Tuesday, February 2, 2010

6 Things I Want to Learn This Year

In the last few years I have found that software developers generally come in only three flavors:

1)The Rockstar:
In this case, I am not talking about the standard definition, I'm talking about the programmers who get by on talent alone. They come to a job and they know about as much as they are going to know. They may pick up a few tricks here and there, but they are good enough that they don't have to work at it.

2)The Jazz Man:
The Jazz man may not have been born with the most talent, but they never let that stop them. They continually work on their craft and try to be creative and inventive in everything they do.

3)The Pop Singer:
Everything they write is terrible and full of bugs. The UI may look nice on the outside, but on the inside, it's mayhem and confusion. This code will be impossible to maintain and they will usually only be around for a short period of time.

Since, I like to think of myself as a Jazz Man (programatically speaking), I decided that this year I was going to find 6 ways to become a better programmer. As a way of helping me along, I am going to blog about them as well. Along the way I will pass along the Websites I found useful (or not useful), the books I read, and some examples of the work I did.

While reading The Pragmatic Programmer , I came across a few ideas as to how I can become a better programmer and I decided that, every two months, I would actively try to take my knowledge of a subject to the next level. Here is my List:

January & February: Emacs
March & April: Bash Scripting
May & June :The LISP Programming Language
July & August : Regular Expressions
September & October : The C Programming Language
November & December : JavaScript

These are all tools/languages/ideas if which I have at least a fundamental knowledge. I am going to attempt to delve deeper and increase my comfortability with them in order to become a faster, more efficient programmer. This shouldn't be that difficult for me because I really do enjoy programming and I think that this will be a fun way to also help me reduce my addiction to TV!
Join me if you like, follow along and of course feel free to suggest some alternative methods/books/sites etc.