Developers – Talk To People

Many software developers have a tendency to avoid talking to people. They would rather just rely on written communication in chats, email or issue tracker tickets. However, talking to people more can make them more effective as software developers. Here are some examples: Continue reading

Code Rot

In my experience, code can rot in two distinct ways. The first case is code that hasn’t been used in a long time, but where the environment has changed so it is no longer possible to run the code. In the second case, the code still works, but has gradually become complicated and hard to work with. The first case is unusual, but straight forward to fix. The second case is very common, but unfortunately hard to fix if left for too long.

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Programmer Career Planning

Here are my thoughts on programmer career planning. You should always stay employable, mostly by changing jobs regularly (every five years or so). When changing, don’t wait until you have to. Your negotiating position is much better when you can turn down a potential new job.

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Software Development and the Gig Economy

These days it is common to hear arguments that software development is becoming gig based. In other words, companies will not hire programmers for permanent positions. Instead, they will put together temporary teams of independent contractors from anywhere in the world to complete projects.

This is no doubt true for some software development tasks. However, for companies whose core product is software, this model makes very little sense.dsc_0244 Continue reading

Book Review: The Effective Engineer

Last month we finished reading “The Effective Engineer” by Edmond Lau in the book club at work. It is a great book full of practical advice on how to get more done as a software developer. In fact, it is one of the three books I think all programmers would benefit from reading (the other two are Code Complete and The Pragmatic Programmer).

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Things Programmers Say

Recently @ThePracticalDev asked people on Twitter for typical things programmers say:

There were a lot of great answers. Here are my favorites: Continue reading

Developer Book Club

dsc_0333For several years now, we have been running a developer book club at work. We pick a book relevant to software development, and read a chapter a week. Every other week we meet for 30 to 45 minutes and discuss what we have read. It is quite popular and useful, so I thought I would describe how we do it, and why having a book club at work is a good idea. Continue reading