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  • How to effectively measure developer's work hours?

    - by twk
    I have a few software developers working for my projects and I would like to provide them a way to register time they spent on real development. There is good will to register development hours, no force, but we try to avoid techniques like excel sheets register because this is so uncomfortable. I can track svn commits, but this is unreliable. Developers also helps supporting different projects during the day, so assuming they work on one project by whole day is not true. I've seen utilities that popups a message every hour to confirm the project you're working on but this is annoying. Some kind of active-window-title-anaylzer might help (you can get solution name from there in the case of Visual Studio) but I have no experience with such idea. If you have any experience with programmers/designers work hours registration, please share with me. Thanks

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  • What is the economic rationale behind programmers who work on a open source project (free) instead of a commercial project (not free)?

    - by Kim Jong Woo
    I can't understand why some people dedicate so much hour into a completely open source project without closing it and yielding greater profit from it. I don't think profiting from your code is evil, I think it's a great motivator. Why do some people feel that commercial software and generating money from it is bad? There seems to be this black and white thinking that open source = good, commercial = bad. I hardly find this convincing, and often commercial companies which are supported by sales produce very good results. An open source software in the same niche can't compete against the corporation. Of course, sometimes this is completely the other way around where private companies produce inferior product compared to open source counterparts. So help me understand, why do programmers open source their code when there is commercial prospects for it? Shouldn't the rational programmer or human being make every effort to capitalize on their opportunity cost? Working on a open source project for months when you could've spent the same number of hours at commidity wage or some other monetary compensation?

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  • Have programmers at your work not taken up or been averse to an offer of a second monitor?

    - by Chris Knight
    I'm putting together a business case for the developers in my company to get a second monitor. After my own experiences and research, this seems a no-brainer to me in terms of increasing productivity and morale/happiness. One question which has niggled me is if I should be pushing to get all developers onto a second monitor or let folk opt-in (i.e. they get one if they want one). Thoughts on this are welcome, but my specific question relates to a snippet on this site: But when the IT manager at Thibeault's company asked other employees if they wanted dual monitors last year, few jumped at the offer. Blinded by my own pre-judgement, this surprised me. Has anyone else experienced this? I fully appreciate that some people prefer a single larger monitor, but my general experience of researching the web suggests that most programmers prefer a dual (or more) setup. I'm guessing this should be tempered with the thought that those developers who contribute to such discussions might not be considered your average developer who might not care one way or the other. Anyway, if you have experienced the above have you tried to sell the concept of dual monitors to the masses? If everyone just got 2 monitors regardless if they wanted it or not, were there adverse reactions or negative effects? UPDATE: The developers are on a mixture of 17", 22", or 24" single monitors. The desks should be able to accommodate dual 22" monitors as I am proposing, though this will take some getting used to I imagine.

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  • Are programmers a bunch of heartless robots who are lacking of empathy? [closed]

    - by Graviton
    OK, the provocative title got your attention. My experience as a programmer and dealing with my fellow programmers is that, a programmer is also usually someone who is so consumed by his programming work, so absorbed in his algorithmic construction that he has little passion/ time left for anything else, which includes empathy for other people, love and care for the people whom he love or should love ( such as their spouses, parents, kids, colleagues etc). The better a person is in terms of his programming powers, the more defective he is in terms of love/care because both honing programming skills and loving the surrounding takes time and one has only so much time to be allocated among so many different things. Also, programming ( especially INTERESTING programming job, like, writing an AI to predict the future search trend) is a highly consuming job; it doesn't just consume you from 9 to 5, it will also consume you after 5 and practically every second of your waking hours because a good programmer can't just magically switch off his thinking hat after the office lights go off ( If you can then I don't really think you are a passionate programmer, and the prerequisite of a good programmer is passion). So, a good programmer is necessarily someone who can't love as much as others do because the very nature of the programming job prevents him from loving others as much as he wants to. Do you concur with my observation/ reasoning?

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  • Is there any evidence that drugs can actually help programmers produce "better" code? [closed]

    - by sytycs
    I just read this quote from Steve Jobs: "Doing LSD was one of the two or three most important things I have done in my life." Also a quote from that article: He was hardly alone among computer scientists in his appreciation of hallucinogenics and their capacity to liberate human thought from the prison of the mind. Now I'm wondering if there's any evidence to support the theory that drugs can help make a "better" programmer. Has there ever been a study where programmers have been given drugs to see if they could produce "better" code? Is there a well-known programming concept or piece of code which originated from people who were on drugs? EDIT So I did a little more research and it turns out Dennis R. Wier actually documented how he took LSD to wrap his head around a coding project: "At one point in the project I could not get an overall viewpoint for the operation of the entire system. It really was too much for my brain to keep all the subtle aspects and processing nuances clear so I could get a processing and design overview. After struggling with this problem for a few weeks, I decided to use a little acid to see if it would enable a breakthrough, because otherwise, I would not be able to complete the project and be certain of a consistent overall design"[1] There is also an interesting article on wired about Kevin Herbet, who used LSD to solve tough technical problems and chemist Kary Mullis even said "...that LSD had helped him develop the polymerase chain reaction that helps amplify specific DNA sequences." [2]

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  • What did programmers do before variable scope, where everything is global?

    - by hydroparadise
    So, I am having to deal with seemingly archiac language (called PowerOn) where I have a main method, a few datatypes to define variables with, and has the ability to have sub-procedures (essentially void methods) that does not return a type nor accepts any arguements. The problem here is that EVERYTHING is global. I've read of these type of languages, but most books take the aproach "Ok, we use to use a horse and cariage, but now, here's a car so let's learn how to work on THAT!" We will NEVER relive those days". I have to admit, the mind is struggling to think outside of scope and extent. Well here I am. I am trying to figure out how to best manage nothing but global variables across several open methods. Yep, even iterators for for loops have to be defined globaly, which I find myself recycling in different parts of my code. My Question: for those that have this type experience, how did programmers deal with a large amount of variables in a global playing field? I have feeling it just became a mental juggling trick, but I would be interested to know if there were any known aproaches.

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  • What have my fellow Delphi programmers done to make Eclipse/Java more like Delphi?

    - by Robert Oschler
    I am a veteran Delphi programmer working on my first real Android app. I am using Eclipse and Java as my development environment. The thing I miss the most of course is Delphi's VCL components and the associated IDE tools for design-time editing and code creation. Fortunately I am finding Eclipse to be one hell of an IDE with it's lush context sensitive help, deep auto-complete and code wizard facilities, and other niceties. This is a huge double treat since it is free. However, here is an example of something in the Eclipse/Java environment that will give a Delphi programmer pause. I will use the simple case of adding an "on-click" code stub for an OK button. DELPHI Drop button on a form Double-click button on form and fill in the code that will fire when the button is clicked ECLIPSE Drop button on layout in the graphical XML file editor Add the View.OnClickListener interface to the containing class's "implements" list if not there already. (Command+1 on Macs, Ctrl + 1 on PCs I believe). Use Eclipse to automatically add the code stub for unimplemented methods needed to support the View.OnClickListener interface, thus creating the event handler function stub. Find the stub and fill it in. However, if you have more than one possible click event source then you will need to inspect the View parameter to see which View element triggered the OnClick() event, thus requiring a case statement to handle multiple click event sources. NOTE: I am relatively new to Eclipse/Java so if there is a much easier way of doing this please let me know. Now that work flow isn't all that terrible, but again, that's just the simplest of use cases. Ratchet up the amount of extra work and thinking for a more complex component (aka widget) and the large number of properties/events it might have. It won't be long before you miss dearly the Delphi intelligent property editor and other designers. Eclipse tries to cover this ground by having an extensive list of properties in the menu that pops up when you right-click over a component/widget in the XML graphical layout editor. That's a huge and welcome assist but it's just not even close to the convenience of the Delphi IDE. Let me be very clear. I absolutely am not ranting nor do I want to start a Delphi vs. Java ideology discussion. Android/Eclipse/Java is what it is and there is a lot that impresses me. What I want to know is what other Delphi programmers that made the switch to the Eclipse/Java IDE have done to make things more Delphi like, and not just to make component/widget event code creation easier but any programming task. For example: Clever tips/tricks Eclipse plugins you found other ideas? Any great blog posts or web resources on the topic are appreciated too. -- roschler

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  • Why are marketing employees, product managers, etc. deserving of their own office, yet programmers are jammed in a room as many as possible?

    - by TheImirOfGroofunkistan
    I don't understand why many (many) companies treat software developers like they are assembly line workers making widgets. Joel Spolsky has a great example of the problems this creates: With programmers, it's especially hard. Productivity depends on being able to juggle a lot of little details in short term memory all at once. Any kind of interruption can cause these details to come crashing down. When you resume work, you can't remember any of the details (like local variable names you were using, or where you were up to in implementing that search algorithm) and you have to keep looking these things up, which slows you down a lot until you get back up to speed. Here's the simple algebra. Let's say (as the evidence seems to suggest) that if we interrupt a programmer, even for a minute, we're really blowing away 15 minutes of productivity. For this example, lets put two programmers, Jeff and Mutt, in open cubicles next to each other in a standard Dilbert veal-fattening farm. Mutt can't remember the name of the Unicode version of the strcpy function. He could look it up, which takes 30 seconds, or he could ask Jeff, which takes 15 seconds. Since he's sitting right next to Jeff, he asks Jeff. Jeff gets distracted and loses 15 minutes of productivity (to save Mutt 15 seconds). Now let's move them into separate offices with walls and doors. Now when Mutt can't remember the name of that function, he could look it up, which still takes 30 seconds, or he could ask Jeff, which now takes 45 seconds and involves standing up (not an easy task given the average physical fitness of programmers!). So he looks it up. So now Mutt loses 30 seconds of productivity, but we save 15 minutes for Jeff. Ahhh! Quote Link More Spolsky on Offices Why don't managers and owner's see this?

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  • For Programmers familiar with ACM API? Drawing Initials [closed]

    - by user71992
    Possible Duplicate: For Programmers familiar with ACM API? Drawing Initials I came across an exercise (in the book "The Art and Science of Java" by Eric Roberts) that requires using only GArc and GLine classes to create a lettering library which draws your initials on the canvas. This should be made independent of the GLabel class. I'd like to know the correct approach to use in solving this problem. I'm not sure what I have so far is good enough (I'm thinking it's too long). The questions requires that I use a good Top-Down approach. Here's my code so far: //Passes letters to GLetter objects and draws them on the canvas package artScienceJavaExercises.chapter8; import acm.program.*; //import acm.graphics.*; public class DrawInitials extends GraphicsProgram{ public void init(){ resize(400,400); } public void run(){ //String let = readLine("Letter?: "); letter = new GLetter("l"); add(letter, (getWidth()-letter.getWidth()*2)/2, (getHeight()-letter.getHeight())/2); add(new GLetter("o"), (letter.getX()+letter.getWidth()), letter.getY()); } private GLetter letter; } //GLetter Class package artScienceJavaExercises.chapter8; import acm.graphics.*; import java.awt.*; public class GLetter extends GCompound{ private static final int ONE_THIRD = 30; private static final int ROW_2_HEIGHT = 40; private GArc[] arc = new GArc[4]; private GLine[] line = new GLine[24]; public GLetter(String s){ line[0] = new GLine(0,0, ONE_THIRD, 0); line[1] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD,0, ONE_THIRD*2, 0); line[2] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2,0, ONE_THIRD*3, 0); line[3] = new GLine(0,0, 0,ONE_THIRD); line[4] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD,0, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD); line[5] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2,0, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD); line[6] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*3,0, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD); line[7] = new GLine(0,ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD); line[8] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD,ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD); line[9] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2,ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD); line[10] = new GLine(0,ONE_THIRD, 0, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[11] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[12] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2,ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[13] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*3,ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[14] = new GLine(0, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[15] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[16] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[17] = new GLine(0, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, 0, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[18] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[19] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[20] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[21] = new GLine(0,ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[22] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*2, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); line[23] = new GLine(ONE_THIRD*2,ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT, ONE_THIRD*3, ONE_THIRD*2+ROW_2_HEIGHT); for(int i = 0; i<line.length; i++){ add(line[i]); line[i].setColor(Color.BLACK); line[i].setVisible(false); } arc[0] = new GArc(getWidth(), getHeight(), 106.699, 49.341); arc[1] = new GArc(getWidth(), getHeight(), 23.96, 49.341); arc[2] = new GArc(getWidth(), getHeight(), -23.96, -49.341); arc[3] = new GArc(0,0,getWidth(), getHeight(), -106.699, -49.341); for(int i = 0; i<arc.length; i++){ add(arc[i],0,0); arc[i].setColor(Color.BLACK); arc[i].setVisible(false); } paintLetter(s); } private void paintLetter(String s){ if (s.equalsIgnoreCase("l")){ turnOn(line[3]); turnOn(line[10]); turnOn(line[17]); turnOn(line[21]); turnOn(line[22]); turnOn(line[23]); } else if(s.equalsIgnoreCase("o")){ for(int i = 0; i<4; ++i){ turnOn(arc[i]); } turnOn(line[1]); turnOn(line[10]); turnOn(line[13]); turnOn(line[22]); } } private void turnOn(GObject g){ g.setVisible(true); } } I created a class (GLetter.java) with arrays for GArc and GLine objects. They are positioned in certain ways thereby turning certain Glines and/or GArcs on or off (changing visiblity) would create a pattern for a letter. This Gletter uses the if/else statements to determine which pattern to create - this makes me feel my code is too long. There is another class (DrawInitials.java) that simulates a GraphicsProgram and allows the user to pass certain letters as arguments to the GLetter object. I've used 'L' and 'O' as examples. However, I posted this because I'm not sure I'm using the right approach. That's why I need your help. I feel MY CODE IS TOO LONG! The code above is not the complete project...it only draws letters 'L' and 'O' for now.

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  • Do Programmers create BUGS?

    - by Diallo
    Recently i had a not very friendly discussion with a client stating that "he can't pay for fixing bugs on the application i've built for him". his reason is simple: - I Can't actually pay for bugs you actually create. He think that a bug in an application has as origin the author so it should be his responsibility to fix it. Do you share that idea?

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  • how to hire the best programmers ?

    - by sh00
    I am going to apply Joel's method: http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000073.html I'm curious if is there anybody that used this method of hiring for long periods of time. Any comment could be useful. Thanks.

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  • Programmers - I have a question for you.

    - by jens
    My boyfriend does coding (Rails/C?/PHP) for a job and I don't know what he would appreciate on our first anniversary. Does anyone have any ideas? Yes, he's stereotypical geek, but I'd rather not give a pack of Bawls for an anniversary gift. He dislikes going anywhere, so "experiences" like going to an event are out. Maybe I should just have a giant LAN party in the house.

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  • When do married programmers find time to work?

    - by dave-keiture
    Hi people, Maybe my problem is unique (though I don't believe so), and probably I should go with it to the psychologist, but sinse I get married (~year ago) I feel that I don't have enough time to work anymore. For years I've been working at my day job doing regular stuff, and at nights I've been committing to the opensource projects, freelancing and self-educating. Now, I can't work at home at all, because once I start working, my wife either says that there're more important thing to do (walk out the dog, buy something in a grocery, etc.) or that I don't pay anough attention to her.. As a workaround, I've started getting up at 3-4AM in the morning to do the things I was usually doing nightly before. After a month of such schedule I feel myself totally crushed. So... 2 questions: Do you have the same problems, or I'm just a <..., who should say goodbye to programming, and start doing "really important things"? If you have the same problems, when do you find time to work? Maybe you know any cool lifehack or trick to spend at least some tome for doing the thing you like :) Best regards.

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  • Keyboard for programmers

    - by Robert Höglund
    I'm trying to improve my working environment and I'm still searching for that perfect keyboard that practically types bug-free code all by itself. At the moment I'm using a Logitech Wave for my Windows need and an Apple Wireless Keyboard (the one without a numeric keypad) when doing OS X stuff. I'm quite happy with the Logitech Wave but I would prefer one without all the extra multimedia buttons. What I like most about the Apple Wireless Keyboard is that it is very similar to the Macbook's keyboard which for me makes it easier to write code when on my Macbook. What kind of keyboard would you recommend for going all out writing code until your fingers bleed? I have remapped the Caps Lock key to Ctrl which after a while feels really good, until I have to sit at another computer or when someone at work is going to show me something on my computer. Are there other little keyboard tricks that you use to get a little bit more productive? I have looked into switching to Dvorak but I have decided it's not for me.

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  • How to weed out the bad programmers from the competent ones in the interview process

    - by thaBadDawg
    I am getting ready to add another developer to my team and I want to try and fix the mistakes I made in my last hiring cycle. I like to think of myself as a competent programmer (I can be given a project, I can deliver on that project and the deliverable work with very few if any bugs) and so I ask questions that I would ask myself in an interview. I've come to the conclusion that my interviewing skills are completely lacking because the last two people I've hired interviewed incredibly well but have been less than ideal at the tasks that they've been given. My CTO (who was completely useless in giving any guidance as to how) suggested I improve on my interviewing skills. The question is this - How does one programmer interview another programmer and get an understanding of the other programmer's abilities? Edit: Though slightly different, the answers provided to this question could be of use to you. That question concerns specific interview questions while yours seems to be more general about interview approaches and not just about the questions themselves. Update: Just for the hell of it I asked two of the guys I worked with if they could do FizzBuzz. 45 minutes and 80 minutes to work it out. And these aren't bottom level guys either.

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  • Language for non-programmers to start learning programming

    - by zarawesome
    A non-programmer friend will be starting the Computer Science college course in a few months. I'd like her to try her hand at some programming before she starts her studies (the course itself expects one to know C, but it's an horrible language to learn to program at). What language would be the best to do so? Related question: Best ways to teach a beginner to program?

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  • Should Competent Programmers be "Mathematically Inclined"

    - by Abhijeet Patel
    From a blog post by Jeff Atwood of the same title, I can tell from personal experience that it's much more easier to grasp math after having worked professionally as a developer for a while. I appreciate math much more as I can see it's real world applicability. Can you recommend any resources/books that can help become familiar and comfortable with the kind of math concepts that developers should be familiar with for being well rounded and effective developers.

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  • Recommended Math textbooks for programmers

    - by Tony
    I learned math in a non-English environment, I recently read some books about algorithm analysis, I found some math concepts were confusing, and seemed not the same as what I've learned. What math textbooks would you recommend that covers math concepts from the scratch and suitable for self-learning ?

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  • iPhone App development for non-programmers

    - by user645479
    I have a English major during college and would like to start my career in mobile application development. I know this won't be easy for someone like me who doesn't have a technical background but I have made up my mind and I am committed to learning to code. What would you recommend to someone who wants to to start learning mobile application development from scratch? What books or college courses/certificates are required?

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  • Open Source Utilization Questions: How do you lone wold programmers best take advantage of open sour

    - by Funkyeah
    For Clarity: So you come up with an idea for a new program and want to start hacking, but you also happen to be a one-man army. How do you programming dynamos best find and utilize existing open-source software to give you the highest jumping off point possible when diving into your new project? When you do jump in where the shit do you start from? Any imaginary scenarios would be welcome, e.g. a shitty example might be utilizing a open-source database with an open-source IM client as a starting off point to a make a new client where you could tag and store conversations and query those tags at a later time.

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  • Self Assessment Tests for Programmers

    - by THX1138.6
    I want to help the Dev team identify areas of knowledge (practical and theoretical) that they can work on. Though I am big believer in focusing on people's strengths being a good programmer requires (I think) being challenged by concepts and ideas that don't always come naturally. We work largely in the web app space using PHP & MySQL but better skills in data modelling, query optimisation, use of MVC and OOP etc. would help the team and the company a lot. I want to help the Dev team manage their careers, explore and expand their skills sets. Be all they can be and better than they were previously. I know its an idealistic goal but work must be about more than simply getting the work done. There should be some time to review, to learn, to grow and get better. Any thoughts, ideas, opinions and directions to tests or similar resources would be greatly appreciated.

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