There are a lot of blogs about basic programming, specific technologies with which to do it, and generally every way of making a computer do what you want it to do. This blog will not be just another one of those. Those blogs tend to fall into one of two categories:
- The So you’ve decided to learn that computer-y stuff blog. This blog seems to be either written by a non-tech person who knows just enough programming to convey an idea or some basic language-specific concepts, or by a tech-oriented person who lacks real-world experience and can understandably only explain that which they know. This type of blog usually serves its purpose as an introduction but rarely dives deeply into the chosen topic. (I can see some writers using this style of blog to reinforce in their own mind a concept which they recently learned. After all, they say that the best way to learn something is to teach it.)
- The I’ve decided to start programming; follow me on my journey blog. This blog usually seems to convey a message of “If I’m doing it, you can, too!” and it appears to be genuine. Rarely do I find one of these where the writer just wants attention.
Aside from these general pigeon-holes, there are a few blogs which step beyond the realm of mere introductions and really get to the heart of software development. I have been fortunate to find some, and would be interested to hear of any others you may read. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Fabulous Adventures in Coding by Eric Lippert. Eric used to work for Microsoft on the C# compiler team. About a year and a half ago, he made the move to Coverity and now works on their language-analysis-based developer tools. Eric has a flair for writing very rarely found in the tech world. That combined with his intimate knowledge of programming languages in general (as well as specific knowledge on C#) makes his blog a definite must-read for any .Net developer.
- Jon Skeet’s Coding Blog. Jon is the author of C# In Depth, a wonderful book that has been kept up-to-date with recurring editions as the language changes. Jon’s blog tends to focus equally on C# as a language and general programming ideals. Many of his writings come from the perspective of one of his many code publications, most notably NodaTime.
- Coding Horror by Jeff Atwood. Jeff is the creator and founder of the Stack Exchange websites as well as a new conversation-based forum site called Discourse. He has some very unique ideas and a humorous writing style. While his blog focuses more on tech in general, he does occasionally touch on software development from various points of view (code, UI design, usability, etc.), and it’s definitely worth the read.
For me, these are the celebrities of the software development world.
My aim is to write content more in line with these. I will try to focus on more high-level architectural and design pattern ideas, while also diving into specifics about coding, usually in the form of anti-patterns, or “don’t do this; it’s bad and here’s why.” Occasionally I will also share solutions to coding challenges that I’ve found, partly for you, the reader, but also as a repository of knowledge for me so that I don’t have to re-invent the wheel when I face the problem again (and I will). Additionally you can expect to see posts on the various pieces of software I’ve published open-source.
On occasion, I will venture away from the realm of software altogether. It’s nice to have a break now and then.
About the Author
I have officially been a professional developer for three years, all of which has been with GameStop, which is located in Grapevine, TX, right between Dallas and Fort Worth. The most common question I receive is, “Do you write games?”. No. GameStop is a retailer of games, not a game developer or publisher. I write applications which enable GameStop to fulfill its mission: sell games and gaming accessories.
Prior to software development, I was in the world of aerospace manufacturing. I found myself at a couple companies right when they were going through a major reorganization to become more efficient via the power of Lean Manufacturing. I learned a lot about waste during those years, and every day I endeavor to apply that knowledge to the software I write. I find it fascinating how much the two parallel each other.
Thank you for joining me. I hope that I can inspire you to write better software and that perhaps you can teach me a few things as well.
Next time we’ll peer into a language feature idea I posted on Stack Overflow.