What I do to Become a Better Developer

I recently discovered Justin Etheredge’s blog. He has recently posed an interesting question to the developer community, “What is your strategy for becoming a better developer?”. I like the responses that have been posted so far, so I will chip in with my own.

I think learning is a never-ending process. Just as soon as you get something figured out, yet more interesting subjects will appear. I should know — my to-read list is now as long as my arm. There are many sources of reading material when it comes to programming: books, magazines, blogs, articles. I subscribe to some developer magazines, try to get through a new book every now and then, and subscribe to over a hundred blogs (I really need to cut that down — it’s almost too much to keep up with on some days!). By doing the same, you get exposed to ideas, new and old. You get informed. You get inspired. You learn.

As a follow-up to the reading, I like to try the new concepts I have just discovered. So I write code. By doing this, I expand my boundaries. I have been doing a lot of this recently when working with .NET. Check my Programming category for proof of this.

Don’t just write code, but write about writing code. Share the wealth of knowledge. It is an interesting thing where you write about a subject to teach others, and you tend to learn more on the subject at the same time. It’s strange, but it works! I have experienced this in the past when learning and writing about tools and techniques for .NET.

Well, that is my response. If you are a developer, you may find the original post, and it’s responses, to be good reading.

As an additional bonus, Justin is planning to give away copies of The Pragmatic Programmer to the three best responses, so there is even more reason to participate!