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➡️You Are Not A Software Developer⬅️
When I became a developer, I thought that my job is to write software. When my customer had a problem, I was ready to write software that solves that problem. I was taught to write software.
But what customers need is not software. They need a solution to their problem. Your job is to find the most cost-effective solution, what software often is not.
According to the universal law of software development, more code leads to more bugs:
e = mc²
errors = (more code)²
The number of bugs grows with the amount of code. You have to prioritize, reproduce and fix bugs.
The more code you write, the more your team and the team after it has to maintain. Even if you split the system into micro services, the complexity remains.
Writing well-tested, clean code takes a lot of time. When you’re writing code, other important work is idle. The work that prevents your company from becoming rich.
A for-profit company wants to make money and reduce expenses. Then the company hires you to solve problems that prevent it from becoming rich. Confused by your job title, you take their money and turn it into expensive software.
But business has nothing to do about software. Even software business is not about software. Business is about making money.
Your job is to understand how the company is making money, help make more money and reduce expenses. Once you know that, you will become the most valuable asset in the company.
Stop viewing yourself as a software developer. You are a money maker.
Think about how to save and make money for your customers.
Find the most annoying problem and fix it:
▶️Is adding a new feature too costly? Solve the problem manually.
▶️Is testing slow? Become a tester.
▶️Is hiring not going well? Speak at a meetup and advertise your company.
▶️Is your team not productive enough? Bring them coffee.
Your job title doesn’t matter. Ego doesn’t matter either.
Titles and roles are distracting us from what matters to our customers – money.💸
You are a money maker. Thinking as a money maker can help choose the next skill for development. For example:
Serverless: pay only for resources you consume, spend less time on capacity planning = 💰
Machine Learning: get rid of manual decision-making = 💰
TDD: shorter feedback cycle, fewer bugs = 💰
Soft Skills: inspire teammates, so they are more productive and happy = 💰
If you don’t know what to learn next — answer a simple question:
What skills can help my company make more money and reduce expenses?
Article by Eduards Sizovs
I’ve been programming for 20 years now. My friends and family never really understood what I did back in the days. And they still don’t.
All they saw was a kid who was good with computers. Your friendly neighborhood tech guy who would take a look at your computer for free.
I’m sure most of you have been in the same situation.
When people ask me what I do for a living. I’d just say “something with computers”. Because most of the time they will ask me to look at their computers and I’d reply with “oh that’s not what I do”.
When I was younger, I’d try to explain what I actually do for a living. To really tell people the problems we as a programmer solves on a daily basis or the things we create. That’s really hard to explain to “common” people.
So whenever someone asks me what I do for a living? It’s always something with computers ;)16
Woohoo!!! I made it to 1000++s :) Now I feel less newbie-like around here :)
So... I don't want to shit-post, so in gratitude to all you guys for this awesome community you've built, specially @trogus and @dfox, I'll post here a list of my ideas/projects for the future, so you guys can have something to talk about or at least laugh at.
Here we go!
Current Project: Ensayador.
It's a webapp that intends to ease and help students write essays. I'm making it with history students in mind, but it should also help in other discipline's essay production. It will store the thesis, arguments, keywords and bibliography so students can create a guideline before the moment of writting. It will also let students catalogue their reads with the same fields they'd use for an essay: that is thesis, arguments, keywords and bibliography, for their further use in other essays. The bibliography field will consist on foreign keys to reads catalogued. The idea is to build upon the models natural/logical relations.
Apps: All the apps that will come next could be integrated in just one big app that I would call "ChatPo" ("Po" is a contextual word we use in my country when we end sentences, I think it derived from "Pues"). But I guess it's better to think about them as different apps, just so I don't find myself lost in a neverending side-project.
A subchat(similar to a subreddit)-based chat app:
An app where people can join/create sub-chats where they can talk about things they are interested in. In my country, this is normally done by facebook groups making a whatsapp group and posting the link in the group, but I think that an integrated app would let people find/create/join groups more easily. I'm not sure if this should work with nicknames or real names and phone numbers, but let's save that for the future.
A slack clone:
Yes, you read it right. I want to make a slack clone. You see, in my country, enterprise communications are shitty as hell: everything consists in emails and informal whatsapp groups. Slack solves all these problems, but nobody even knows what it is over here. I think a more localized solution would be perfect to fill this void, and it would be cool to make it myself (with a team of friends of course), and hopefully profit out of it.
A labour chat-app marketplace:
This is a big hybrid I'd like to make based on the premise of contracting services on a reliable manner and paying through the app. "Are you in need of a plumber, but don't know where to find a reliable one? Maybe you want a new look on your wall, but don't want to paint it yourself? Don't worry, we got you covered. In <Insert app name> you can find a professional perfect to suit your needs. Payment? It's just a tap away!". I guess you get the idea. I think wechat made something like this, I wonder how it worked out.
* Why so many chat apps? Well... I want to learn Erlang, it is something close to mythical to me, and it's perfect for the backend of a comms app. So I want to learn it and put it in practice in any of these ideas.*
Flat-land arena: A top down arena game based on the book "flat land". Different symmetrical shapes will fight on a 2d plane of existence, having different rotating and moving speeds, and attack mechanics. For example, the triangle could have a "lance" on the front, making it agressive but leaving the rest defenseless. The field of view will be small, but there'll be a 2d POV all around the screen, which will consist on a line that fills with the colors of surrounding objects, scaling from dark colors to lighter colors to give a sense of distance.
This read could help understand the concept better:
A 2D darksouls-like class based adventure: I've thought very little about this, but it's a project I'm considering to build with my brothers. I hope we can make it.
Imposible/distant future projects:
History-reading AI: History is best teached when you start from a linguistic approach. That is, you first teach both the disciplinar vocabulary and the propper keywords, and from that you build on causality's logic. It would be cool to make an AI recognize keywords and disciplinary vocabulary to make sense of historical texts and maybe reformat them into another text/platform/database. (this is very close to the next idea)
Extensive Historical DB: A database containing the most historical phenomena posible, which is crazy, I know. It would be a neverending iterative software in which, through historical documents, it would store historical process, events, dates, figures, etc. All this would then be presented in a webapp in which you could query historical data and it would return it in a wikipedia like manner, but much more concize and prioritized, with links to documents about the data requested. This could be automated to an extent by History-reading AI.
I'm out of characters, but this was fun. Plus, I don't want this to be any more cringy than it already is.12
My colleague is what you would call a cowboy coder. He solves problems with really complex solutions that only he understands and does not seem to care about that the team doesn't understand it. He's super fast and very skilled, but it leaves the rest of the team hanging. He sometimes works at his spare time so things we worked on the previous day can be totally changed the next day without any notice. He has also removed code written by someone else because he did not like it, in secret. I found this while browsing through commits that were committed directly to master without a PR.
We have tried talking to me about this but it doesn't seem to work. He seems to value speed over anything else and doesn't seem to have any respect for other team member's opinions.
What the hell do I do? Has anyone else worked with a similar typed person? He's really making my life hard and I think it's very frustrating. Please help.13
"There's a problem with the app, can't you guys do something about it? It's wasting my time, aren't you gonna fix it already?"
Has been secretly working on a complete ground up rewrite which solves all the problems and reveals it to surprise and relief.2
"There's more to it"
This is something that has been bugging me for a long time now, so <rant>.
Yesterday in one of my chats in Telegram I had a question from someone wanting to make their laptop completely bulletproof privacy respecting, yada yada.. down to the MAC address being randomized. Now I am a networking guy.. or at least I like to think I am.
So I told him, routers must block any MAC addresses from leaking out. So the MAC address is only relevant inside of the network you're in. IPv6 changes this and there is network discovery involved with fandroids and cryphones where WiFi remains turned on as you leave the house (price of convenience amirite?) - but I'll get back to that later.
Now for a laptop MAC address randomization isn't exactly relevant yet I'd say.. at least in something other than Windows where your privacy is right out the window anyway. MAC randomization while Nadella does the whole assfuck, sign me up! /s
So let's assume Linux. No MAC randomization, not necessary, privacy respecting nonetheless. MAC addresses do not leak outside of the network in traditional IPv4 networking. So what would you be worried about inside the network? A hacker inside Starbucks? This is the question I asked him, and argued that if you don't trust the network (and with a public hotspot I personally don't) you shouldn't connect to it in the first place. And since I recall MAC randomization being discussed on the ISC's dhcp-users mailing list a few months ago (http://isc-dhcp-users.2343191.n4.nabble.com/...), I linked that in as well. These are the hardcore networking guys, on the forum of one of the granddaddies of the internet. They make BIND which pretty much everyone uses. It's the de facto standard DNS server out there.
The reply to all of this was simply to the "don't connect to it if you don't trust it" - I guess that's all the privacy nut could argue with. And here we get to the topic of this rant. The almighty rebuttal "there's more to it than that!1! HTTPS doesn't require trust anymore!1!"
... An encrypted connection to a website meaning that you could connect to just about any hostile network. Are you fucking retarded? Ever heard of SSL stripping? Yeah HSTS solves that but only a handful of websites use it and it doesn't scale up properly, since it's pretty much a hardcoded list in web browsers. And you know what? Yes "there's more to it"! There's more to networking than just web browsing. There's 65 THOUSAND ports available on both TCP and UDP, and there you go narrow your understanding of networking to just 2 of them - 80 and 443. Yes there's a lot more to it. But not exactly the kind of thing you're arguing about.
Enjoy your cheap-ass Xiaomeme phone where the "phone" part means phoning home to China, and raging about the Google apps on there. Then try to solve problems that aren't actually problems and pretty vital network components, just because it's an identifier.
P.S. I do care a lot about privacy. My web and mail servers for example do not know where my visitors are coming from. All they see is some reverse proxies that they think is the whole internet. So yes I care about my own and others' privacy. But you know.. I'm old-fashioned. I like to solve problems with actual solutions.11
The posts about love coding interviews and low paid freelancing work just reminds me how little anyone know about process of using code to solve real problems.
No one is paying me for my ability to write code. They are paying me to solves problems that businesses have that are likely to involve software.2
So ok here it is, as asked in the comments.
Setting: customer (huge electronics chain) wants a huge migration from custom software to SAP erp, hybris commere for b2b and ... azure cloud
Timeframe: ~10 months….
My colleague and me had the glorious task to make the evaluation result of the B2B approval process (like you can only buy up till € 1000, then someone has to approve) available in the cart view, not just the end of the checkout. Well I though, easy, we have the results, just put them in the cart … hmm :-\
The whole thing is that the the storefront - called accelerator (although it should rather be called decelerator) is a 10-year old (looking) buggy interface, that promises to the customers, that it solves all their problems and just needs some minor customization. Fact is, it’s an abomination, which makes us spend 2 months in every project to „ripp it apart“ and fix/repair/rebuild major functionality (which changes every 6 months because of „updates“.
After a week of reading the scarce (aka non-existing) docs and decompiling and debugging hybris code, we found out (besides dozends of bugs) that this is not going to be easy. The domain model is fucked up - both CartModel and OrderModel extend AbstractOrderModel. Though we only need functionality that is in the AbstractOrderModel, the hybris guys decided (for an unknown reason) to use OrderModel in every single fucking method (about 30 nested calls ….). So what shall we do, we don’t have an order yet, only a cart. Fuck lets fake an order, push it through use the results and dismiss the order … good idea!? BAD IDEA (don’t ask …). So after a week or two we changed our strategy: create duplicate interface for nearly all (spring) services with changed method signatures that override the hybris beans and allow to use CartModels (which is possible, because within the super methods, they actually „cast" it to AbstractOrderModel *facepalm*).
After about 2 months (2 people full time) we have a working „prototype“. It works with the default-sample-accelerator data. Unfortunately the customer wanted to have it’s own dateset in the system (what a shock). Well you guess it … everything collapsed. The way the customer wanted to "have it working“ was just incompatible with the way hybris wants it (yeah yeah SAP, hybris is sooo customizable …). Well we basically had to rewrite everything again.
Just in case your wondering … the requirements were clear in the beginning (stick to the standard! [configuration/functinonality]). Well, then the customer found out that this is shit … and well …
So some months later, next big thing. I was appointed technical sublead (is that a word)/sub pm for the topics‚delivery service‘ (cart, delivery time calculation, u name it) and customerregistration - a reward for my great work with the b2b approval process???
Customer's office: 20+ people, mostly SAP related, a few c# guys, and drumrole .... the main (external) overall superhero ‚im the greates and ur shit‘ architect.
Aberage age 45+, me - the ‚hybris guy’ (he really just called me that all the time), age 32.
He powerpoints his „ tables" and other weird out of this world stuff on the wall, talks and talks. Everyone is in awe (or fear?). Everything he says is just bullshit and I see it in the eyes of the others. Finally the hybris guy interrups him, as he explains the overall architecture (which is just wrong) and points out how it should be (according to my docs which very more up to date. From now on he didn't just "not like" me anymore. (good first day)
I remember the looks of the other guys - they were releaved that someone pointed that out - saved the weeks of useless work ...
Instead of talking the customer's tongue he just spoke gibberish SAP … arg (common in SAP land as I had to learn the hard way).
Outcome of about (useless) 5 meetings later: we are going to blow out data from informatica to sap to azure to datahub to hybris ... hmpf needless to say its fucking super slow.
But who cares, I‘ll get my own rest endpoint that‘ll do all I need.
First try: error 500, 2. try: 20 seconds later, error message in html, content type json, a few days later the c# guy manages to deliver a kinda working still slow service, only the results are wrong, customer blames the hybris team, hmm we r just using their fucking results ...
The sap guys (customer service) just don't seem to be able to activate/configure the OOTB odata service, so I was told)
Several email rounds, meetings later, about 2 months, still no working hybris integration (all my emails with detailed checklists for every participent and deadlines were unanswered/ignored or answered with unrelated stuff). Customer pissed at us (god knows why, I tried, I really did!). So I decide to fly up there to handle it all by myself16
Alright. This is going to be long and incoherent, so buckle up. This is how I lost my motivation to program or to do anything really.
Japan is apparently experiencing a shortage of skilled IT workers. They are conducting standardized IT skill tests in 7 Asian countries including mine. Very few people apply and fewer actually pass the exam. There are exams of different levels that gives you better roles in the IT industry as you pass them. For example, the level 2 or IT Fundamental Engineering Exam makes you an IT worker, level 3 = capable of working on your own...so on.
I passed level 1 and came in 3rd in my country (there were only 78 examinees lol). Level 2 had 2 parts. The theoretical mcq type exam in the morning and the programming mcq in the afternoon. They questions describe a scenario/problem, gives you code that solves it with some parts blanked out.
I passed the morning exam and not the afternoon. As a programmer I thought I'd be good at the afternoon exam as it involves actual code. Anyway, they give you 2 more chances to pass the afternoon exam, failing that, you'll have to take both of them the next time. Someone who has passed 1 part is called a half-passer and I was one.
A local company funded by both JICA and my government does the selection and training for the Japanese companies. To get in you have to pass a written exam(write code/pseudocode on paper) and pass the final interview in which there are 2 parts - technical interview and general interview.
I went as far as the interview. Didn't do too good in the technical interview. They asked me how would I find the lightest ball from 8 identical balls using a balance only twice. You guys probably already know the solution. I don't have much theoritical knowledge. I know how to write code and solve problems but don't know formal name of the problem or the algorithm.
On to the next interview. I see 2 Japanese interviewers and immediately blurt out konichiwa! The find it funny. Asked me about my education. Say they are very impressed that self taught and working. The local HR guy is not impressed. Asks me why I left university and why never tried again. Goes on about how the dean is his friend and universites are cheap. foryou.jpg
The real part. So they tell me that Japanese companies pay 250000/month, I will have to pay 60% income tax, pay for my own accommodation, food, transportation cost etc. Hella sweet deal. Living in Japan! But I couldn't get in because the visa is only given to engineers. Btw I'm not looking to invade Japan spread my shitskin seed and white genocide the japs. Just wanted to live in another country for a while and learn stuff from them.
I'll admit I am a little salty and probably will remain salty forever. But this made me lose all interest in programming. It's like I don't belong. A dropout like me should be doing something lowly. Maybe I should sell drugs or be a pimp or something.
But sometimes I get this short lived urge to make something brilliant and show them that people like me are capable of doing good things. Fuck, do I have daddy issues?19
I have been on a journey with editors, all the way back to using edit.exe in Windows 95, to notepad, MS FrontPage, Adobe Dreamweaver, PHPDesigner, vim, nano, then out to Eclipse, Atom, Brackets, notepad++, back to Atom, then VsCode.
And by far, vsCode has given me the most productivity and customisation of them all to not care about what project I open, what language it's written in, or what frameworks are working behind it. I can switch with workspaces and everything is setup to go, yes it's a pain in the ass to setup, but it's a ducking dream to just open and jump in.
Now being able to use VsCode for Salesforce has dropped any requirement for me to keep eclipse around.1
So, due insanely annoying youtube algo, I just wanted to listen related music to given author - not really what I usually listen to. You know the youtube drill, it's suggestion feed sucks hard.
So I kick in incognito, my typical workaround and wait a second... it prompts me to check out youtube music (didnt know its a thing) and well, well, well... It's actually pretty nice. And solves my suggestion feed problems.
Nice. I have no idea when they deployed that but it's lookin preetty nice (at first glance) and dosent use as much bandwidth. Sweet, exacly what Dubby needed.
(said person who dislikes spotify cuz 60% of music I listen to is just not there)
Work on projects that produce something that solves one of my existing problems.
Also dev environment matters. One of those hackers desk setups would be fine. Nothing too fancy, just need a functional one.
So, I took 2 days, he took 1 hour. Same problem he solved it.
My senior is good but now I feel I am so dumb.
How do people deal with their dumbness. I create so many small problems and won't be able to solve it and my senior even he starts with ground 0 and solves it.
He must have lost respect for me.7
How do you go about exploring new technologies?I personally feel super confused when i have to make a decision between using and modifying my current tools to solve a problem, vs reading understanding a then using a totally new tool to solve a problem
( or in other words, i am being too lazy to learn about kotlin coroutines and rx java, when we already have threads and executors, which usually solves all my problems)1