An ogre or gingerbread cookies?

I picked up one of those best selling thrillers for light reading a few days ago. I must say! I am a software engineer and all that, and yet it stumps me every time I read one of these techno thrillers. Get me started on some code, and try as I might to design and think of all possible scenarios, seldom is there a time that I have the blasted thing to work in the first attempt. If nothing else, I would have taken care enough to miss a semi-colon in a particularly hard to spot spot. Without a once-over, I am bound to have let something slip.

Yet, these fantastic heroes and heroines of these thrillers just sit there and whiz through complex networks and hacking into the most complex systems set up with millions of lines of security code in a jiffy.

All I can do is sigh, and hope the sigh would transfer some of that luck over to me. Imagine how much time I would get to muck around with what to write if I could only do that?! Here, allow me to wallow in some scenarios for you…

Scenario 1:
The question in the practical examination in the Engineering examination read:ย  Design and code the shortest path algorithm and come up with the best route to get from the USA to Sevapettai village.

What happens to me if I were brilliant heroine like above?

The question could have stumped everyone, but being an excellent programmer, she had got it right in the first attempt. She actually proved that Djikstra not only had a spelling that wasn’t the shortest possible, but his algorithm could be improved as well. She was left to think and write about the pros and cons of having ogres as pets in the house for the remainder of the examination.

Scenario 2: I forgot my password.

What happens to me if I were brilliant heroine like above?

She never forgot her password because she was so good at cracking them. It took her 2.56 seconds to break into her own password and transfer all the data she needed, leaving her with 59 minutes and 58.44 seconds to twiddle her thumbs and wonder about whether gingerbread cookies had ginger and bread in them and why they were called cookies if it were really bread.

See the possiblities? Sigh again.

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8 thoughts on “An ogre or gingerbread cookies?”

  1. LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ I always wonder the same too, just not when I read fiction (I can never read Science fiction) but when I watch shows like NCIS or Criminal Minds – how they hack networks / computer willy nilly, especially when they work under such enormous time pressure.

    Oh! how I would have loved to be such heroines when I wrote my Multimedia Networking and Network security papers ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I completely agree. Geeks or Heroes are portrayed as someone who can do everything in rapid pace.. and that misses the hard work behind it…. Well hard work won’t work for TV or movie format.

    I think only Rajini can go from rags to riches in a movie everyone else.. should suffer ๐Ÿ˜›

    1. Well…it’s not really all that very hard in a novel. “The problem stumped her, but she worked at it racing against time. When she was almost frustrated enough to give up, she found something that might help.” See? Still the same length but wholly different.

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