Optimization is fascinating topic – the process of identifying potential areas for improvement in an existing system, identifying possible approaches to bring about the improvements, and observing the actual improvements in the system after implementing the changes gives me a wonderful feeling. One of the best projects I’ve worked on involved optimizing the boot up time of a Linux based digital still camera – I managed to bring this from nearly 50 seconds to just over 2 seconds.
Anyway, this post is not about technical stuff. Today morning P,D,S and me went for a brunch buffet, and here (in the most unexpected of places) I was fortunate enough to observe some “optimization” techniques practiced by the patrons. So here it is : The list of the top four optimization techniques that could be used at a buffet queue.
4. Jumping the queue: Approach the buffet with a plate that already has food, say, two idlis. Pretend to have come to just refill the sambhar or chutney, so skip the queue and go straight to sambhar. Once done, nonchalantly backtrack, grab some dosas/vadas and walk off.
3. Teamwork: Works when you have a friend. If the friend goes for a refill before you do, wait till he reaches the food, hop across to him (with a plate) and grab what you need. Done !
2. Multicore: Similar to 3, except, there is no friend. Just take 2 (or more) plates with you.
And now, the winner. This is the best technique I’ve seen till date, and its simplicity and originality blew my mind ! It is
1. Non-stop eating: Stand in the queue, take what you need, go back to the end of the queue and start eating. No time wasted behind slow coaches, no time wasted walking back and forth between food and table, no danger of missing any refill !
(Note: I feel rusty ! I am not happy the way this post has come out, yet, its a start).