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Sam Jarman 👨🏼‍💻
Sam Jarman 👨🏼‍💻

Posted on • Originally published at on

Dev Chats: Scott Hanselman

This is a article from my "Dev Chats" series where I speak to an awesome developer or techie every week or so. You can read more here. Let me know in the comments if you find these useful to you!

  Scott Hanselman. Bit of a legend. 

Scott Hanselman. Bit of a legend. 


Introduce yourself! Who are you? Where do you work?

I’m Scott Hanselman from and I currently work at Microsoft on open source .NET and C#


Who or what got you into programming?

When I got out of high school I had no real plan, but Portland Community College was spinning up their first Software Engineering Program. This program was a lot different from the computer science program in that it was more practical and far less theoretical. I much more enjoyed learning about the creation of software then learning about the theory behind the CPU.


How do your colleagues view your writing, speaking, etc - does it have any impact on the way you work together?

No, all of my colleges also write and speak so it’s a non-issue. I think every developer should be a social developer.


More generally, how has writing, speaking and podcasting had an affect on your career?

I think it would make it easier for me to get an interview at a new job. It would get the door open although it would not keep the door open.


What is it like to work at a massive company like Microsoft? Are there any unique challenges compared to say, a startup or small/medium size business?

Not really. Event large companies are really just small groups that make up the larger company. Microsoft has 100,000 people but it's really 1,000 companies with 100 people each


What has been your toughest lesson to learn in your software career so far?

To shut up and listen. Very rarely will you be the smartest person in the room and you can learn a lot more if you are truly listening rather than just waiting for your turn to speak.


What would be your number one piece of advice for a successful software career?

I'd rather answer what would happen if I had to start over. This post (from 2014) about learning a new language is my answer. I recommend learning one language you can build large systems with AND also learn JavaScript. When you’re learning it, join the community, go to meetups and write about it.


What would you recommend junior developers do if they have aspirations to work at Microsoft one day?

I don't think Microsoft is a destination any more than Google is a destination or a goal. They're just companies, good or bad, and you should work where ever makes you happy.


What books/resources would you recommend?

Check out Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software by Charles Petzold


Finally, make your shoutout! What would you like the readers to go have a look at?

Please subscribe to my podcast at and tell your friends!

Discussion (1)

buinauskas profile image

They're, not there. Probably. 🙂