What are the Good Qualities of a Developer??

Tuesday, October 7, 2008
A developer doesn’t becomes a good developer simply by using a particular programming language.
The rapid development environments made this industry evolve faster then anything other I know today. This has positive and negative outcomes. Today’s developers can choose from a rich variety of programming languages, development tools and platforms, but it’s a lot harder to set up a secure, scalable environment. Hardware and software are getting more complex every day, it’s much harder to learn about new technologies today then it was yesterday.
Here are some qualities…

  • Languages and Tools:
    The first skill any developer needs to have is ability to work with programming languages and the main tools that are used with them. These could include build tools, IDEs, web frameworks, messaging APIs.

  • Programming Paradigm:
    Having a good understanding of object orientation which is vital for writing maintainable code with imperative languages. An understanding of ways to approach different problems you might encounter in enterprise development by knowing different patterns and when to apply them is also useful.

  • Domain Specific Knowledge:
    Specific knowledge about the domain is vital for writing a system which is closely linked to the problems it is trying to solve.

    Although a lot of this knowledge is acquired by the Business Analyst on the project if Developers can gain it too then conversations with users will be much easier to deal with as amongst other things the terminology they use will make sense.

  • People Skills:
    One of the most important skills in software development is the ability to work effectively with other people - fellow developers, Quality/Business Analysts, clients, users, the list is endless. If you can do this effectively then you go a long way to ensuring your success.

  • Problem Solving:
    The ability to solve problems that don't have an obvious solution is key in software. Coding wise it could be debugging a class-path issue when deploying your application to JBoss or finding a tricky bug that a test reveals.

  • Good Communication skills:
    In the software world, people usually define good communication skills as fluency in a spoken language. That's not really what it is. It is how effectively you are able to communicate with others. As a 'good' developer, you should be able to express yourself well, listen well, as well as manage the communication process well.

  • Read Books:
    Read plenty of them to get a good idea of different technologies. Reading books gives you quick and handy insight into a technology. You should choose books that are usually written by known professionals who recommend best practices and different methods of solving a business problem using the technology. During the course of time, you will learn to develop your own methods. Who knows you may one day write a book!!

  • Practice, Practice and Practice:
    A lot of developers having good amount of theoretical knowledge. They read a lot of books and technical material. However when it comes to applying that knowledge, they take a back foot. That is because they do not practice. Efficiency and effectiveness in your work can only be attained if you practice code. The only way you can make a good developer of yourself is to practice, and then practice some more.

  • Follow Patterns and Best Practices :
    Patterns & practices reflect technical guidance, technical problem domain and engineering practices based on real-world experiences. The process to learn it is gradual, but once done; it can save you a lot of time and efforts and enable you to work smartly. Follow a Code Design Guideline. Always use a code analysis tools that will evaluate and analyze your code.

  • Discussion/Newsgroup:
    Participating in communities develops the quality of leadership and contribution, both ingredients of success. Having participated in a good technical discussion on the community leaves you with a feeling of self-satisfaction. It also increases your knowledge, as you find smart people who can validate your solutions, as you validate theirs. It also teaches you to appreciate suggestions. Do not forget to 'pat someone on the back' if he/her has made a positive contribution. Believe me it makes all the difference.

  • Knowledge of Networking and Databases:
    People may contradict this point, but a good developer should know the basics of networking and databases. Almost all the solutions that we create, involve interactions with networks and databases. Having knowledge of these two, helps you write better code and saves you on a lot of time too.

  • Blog/ Write Articles:
    How many of us can remember everything? I cannot. So I document them. It helps me to reference stuff when I need them. Over and above, it also helps me get some good feedback from readers and shows me multiple approaches to do the same stuff. I have received a lot of feedback about my work, some good and some not so good. However, I do validate them and learn from this process. It develops the developer in you.

  • KISS:
    Hey its not about that KISS ur thinking its a Keep Implementations/Approaches Short and Simple. Do not over complicate things by using jargons, which people find it hard to understand. The key is to simplify your designs and avoid over-engineering things.

  • Think as a Tester:
    Developers and Testers; two sets of people from different camps, ready to take on each other. I have observed that the intersection of the two produces good results. It does not harm taking off the developer's hat for some time and putting on the tester's hat. In fact, in the long run it helps you reduce bugs/defects in your code. You develop a mindset of about breaking your code, when you are creating one.

  • Consistency is the name of the game:
    Do you hop jobs too often or are bitten by the 'salary' bug? If yes, then it’s time for you to sit down, relax and plan. Invest time in thinking and let your decisions not be spontaneous. To move ahead, you need a solid foundation and that comes with consistency.

  • Attend technology seminars and events:
    If there is one hosted in your city, make sure you take out time to attend one. Most of them are free and provide a valuable source of information about new technologies.

  • Jack of all or Master of One?:
    Well that's a difficult one to answer. In today's scenario, you have to master more than one technology. Practically it is quite difficult to do so, but the good ones do it. However the key is adaptability over here. If you are good at any one technology and confident in it, given an opportunity, it would be easier for to relate to a new technology in a short period of time. Try it out as it enables you to compare technologies and make decisions, once you have worked with them.

  • Stop complaining :
    Did the software fail or are the testers giving you a tough time by finding a lot of bugs? A natural tendency for a lot of developers is to react and then overreact in such situations. While the reaction is natural, it may not be desirable. Analyze why the software failed or why was the bug reported. It is going to be a learning experience and will help you in your future projects.

  • At the end, just remember that you are not going to remain a programmer for ever. So once you are satisfied and get a feeling that you have proven yourself as a good programmer, it’s time to re-program yourself. Expand your interests. Development is just a part of the process. Understanding the users and business is in itself an art, one should aim for and should master over a period of time.

    Source:I have collected Information from various blogs and articles which Inspired me a lot.


    Jigssy said...

    I personally appreciate your views

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