Robert Tamayo


Inspiration for Coding

We often need inspiration for the things we want to do in life. The key to my self-driven nature is that I let myself become wildly inspired by the achievements of others, and then I use that energy to work as hard as I can at something. I will talk about how this relates to weightlifting and language learning on my other blog, but here I'll focus on how it affects my approach to programming.

John Carmack

My primary inspiration for coding is John Carmack. His work ethic is almost unmatched, and his achievements in games programming helped to usher in the third dimension. Reading about his work habits, and knowing what sorts of things they could achieve, I always come back to him when I'm feeling uninspired and need to kick myself into gear.

Startup Culture

Other sources of inspiration for coding would be the more typical startup programmers and founders. You can found a company, create a product out of nothing, and do it all with a keyboard and mouse. Silicon Valley startup culture was the Gold Rush of the new millennium, and I was drawn to games programming with a similar fantasy of building an entire game by myself. One particular person I admire in this group is Steve Wozniak. I never really knew him from his work, as it was before my time. But I'm familiar with some of the interesting anecdotes surrounding him, and his cheerful attitude and sheer brilliance are qualities that stand out among the Machiavellian, cut-throat intellectuals comprising the majority of the big names in tech culture.


When I'm doubting myself, or lacking inspiration, I sometimes look back on my own achievements and use them as a source of inspiration. I remember that it was me, yes me, who built a game from nothing and taught myself to code while doing it. I figured it out. I figured out how to build a blog, work on websites, work on anything. There's never been a problem that has come up that I couldn't solve. I don't do this out of pride, but to inspire myself. When in doubt, look to yourself and your own achievements. Remember, if you once did something you were proud of, it was you who did it. Use that fact to work harder and achieve even greater things. Don't forget.
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