Truths Not So Vigilantly Held.
Software engineers are pretty great at holding onto ideas for...
Well, what feels like infinity.
Some grey-beard will impart a slice of knowledge that completely blows us away when we were junior engineers.
seemly with little validation,
we continue to clutch so dear to this knowledge.
We even pass it around to other newly juniored engineers or in peer groups as if it's some kind of gospel.
these 'nuggets of gold' are often opinions that should be loosly held,
rigorously tested on a yearly interval,
and continually explored with other engineers in your discepline (front-end/back-end).
Over the entirety of 2020 I began to question and
think a little differently concerning some of the above.
The following is a list of opinions that I gathered, let go of, and ultimatly kept in my clutches.
The structure of this post is highly influenced by this wonderfully written piece
- TDD is the only way to build great software. TDD is one great way, there are so many more.
- Never copy and paste. Not everyone has used Vim for a bajillion years.
- Being correct is not some form of 'winning'. Listening and being mindful is.
- Tools don't matter. Not really. There's bound to be a better one soon so don't die on the tool du jour's hill.
- Your work sells itself. There is a distinct need to sell everything you do (inside and out of 'work').
- Build your own tools within reason.
Most of the time existing libraries carry too many tradeoffs and will ultimatly slow down the building of software.
- Not all currencies have a unicode symobl.
After being in ecommerce all these years, this fact blows my brain.
- Make a mess. There's a formatter, test suite, or linter that's got your back.
- Nothing lasts forever. Whatever you build, make it small enough to quickly rewrite, perhaps in as much as two 'sprints'.
Opinions Still Closely Clutched!
- Write well; exceptionally well.
Never give up when it comes to striving to make yourself better understood through prose.
- Read anything that interests you. There are gems of knowledge in any form of writing.
- Look for the outliers. They are the ones doing the hard/fun/exciting/non-boring work.
- There are a small amount of tools required to be successful in programming.
Collect pens, paper, keyboards. Use the best tools you can find.
- Never stop building and toying with ideas.
Even the most shallow explorations can lead to breakthroughs in more complex projects.