Let’s first be frank and say that as coders we live pretty lavish lives compared to the rest of the middle class. Especially in the SF Bay Area! If anyone wants to complain about life, it shouldn’t be us. Really, just don’t!
However, I often wonder just how efficient we really are… working at these companies that are valued beyond what a cheap calculator could comprehend. What does it mean to be a coder and how do we improve?
Here are some lessons that I have either learned, realized or daydreamed.
1. Coding is not a gift from your good genes.
Someone once said that coding is a special gift you have. What a load of bull! I’m here to testify that it’s completely false. Anyone who can make simple decisions can in fact become decent coders. The rest is determined by interest and experience. More on those later.
2. Most of us are mediocre coders. >video
Be careful when you complain about someone else’s crappy code and your awesome ability to pinpoint the wrongs. I’ll be the first to admit that I have made this mistake many times. As coders we love to hate on other people’s work, and it’s easy to fall into the trap of being overconfident. The truth usually lies somewhere in between. Most of us are just mediocre coders. The key is to leverage unique strength from individuals, put the team in a position to benefit from mediocracy. If someone seems weak, mentor them. Give them some room to breathe and learn.