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Apr 23 2008   12:12AM GMT

The career, Software Developer (your comments appreciated)



Posted by: 2020viip
Tags:
Fun
Inherent Quality
IT
Security
Software Quality

There are many who began their career in IT as a software developer (aka computer programmer or software engineer). Within this group there are also many who no longer regularly author code. Many of these individuals were once very good at generating code that met requirements and had all reported bugs fixed prior to the code going into production on time and on budget. Today, after decades of significant change within IT, there are many positions within that do not require incumbents to author code or to even have much understanding for the skills and daily challenges of software developers. Today in many organizations and on many projects, it is not surprising to discover that there are more people scoping, managing, testing and supporting the work of software developers than there are software developers. Improvements in talent, process, languages, tools and so on potentially could be behind this (e.g., now you can do more in less time and with better results, so you don’t need as many developers). You may particularly say this is so, if the bulk of the people in the organization are focused on activities unrelated to the work of software developers. Many opportunities today however can be enabled by software and technology so you may think it would not be surprising to see a growth in the number of people employment globally in IT, and particularly as related to software development. While quality is increasingly driving results, deadlines are still a big part of reality. In today’s world it may be true that software developers experience fun with the pressure of deadlines (e.g.), however beyond simply imposing increasingly challenging deadlines one way to grow excellence in results may be related to increasingly discovering ways to grow excellent programmers and in making software development increasingly a fun and rewarding career.

Draw upon the above paragraph and 20 questions below as input to your thinking, and comment on the career of computer programming. Thank you for doing so. Your comments may help evolve the world towards increasingly better results for all from various perspectives while helping software developers feel appreciated for the inherent quality they are and help increasingly to produce.

  1. Are computer programmers over worked (e.g., not involved in providing estimates and asked to deliver quality in periods of time that impose risk and stress)?
  2. Can someone be an IT Pro if they never coded?
  3. Do you need to be able to read code (perhaps with a bit of assistance from a full-time developer) in order to be an IT Pro?
  4. What makes an excellent software developer?
  5. Are excellent software developers (aka computer programmers or software engineers) able to trouble-shoot a program if they never saw the language or code base before?
  6. What are a few inherent qualities of excellent software developers (e.g., strong logic and math skills, broad understanding of technology and business, diligence, endurance, self-motivated, highly energetic and ethical)?
  7. Does an excellent computer programmer make it a standard part of their processes to test their own assumptions early and regularly?
  8. Do they provide tests and documentation with the code they produce so there is a complete versioned package of intellectual property, and so regression testing can more easily and quickly be done in an automated way for entire eco-systems?
  9. Are excellent software developers always advocates and catalysts for that which is socially responsible and eco-friendly? 
  10. Do excellent software developers (aka computer programmers or software engineers) have a common quality foundation, and do they maintain a regular practice of knowledge sharing and keeping current so they can utilize or recommend that which may help to make quality and value increasingly more intrinsic and pervasive?
  11. Are the best computer programmers working as part of the force for good, or are hackers on the dark side the best software developers?
  12. Everyone has a stake in prevention (i.e. quality assurance), and each role has a purpose that ideally provides value, however if you had to pick the most important role would it be software developer?
  13. Can security and many issues be solved proactively by globally growing excellence in software developers?
  14. If there was a round-table of executives and visionaries meeting to determine the next steps to make things increasingly better, should the round table include a couple of the best computer programmers?
  15. Who would you say are some of the best computer programmers of all time and why?
  16. Would looking at the answers for question 15 help to identify innate characteristics that could become part of the quality foundation for the current and next generation of software developers?
  17. Does belief help to program reality (e.g., if you believe you are an excellent programmer, will you strive smarter and harder in various ways to progressively ensure excellence in the code produced by you and the global IT profession)?
  18. Are tools increasingly helping to produce better results while making the job of software developer easier?
  19. Will peer programming in the future involve a human and robot?
  20. What tools and languages do you think are the best for a software developer to utilize today and why?

2  Comments on this Post

 
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  • 2020viip
    [...] just finished reading an excellent post by fellow TechTarget blogger Ron Richard entitled “The career, software developer (your comments appreciated)”.  His post is one which can’t help but spur its readers thoughts both into their [...] read more
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  • SJC
    Thanks for your thought provoking post! I found myself instantly drawn in to your questions - and was prompted to respond with an entry in my Techtarget blog "Custom Application Development: Buy, Build or Ignore?" in answer to your question on "peer programming" and a robot.
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