I am doing NaBloPoMo this month. 30 blog posts in 30 days. Come join me. #nablopomo2023
Working with me is pure delight, I can assure you. I am focused, detail-oriented, and I ask questions. Lots of questions. Questions that often don’t have a precise answer. Questions that maybe shouldn’t be asked. But I can’t help myself. If I do something, I want to do it right. And to do it right, I need all the information that I can get.
You see, I am a bit of a perfectionist. I usually work with high-resolution, high-precision data. I like to measure things precisely, and I like the numbers to add up and make sense. If I have incomplete or inconsistent data, it will keep me up at night. (Literally.)
My dilemma: I often work with modelers.
Do you know what modelers do?
They work with incomplete, imprecise, or inconsistent data. They make assumptions and lots of them. (I call it: ‘making up data’ and it’s the bane of my existence.)
I get it. (I really do.) It’s what they have to work with. But if I am involved, I want to make the incomplete, imprecise, and inconsistent data as complete, precise, and consistent as humanly possible before I hand them off. What’s wrong with that?
In past performance reviews, I’ve been told that my colleagues emphasized my thoroughness and attention to detail. I know it probably wasn’t always meant solely as a compliment. I tend to overthink and overanalyze (and probably sometimes waste time) when confronted with inconsistent or incomplete data. I swear, I am trying to let go. (Deep breath, San.)
Fast forward to today; I am currently trying to crank out unvegetated-vegetated ratios for a set of satellite data to hand off to a colleague who will implement them into a watershed model. Yesterday, I thought I was at a point where I was done with the analysis and ready to pass on the results. Then at the end of the day, I discovered inconsistencies in two of the data layers and now my whole analysis is unraveling.
I am having a call with my colleague later today to discuss these inconsistencies and I
am expecting wouldn’t be surprised if she shrugs it off and tells me not to worry about it. Which, for the love of all things measurable, I don’t know how to do.
Down the rabbit hole, I go.
I mentioned in my re-introduction that I work as a geographer and some of you have asked what exactly I do. I’ll answer this question in more depth in a separate post later this month, so stay tuned.