Seven golden advices for programmer

I work as programmer for many years. During this time I formed some my own rules.

1. Never trust yourself

It's about the code. Everytime, when I have an error somewhere but I fail to find it, I start to blame everything: interpreter, environment, language. But this is always the error in the code, mostly this error is simple, like similar name of variable or just a silly typo. In such moment I always trying to change state of my mind, switch environment, write unit test, grab cup of coffee or go for a walk. It is necessary to make interruptions when you face insurmountable problem.

2. Stay calm

Everytime, when we have something important, we start worrying about that. I know, this is complicated to keep things under control, and I think that is possible. There are plenty things, which can annoy you like slow deployment or environment, bad code, lack of documentation or even noise in the office. It is very important to understand that this is part of your job and you are a professional, you can handle that. Sometimes it gets tricky or complicated, but this is always possible.

3. Don't postpone it

There is a lot of distracting factors: simple tasks, some emails or videos from Watch Later. You begin procrastination and time wasting instead of real work. It is better to force yourself to start solving the problem. If problem feels too big, try to split it to several smaller parts (use decomposition).

Sometimes I start writing interface or abstract class. Sometimes i begin with one-line comments. Start coding right now, don't postpone it!

4. Read the books

Read, read and read. You are pour without books. Yes, you can read the articles, but that is not enough. Books will systematize your knowledge, make the knowledger deeper and provide wider perspective. Also, books contribute to your intellectual abilities and improve abstract thinking while effectively engaging your imagination. I don't speak about language references, I always thought that is useless because many modern IDE has perfect support of documentation rendering. I speak about the good books, like "Code complete" for example. Fiction books are also useful. Learning transfer can lead to the interesting results.

5. Know your tools

The biggest part of my life I spent with relatively slow hardware, therefore I had to use simplest and fastest solutions. I used shell, I tried to create little bash and bat scripts. And later, when I started using IDEs, by habit I neglected its most advanced features. It takes some effort to learn your tools but it drastically increases your productivity. Always invest in your education.

6. Help others

Always help your friends or colleagues. It will pay you back.

7. Never stop learning

Doesn't matter how old you are. Just go and learn new things.


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