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  • Is there any research out there on geographic differences in work environments (e.g., respect) for programmers?

    - by Ethel Evans
    One thing I've learned from this website is that software developers are not treated the same as what I've seen in the companies I've worked at, and some of the differences seem to be related to the culture or other factors of the geographical location where the programmer works. In some areas, it seems like programmers can expect many perks and a great deal of professional respect, but in others it sounds like programmers are seen as laborers who are told what to do and then should go do it without question. Even in just the USA, there seem to be major differences in "the norm" between the various regions of this country. I'm wondering how much of this is just my perception, and how much is real differences about how programmers are perceived in their different locations. Is there any research out there discussing major differences in programmer work environments or attitudes about how to treat or respect programmers by geography? I'd be interested in multiple articles tackling different ways of looking at this. Edit: Research, specifically, doesn't seem to be available, so I'm making the question broader. Any good, thoughtful writing on the topic of any kind available?

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  • Will high reputation in Programmers help to get a good job?

    - by Lorenzo
    In reference to this question, do you think that having a high reputation on this site will help to get a good job? Aside silly and humorous questions, on Programmers we can see a lot of high quality theory questions. I think that, if Stack Overflow will eventually evolve in "strictly programming related" (which usually is "strictly coding related"), the questions on Programmers will be much more interesting and meaningful ("Stack Overflow" = "I have this specific coding/implementation issue"; "Programmers" = "Best practices, team shaping, paradigms, CS theory"). So could high reputation on this site help (or at least be a good reference)? And then, more o less than Stack Overflow?

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  • Are there any memorization techniques that exist for programmers? [closed]

    - by Akromyk
    I just watched this video on Ted.com entitled: Joshua Foer: Feats of memory anyone can do and it got me thinking about memory from a programmers perspective. There are so many abstract concepts and syntactic nuances we encounter daily, and yet we still manage to remember enough information to be productive. The memory palace may help in remembering someone's name or a random story but are there any memorization techniques that can better aid programmers?

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  • Are highly capable programmers paid more than their managers?

    - by Fun Mun Pieng
    I know a lot of programmers are paid less than their managers by significant amounts, as highlighted there. How often is it that a programmer gets paid more than his manager? Or phrased different how many programmers are paid more than their managers? Personally, I know of one case. I'm asking to see how common is the case. When I say "manager", I mean anyone further up their organization hierarchy.

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  • Is there a good site for programmers to discuss culture, stories, opinions, or whatever?

    - by Rachel
    I am asking because I am interested by a lot of questions that are getting closed recently. I understand that the moderators want Programmers.SE to be a place for answers, not discussion, however I enjoy the discussion and find I can learn a lot from it. Edit #2 Removed examples from here and posted them on meta per suggestion. Would like to have my original question answered instead of this turning into a discussion about Programmers.SE

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  • Will SRS be sufficient enough for the programmers to do their work, without the additional overhead of FS?

    - by SixSickSix
    We always make 2 documents the SRS (Software Requirement Specification) and the FS (Functional Specifications) documents for the coders aka programmers. As I have examined the SRS is more like containing both functional and non-functional requirements as compared to the FS that deals only with the functional requirements. To cut it short will the SRS be sufficient enough for the programmers to do their work? and not make any FS anymore?

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  • Best way for programmers to edit XAML

    - by JessicaB
    I was wondering how programmers chose to edit XAML. Most of the programmers I speak to seem to edit the raw XML, but that seems nuts to me since it is such a natural thing for a more visual editor (of course you often have to get down to the raw code ultimately, but isn't there a better way to lay out a grid, or edit a template, or add non c# triggers or manage commands? The one that really set me off was editing a menu -- Visual Studio 1.0 had a better menu editor for C++ than the raw XAML editing experience.) When I edit .aspx files I use a visual editor much of the time, and then for the raw stuff I get into the html code. I am aware of Expression Blend, but that seems far more focused on artistic types and GUI experts rather than programmers. Does anyone have recommendations for a better editor for XAML than VS? Especially so since VS seems to have real nasty problems with XAML editing too, like bugginess and poor performance? Appreciate your helping this XAML newbie.

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  • Are C++ meta-templates required knowledge for programmers?

    - by Robert Gould
    In my experience Meta-templates are really fun (when your compilers are compliant), and can give good performance boosts, and luckily I'm surrounded by seasoned C++ programmers that also grok meta-templates, however occasionally a new developer arrives and can't make heads or tails of some of the meta-template tricks we use (mostly Andrei Alenxandrescu stuff), for a few weeks until he gets initiated appropriately. So I was wondering what's the situation for other C++ programmers out there? Should meta-template programming be something C++ programmers should be "required" to know (excluding entry level students of course), or not? Edit: Note my question is related to production code and not little samples or prototypes

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  • Why do marketing employees get 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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  • How programmers can afford to NOT learn new things.

    - by newbie
    Good day! I am wondering how programmers learn many things because as a career shifter (from engineering to IT), I find it really hard to absorb everything. Three months ago, I learned HTML/CSS/Javascript. Two months ago, I learned mySQL and CCNA1. One month ago I learned C and Java. Now I am trying to learn J2EE. But it seems that I must combine everything I learned then add more into my brain (especially because J2EE is HUGE! -- XML, servlets, JSP, JSTL, EJB, frameworks(Hibernate, Structs, Spring), JDBC... and so on!!!) So I am wondering, how can programmers learn everything, then add something new without being confused of everything! Because Right now, I feel like my brain is going to explode because of information overload! And these knowledge I am trying to acquire are just the BASICS of programming (icing on the cake)! I still need to learn MORE to become a good programmer! And new technology emerges now and then that requires programmers to learn more again.. Learn.. learn.. learn... Any suggestions on how you as a programmer fit all you've learned into your brain? And how do you know which is the right thing for you to learn? Aren't you afraid that what you've learned may be obsolete next year then start learning again...?

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  • Black hat knowledge for white hat programmers

    - by Dinah
    There's always skepticism from non-programmers when honest developers learn the techniques of black hat hackers. Obviously though, we need to learn many of their tricks so we can keep our own security up to par. To what extent do you think an honest programmer needs to know the methods of malicious programmers?

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  • A Book about Productivity for programmers

    - by dole doug
    I just find this video about productivity for programmers by peepcode and I'm thinking to download and see it. Besides that, I have to tell you that I prefer to read a book and take notices about it, rather than seeing a video. So, my question is: can you recommend me a good book about productivity for programmers with tips, advices, best practice, et? ps: I'm new into this work field(because I'm still a student).

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  • How can I manage several programmers?

    - by Isamtron
    Hello, I will soon have to manage 4 programmers working on the same project. I'm wondering how will I be able to do that. The project will be done using PHP and MySQL databases. What's confusing me is how several programmers will be working on the same files. Please advise. Your help will be appreciated.

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  • What are best practices when giving a presentation to programmers?

    - by blunders
    I've watched 50 plus presentations on programming topics, although most have been online; example, Google Tech Talks -- and have ad-hoc experience on what formats work for programmers, or practices to take into account when presenting to a group of programmers. That said, I'm open to any suggestions, but here's some topic of the top of my head: Programming Jokes, Images, etc. Posting Code for download Contact Info Collecting feedback Presenting Code on Screen If it matters, in this case -- I'm giving a presentation on using a scripting language to extract, transform and load data to a local user group who's focus is the scripting language; Ruby in this case. Questions, feedback, requests -- just comment, thanks!!

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  • What is the best drink to drink when you have read nonsense questions on programmers?

    - by stefan
    I am having a hard time deciding what drink to drink after I have read a nonsense question on programmers.stackexchange. It's either Beer och Whisky; The beer is nice since you can down it some what relaxed but some times I feel the need for something "stronger" because the question is so utterly nonsense and stupid. Every time I have read a stupid / nonsense question on programmers.stackexchange.com I've questioned myself why I didnt write some code instead. I couldve probably written countless lines of codes, together probably building a new Facebook or Linux by now. But instead I sacrificed my precious time reading questions that shouldn't have been posted on the internet. It really makes me frustrating, I guess that is why I am so often considering the whisky part instead of beer. Since beer will maybe not calm me down enough and then I have to take the whisky too, together it's a) slightly more expensive and b) more time consuming. So, what is the best drink?

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  • Why are a seemingly disproportionate amount of programmers just, well, not nice?

    - by Macy Abbey
    Maybe it's just my personal experience, but I associate with varying different groups and types of people and it seems to me that an oddly large percentage of programmers I have encountered are "not nice" or for an attempt at a better definition: Condescending Snarky Negative in the way they talk about people If you have noticed the same thing, any theories as to why? Any suggestions on how to politely or not so politely let one of these programmers know how they are acting and suggest they correct it if they want to be perceived as professional one would want to work with? Or perhaps I've just come across a bad sample and there are bad seeds in every group of people one can name.

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  • What type of interview questions should you ask for "legacy" programmers?

    - by Marcus Swope
    We have recently been receiving lots of applicants for our open developer positions from people who I like to refer to as "legacy" programmers. I don't like the term "old" because it seems a little prejudiced (especially to HR!) and it doesn't accurately reflect what I mean. We are a company that does primarily .NET development using TDD in an Agile environment, we use Git as a source control system, we make heavy use of OSS tools and projects and we contribute to them as well, we have a strong bias towards adhering to strong Object-Oriented principles, SOLID, etc, etc, etc... Now, the normal list of questions that we ask doesn't really seem to apply to applicants that are fresh out of school, nor does it seem to apply to these "legacy" programmers. Here is how I (loosely) define a "legacy" programmer. Spent a significant amount of their career working almost exclusively with Assembly/Machine Languages. Primary accomplishments include work done with TANDEM systems. Has extensive experience with technologies like FoxPro and ColdFusion It's not that we somehow think that what we do is "better" than what they do, on the contrary, we respect these types of applicants and we are scared that we may be missing a good candidate. It is just very difficult to get a good read on someone who is essentially speaking a different language than you. To someone like this, it seems a little strange to ask a question like: What is the difference between an abstract class and an interface? Because, I would think that they would almost never know the answer or even what I'm talking about. However, I don't want to eliminate someone who could be a very good candidate in their own right and could be able to eventually learn the stuff that we do. But, I also don't want to just ask a bunch of behavioral questions, because I want to know about their technical background as well. Am I being too naive? Should "legacy" programmers like this already know about things like TDD, source control strategies, and best practices for object-oriented programming? If not, what questions should we ask to get a good representation about whether or not they are still able to learn them and be able to keep up in our fast-paced environment? EDIT: I'm not concerned with whether or not applicants that meet these criteria are in general capable or incapable, as I have already stated that I believe that they can be 100% capable. I am more interested in figuring out how to evaluate their talents, as I am having a hard time figuring out how to determine if they are an A+ "legacy" programmer or if they are a D- "legacy" programmer. I've worked with both.

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  • Where can I get feedback and support from other programmers in real time?

    - by cypherblue
    I used to work in an office surrounded by a large team of programmers where we all used the same languages and had different expertises. Now that I am on my own forming a startup at home, my productivity is suffering because I miss having people I can talk to for specific help, inspiration and reality checks when working on a coding problem. I don't have access to business incubators or shared (co-working) office spaces for startups so I need to chat with people virtually. Where can I go for real-time chat with other programmers and developers (currently I'm looking for people developing for the web, javascript and python) for live debugging and problem-solving of the tasks I am working on? And what other resources can I use to get fellow programmer support?

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  • How to tell whether your programmers are under-performing?

    - by A Team Lead
    I am a team lead with 5+ developers. I have a developer (let's call him A) who is a good programmer, who writes good clean, easy to understand code. However he is somewhat difficult to manage, and sometimes I wonder whether he is really under-performing or not. Our company requires the developers to indicate the work progress in the bug tracker we use, not so much as to monitor the programmers but to let the stackholders know the progress. The thing is, A only updates a task progress when it is done ( maybe 3 weeks after it is first worked on) and this leaves everyone wondering what is going on in the middle of the development week. He wouldn't change his habit despite repeated probing. ( It's OK, developers hate paperwork, I do, too) Recent 2-3 months he on leave quite often due to various events-- either he is sick, or have to attend a lot of personal events etc. ( It's OK, bad things happen in a string. It's just a coincidence) We define sprints, or roadmaps for each month. And in the beginning of the sprint, we will discuss the amount of work each of the developers have to do in a sprint and the developers get to set the amount of time they need for each task. He usually won't be able to complete all of them. (It's OK, the developers are regularly missing deadlines not due to their fault). If only one or two of the above events happen, I won't feel that A is under-performing, but they all happen together. So I have the feeling that A is under-performing and maybe-- God forbid--- slacking off. This is just a feeling based on my years of experience as programmer. But I could be wrong. It is notoriously hard to measure the work of a programmer, given that not all two tasks are alike, and there lacks a standard objective to measure the commitment of a programmer to your company. It is downright impossible to tell whether the programmer is doing his job or slacking off. All you can do, is to trust them-- yeah, trusting and giving them autonomy is the best way for programmers to work, I know that, so don't start a lecture on why you need to trust your programmers, thank you every much-- but if they abuse your trust, can you know? My question is, how can you tell whether your programmers are under-performing? Surely there are experience team leads who know better than me on this? Outcome: I've a straight talk with him regarding my perception on his performance. He was indignant when I suggested that I had the feeling that he wasn't performing at his best level. He felt that this was a completely unfair feeling. I then replied that this was my feeling and I didn't know whether my feeling was right or not. He would have none of this and ended the discussion immediately. Before he left he said that he "would try to give more to the company" in a very cold tone. I was taken aback by his reaction. I am sure that I offended him in some ways. Not too sure whether that was the right thing to do for me to be so frank with him, though. Extra notes: I hate micromanaging. So all that we have for our software process is Sprint ( where tasks get prioritized and assigned, and at the end of the month, a review of the amount of work done). Developers would require to update the tasks as they go along everyday. There is no standup meeting, or anything of the sort. Mainly because we have the freedom to work from home and everyone cherishes this freedom. Although I am the one who sets the deadline, but the developers will provide the estimate for each tasks and I will decide-- based on the estimate-- the tasks that go into a particular sprint. If they can't finish the tasks at the end of the sprint, I will push them to the next. So theoretically one can just do only 1 or 2 tasks during the whole sprint and then push the remaining 99 tasks to the next sprint and still he will be fine as long as justifies this-- in the form of daily work progress updates

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  • Do you accept counter offers when recruiting experienced programmers? [migrated]

    - by MathAttack
    It is VERY hard to find good experienced programmers. Generally if they're performing well, their employers don't want to let them go, and many don't have resumes, let alone resumes in circulation. Let's say you find one who for personal circumstances is available. And let's say you make them an offer that's fair within your salary structure. And let's say you get a modest counter. (5-10% of the total offer side) Do you accept the counter? Part of me says, "Programmers like this are so rare, why let a small sum get in the way of hiring them?" The other part says, "This precedent will set up an annual headache." Thoughts? I know it's not black and white.

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  • Are there any famous one-man-army programmers?

    - by DFectuoso
    Lately I have been learning of more and more programmers who think that if they were working alone, they would be faster and would deliver more quality. Usually that feeling is attached to a feeling that they do the best programming in their team and at the end of the day the idea is quite plausible. If they ARE doing the best programming, and worked alone (and more maybe) the final result would be a better piece of software. I know this idea would only work if you where enough passionate to work 24/7, on a deadline, and great discipline. So after considering the idea and trying to learn a little more, I wonder if there are famous one-man-army programmers that have delivered any (useful) software in the past?

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  • How do programmers work together on a project?

    - by Laith J
    Hello, I've always programmed alone, I'm still a student so I never programmed with anyone else, I haven't even used a version control system before. I'm working on a project now that requires knowledge of how programmers work together on a piece of software in a company. How is the software compiled? Is it from the version control system? Is it by individual programmers? Is it periodic? Is it when someone decides to build or something? Are there any tests that are done to make sure it "works"? Anything will do. Thanks.

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  • What are suitable performance indicators for programmers?

    - by Graphain
    Hi, I am wondering what performance indicators people encounter, and think are realistic, for programmers in the workplace? I've seen numerous articles (I can't recall a really good one that I read right now) that detail how programmers will optimise for the metric they are being measured by (whether that be lines of code etc.). However, is there any metric that can be used as a good performance indicator of a programmer in the workplace, and conversely be used as a milestone by a programmer when negotiating with management? Replies Thanks for the link to that one and good feedback so far!

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  • What is the ratio of Java programmers to C#.net programmers?

    - by Vaccano
    How many Java Programmers are there to every C# programmer? I have a coworker that says it was 3:1 (3 Java to 1 C#) but it is now more like 2:1 (2 java to 1 C#) Is this valid? Is there somewhere I could go for this info? Edit: This question needs to be a bit more limited in scope. I am referring to US programmers and those who would consider their career to be more focused in one side than the other. (If you are evenly balanced then you would cancel out.)

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