Aaron Lerch talks a bit about what it takes to be a technical manager. He enumerates five characteristics that he feels are essential for a technical manager (personally, I think that they are better classified as skills because they’re learnable and improvable). Here’s his five:
It’s a good list for the good times, I think. As long as things run more or less smoothly, a manager with those traits will be in good...
I thought I'd take a shot at introducing myself here as suggested by Jay and maybe dispel any pretense at being a thinker, heady or no. Frankly, it's probably long past time that I put together some kind of background post about myself if only to give those who disagree with me a way to discount my arguments out of hand.
I suspect this'll be long as I do go on sometimes. You can skip to a recent, similar post if you only want the heart of my current situation.
I've been playing with computers in one way or another...
Reading the beginning of Joel’s second section of his talk at Yale clarified one reason I find myself so at odds with much of the hard-core Dependency Injection crowd (has Joel really achieved the level of fame that we can dispense with using his last name as Phil Haack suggests? Did you know who I meant right off?). Anyway, I am an in-house developer in a small company and that has a huge effect on my architectural decisions.
I described it a couple of months ago as simply "small company development", but Joel’s right that the more significant aspect...
In many companies developer career progression is deceptively straight-forward; Jr. Programmer, Programmer, Sr. Programmer, Team Lead, Architect, Sr. Architect, Bob (Bob being the semi-mythical entity referred to in obscure comments, worshipped by now-extinct aboriginal tribes, and rumored to haunt the sub-sub-basement).
The differentiation between these positions starts off with how much you know. A Sr. Programmer is a Jr. Programmer who knows his tools inside and out and can complete assigned tasks quickly and without a lot of supervision. Around Team Lead time, however, progression stops being about what you know and starts revolving around your ability to choose wisely...
I was thinking today about something I learned the hard way and how I wish someone had taught me what to look for earlier in my career. Then it occurred to me that perhaps I could perform that service for others.
He Hates Me!
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where someone important where you work doesn’t seem to like you very much? I have. In fact, at my first real programming job (programming in Pick of all things) my manager’s boss obviously had a hard time with me. I would hear from my manager that her boss was...
I said yesterday that
The skill sets [of developers and QA people] aren't simply unrelated—they are, to an extent, opposed.
I think that deserves some explanation because for some reason this is not obvious even to people in IT.
The reason that developers and testers require fundamentally different skill sets is that they have fundamentally different responsibilities. What it comes down to is that it is a developer's job to make software work and it is a testers job to make "working" software break. In fact, I knew I had found the right QA Manager for XanGo when one of the first...
Steve Harman had a post back at the beginning of the month about stuff you'd tell a young developer. It's a reaction to a similar piece by Jeremy Allison. It's an interesting topic, so I thought I'd waste a few pixels on it myself.
If it's not what you love, don't do it
I wouldn't generalize this to other fields, but for software development, I think this is a good thing to keep in mind. A lot has been made in the past by career counselors and other gurus about "finding your bliss" or similar nonsense. I think that's mostly a crock. You...