Mel Reams


Be a better programmer while still having a life: part 4

As much as we would all like to believe that programming is about logic, not feelings, being able to deal with your emotions is incredibly important if you want to be a better programmer. For example, one of the best things you can possibly do for you career is to learn to take criticism. Logically everyone should be thrilled to get feedback on their work but you know what gets in.. Read More

Talk of the day

Alan Cooper has some really interesting stuff to say about sustainability in both agriculture and software development in his talk Ranch Stories.

Be a better programmer while still having a life: part 3

More stuff you can do to be a better programmer while still having a life! The core of programming is really problem solving, but we’re kind of expected to pick it up as we go while we’re learning specific skills like programming in java. I have a strong suspicion that’s why so many new developers feel totally lost when they try to build something on their own: we’ve collectively done.. Read More

Link of the day

Conveniently enough, I’m not the only blogger on a “be a better programmer while still having a life” kick. If you’re interested in more tips about becoming a better programmer, check out Itamar Turner-Trauring‘s excellent post about learning more tools and techniques while you’re at work. While you’re at it you should check out Itamar’s Software Clown newsletter, it’s full of great mistakes you can learn from and maybe even avoid running into.. Read More

Be a better programmer while still having a life: part 2

In my last post about becoming a better programmer while still having a life, I talked about communication. Specifically, making sure you understand why you’re doing a task and what the eventual user of that feature wants to accomplish. That’s far from the only thing communication is good for, though. It’s not just about clarifying tasks, it’s also important to communicate status. Strictly speaking, this may not make you a better.. Read More

Link of the day

Have you ever spent days trying to track down a horrible bug in your code? You’re not alone! Check out this collection of stories about terrible, infuriating bugs.

Be a better programmer while still having a life: part 1

In my last post I said that being a better programmer wasn’t worth sacrificing your entire life outside of work, but that doesn’t mean being a better programmer isn’t worth some work. Also, sacrificing all of your free time is simply not necessary. There are lots of things you can do to be better that don’t involve never seeing your friends again and/or being a bad partner. Lots of them! Here’s tip.. Read More

Link of the day

While I’m a fan of watching (well, mostly listening to) talks on YouTube, not everybody learns well from audio or hears well enough to deal with not-always-perfect audio. Fortunately, if you like text better Matthias Nehlson had some transcripts made for talks he was interested in and put them up on github so everyone can use them. Enjoy!

Rest is good for you

No not the architectural style (although I am a fan), I’m talking about taking a break once in a while. I’ve already talked about how churning out work isn’t everything, but it seems like a good time for a reminder. Actually, the ideal time for a reminder would have been last Monday, but I didn’t come up with the idea for this post until last Sunday and it seemed hypocritical to write about.. Read More

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