What's this blog about?

The short answer, "Software and Professional Development".  Now for the long answer.  Over the years I have come to look at software development as a professional career  instead of  just a career.  The professional part is very important.  As many forward thinkers in software development have pointed out, the majority of people in the world use software in some way every day, yet we as software developers are not held to professional standards.  Most other technical careers such as civil, electrical, and mechanical, engineers have a professional society.  Doctors and lawyers are also held accountable for their actions by a professional society of their peers.  These professional societies were probably born of the pre-industrial revolution guild system.  This guild system, specifically the guild system of Europe, is where the title of this blog originated. We as software developers do not yet have a professional society to guide and regulate our actions, so it is up to each of us to be professional in our work.  So, "what is this blog about?", it's about software development and professional development.

What do I know about software and professional development?  I know a little.  I've been developing software for a living for well over a decade.  I've participated in every stage of the software life-cycle.  I've done cowboy coding one month and then transitioned to CMMI level 4 the next.  In the past few years I have become the unofficial mentor to some of the co-op, and junior developers where I work. In that time, I have discovered 2 things.  First, I like teaching.  Second, mentors are important.  Luckily I had 3 very good mentors, who were journeymen themselves, during my time as an apprentice.  I learned good and bad habits from my mentors, and have discovered the bad habits are just as educational as the good. From my experience a good mentor can make the transition from apprentice to journeyman an educational and fun experience.

The goal of my posts will be to help others in their quest to mold apprentices into journeymen, all the while trying to achieve master craftsman status myself. I'll post insight that I've gained from dealing with apprentices, as well as other journeymen and master craftsmen.  I don't have all the answers, but I'm going to try and find them.  Along the way, maybe we'll all learn something.

References

Interviews with Robert "Uncle Bob" Martin on Software Craftsmanship can be found here and here.