[Links] Programmer career

In "In case you missed it", I share links to interesting things I recently found on the Internet.

This time, it's about being a good developer and manage your career.

1. Working as a Software Developer

This is one of my favorite article on programming career advice. It really influenced me.

http://henrikwarne.com/2012/12/12/working-as-a-software-developer/

Here is the most important thing in here:

Write for people first, computer second.

The computer doesn’t care how the code is written, so make it as easy as possible to understand for the next person that has to read it.

It’s better to be clear than to be clever.

This few sentences literally changed my way of writing code.

2. Managing your Career in IT

Here are a few career advices, especially on selecting the right skill set.

http://programmers.blogoverflow.com/2012/09/managing-your-career-in-it/

Quotes:

Choose Skills that compliment your current skill set

Choose Skills that are transferable and Soft

3. Don't Call Yourself A Programmer, And Other Career Advice

Here is a quite pessimistic view of our job. I can't say I agree on everything, but it's definitely worth reading.

http://www.kalzumeus.com/2011/10/28/dont-call-yourself-a-programmer/

The text is really long so it's impossible to sum it up in a few quotes. However, here is a taste:

This post aspires to be README.txt for your career as a young engineer.

Producing beautiful software is not a goal. Solving complex technical problems is not a goal. Writing bug-free code is not a goal. Using sexy programming languages is not a goal. Add revenue. Reduce costs. Those are your only goals.

You are not defined by your chosen software stack.

In the real world, picking up a new language takes a few weeks of effort and after 6 to 12 months nobody will ever notice you haven’t been doing that one for your entire career.

Your most important professional skill is communication

Modesty is not a career-enhancing character trait

At the end of the day, your life happiness will not be dominated by your career.

4. How to be a Programmer: A Short, Comprehensive, and Personal Summary

Here is a very complete career guide. It ranges from technical advises to team management.

http://samizdat.mines.edu/howto/HowToBeAProgrammer.html

There are a lot of topics, here a some of them:

How to Work with Poor Code

How to Deal with Difficult People

How to Stay Motivated

How to Tradeoff Quality Against Development Time

How to Tell the Hard From the Impossible

How to Tell People Things They Don't Want to Hear

5. Ten ways to improve your programming skills

Quick, pragmatic guide:

http://www.antoarts.com/10-ways-to-improve-your-programming-skills/

Here are the best advises:

Learn a new programming language

Read a good, challenging programming book

Solve programming puzzles

Hang out at programming sites and read blogs

Learn low-level programming