A year ago I wrote a blog right here on ZDNet.co.uk entitled Seven Reasons to Love Developers on Valentines Day full of heartfelt love for the IT industry and software application development in particular.
One year on, I’m faced with the following options: ignore the fact that it is Valentine’s Day tomorrow (always a bad idea); concentrate on blogging about embedded mission-critical apps in exciting scenarios like railway ticketing machines (not usually that great an idea either); or try and come up with seven more reasons.
I think the latter is my best option, so here we go:
1 – Fastidious detail: I touched on this last year, but it’s more relevant than ever before. I had a 28-email discussion with a programmer last month on why I couldn’t use the Optima font (and various others) for code listings. Sans Serif is more important that you might have thought!
2 – Cracker crumb concentration: A DBA/developer pal of mine reports that his wife complains that he gets cracker crumbs in his ears while he works on code. His little daughter crumbles them in and he keeps working, totally oblivious.
3 – Single minded focus & reliability: By and large, you can always put your trust in a software engineer in terms of knowing that they will carry a job through. Management complains about incomplete projects, but that’s usually just because they stipulate end-points based on budget constraints. If you give a developer a task, they will see it through to the end.
4 - It’s chic to be geek: Who do we have to thank for the fact that geekiness has its own chic appeal nowadays? I personally put it down to the moment that Scott McNealy first started wearing jeans and the collective sigh of relief that was felt around the corporate world that immediately ensued. Either way, you have to love developers and techies in general for making this type of garb a more acceptable professional dress code.
5 – Community spirit: Developers and their cohorts know that from unity comes strength. If you look at something as specific as the particular Twitter community that I belong to, it’s made up of analysts, programmers, techie commentators and, yes PR people too – who all share a common lingua franca and bond of trust. The mantra is… ‘Step inside and feel the love’.
6 – Hot dogs, hamburgers, nachos and pizza: There’s a common link through food for people in many walks of life. The standard techie-fayre (typically pumped out at conventions and symposia) is the archetypal junk food that we all love. I personally would have thought that this stereotype is out of date and that we ought to think about healthier food. But I just got back from an event where lunch was fajitas and dinner was mini hamburgers (sliders!) – so perhaps it best not to fight this… and just love the ketchup along with everyone else.
7 – Never a dull moment, always something new: Probably the best reason to love software developers is the same reason that they themselves love the business they are in. The technology that they touch changes daily and there are always innovations to track, examine, dismiss or adopt. This is the most fluid sector or world business that I can think of. What’s not to love about that?