How to Demotivate a (Good) Programmer

Louis over at lbrandy has a funny-yet-serious post on "Demotivating a (Good) Programmer" (found via Delicious popular links). Here's my favorite bit:

Developers hate three things, above all else, in increasing order of painfulness…

  1. Working on stuff that is easy
  2. Working on stuff that is tangential
  3. Working on stuff that no one will use

These are the three deadliest of deadly sins in the development world. Especially number three. Nothing will suck the life out of programmer faster than working on something he is certain no one will ever use.

I don't know about you, but I totally agree with number 3. I can still remember feeling upset about a project I invested 3 weeks in, 6 years ago, that was eventually thrown away. Grrr...

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posted @ Monday, October 20, 2008 12:01 PM


Comments on this entry:

# re: How to Demotivate a (Good) Programmer

Left by Oskar Austgeard at 11/6/2008 1:32 AM
You must live a charmed life. You wasted 3 weeks 6 years ago? The Humanity!

Try wasting 3 months at a failed startup, 9 months at another, 2 years at a 'stable' company (whose CEO was let go, then your project, then you), then 3 years at a company who still hasn't shipped your product two years after you left.

It's a wonder I'm still in this field.

# re: How to Demotivate a (Good) Programmer

Left by Thomas Williams at 11/6/2008 2:53 PM
Hi Oskar, how frustrating! Your experience certainly balances out mine - the three weeks was one thing I clearly remember, although I know there's more...
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