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addressing five misconceptions about software developers

Elijah Ajuwon

This post was written by David Egbue

When you think about software developers what do you think of them? That they are usually the smartest person in the room? That they are geeky? Perhaps you think that software developers are boring. These are some of the misconceptions that people have about software developers and some of the assumptions that are made about me. In this post I will be adressing and debunking some of the most common myths about software developers

  1. Software Engineers are geeks with no social life

This is probably the biggest misconeption that people have about software engineers; movies and tv series have only perpetuated this image. How many times have we seen the nerdy geek hacking into a government system in his parents basement. Countless. I understand do understand where it comes from, however, this is only applicable to a small amount of developers. A social life can consist of many different things, and developers are not homogenous. With this being said yes some developers like gaming during their spare time, however, in my office some like to dance, play football or sing (my personal favourite). Every developer have their own unique personalities and instrinsic qualities and this is evident through our diverse range of hobbies.

  1. Developers can solve all of your computing needs

No I cannot fix the laptop you threw down the stairs; no can't hack into your ex-boy/girlfriends laptop, I don't want build a website for you or help you install Windows 10. I do not repair hardware, I am not a hacker and I am nost defintely not tech support. I am a software developer; I build software and applications that help organisations and drive value to the end users.

  1. Developers have a corporate culture

It is true that the nature of our job is shifting, the days of just sitting behind a desk coding are starting to fade as sometime developers may have to meet clients. Despite this depending on the organisation you are working for there is a lack of a better term "chilled" culture. When building complex systems or applications it is imperative to be a comfortable as possible so that we can be in the right frame of mind to build as efficiently as possible. With that being said you can catch developers around the office wearing tshirts, jeans and trainers. I sometime even walk to the office and sit on my desk with a chain on.

  1. Developers always know what they are doing

The beautiful thing about developing is the fact that you are constantly learning. Think of programming as an endless course in university that you'll never graduate from; we never stop learning. You never know the complete ins and outs of programming languages, I can personally say thhis for the programming language that I am most proficient in. If we get stuck on a particular part of code (which we always do) we use a website called stack overflow which is a forum for developers who are looking to find solutions to problems that they are facing; from errors to integrations. We area always looking for ways to overcome certain code block obstacles and become better programmers. That's just the beauty of software developement.

  1. The more languages you know the better the developer you are

A jack of all trades, a master of none isn't something that applies in software development, if anything I alongisde most developers would suggest that you are better to be a master of one. Of course, it is always useful (and in most cases required) to know a couple of programming languages, however, thinking that the more programming languages you know the better you are is just wrong. This is the reason that when people ask me how many languages do I know (to gauge my ability) it just shows me you don't know much about software development because that doesn't actually matter. Learn the programming languages that align with your interests. If you want to build iOS apps learn C and Swift as your foundation and for a websites HTML and CSS.

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