BUILDING PHILOSOPHY LIFESTYLE HABITS ADVICE CAREERS BUSINESS ENTERPRISE SELLING

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What makes a programmer senior?

Great question. Ask it to n programmers and get n^2 responses. This could easily be the subject for another post or even a book. Just off the top of my head in no particular order:

- understands the problem at hand before writing any code

- uses the right tool for the right job

- follows accepted standards and protocols without sacrificing creativity

- names variables & functions what they actually are for the next programmer

- anticipates what could go wrong before relying on a debugger or testing

- understands the underlying architecture and how to best utilize it

- never writes the same code twice

- never writes in 150 lines that which could be written in 100 lines

- Poor code: uncommented. Mediocre: commented. Good: doesn't need comments.

- understands the entire code life cycle & writes it to last

- has pity on the poor soul who has to maintain it & leaves a clue or 2

- writes flexibly enough to be easily changed before the project is done

I could go on and on, but you get the idea. In general:

A good programmer writes it right, once, in a week.

A mediocre programmer writes it OK, in 2 months, and then futzes with it forever.

A bad programmer never gets it done.

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ED WEISSMAN

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