Developer Fears (4 Part Series)
This is part of a series of posts dedicated to talk about the biggest fears that we face as developers.
It took me a while to start this post and, being honest, I wasn’t even sure about writing it.
Of course, I could just write the same things you can find everywhere: keep studying, take online courses, read, and so on. But you already know that!
Instead, I’m going to share some things that I keep repeating myself when trying to stay up to date with tech. So, this is more like a how to avoid panicking rather than how to actually stay up to date.
I can't think about anything that evolves as quick as the tech stack. Every week (or even every day) you will see a new language, framework, platform, pattern, tool... you just name it.
This makes it impossible to know all of them. And by know, I don't mean use it or read about it, I just mean know that it exists. So, my key is to choose what to learn based on the current needs, either mine or for the company.
If you're new on a company, or planning to stay more time on it, then focus on the company tech stack.
- Make sure that you understand what type of company is: are they married with a defined stack or are they opened to innovation and trying new things?
- What is the current tech stack, so you can start learning about it soon.
- Are they planning new projects and considering new technologies? If so, then start reading about those. Even if they end up using a different technology, you will have learned something new.
But, if you're looking for a new job, then think about what you want and what the market is looking for:
- Decide what would you like to work on. To do this, check what the companies are looking for, what the current top technologies are.
- If you're feeling adventurous, look for things growing fast and that potentially will become popular in the short term. That would give you some advantage later when companies start moving into it.
Once you have learned to code in 2 or 3 different languages, you will notice that underneath they are all similar and that a lot of stuff that you previously learned helped you to learn faster.
That's why you should focus on more basic things. Rather than jumping right into a new language, first you need to learn how to create clean and quality code. Learn about different patterns and standards.
All those things would make you a better developer, and the sooner you do that in your career the better.
People usually complains about having no time after work to study or learn new things. Well, we should learn to see the job as another source of knowledge.
If you pay close attention, you will find a lot of different ways to learn at job:
- Look at other people's code. You can learn about different coding styles, small tips on specific technologies and a bunch of things that you probably didn't know.
- Make sure to share knowledge. If you are, for example, learning about a new tool. Talk about it with your colleagues, it would help you remember what you learned and maybe they will learn something too.
I've been conding for almost 10 years now, and this is something I learned on each company I've worked for: they value your coding skills, obviously. But something they value even more, is how much you get to know the company and business.
And that, is my final advice, make sure to be the go-to person when people need to know something. That will put you on a nice position and you will be able to help everybody not only by coding.
What about you? How do you keep relevant? Or what are your tips to avoid feeling overwhelmed?