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29 December 2013

The Passionate Programmer

books, passionate, programmer
  • How to be a better programmer?
  • What technologies should be learned?
  • How to have fun when coding?
Read more to see where are the answers for those questions.
Plan:

Intro

Programmers have this wonderful opportunity to often pursue a dream career path. Lots of us would not like to only pay the bills but actually change the world as well. Some create awesome projects, some build communities, speak at conferences, are great consultants and experts.
Of course it is not that easy to reach the top, but there are some "tools" that can help us, One of such tool can be the book called "The passionate programmer" by Chad Fowler.
Let us look what we can find inside it.
The author - Chad Fowler - musician who additionally (and very successfully) learned programming has a very inspiring view on IT world. He tries to help the reader with the career choices. At the same time he shares some interesting stories about coding.

Market and Investment

Java, C++, C#, Scala, Python... Android, Win32, Linux... Game programming, TDD, SOLID, Threads, Networking, etc, etc... it is possible to be great in all of those fields? It would be great to at least try each area, know several programming languages. But when it comes to career we need to choose only a relatively small subset of techniques.
For me, the book was first in its kind. Previously I've read a lot of books about techniques, technologies and languages. But non of them showed me how to drive my career.
Fowler addresses:
  • What technologies to choose
  • Why communication is so important
  • The law of supply and demand
  • How to learn effectively new things

Execution

After you choose what to do then comes the "execution" action. This is actually the hardest part :)
In this chapter the author will not solve your motivational problems at once, but he gives advice on:
  • How to love maintenance
  • Be in the present rather that daydream about your next great job/project
  • How not to panic

Marketing and Maintaining your Edge

You will not be noticed if you do not make some for of marketing around your brand. Although, currently, we have a lot of ways to do this: blog, youtube, conferences, github, etc, etc... it is actually quite hard to be visible though. The author gives you several ideas how to market yourself a bit more effectively.
Additionally even if you are the best these days, you are the expert.... you still need to learn and develop. No one knows what will happen in near future. Languages and technologies are invented rapidly and they die as well. The last part of the book tries to give a set of tips how to be prepared and maintain your high market value.

Sum up

The book is great!
  • It is very easy to read: have only 5 minutes? Just take any of 53 chapters that can be read in any order.
  • No matter if you are expert or just starting your professional career you will fond something for you.
  • Even in five or ten years basic "advice" from the book will be valid and current.
  • Can really help in improving your programming and career management skills.
What is the most important message coming from the book? Just have fun and love your code.

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