re: What is your personal Programming ethics? VIEW POST


Not intending to inflict Godwin's law, but the "Nazi soldier defense" is unacceptable. There is no just following orders, or if I do not do it, they will find somebody else. You simply do not do things which you think are wrong. Yes, that could mean that you might have to find a different job. As a software developer you are responsible for everything you create. You are also responsible for challenging designs/solutions handed to you.

There is a reason why the "true" engineering disciplines object to the term software engineer. It is because in general software developers do not respect the engineering ethics.

Within the software industry we have two major learned societies: IEEE and ACM. Both worked (and continue work on) a code of ethics for software engineering.

I cannot say I really have any personal ethics as I subscribe to the IEEE/ACM code of ethics, which covers pretty much everything really important.

I do have a bunch of mantra's I keep to (as much as possible):

  • Write code as if the person who needs to maintain it is a homicidal manic and knows where you live.
    • Or the less violent version: Write code you'd like to read in 6 months (you probably will).
  • Leave code behind nicer than you encountered it. (The boy scout rule).
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