This week I learned not to be stubborn and to let go, just like that. What happened these days was that I had a great challenge ahead, which was seen as something quite achievable for me: to be able to obtain information from a reliable source on issues of COVID-19 variants and expose it in an API so that anyone could manipulate the information (if you want to know more about it you can consult this link which is where I am working).

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

Once the objective was set, what followed was the most complicated thing, obtaining information, the places that collect this type of data are usually government pages, most of the countries treat this information in a very delicate way, since its worldwide image can be affected by this. It is not difficult to guess that if this problem of seeing variant data had not been dealt with before, it was not due to lack of desire, but because finding reliable sites that talk about the pandemic, in general, is difficult, it is more so if their data includes information on the various variants, that is why when I found a site that met my needs, which belongs to the US government, I did not hesitate and I chose it as the main source, I got everything right I thought, it is not the first time I get information of a page thanks to do something called “web scraping” which is nothing more than reading the HTML code of a page and taking what you need from there. The problem is that this page didn’t have the data there, it grabbed it from some unknown place and converted it into an image, and my way of taking the data is incompatible with an image.

Photo by Mayer Tawfik on Unsplash

Searching the internet I found a few ways to do what I wanted, most of them were quite complex and were even done with a different programming language than the one I was supposed to use in this project, so the task became much more difficult than I expected.
I spent a full week trying to achieve my mission, although I managed to move forward, I never really got close to the conclusion of this work, so over the weekend I sat down, thought about what I was doing, and decided if I was being so difficult and tortuous the way in which I was working, maybe it wouldn’t be the best for me and my current skills so I concluded that I had to look for another source of information, for my fortune I found an European Union department that had exactly what I needed, it took me 2 hours to achieve my mission, to obtain the information.

Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

Although I still have to work to completely finish this task, the most complicated part has already been done and I must say that I achieved it because I let go of my ego that told me to continue no matter what.

Sometimes it is preferable to feel a little bad for not knowing or not being able to with a situation and turn around so that you realize that there is never only one way to solve a problem, there are always many, some even easier, but if you stare at a single point, you will not be able to realize all the possibilities that surround you.

That is why I tell you, always move, never remain static because as I had already mentioned before:

If you want something to die, leave it alone
-Jorge Dexler.

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