software development

Do processes kill developer passion?

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Two interesting pieces of content i read on the internet, around programming, that I would like to share

An O’reilly article that says ‘Best practices sound good in isolation, but they can suck the life out of developers...’

O’Reilly Radar argues that excessive process in software development is sucking the life out of passionate developers, all in the name of making sure that ‘good code’ gets written. ‘The underlying feedback loop making this progressively worse is that passionate programmers write great code, but process kills passion. Disaffected programmers write poor code, and poor code makes management add more process in an attempt to “make” their programmers write good code. That just makes morale worse, and so on.'”

My take is that the time for these processes need to be budgeted in the development process itself. If we don’t then we may not get the benefits of these processes. To be fair, even the O’reilly article doesn’t make a case for the ‘wild-wild west’ kind of chaotic programming. What I found even more interesting than the article itself was the comments on that article. Makes for a pretty interesting read.

The other question I had was: combined together, with all these best practices to be followed, do developers even get time to code? Here is a humorous take on what programmers eventually spend their time on

Not all of the above is true but it kind of makes the point 🙂

So, what’s your take on this subject? Are these & a hundred other industry ‘best practices’ a great idea. Or do they ‘in isolation‘ make a great case but lose out when chained together and become an unnecessary overhead leaving little time for developers to be innovative and creative?