control for me to not just throw in a video game when I really know I'd like to be writing or reading.
That is just the struggle in so much of life, isn't it? It is what Christianity calls "seeking the greatest good". it is doing what is best when there is something good nearby.