Dear new developer, Story time. Many years ago, I was a contractor doing web development. I focused on web/database apps in unix-like environments. I wrote primarily php, java and perl. (Like I said, it was many years ago.) A friend and former colleague reached out and said they had a client seeking development help. It … Continue reading Stretch, don’t contort
Questions To Ask To Have Influence Over People
This is a guest post from Jean Lee. Enjoy. Dear new developer, Change is hard, but you need to influence folks to make it happen. Here are five questions to ask when you want to have influence over specific situations or people. Who is this change benefiting? Is it me? Is it my teammates, my … Continue reading Questions To Ask To Have Influence Over People
When is it time to quit my 9-5?
This is a guest post from Pariss Athena. Enjoy. Dear new developer, Honestly, I don’t think there’s one absolute answer. I believe the answer depends on you and the risk you’re comfortable taking. However, I do think there are things you should take into account before jumping the gun. This is how I personally knew … Continue reading When is it time to quit my 9-5?
Take time for decisions
Dear new developer, For large long term life decisions, you should realize a few things. First, that few decisions are 100% irreversible. Second, that the choices you have in the future are based on the choices you make (this is called path dependence). Finally, that you should take time for important decisions. In fact, you … Continue reading Take time for decisions
No choice is permanent
Dear new developer, Sometimes when you are thinking about a new job or shifting to a new position in a company, it can feel overwhelming. What if I make the wrong choice? At least, I've often felt that way. Every choice you make has effects. When you choose to study ruby, you can't also study … Continue reading No choice is permanent
The perfect is the enemy of the good (and the done)
Dear new developer, When you are facing a problem, it can be very tempting to try to solve it perfectly. Handle all the possible edge cases, make it extensible, have it be configurable without code changes. As with everything in life, there's an opportunity cost to this perfection. If you're spending days perfecting a single … Continue reading The perfect is the enemy of the good (and the done)
Learn to look around corners
Dear new developer, Sometimes you want to play out things two and three steps deep. Kinda like chess players, who think about many moves ahead, if you can consider the ramifications of your decisions, you'll be well served. I remember talking to someone about a software position at his company and he referred to the … Continue reading Learn to look around corners
What if I have to make a technical decision and I don’t know the right answer?
Dear new developer, Sometimes you are confronted with decisions for which you simply don't know the correct answer. This has happened to me many times over the years. A recent example is that the client wanted to build an online quiz. They wanted to be able to edit quiz questions and answers. They wanted it … Continue reading What if I have to make a technical decision and I don’t know the right answer?