Developer, geek, and do-er of things.


I've noticed that in the dev industry, there's a tendency to over-emphasise 'correctness'. A lot of developers have a strong focus on doing things the 'correct' way, without evaluating why this is the case. This feels a lot like dogma to me.

The above seems to occur more often in discussions of architecture. Usually in these conversations, it becomes a matter of preference, for example how complex should a function be, how many functions should be in a file, etc.

With these conversations, the developer's obsession over 'correctness' begins to unfold. They'll say things like "this book states it should be done this way, so you should do it this way", or "{insert famous person here} does it this way, and he's popular, so you should do it this way".

This seems to all boil down to that developer being part of a cargo cult. They believe their way is the best way because at least one other person agrees with them. Their way is the correct and only way to do something, and if you don't do it that way, you're a bad developer and they're superior to you.

This process of grandstanding I find incredibly exhausting, and I've noticed it occurs a lot, especially in larger companies where autonomy and freedom of thought is a rare experience.

I prefer to evaluate each option in turn, and if there's no significant and clear benefit between them, I'll pick the one that has the least maintenance cost and greatest clarity for me and the team as a whole, rather than just picking my personal preference and ignoring all others. Unfortunately, it seems that this methodology is very rare in this industry.

I sometimes wonder if picking software development over art was the best career move for me. There's no empathy in software development, and it pushes people out - especially minorities.