Coder, programmer or developer

Scratch headCoder, programmer or developer

Today I had a conversation with my Wife about the stuff I do at work. I was trying to explain what is my role. After few minutes I got into a pickle. Am I a coder, programmer, developer. Does all those terms mean different things or they all the same?

Taking a step back in my life I tried to analyze all those words according to what I was doing.

Coder

When I left university I was full of theory. Empty words and concepts that I never tried in life. I knew few programming languages and some technics. I had no experience how to deal with people though. Whenever I was in a conversation about next project, feature I was thinking only in technical terms. When I found something impossible to do (as I just never done it before), I said that it is impossible to do. These were old days, and I think I was a coder at that point in my life.

Programmer

When I started my first job, every simple task was a problem. I was asking a million questions all guys that were working there for long time. Needed guidance on everything. After a while I was capable to make some simple technical decisions and not ask anybody. This is when I still was in my little world of code and I didn’t care about reasons behind it.

Developer

This is few years after university. This is the moment when I stopped thinking about programming languages (they are just another tool) and focused on software as a whole. A big role in this was played by people from the company I work for at the moment (ThoughtWorks). As a developer I need to know what is the driver behind the need for feature/software. Why? I need to understand system as a whole, to make proper decisions. It is also possible that the feature or functionality is not really needed or hard (impossible) to implement.

So, coder, programmer, developer. This is how I believe I evolved through my technical life. The labels are still a labels but I find them very useful explaining or just understanding what I was doing.

I believe it is natural for next question to appear, what’s next?

We’ll see 😉

Greg

Year 2009 in a glance

FireworksThis is it. Year 2009 has gone. Other than actually new date in a calendar not much has changed. Still same old. I do hope though that new 2010 will be different. At least I will give it a credit of a doubt for the time being.

What happened to me and my family in 2009?

I spend 5 great months in Sydney, Australia. You can check back my blog to see some of the pictures. Good times in there. Meet lots of new interesting and less interesting people. I got exposure to new perspectives. My family has rested from UK and all UK related problems. Enjoyed nice weather and central Sydney location.

In a mean time when we were in the Oz land our house got totally flooded by water from the loft (water pipe burst in a freezing weather). It also turned out that insurance is not willing to pay us a single penny for that accident.

I tried to dry the house when I took a week off and got back to UK to rescue whatever was left from our house.

In May we returned to a horrible reality (after a week of awesome holidays in Bangkok, pictures also earlier on a blog). Had to settle back in a house that was a huge mess. Stinking and full of dump. All our savings went into repairs.

We are still fighting consequences of a flood but at least house is in a reasonable state now. We also need to buy some furniture (again), as old were rubbished by water.

While in Australia I was working on a .NET project for insurance company. I got my skills polished in JavaScript as well. I think I’m having a second thoughts about JavaScript after hating it for so long.

I spent some time developing F1 Dashboard web site. Formula 1 related site with news, images and videos. While I was developing it I learned and studied different platforms for cloud programming. F1 Dashboard is running on Google App Engine and is written in Groovy (oh, I learned Groovy as well).

After Australia when we came back to UK I didn’t have to much time to go deep into technology and experiment in free time. I got some time on a train to/from work that I devoted to reading. I got into literature about Lean software development (expect more blog entries in 2010 about that).

Bad weather in December ruined our plans of travel to Poland for Christmas holidays and we spent this time in UK.

So, for all of you who are waking up now, near the end of the post.

2009 was shit. I’m happy it is over. Entire year was full of clouds with rarely few sunny spells (metaphor). I hope 2010 will be better and I wish you ALL that it will be better for you.

So, happy new 2010 year and take care.

Greg

Ps. Oh, I forgot to mention recession and Michael Jackson.