I read this article by Joel recently.
I consider myself to be a bit of a one of these. I am more interested in getting something live than making something beautiful. The article gave me some reassurance after a crap interview I had recently.
Hands up, it was my fault, I did interview spectacularly badly (well in one part anyway). But as well as my own pish poor performance I also think I touched a few comedy raw nerves.
It was a technical C# interview, I had already totally cocked up the on-line C# test because I am not anal or obsessed with language history (and I am a bit rusty on C#, having been back on pure Excel/VBA/Oracle for a while). And bear in mind this was a multiskill role (with heavy energy trading business focus as well as technical), not some pure C# nerdathon.
Anyway the interviewer asked me if I had used linq, yes, I said but I thought it was a bit pointless. His eyes went wide in shock, he was dumbfounded. So much so that I had to check we were talking about the same linq (language integrated query). we were. As far as I am aware many devs would consider the database a better place to do the queries. Yes, if you have created a textbook multilevel mulit inheritance, multi interface, hierarchical nightmare you might be too far gone to do it in the DB. I am totally sure there are plenty of scenarios where it is useful, and equally plenty of times other techniques are at least as good. I’ve only dabbled with it so I could be wrong.
Then he asked me about design patterns, so I answered (honestly) that I tend to write fairly simple code, try to avoid inheritance and complex class hierarchies. More shock.
He asked me some other stuff I can’t remember but I am fairly sure I got that 100% wrong by his criteria, and 100% right by the duct tape programmer description.
It only just dawned on me that C# was his life, I am sure he has managed to squeeze every single C#/.net feature into one of his projects somehow. And is proud of that. Definitely in the 34% sparklier gang. Me, I’ll churn out the same old pap that I know works time and time again, unless I am sure there is time and justification for blue sky thinking.
No wonder he was traumatised when I suggested something he loved was ‘a bit pointless’. At least he didn’t ask me about silverlight or he would have got both barrels.
This interview made me realise I don’t want to be a ‘pure’ C# developer, in that rarefied atmosphere where technology is more important than solving business problems.
I want to use the cool tools IT departments get like VS, SQL Server, Toad etc, but I want to be with the business fixing the pain points (with the techs they rely on (Excel/Access/VBA/.net etc)).
which are you sparklier or dact tape?