Recommondation: Cmdline Heroes Podcast Episode About 10x Coders

Roel M. Hogervorst

2020/09/15

If you are into podcasts and a bit interested in computing and its effect on the world, I would recommend command line heroes and the latest episode I listened to is really great: What kind of coder will you become. The hosts Saron and Clive investigate the myth of the 10X coder.

The 10X Coder is often positioned as a mythical developer who can always save the day. Saron and Clive investigate how much of that myth is grounded in truth.

popart picture of someone with headphones

They interview people who had rockstar programmers in their workplace and their effect on employees:

Greg Sadetsky argues that coding is much like professional sports—some athletes are bound to be much better than those starting out. Brianna Wu and Bonnie Eisenman pick apart the myth by sharing how much they have had to clean up after supposed 10X Coders. Jonathan Solórzano-Hamilton recounts the story of Rick, a self-proclaimed rockstar developer who assumed too much. And everyone considers the benefits of the 1X Coders—because what use is code without ideas and experiences to guide development?

I think this episode shows what happens when you let assholes into your company and how much they can mess up your work environment. At the end of the episode they talk about the kind of coders that really improve your workplace, the 1Xers. Some of those I have had the pleasure to work with.

I think their attributes are often that they’re the person that is actually the sort of careful, thoughtful developer, who instead of just thinking they can sort of accomplish this all in one sudden romantic evening of bashing out a prototype, is, like, “No, no, I want this thing to work and to scale and to be reliable. I want my code to be readable by other people because they know that coding is a team sport.” And so they are working much more patiently and carefully. They are talking all the time to everyone else on their team.So everyone knows what everyone else is doing when they write the code, it’s written for other people as well as the machine. So someone else can come in and read it later on. And they often have a really great sense of humor, they’re good to work with, they’re really good people. They’re humble about what they don’t know and eager to learn it.

And that is what I intent to become, a 1X coder, who writes code for people and with people.

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